5 successful women at Morgan Stanley share their best career advice

Wall Street has not traditionally been a woman’s world.

At the senior level, women make up only 20% to 35% of executives on the Street.

But there are women who have made it, and they can serve as valuable resources for others hoping to build careers in finance.

Morgan Stanley spoke to a handful of its senior women and published their best pieces of advice in a recent blog post.

Here’s what some of those women had to say.

You don't always have to say 'yes' -- not even to opportunities offered to you.

Morgan Stanley
Celeste Mellet Brown

'Don't miss out on potentially fantastic roles or jobs by thinking that you need to follow a particular career path. But don't say 'yes' to every opportunity that's offered to you either. Make sure you have someone you trust, who can help you think through opportunities as they come up.'

Celeste Mellet Brown -- Managing Director, Corporate Treasurer

Stop apologizing.

Morgan Stanley
Katy Zhao

'When I first started my career, I used to be apprehensive about voicing my opinions, so I'd often apologise for giving them. My boss told me I should never apologise for being myself, and that advice has been transformative.'

Katy Zhao -- Vice President, Investment Products & Services, Wealth Management

There are 3 things you're going to need.

Morgan Stanley
Wei Sun Christianson

'First, you need to have a dream; second an idea of what your goal is and third, passion. Obviously having the skill set and working hard are important, but if you don't have a dream and a goal, then don't be surprised when you don't get there. And if you don't fill your dream with passion, then you can become disheartened about your career choice during the tough times. And there are always tough times in a cyclical business like finance.'

Wei Sun Christianson -- CEO Morgan Stanley China, Co-CEO Morgan Stanley Asia Pacific

Be honest.

Morgan Stanley
Yuki Hashimoto

'When I got my first management position nearly 15 years ago, my global manager said to remember, 'Transparency and honesty are key to managing relationships and gaining trust from people. And it's harder than you think.' It's true. It's incredibly hard sometimes to deliver a message you know someone is not going to like, but in the long run, it really pays off to be as transparent about a situation as you can be.'

Yuki Hashimoto -- Managing Director, Head of Fixed Income, Japan

Network with people outside of your usual circle.

Morgan Stanley
Jessica Alsford

'It's incredibly beneficial to your career to broaden your network outside your immediate team. If you build relationships with colleagues in other teams or divisions, it will give you a support network you can turn to for career advice. I think that having a good network can also help you do your job better, because you are better connected to the wider business.'

Jessica Alsford, Executive Director, Head of Sustainable+Responsible Investment, Equity Research

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