Midway through his MBA, Farhan joined the banking sector. Now, he is well into a successful career that he credits to Deakin.
Interview with Richard Carr
Can you tell us about your time at Deakin? Is there anything you especially remember?
My time at Deakin was nothing short of roller coaster ride. I first arrived at Deakin in 2008 for my diploma of commerce from MIBT, which was at time affiliated with Deakin. My first year was a mix of really good and hard time. It was the first time I was living abroad and I knew nothing about Australian culture, lifestyle and people. However, Deakin accepted me with arms wide open and I was loved, mentored and advised whenever I needed. It’s safe to say the time I spent at Deakin was the best time of my life. I particularly remember this one instance where one of our group assignment members backed out and left me and other group members to dry. We all went to the campus and pulled an all-nighter to finish the assignment. We were so tired and were expecting a bad score however we end up acing the assignment.
What has been your journey since finishing your course? Briefly outline your career path prior to your current role.
I was in the middle of my MBA when I was offered a place at ANZ banking group in their mortgage department. I was specialising in Risk Management and Insurance, and was naturally inclined towards a risk and insurance role. My boss at ANZ was understanding enough to put me through a mentorship program at the ANZ risk department. That’s where I put my foot into the field of Risk management. After finishing my MBA, I went back to my Pakistan where I was offered a role at one of the big four banks of Pakistan as Senior Risk Associate. The knowledge and expertise I gained during my MBA made me a perfect Risk Management expert. Risk management frameworks were in the implementation process in Pakistan by the regulatory bank during 2015. I was approached by the biggest bank of Pakistan to work as Risk Architect for their Microfinance division. I was made the youngest Assistant Vice President in the history of the bank in 2015. I developed and implemented the Risk framework for the whole bank. In 2017 I received an offer from a Telco based bank to join their team as Manager Corporate Investments. I had no exposure of Corporate Investments and had a long discussion with my mentor who convinced me to increase my exposure and take the role. I took on the role and have proven to be successful so far. I have start to enjoy my new role and there is much more to learn in this field.
What has been the biggest influence on your career?
- The challenging nature of the line of work
- My mentor (Ahan Dimplous)
Have you always wanted to pursue the kind of career you have embarked on? If so, when and how did you realise?
Yes I love my job, this is exactly where I wanted to be at this time. I realised this at the end of 2018 when I successfully completed all the tasks assigned to me at my new role and exceeded the expectations of the management.
What advice would you give graduates wanting to pursue a similar profession?
Banking is a wonderful career with so much to learn. It can take you places. Give time to your profession try to enjoy it in any way possible always learn new things and motivate yourself. Never be afraid of asking for help. If you are enjoying your work you are already half successful.
What do you believe Deakin University has shown you/given you as a person?
I owe my career to Deakin. Deakin has given me so much knowledge, it has polished my skills and it has taught me how to be the best of me.
What are your passions outside your work?
I am into running, golf and competitive cycling. I am a sponsored rider by my work and among the very few people who have ridden on KKH in the Gilgit Baltistan region. That is one the highest altitude race in the world.
How would someone describe you?
Generous to a fault.
Is there any advice you would give to a person who is starting out in your career?
Set your goals, ask for guidance, ask for help and never stop asking questions.