Meet our people: John Rae
I studied Physics at university, then initially went on to work for a large global investment bank. Part of my role there was speaking to investment management firms, and I quickly realised I wanted to be on the other side of the conversation. Initially, I joined the Client Administration department at Baillie Gifford, but decided I wanted to work more closely with the investment teams so moved to a Portfolio Implementation role. This experience cemented the idea that I wanted to become a Client Manager, so I applied for the programme.
Baillie Gifford aim to hire the best people but also recognise they may not want to stay in the same place for their whole career, so internal opportunities are made as accessible as possible. Hard work is recognised and there’s plenty of scope to explore different opportunities to progress. The Client Manager programme’s focus on continuous improvement really appealed to me.
There’s lots of autonomy in this role, especially with the flexible working available. At the moment my day might start with client calls in the morning, which I can choose to do from home if that suits me. Then I might do a couple of hours of learning before going into the office for my afternoon meetings. Typically, my work involves sourcing information for clients, sending emails, checking reports and writing commentary – it’s very varied. Your tasks will be led by the clients you work with, which means no one Client Manager role is the same. There’s plenty of time to find the right fit for you and I’m still in that process in my second year.
I’m currently on my second placement with one of the investment specialist teams. As I’m quite new to the team I still spend a lot of the day reading and getting up to speed with portfolio holdings and trends that are relevant to our clients. It took some time to realise that, when it comes to this role, reading and research is just as important as answering emails and dealing with client requests. It’s our job to give clients the most informed answers to their questions, so we need to keep up with what’s happening in the world.