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Settled in: Sarah Prokopp

16 Apr 2020

Settled in: Sarah ProkoppPeople & ideas at Deutsche Börse

In our "Settled in" series, our colleagues who have decided to start their careers at Deutsche Börse Group share their journeys with us. Next, Sarah Prokopp from Global Securities Financing Operations at Clearstream tells us about her experiences and personal milestones within the company.

Sarah Prokopp

What did you study and how did you end up at Clearstream?

In Mannheim, I studied German philology as well as Communication and Media Sciences during my bachelor's degree and continued the latter in my master's degree at the University of Trier. After graduating, I did an internship at Volkswagen in Wolfsburg, but shortly afterwards, I was drawn back to Trier because I really like the city. Like many fellow students, I decided to look for professional opportunities in neighbouring Luxembourg. During my studies, I developed a keen interest in sales and marketing, and I also enjoy being in contact with customers. Then I came across Clearstream and began a six-month internship in Sales and Relationship Management in April 2018.

What was your internship like and what opportunities came your way?

It was a challenging internship, not least because of the international environment and because I had never worked in the financial sector before. But I was welcomed with open arms; the people from my team as well as from other departments and locations were very helpful. I was quickly given responsibilities and gathered a lot of experience while supporting my team in different tasks, such as the coordination of client contracts. I was also in close contact with the Operations team, sending requests for new contracts, amendments or suspensions. It didn't take very long before I realised that the job of a sales relationship manager is very diverse, and I enjoyed working in this area very much.

When I finished my internship, I was luckily given the opportunity to work in Global Securities Financing Operations and thus continued my path with a focus on collateral management. This was a great benefit for me, as I was now able to deepen my knowledge of the operational background of our collateral management product offering. I have also come to appreciate the company's internationality: working in a multicultural team and getting in touch with other locations on a daily basis have definitely developed my language skills and even inspired me to take courses in French. 

What do you do now and what are important skills for your job?

My team takes care of the operational onboarding of new customers, but of course, we continue to support them afterwards, for instance if changes or new contracts arise. Besides the Sales & Relationship Management team, we work together closely with other departments such as the Product teams and IT. Another major task for my area is the generation of collateral baskets. Setting up a basket can be very challenging since we try to satisfy all wishes and criteria that meet the trading habits of our customers.

With respect to important skills, open and honest communication is key, not only within a team but also with other departments and our customers. It is best to be open towards new challenges and to work strategically. Operations is very process-oriented, so it is essential to structure your thoughts and continuously try to optimise your daily work.

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