Were you initially based in Botswana?
Yes, the first part of the programme was based entirely in Botswana. I had various rotations in the business, such as in transaction banking, then I spent some time in support functions - legal, compliance, and operations.
What was your next step after the grad programme finished?
The programme gives you access to different offices around the globe. Shortly after it, I received an offer from the New York office, which ultimately led to my move to the U.S.
Was it in an area you’d experienced as part of your rotation or was it something brand new?
I did have experience of it in Botswana, but on a much smaller scale. It’s challenging to match somewhere like New York when it comes to the complexity and volume of the transactions.
Are you still in the same area now?
I’d like to consider myself a trade finance expert now. I’m currently sitting in a more expanded role responsible for global trade finance solutions for our consumer healthcare and retail clients.
What was it like moving to NY and experiencing Standard Chartered in a completely different setting?
It was a sensory overload! I was hungry to explore the world and be a part of something bigger. I think that hunger perhaps overshadowed the realistic expectations of moving from Gaborone, a city of about 200,000 people, to working in a metro like New York.
I remember looking for apartments and learning that most of them don’t come with any furniture, which is very different from how rentals work in Botswana. And the cost of everything. People talk about how London and NY are expensive, but as a young professional, I was like, ‘what is going on here?!’
From a work perspective, I was suddenly taking calls from clients at brand names that I’d only ever seen on TV. It was a thrill, but it also made me realise what kind of financial and economic market I’d placed myself in. It’s a whole different world and very exciting.