Meet alumnus Sekou "CK" Soumaoro
MSC in economics
What is it like working in a bank? As a trainee at SEB Sekou is exploring the career, rotating within the bank. Through some good metaphors and proverbs he tells us all about working with FX Trading - and how LUSEM prepared him for that.
Being a trainee I have the opportunity to see and learn from the entire bank. The more I learn and see, the more I understand how it is to be Jon Snow (“You know nothing, Jon Snow), banking is vast.
Sekou, tell us about what you do today!
I’m a SEB International Trainee at FX trading. What it means? Well imagine yourself going to a market downtown where you wish to buy headphones, as cheap as possible of course. However the seller of the headphones wish to sell it with a profit. You come to an agreement and the headphones is yours, and your risk: they may malfunction, you might drop them and there is time decay. Basically your headphones is loosing value. Now you wish to sell the headphones on the same market place. Of course you wish to sell them with profit - again it’s your risk. Now you are the seller on the market and I bet there is a person out there willing to buy it - cheap.
This is something you do quite often in any market place, e.g. when you sell and buy furniture, clothes or stocks. The only difference is that I do this with Foreign Exchange (FX), to be exact I do FX Forwards, where the above story applies: buy cheap, sell high.
But don’t get carried away, I’m a trainee not a full blown trader, yet. Being a SEB international trainee, I’m assigned 1/3 to my home department, 1/3 to trainee activities and 1/3 to rotation within the bank.
But don’t get carried away, I’m a trainee not a full blown trader, yet. Being a SEB international trainee, I’m assigned 1/3 to my home department (my job), 1/3 to trainee activities (in-depth presentation of the bank) and 1/3 to rotation within the bank (yes, I can rotate within the bank and learn from other parts of the bank). Being a trainee I have the opportunity to see and learn from the entire bank. The more I learn and see, the more I understand how it is to be Jon Snow, (“You know nothing, Jon Snow), banking is vast.
Yes, it sounds awesome to be a trainee and yes, it is awesome. No I’m not advertising but you should apply when the opportunity presents itself, which is once a year during the fall.
Most of my teacher where adamant that I actually learned something. They challenged us, and without challenge I would remain the same - I wouldn’t excel.
What is the main reason you work with what you do?
There is this proverb that goes like “You should work with your hobby, because it will be fun”. I’m not quoting word for word, but you get the idea. It’s like doing a course you truly like, you feel an eagerness to study, a drive to excel, you’re having fun. Yes, I feel very lucky.
How did LUSEM prepare you for working life and your role as a trainee?
Academia is much different from the practical work life, i.e. the real world. However, to open a course book and read is not much different from opening a company report. Analyzing the process of a math formula is not much different to analyze the process of how the company makes profit, and so on.
LUSEM offered me the courses where I could do just these mentioned metaphors. Most of my teacher where adamant that I actually learned something. They challenged us, and without challenge I would remain the same - I wouldn’t excel. Furthermore, LUSEM attracts brilliant students, they are also a resource of learning as you are to them.
It's a marathon, not a sprint.
What do you prefer to do outside of work?
Like any human being I like to chill, hit the gym, do some cardio and spend quality time with family. Then there is football, I’m a Manchester United fan since 2006. More than that I like sports e.g. MMA, Boxing and American Football.
What advice would you give yourself if you started your studies now?
It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Tell us about your expectations for the future.
I’m an optimist, I expect to see more LUSEM people in Stockholm within the finance industry.