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Christoffer went from Intern to Associate – could be you! Apply before 18 Nov.

13-11-2020 09:00

Interested in joining our summer internship in Stockholm? That's how Christoffer boosted his career - learn how, and why to apply for an internship.

Christoffer, who earned a Master in Finance from Lund University School of Economics & Management, kick-started his career with an internship at Nordea.

Christoffer Ström works as an Associate in Investment Banking, covering the Leveraged Debt Capital Markets. In his role, he advises companies in raising debt and hybrid capital and works closely with the firm’s other Investment Banking teams, Sales and Trading divisions, issuers and fund managers. Christoffer has been with Nordea for nearly four years now, during which time he has worked on some of the recent most significant transactions in Investment Banking.

Prior to his current role, Christoffer worked as analyst in the Debt Capital Markets department. Before that, and what made his career take-off, was an internship within Nordea Leverage Finance, where he as intern helped private-equity firms evaluate opportunities and investments in various portfolio companies.

Over the years, Christoffer has also dedicated time to numerous talent initiatives, including his active role in the Investment Banking recruiting team for Debt Capital Markets, Debt Structuring and Debt Syndicate. Conclusively, as former intern and now fully employed as associate, Christoffer has deep hands-on experience about our internship, career opportunities and work life in general at Nordea and Investment Banking in particular. Here are some insight and advise from Christoffer.

Why should students apply to our internship positions?

You will work in a every day challenging environment where you are expected to be innovative and creative in a pan-Nordic setting. An internship within investment banking offers high performing individuals a steep learning curve where you will be surrounded with junior analysts and seasoned veterans that are immensely smart, insightful and who are the best at what they do. The tasks will be diverse and demanding and you will be rewarded for your hard work and commitment through the development of a competitive skill set and a unique experience that you will be able to benefit from throughout your career whether in investment banking or elsewhere.

What type of work do you do as an intern in your team?

You will join a team that works together, across hierarchy or title, to deliver first-class service to our clients. Interns will be exposed to large intricated transactions and be challenged to be strategic, analytical and technical, often all in the same day. Key responsibilities for interns could include assisting with preparation of presentations for clients, investors, and the broader investment community. Assisting senior team members with origination of new business, including identification of target opportunities by creating M&A financing models, gathering market data to analyse trends, investors’ sentiment and market outlooks.

What are the key attributes you look for?

I’m always looking for people with a passion for the industry and interest in what makes companies succeed with an underlying interest in business and finance. We spend a lot of time talking to investors and to the corporate client to find the optimal solution, thus analytical skills coupled with great communication skills are important. Never be afraid to take initiative to move to the next level.

At Nordea, we encourage even the most junior members of the team to participate and speak up and never hesitate to step up and take on a larger role. I try to look beyond the candidate’s technical skills. Even if we are product experts, in a career in banking you will spend a lot of time with clients so it helps to be multidimensional. Many conversations move beyond the specifics of the deal, and having something to say about your outside interests (travel, volunteer work, sports, etc.) creates a personal connection and can help de-stress the pressure of the deal.

What distinguishes a great intern?

Be innovative and creative – I encourage people to not be a “no” person, there is a solution to almost any problem, so “no” should never be the immediate, default answer. Ask the right questions and designing a solution that allows for a “yes”. We want you to be dedicated, ambitious and willing to learn. I am a big believer in delegating tasks to team members to challenge them and stretch their capabilities as an opportunity to showcase their skills, as well as build on them. At times, things can be very busy at the desk so great interns perform well under pressure and against tight deadlines.

Recommendations on how to succeed and make the most out of an internship and succeed at Nordea?

Be committed to excellence in your work and maintain high professional and ethical standards and be a proven team player. Do not be afraid to manage a wide range of responsibilities at the same time. Carve out time to take people in the firm to lunch or coffee to get to know Nordea. It’s a way for you to build relationships across divisions and the organisation. If someone reaches out to me, I’m going to help and so will everyone else, no matter the hierarchy or title. At Nordea, you get the opportunity to develop an extensive network across the region, both among other financial institutions and with our customers and don’t forget to stay connected even after you internship.

From your experience, can an internship at Nordea be a door-opener to a job at Nordea?

There will always be positions for good candidates. Every year we hire excellent candidates as analysts, graduates and offer part-time student positions, across the Nordics. If you’re eager to learn about the world of finance and get some hands-on experience, I’d definitely encourage students to apply for an internship with us, where you’ll be part of the action in Investment Banking and feel the dynamic atmosphere at Nordea Markets trading floor.

For inspiration and more insight, meet some of our previous summer interns in Markets e.g. in 2020 – read their blogs here. You can also have a look at blogs from former interns, and now fully employed with us; Emelie Jonsson and Hanna Lönnqvist, currently working in Investment Banking Advisory and Derivatives Coverage, respectively. They will let you in on how to utilise the window of career opportunities – and reveal what makes at great intern along with other useful information which can help you kick-start your career with us!

Also, have a look at some of our many other blogs posts by previous interns, students and graduates sharing their experiences working at Nordea.

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