Habits of Successful Investment Bankers

In this series of posts, we’re going to be examining the traits and habits of investment bankers and how they translate into a successful business and reputation. In this role, however, your responsibilities are much more significant, there is more at stake, and politics come into play. Therefore, a Bankers Professional Liability (BPL) policy can provide the necessary coverage needed to protect your daily operations. Read on to discover some of the top habits of successful investment bankers.

Be adaptable.

Different phases of your career require different personality traits. “At inception you need to fit in and be a team player, with a strong willingness to learn from all the big egos around you. Next you need to demonstrate a sharp commercial acumen and an innovators’ mindset. Create something unique. Finally, no successful investment banker, even in trading, was ultimately successful if they do not have an eye on the needs of clients. Once you make clients your friends you become less dispensable,” explains Graham Ward, the former head of equities at Goldman Sachs and now adjunct professor of leadership at INSEAD, to eFinancialCareers.

Know how to delegate.

Finding the right balance between teaching and doing is one of the biggest hurdles for senior investment bankers. While you spent your time climbing the ladders and proving you were more skilled than your predecessors, now is the time to share your knowledge and focus on delegating tasks for the benefit of the entire team.

Take risks.

Even the most diligent and goal-oriented banker cannot predict the future. Often, a master plan becomes unraveled. Rather than come apart at the seams, take the opportunities as they come. Taking risks is part of every industry, and investment banking is no exception.


Senior bankers are under more scrutiny about which elements of client interaction can strictly be categorized as work. Client relationships need to run deep, says Ziad Awad, a former Goldman Sachs and Bank of America Merrill Lynch managing director who now boutique bank Awad Capital. “And any investment banker who focuses on a single deal over long-term relationships with clients will not succeed. The key is not to be overly wedded to the idea of free weekends.”

About FGIB

Since 1983, Financial Guaranty Insurance Brokers has distinguished itself as a provider of Professional Liability, Cyber Liability, and Crime insurance products for financial entities. A BPL policy offers banks, their executives and employees coverage for alleged errors or omissions in professional services rendered to customers. Financial Guaranty Insurance Brokers (FGIB) can provide you with this policy and customize the coverages you require to address your operations and the services you offer. For more information about our products, we invite you to contact our experts today at (626) 793-3330.