Mirbahram graduated from the University of Oxford having studied Russian & European Studies and joined Baillie Gifford in 2018. He offers some incredible insight into the firm and his role.
I’m from Azerbaijan and have studied in Turkey, the Netherlands and the UK. I’m always looking to learn about different countries in political, social and economic senses. I first met Baillie Gifford at a careers fair at Oxford and they seemed to be a firm that was interested in people who are curious about the world. Baillie Gifford’s Investment Research programme attracts graduates from a wide variety of backgrounds, and that appealed to me.
I liked Edinburgh immediately – a mix of the Caucasus of Azerbaijan and the historical buildings of Oxford! I didn’t know anyone in Edinburgh when I relocated but had plenty of support with lunches, dinners with my fellow grads and advice on where to shop and rent a flat. I was able to ask lots of questions about the programme and help was there at every stage if I needed it.
A broad focus
Before Baillie Gifford, I had minimal exposure to financial services. But the work I’m doing here is surprisingly similar to academia. The bulk of my work is qualitative research – it’s about learning, building arguments and thinking about the future. So far on my placements, I’ve researched a wide range of companies – everything from self-driving trucks to vaccines. We’re working with other teams, sharing ideas and looking at opportunities across all industries and geographies.
Independence and autonomy
I am always challenged in my work and got a lot of responsibility early on. I was able to attend an industry conference just three months into my first placement and was responsible for interviewing a CEO and a number of senior managers over the phone – asking them about their companies’ strategies. You are trusted to represent the firm well when you meet different companies. Also, you are given independence in your research to choose your sources and methods.
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