Heads up, financial analyst! This article is far from an instruction manual with foolproof tips on how to achieve success in a few steps. In fact, we intend to enumerate important reflections on the topic for you to achieve a high performance in the face of the demands of the current market.
For you who are interested in the career and want to know more about what a financial analyst does, we have separated a complete guide.
Know that you are the biggest and perhaps the only one responsible for your career. Therefore, it is not smart to let other people or circumstances decide in your place what needs to be done. This is the number one lesson for successful professionals.
But, after all, what makes a financial analyst? What are the duties of this professional? How to grow in your career? Do not worry if these questions hammer your head, as they also permeate the minds of high-performance professionals, who find challenges to be overcome during their daily activities.
To answer the questions above, it is necessary to reflect on the main obstacles that hinder your career growth.
What does a financial analyst do?
The duties of the financial analyst, are many and encompass fundamental activities for the development of a company, regardless of its size, time in the market or segment.
Without this professional, your business may lose the opportunity to study the quality and financial stability of any projects and loans. In addition, you will not have an assertive indication of whether or not to perform certain actions with your customers.
Check out some of the activities of the financial analyst:
- Organize accounts payable and receivable;
- Conduct the transfer of assets and closing the company’s books correctly;
- Carry out billing from customers and payments to suppliers;
- Analyze all financial operations of the company;
- Define indicators that can reveal operational problems;
- Develop calendars and procedures to measure and disclose the company’s results;
- Simulate and identify any problems and opportunities to improve the company’s economic and financial performance;
- Monitor performance and cash flow forecasts;
- Identify and correct occasional distortions;
- Prepare and present strategic projections and simulations that can anticipate the company’s results;
- Calculate and analyze the costs of the company’s products and, when possible, reduce them;
- Create actions to improve profits;
- Prepare economic feasibility studies for the product, which is nothing more than analyzing whether the company will have the expected return, taking into account the costs and investment time;
- Diagnose the company’s financial condition;
- Make strategic financial decisions based on the results of the diagnosis made;
- Research and suggest reliable sources and opportunities for financing.
Each company can define the set of activities of its financial analyst. However, the professional can act on all the fronts listed above.
What does a financial analyst need to know?
Keep in mind that the financial area has an impact on all sectors of a company and, therefore, requires accuracy, technical mastery and a lot of versatility to understand and deal with corporate demands.
However, given the high volume of work, the financial analyst you can be an expert in operational activities, but leave something to be desired in terms of management.
Another frequent complaint is related to the difficulty of finding tools that best meet the needs that are characteristic of the finance segment.
Implement a financial management software it can optimize the work of the employee and expand the results of the sector. However, many professionals do not understand how and how important technology can be and thus do not need a work tool that can make a difference in the optimization of processes.
Qualifications and specializations for the financial analyst
A financial analyst needs to know, too, that the lack of continuing education can be a major hindrance in your life. This is one of the main points of how to grow in your career: staying in constant development and training.
Graduation is essential, but to grow in this area some specific certificates are required. Meet some of them:
In addition to the certificates mentioned above, specializations in Business Management or Finance are also highly recommended for the financial analyst.
Heads up: do not confuse financial analyst with financial assistant.
The financial assistant helps in setting up the database and creating content for the sector. The financial analyst job description, according to Catho, is to plan, manage and analyze a company’s financial resources. In order to circumvent the difficulties and achieve the success of the financial sector, we have separated some valuable tips.
7 tips for growing a financial analyst career
1. Master the work tools
Among the duties of the financial analyst is the need to know in depth the main tools used in the area. The domain of software such as Excel and other data analysis programs are essential for the delivery of “beans and rice” in the financial segment.
Using the tools, it is possible to generate financial reports that must be read and interpreted by the analyst. The conclusions need to be communicated clearly, so that assertive decisions, which contribute to the company’s success, can be considered.
2. Understand beyond numbers
The numbers are revealing and it is not for nothing, because great ideas and projects can arise from reports. However, it is essential to translate what they say. Much of what could be used in favor of the company is lost due to a lack of zeal and attention with the information contained in documents.
It is also necessary to align the data presented in reports related to the strategies, objectives and business management, in order to guarantee work that generates highly positive and efficient results. After all, the financial analyst is also a business professional.
3. Take risks
As difficult as it is to leave the comfort zone, if you are looking to grow in your career, you will have to propose solutions that may or may not work.
Therefore, the recommendation is to analyze the situation objectively and rationally to avoid misunderstandings that damage your career and reputation. In the corporate world, risk management must be performed. Therefore, decisions are made based on several variables that indicate great chances of success.
4. Anticipate changes
More than delivering efficient solutions, it is part of the activities of the financial analyst to anticipate scenarios that are to come.
Therefore, it is essential to be well informed about:
- The reality of the company as a whole;
- External factors related to the macroeconomic environment;
- Government regulations;
- Competitors’ strategies.
The professional who has the ability to see ahead is able to prepare the company for changes, which will certainly increase your opportunities for growth.
5. Invest in feedbacks for better performance
The importance of continuous or structured feedback in the corporate world it is indisputable.
In addition to correcting possible flaws in the execution of tasks, posture and even behavior, listening to the feedback yours leader, from a colleague or from the client is an important way to search for an ever better performance.
One of the characteristics inherent to a successful professional is the relentless need to improve their working methods in order to achieve excellent results.
6. Focus on your reputation
It is not about worrying about what people think of you, nor about believing that, in order to get along, you have to please everyone all the time, within the business world. However, the perception that the other has about you matters, especially if your goal is to move up the ranks, in a certain company or area.
Just a wrong look at your image and some opportunities can be lost. So be careful with your reputation both professionally and personally within the company.
7. Know a second language
Working in a multinational company or even a national one that negotiates with different countries, almost always requires the employee to speak a second language.
Investing in knowledge of languages can even be considered differential in certain companies. Therefore, the financial analyst who seeks to grow in their careers should consider learning one or more foreign languages, if they speak only their native language.
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