Graduates of Global Distinction Part 2
Bobby Lok – BSc Accounting and Finance
Graduate Analyst at PwC London
Born in Hong Kong, raised in Kings Lynn and made in NBS/UEA
Bobby is the second in our series of Graduates of Global Distinction case studies and is certainly one to watch over the next five years. Securing a dream job is not easy even for a bright graduate. You will need to be resourceful like Bobby and need to show resilience and resolution by not letting set-backs get you down, instead you learn from them and come back even stronger.
Bobby was a semi-finalist in the 2015 University Business Challenge (UBC) and he was a fantastic ambassador for NBS. Bobby tells his story from the heart and concludes with some valuable top tips to students and recent graduates looking to secure their dream job.
With many thanks to Bobby for contributing the following to the NBS Blog:
After my graduation I went back to Hong Kong for 6 months to spend quality time with my family before work life began.
In April 2016, I started working at PwC and progressed through a development pathway which included a combination of client engagements, professional qualification study and PwC internal assurance/compliance training. Despite being specialised in the Business Services Industry I was allocated to companies of different industries, sizes and locations.
One of the most rewarding things about my current role would definitely be the level of exposure that I have had to clients of different sizes and industry. It ranges from auditing smaller subsidiaries to global PLCs. By working in a client facing role it is crucial for me to contact people that are essential for the work I am assigned to; sometimes it might include talking to CFOs/CEOs and Senior Executives. This is such a rewarding part of my role as these encounters do not simply allow me to meet these decision-making individuals but they are also opportunities for me to listen and comprehend the rationale and impact of their financial decisions.
In terms of job seeking before landing my role at PwC I used the UEA employability website to keep informed about careers events and opportunities. Ultimately as a soon-to-be fresh graduate I wanted to get into the bigger firms of the accountancy industry. I started to contact my high school and sixth form peers who were already working in prestigious financial institutions – I did this through LinkedIn and Facebook. As a result, my friend who was working at PwC Cambridge informed me of available vacancies for PwC nationally, which led me to apply.
Throughout my university life at UEA, I participated in different business competitions such as the nPower Energy Challenge and the University Business Challenge. I also worked part time as a Destination Survey Caller for UEA which involved contacting alumnus of all schools within the university. This led me to being more active on social networks such as LinkedIn as I learned just how effective social media is in improving my global business awareness and networking skills.
UBC Semi-Final in Regents College, London, 2015. Bobby is second from the right.
Through engaging in part time employment, networking via LinkedIn, keeping up to date with employability events and competing in competitions such as the University Business Challenge, I demonstrated to my current employer how I was a consistently proactive individual.
The reason why I chose to study at NBS/UEA was because of the sense of community within students compared to other universities. Everybody within NBS, both staff and students are so passionate about Norwich Business School. This is a similar culture to PwC where I am now an employee as everybody is passionate about the organisation that they are representing.
With regards to enterprise and employability I found that NBS encourages students to take part in projects, events and volunteering work outside of their degree.
To conclude, as an NBS Graduate I have 3 pieces of advice for undergraduate students:
- Learn from rejections and don’t give up. I applied for my current job 3 times in order to get an offer. Each time I was unsuccessful I learned from my mistakes and progressed further each time I re-applied.
- Get yourself out there through exposing yourself to different challenges and opportunities; a fuller CV is always more appealing to employers than an empty one.
- It is typical of an undergraduate to have a list of companies that they wish to work for however they often feel that they are not good enough for that company which results in them not applying and pursuing their dream. Don’t let this fear stop you – from my own experience and that of my university peers ‘you won’t know unless you try!’ so always give something a go!
Are you an NBS Graduate with a success story to tell? Maybe you have landed your dream job just like Bobby or started up your own business. Whatever you have done since graduating we would love to hear from you – Email your stories to firstname.lastname@example.org.