It comes as no surprise that most people think of finance and Wall Street synonymously. Landing a job on Wall Street is instantly associated with professional success – and for good reason.
However, there’s an entire world of finance that’s often less talked about outside of Wall Street. If you’re willing to venture beyond the brand name, you can find a successful, happy and lucrative career in finance elsewhere. Check out these alternative options for jobs off of Wall Street.
1. Other Major (and not so major) Cities
While New York City is known as the financial center of the world, there are many other major cities in which you can cultivate your finance career. Even if your heart was set on working for a bulge bracket bank, many have offices outside of New York as well as internationally.
According to the Global Financial Centres Index, Boston, San Francisco and Washington D.C. rank among the top ten financial centers in the world with ratings of 709, 711 and 712 respectively.
Cities like Nashville have experienced tremendous job growth in the finance sector.
Additionally, the fastest growth of jobs in the financial sector has recently been documented in many smaller, lesser-known cities. Phoenix, San Antonio, and Nashville all experienced financial employment growth in the last few years, plus they boast warm weather and more affordable housing and standard of living costs.
There are also great opportunities beyond the United States borders. London, Hong Kong, Zurich and Toronto all ranked highly in the Global Financial Centres Index and are just as much global financial powerhouses as New York City.
Recently, there has been a lot of buzz around financial tech companies. These startups, often referred to as “FinTech”, are companies which develop and bring innovative technological solutions to areas such as banking and corporate finance. FinTech companies have developed products ranging from mobile banking apps to online trading platforms to offer new financial models in a rapidly evolving marketplace.
These companies have even begun poaching some of Wall Street’s best talent. Some of the top banks have taken notice and, in an attempt to retain their employees, have implemented new workplace policies, including more personal time and a more relaxed dress code. It’s undeniable that the new and shiny perks FinTech offers rival the customary benefits of Wall Street.
3. Your Own Startup
The traditional career path is quickly changing as technology and entrepreneurship have shifted the landscape of the finance industry. For those pursuing a finance career, there are more options than ever before.
Over the past few years, more boutique investment banks, private equity firms and hedge funds have been cropping up and giving the bulge brackets a run for their money. Though you would still need extensive experience before going out on your own, starting your own firm is a great option for industry veterans looking to change things up.
If you’re not too keen on staying within the finance borders, there are plenty of opportunities to start your own firm outside of the industry. Financial media, for example, is becoming increasingly popular as finance professionals no longer want just news, but extensive opinions on the state of the market.
The finance world is big and constantly evolving – don’t feel limited to Wall Street just because of its reputation. Explore other options and don’t be afraid to try something different. Success in finance is all about creating the right opportunities for you, not just about the location.