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60 second interview with Wendy Piergolam, IQ-EQ

26 January 2021

April French Furnell

Citywealth spoke to Wendy Piergolam, Head of Client Development USA, IQ-EQ on finding her feet in a new role and cheering on fellow female high-achievers.  

Tell me about your role.

As IQ-EQ’s new Head of Client Development for the United States, my primary focus in on building relationships between the IQ-EQ group (including US-based subsidiary Blue River Partners) and the world’s leading fund managers, while also enhancing internal cross-sell and collaboration across the globe. Based in our New York office, I work closely with our international funds teams on strategies for building out and strengthening key global client relationships, but with a US slant.

Talk us through a typical day from the moment your alarm goes off…

I am definitely what you would call a morning person, and wake up relatively early. For the first 30 to 60 minutes of the day, I try to not look at my phone; it allows me to start my day with a clear head.

Prior to the Covid-19 outbreak, I would argue that every day looked very different, but nowadays to be honest it mostly consists of video meetings with colleagues, clients or prospects, both in the US and internationally, working on projects, ideas and pitches.

What challenges do your clients face and how are you helping your clients to overcome them?

Most of our clients have cross-border structures, and with the regulatory landscape constantly changing it can be rather complex for clients to achieve and retain compliance, especially as the requirements in different countries vary significantly. Being a trusted outsourcing partner that truly works in partnership with our clients, in a pro-active rather than reactive manner, is how we add value.

Our ability and experience working with investment managers to deliver services such as investor reporting, back-office solutions, operational support, IT infrastructure and regulatory compliance across each level of the client’s operations and in each relevant jurisdiction provides our clients with peace of mind and a level of time and cost efficiency that is invaluable.

Best and worst parts of your job?

The best part is the global scope. I get to meet and work with people from all walks of life, from very different backgrounds and cultures, but everyone is so bright in their own way.

As for the worst part, ironically I have to give the same answer – the global scope – as it can be non-stop if you’re not careful! We work so closely with our clients, it’s easy to become personally invested in the relationship and you want to go the extra mile, especially if the client is dealing with time-sensitive projects. So it definitely involves long hours at times.

Who do you most admire and why?

I would say strong women in general. That’s probably triggered because I work in such a male-dominated industry. I have worked for and with some incredible male colleagues who have genuinely supported me and taught me so much, but the more senior you become, you do often find yourself as one of the few, if not the only, female in meetings. That said, I do see a big shift in the industry, with companies focusing more and more on diversity and inclusion, which I applaud. But it always makes me proud when I meet women in senior positions and see my female friends achieve partnership or start their own companies.

If you weren’t in the wealth management industry, what else might you be doing?

I love what I do, but if I were to do something else, it would most likely be marketing and branding in a different industry.

 

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