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JULIAN POON

JULIAN POON

Graduate Analyst, Hong Kong

Societe Generale offers a two-year Graduate Program to final year university students and recent graduates to kick off their career. During the two-year program, an intensive and comprehensive talent management approach will be adopted to develop the candidate’s skills and professional expertise. After successful completion of the program, graduates will be on track for more responsibilities and career opportunities. They will be integrated into a specific team within the bank which corresponds the best with their profile. Julian Poon joined the program in 2018 in Hong Kong in the Natural Resources Financing team and shares his experience.

''I felt really privileged to work with my teammates, everyone is approachable regardless of their seniority. '' 

What are your career aspirations and how do you think the program helped launch your career? 

My career goal has always been to work in banking, maximize my learnings and develop my related expertise. I was looking for the chance to get involved in interesting transactions from an early stage in my career. I wanted to meet amazing people and further broaden my horizon, as I believed this would be rewarding and beneficial to my career.

The job rotations enable me to understand the different products the Bank offers, develop my knowledge, and understand my own strengths and weaknesses. At the same time, the Buddy & Mentor program allows me to meet people from different teams and gain more insights on career development.

How did you get into the program? How was your onboarding experience?

The application process included online tests and several rounds of interviews. I was impressed by the networking events during the assessment day as it really gave candidates a better understanding about the Bank and its various lines of businesses. The pre-joining events provided a smooth transition for me from college to the workplace. There were also job-shadowing sessions which enabled me to get a sense of the daily workflow so I could get myself prepared before joining the Bank.

What is it like to be working at Societe Generale?

Societe Generale is a “People-oriented” company which emphasizes on building a strong team spirit. I felt really privileged to work with my teammates, everyone is approachable regardless of their seniority. My colleagues are from diverse backgrounds and there are opportunities to meet other people on the floor and our interactions are insightful. I also enjoy my life as a Societe Generale employee, I have been joining staff club activities and the touch rugby tournament organized by the firm. These activities can really revitalize you after a long day of work. 

What have you learnt in the program so far? 

Throughout the program, the Bank has arranged a variety of classroom trainings and workshops to get us better equipped for the job, including financial analysis, technical and soft skills. The exposure is excellent. I got placed in the Natural Resources team and have ample opportunities to work on interesting transactions. Not long after joining the team, I already got placed on live deals and I was required to perform various analysis and financial modeling. Through these tasks, I constantly received feedback and support from the team.