Profile of Success: Chanel Soto, Associate, TD Securities

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve been forced to overcome when climbing the corporate ladder? Hear from Chanel on why it’s scary to finally have “the reins” on your career, why it’s necessary to be vocal about it and more!

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Chanel Soto, Associate, TD Securities

Question: As someone who has been involved in the stock broker fixed income space for a few years, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced in the space and how have you adjusted to them?
A: My biggest challenge was learning to take control of my career. No one knows your goals and aspirations better then yourself but it is scary to have the reins, begin taking risks, and holding yourself accountable. I think the key is to have open communication, ask questions, and seek advice from those around you. As you progress in your career having mentors and sponsors can help you make smarter decisions and navigate unforeseen challenges.

Question: What is some advice you would give to women to help them advance in their careers?
A: Be vocal about your career. A mentor once told me career women need to be hardworking, smart, and twice as vocal as men in order to receive equal recognition, and I believe there is some truth in that statement. From my experience women are less likely to self-promote, which is essential to career advancement. It is important to own your career trajectory, and sharing successes with managers or vocalizing interest in a new position is the first step.

Question: What have been key elements to your own personal success?
A: I grew up in a single parent household and my mom instilled in my sister and I that that success is the intersection of passion, persistence, and hard work. From my early teens until college I earned spending money by working in a restaurant and learned the importance of that principle first hand as well as other valuable stills. One lesson from waiting tables that stuck with me was that hard work will get you far, but a positive attitude will take you miles.

Question: What are some steps that need to be taken to get more women in financial services?
A: Early introductions to financial career options many help increase the number of women seeking a position in sales and trading. I wasn’t exposed to finance until my third year of university, and as a result I had a steep learning curing curve when I joined the industry. Raising awareness of the different careers, as well as having successful women in the industry, could potentially lead to more young women to enroll in programs that would deepen their financial skill set. Through my university I mentor incoming freshmen and recommend they explore a variety of traditionally male-dominated fields in case they learn they have a passion for something new.

Question: What trends are currently affecting the financial service industry?
A: One of the biggest trends in the financial industry are regulation overhauls. Everyone wants a safe and fair market place but regulations can create liquidity crunches and impact investment decisions in more ways than one. Several regulations were rolled out in a low yielding environment so it will be interesting to see their effects when rates return to normal levels.

Question: How has your involvement in the FWA benefited your own life?
A: I am a new FWA member, but have heard great things from other women. I believe organizations like FWA help make a large industry smaller, which creates a community for people to learn and grow. I am excited to join this large network of successful women and look forward to getting more involved in the future.

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