What was your first job in financial services?
My first role in financial services was based in Boston working for Fidelity Investments in the mid 80’s as an accountant and then later as a consultant. In the mid 90’s, I provided consultancy support to Fidelity’s business in the UK and Europe and this eventually led to me joining Fidelity Worldwide Investment in 1994.
Working as a consultant early on in my career was an invaluable experience as it provided me with an opportunity to work across a variety of business areas and geographies and helped me to develop an early understanding as to how the company and the industry operate.
What is your current role?
I am responsible for managing the FundsNetwork business and supporting platform services in the UK. The business objective is to provide advisers with access to industry leading products and services and involves supporting more than 20,000 advisers.
What are you most looking forward to in your new role?
The industry is undergoing an unprecedented level of regulatory change and I’m excited about being involved in the business at such a critical time. At times like this, our clients need help in navigating through the plethora of changes and I am absolutely passionate about customer service – I want to make FundsNetwork the place where it is easiest for advisers and clients to do business. I am very keen to get on the road and talk to advisers to understand how we can further support them and their businesses.
What is your career ambition?
I like to focus on the task at hand rather than get distracted by looking out too far into the future. I have been extremely fortunate to have had numerous opportunities over the years and tend to believe that good things come to those who deliver in their current roles.
What is the highlight of your career to date?
Without question, the most enjoyable part of my career has been that my family and I have had the opportunity to live and work in seven different countries across the US, Asia, Europe and now the UK. My son was born in Bermuda whilst my wife and I were living there on assignment and my daughter was born in Hong Kong.
In addition to living in different countries, I have also had the opportunity to have a wide variety of different roles. I have thoroughly enjoyed gaining exposure to different cultures and an understanding of how our industry operates across the globe. I am often asked which country was my favourite. The truth is all of them have had their challenges and all of them have produced very fond memories.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to someone starting out in the industry today?
It is an extremely competitive world out there. Get your foot in the door and quickly demonstrate your work ethic and willingness to get involved in things outside of your direct line of responsibilities. Honesty and integrity rule the day. Do not be afraid to close your eyes, jump and accept new challenges. I have moved countries seven times and do not have any regrets.
Pat Shea is head of FundsNetwork