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A new Bank of America MD was once a welder who lost a finger

One of Bank of America's new managing directors has an amazing backstory. 

Bobby Previti, Bank of America's London-based head of sovereign, supranational and agency trading, started his career in a very different industry.

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“I went from being a steel welder, who lost a finger in a work accident,” Previti said in a social media three years ago, to “working at Morgan Stanley.”

How did he achieve this? In a separate post, Previti detailed his career trajectory as follows:

At 15 I pushed shopping carts at a supermarket.
At 16 I flipped burgers at McDonalds
At 17 a welder apprentice who had a work accident that changed my path.
At 21 I started Uni, worked as a cleaner in a school from 6am-8am and at McDonalds from 4pm-midnight to pay for it.
My grandfather passed and I took a year out.
At 24 I became a father.
At 25 I started my first Masters
At 31 I had worked as a trader, in sales and finished a second masters.
By 37 I was a VP and trader in a great institution.

“I crossed the creek to get water,” Previti added. After his welding injury, he attended Oxford University (and the London School of Economics) and worked a variety of markets roles in Denmark and Germany before settling for Morgan Stanley in London. At Morgan Stanley, he worked on the SSA and covered bonds trading desk before joining Bank of America in 2021. 

Managing directors at Bank of America earn salaries alone in excess of $350k. Having arrived in his role from a background very different to most in that position, Previti has spent the past few years mentoring students interested in banking jobs. We didn't speak to him for this article, but writing on his social media account he says success takes determination and persistence. 

"A good first step is to define what success looks like to you (not to others!), picture a roadmap of how to achieve it and determine when an ambition has been met," writes Previti. "Then, split things up into smaller steps on the path to reaching the end game. By breaking it up into steps, it increases your chances of success as the steps themselves become “mini” successes."

Previti says integrity, sacrifice, positivity, humility, ambition all helped him get where he is today. He also thinks that more students should consider careers in trading, which has a low profile compared to investment banking: "Trading has become so much more than “buy low and sell high”. To be a successful trader is as much about building relationships and a franchise as anything else."

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AUTHORSarah Butcher and Zeno Toulon Insider Comment
  • co
    13 December 2023

    I love this; what A resilient and determined individual. Remarkable journey of perseverance and achievement

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