Advice from Jason Savarese, Securities Division

17 SEP 2019

Jason Savarese, co-chief operating officer in our Securities Division in New York, shares five pieces of advice that he would give his younger self:

1. You can – and will – influence outcomes. Start with the truth that if you’re being asked to attend a meeting, then your perspective is valued – with that as a baseline, be an active participant and contribute to the topic at hand. View each meeting as an opportunity to make an impact, and remember that the more involved you get, the greater the chances are for successful outcomes. 

2. Operate as an honest broker. Every day, you’ll need to make a countless number of decisions at work, and some will be more straightforward than others. What you’ll find most helpful is to create a principles-driven framework (e.g., always have a “firm-first” mindset) that can guide you towards reaching measured decisions in situations that are a little bit opaque. That way, you can avoid letting emotions cloud your judgment, and stay objective as a result. 

3. There’s value in a good post-mortem. Mistakes happen, and when they do, it can be a daunting experience. Doing a post-mortem after completing a project or launching a new initiative is an excellent way to simultaneously take a step back and reflect on what could have gone better or differently, while taking accountability for changes that you want to make. When you look at it that way, mistakes aren’t just good learning moments, they’re also opportunities to demonstrate your abilities and show you can pivot. 

4. Opportunities come in many forms. Managing your career means having the flexibility to change your goals over time. Sometimes, the job in which you experience your greatest success may not have been on your initial roadmap. For example, when I moved  into trading, at the time, I felt like I had reached a significant career goal. Who knew that this journey would ultimately lead to being promoted, not in a trading seat, but as co-chief operating officer of the Securities Division! So develop a plan, but be open to the path.

5. Invest in meaningful relationships for the long-term. You will have the opportunity to engage with many smart and accomplished people during your career. Take the time to establish and maintain relationships. You never know when you might need to rely on the expertise of someone in your network, or when you might be considered for a new position based on your prior experiences working with those individuals.