Be prepared and push yourself: My Hong Kong internship

As part of his Great Global Adventure, Will Moore learned the ins and outs of asset management at AXA Investment Managers, Hong Kong. Before he started his internship we asked him a few questions about what he was looking forward to, and with only a week left to go, we caught up with him again to see if it all lived up to his expectations. So, how did he find the experience of working in another country and at AXA for the first time? Let’s find out. ALL NEWS  |  Early Careers
Nov 4, 2015

On Preparation

Before the internship:

Asia is made up of a collection of fast growing frontier economies. I’m really looking forward to working with a team focused on these markets and the investment opportunities that they present for clients.
I’ve been in touch with the team I will be joining in Hong Kong and have a good idea of what to expect; lots of morning meetings, tight deadlines, an exponential learning curve and a tremendous amount of fun.
I’ve also been keeping a breadth of the markets, especially trends that are affecting Asia such as the recent share slump caused by fears of China’s economic slow-down which has reverberated in share markets around the world.

So has it lived up to your expectations?

Definitely, I’ve had the opportunity to work with different teams, to get an overview of investing within Asia and to see how the different departments interact with each other.
People have been really kind to me and taken the time to explain things clearly which is crucial when facing new challenges. I think my enthusiasm helps as well, I’ve embraced every new task given to me.
If anyone reading this is thinking of doing an internship, I’d say do as much research into the firm, the industry and current affairs as possible, it will really help. And then network and be proactive while you’re there.

On working abroad

Graduates Hong Kong
Hong Kong Team

Before the internship:

I’m incredibly excited to be working in a different country. Everyone has to think globally, we have to see ourselves as global citizens as new markets emerge and new opportunities arise. To understand different cultural customs and discover new ways of investing: from bitcoin to crowdfunding.
It’s highly likely in my career that I’ll work in many different countries within the same organisation, rotating in different offices. It gives you a whole range of transferable skills and a new way of seeing things. I’m a firm believer in local knowledge, global reach.

And how have you found working in Hong Kong?

I’ve loved every second of it. There’s a lot of energy and it’s a real fusion of different cultures. People are industrious and motivated and very family orientated which is a perfect mix.
The main difference is that Hong Kong is a city that never sleeps, but people are as welcoming and engaging as I have them found them to be in the France and UK teams.
I’ve learnt to be agile and to be prepared to face unexpected challenges. But it is also important to allow yourself to have down time. My apartment was opposite a basketball court which was fantastic because I could go and play sport, relax and meet local people. When you’re working hard you mustn’t forget to switch off and to have some fun!