Meet Faye Woodhead, Global Head of Employer Brand, Graduate Recruitment and Training at Deutsche Bank. Hear about her daily life at DB and how she ended up where she is today. Find out what she learned from previous mistakes and get her personal advice on how to to succeed in a role in finance.
What does your current job entail? Is there such a thing as a typical day?
There is no typical day – although many take on a similar shape. I am responsible for Deutsche Bank’s Graduate Programmes, including developing the franchise strategy around junior talent, recruiting, training and development of interns, graduates and post graduates. I am also responsible for Deutsche Bank’s Employer Brand, which is about articulating the story of our people and culture so that others can see the many opportunities we offer as an employer.
No matter what the day, I always make it home for bath time! I have two young children and maintaining a healthy balance is important to me. I try to set that example for my team as well.
What is the best part of your job?
The people I work with, and how much I learn every single day. I have worked at Deutsche Bank for 13 years and there is not a day that goes by without me being impressed by something I learn. In general, I am immensely proud of all we achieve and the impact we make both internally and externally. The creativity and support for the graduate programmes at Deutsche Bank is incredible and I have tremendous support from my manager, my mentor and my team.
What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it?
I started on a temporary contract on the Graduate Recruitment team of a well-known US Investment Bank in London, in July 1997, straight out of university. In January 1998, I was offered a permanent contract, and stayed for a further three years, coordinating campus relations across UK and Europe. I had other work in between, and finally in 2004 I moved to Deutsche Bank.
What words of wisdom you find most valuable?
From my manager: “Let people make mistakes in a controlled environment. As you get more senior ask more questions and listen more.” From my learnings: “Create a vision and a purpose, and teams will feel engaged and empowered.” And from Madeleine Albright: “There is a special place in hell for women who don't help other women.”
What is one mistake you made along the way and what did you learn from it?
Not asking for help when I needed it, and not admitting a mistake when I made it. Never cover up a mistake, always ask for help and learn from everything you do.
What has been the most memorable moment of your career thus far?
Six weeks after joining Deutsche Bank, I got to travel around India for 10 days. I had never been to India before, so it was an unforgettable experience, and an experience I was fortunate enough to have two to three times a year for the next five years. Also, one of the highlights of every year for me is the first day of our Global Orientation as part of the Deutsche Bank Graduate Programme. Seeing the entire global graduate class come together and sensing their excitement and energy at the very start of their careers is just tremendous.
What do you look for when considering hiring someone?
Energy, positivity, a willingness to learn, curiosity, integrity and the desire to make a difference.
What is your favorite aspect of the Deutsche Bank Internship Programme?
Recruitment is one of the most important things we do, so seeing the business embrace and develop the interns is so rewarding. Also seeing our interns grow their network, learn and ultimately be identified as someone we want to stay with us as a permanent employee is just so exciting – for us and for them!
What advice would you give to a 20-something looking to start in finance?
Keep an open mind, try new things and don’t be afraid to make mistakes (just don’t hide them). Also, ask questions, find a mentor (or two, or even three) from inside your work environment as well as outside. Above all else, have fun and enjoy what you do!
What's the one thing that stands out to you the most in a CV?
Something other than academics: maybe you’ve had a positive impact in the community, you’re part of a network or you’ve had life experiences like traveling, volunteering, learning a new skill. This shows that you’re curious and this will set you apart.
Interested in the programme that Faye described? Looking to grow your potential and make an impact? Then click here to learn more about the Deutsche Bank Internship Programme! Whether your passion lies in banking, technology or human resources, there’s a place for you here to find a lasting career. It’s your time to shine, so choose Deutsche Bank to get your start.