Why Wall Street Attracts Philanthropists, Politicians, And Other Professionals

When someone exits Wall Street for an unlikely job, it usually makes headlines.

Vijay Brihmadesam is one of the best examples. He reportedly left a “cushy finance job at a private equity firm” to go work on the food assembly line at a local Chipotle. The reason: he dreamed of starting his own restaurant but wanted to gain firsthand experience before taking the plunge.

Brihmadesam’s story is not the norm. In fact, Wall Street seems to attract more people than it loses.

Paul Goldschmidt, a 25-year-old first baseman for the Arizona Diamondbacks, has planned to get a “real job” for a long time. He currently earns several million a year playing baseball, but he is looking into an off-season finance training program. He told Bloomberg that he would happily take on an internship, even if it was only for a day.

David Petraeus took a job with Kohlberg Kravis Roberts after resigning from the CIA last year. He now serves as the chairman of KKR Global Institute, the company’s newest division.

Tracy Postert, a young Wall Street exec, used the once-popular Occupy Wall Street protests to her advantage. Though she may have appeared to be part of the crowd while spending half her time with protesters in New York City, she went there to get the attention of prospective employers. In time, her unique strategy paid off.

Two years ago Business Insider published a story about 29 people who went from Wall Street to Washington and then back to Wall Street.

Why is Wall Street so appealing to so many different people?

More often than not, it’s the money.

For example, Jason Trigg (an MIT computer science graduate) plans to give away as much of his money as humanly possible. The more he makes, the more he can give away. Thus, he came to Wall Street to earn more and to share more.

Lucky for Trigg and others like him, layoffs no longer dominate Wall Street employment news.

“Business profits seem to be doing pretty well, which I think is a really good sign,” Larry Freed, President and CEO of ForeSee, told StreetID. “I don’t know that it’s translating down to the individual consumers as fast or as much as we need. But you have companies, when they look at their year-over-year comps, they’re actually doing pretty well.”

Freed, who previously served as the Chief Technology Officer of Bank One and held several senior positions at Compuware, said that slow growth on Wall Street is “not necessarily a bad thing because it can usually be sustained for a longer period.”

“We’re not getting the great job growth that we usually get in the recovery,” said Freed. “It’s much more measured growth. But things are definitely improving.”

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These days, job seekers have a million options, but we know where they should turn: StreetID. We built StreetID (a financial career matchmaking website) from the ground up to accommodate Wall Street’s growing community of financial professionals. In good times and in bad, current job seekers and those looking to move on in the future can turn to StreetID and sign up for a free account and make a direct connection with relevant candidates and employers.

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