Cecilia Carlsson, BMO Wealth Management
IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Cecilia Carlsson, senior portfolio manager, BMO Wealth Management.
What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?
The most rewarding part of my job is meeting with my clients at BMO Wealth Management and being able to see how I can help them attain both their short- and long-term goals. I have over 20-plus years of experience within the investment industry, so I enjoy being able to apply my skills and expertise within a different area, counseling high-net-worth clients and their families on the unique challenges and opportunities that come with growing and protecting personal wealth and building a legacy.
Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?
A person who I look up to within business as well as finance is Ann Miletti. She was the co-portfolio manager I first started working under when I started within the investment industry 20-plus years ago. Within a field that is mostly male dominated, it was wonderful to have a successful female role model.
What has been the high point of your career so far?
The high point of my career has been the wonderful people I have gotten a chance to work with as well as meet. I have been fortunate to work with not only some very smart people but also some very generous and kind people as well. In my prior positions, I have had the opportunity to meet with C-suite-level executives as well as some interesting investment personalities. I look forward to all the wonderful people I will get a chance to meet and get to know in my new position at BMO!
Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give your 21-year-old self?
The piece of advice I would give my 21-year-old self is that your hard work will pay off. My first job out of college was within the trading operations area. It was a wonderful gateway into learning how an institutional trading desk worked and the different parties that are involved when executing and processing a trade. However, it was not a great fit for me. It was a job I was able to learn quickly and didn’t provide the challenges that I craved. I started to study for my CFA (certified financial analyst) license, and with a little bit of time I was able to attain an investment research associate position within the firm. From there, my career has progressed to where it is today!
What would you say are the best things about living and working in Dane County?
I appreciate the ability to live in a city that offers a great restaurant and entertainment scene for its size, while at the same time offering easy access to outdoor activities. My family and I enjoy the outdoors very much and love having the ability to go hiking, boating, running, skiing, and biking in very close proximity to where we live. At the same time, we also appreciate a night out at a good restaurant or getting a chance to see a sporting event or a musical.
Do you have any secret talents or abilities that people would be surprised to discover?
If you don’t know me from before, you might be surprised to learn that I am bilingual. I was born in Sweden and lived there until I was 9 years old. As a result, I am both fluent in English and Swedish. I am now trying to teach my two young daughters the language and will hopefully keep the bilingual tradition going in my family!
What are your guilty pleasures?
My guilty pleasure is watching HGTV. One of my hobbies is interior design and I absolutely love watching their shows!
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