Spotlight on Fixed Income Capital Markets

We believe providing the best service to our clients starts with hiring the best bankers and associates. We invite you to learn more about our leaders within Fixed Income Capital Markets.

Alex Ketner photo

Alex Ketner
Managing Director, Fixed Income Institutional Sales and Trading
Tenure at Baird: 13 years

  • What is a typical day like?

    I usually wake up around 5:30 a.m., work out before the kids are awake and get ready for work, making sure all four are up by 6:45 for school. I log into Bloomberg mobile in case anyone needs me, drop the kids off and make it to the office around 8:00. I then catch up on email and the market, send out inventories and start working on any buy/sell interest that came up since yesterday. Throughout the day I’ll reach out to my customers to see what they are looking for and come up with ideas where Baird can line up with them on trades. I’ll usually have to go back to Bloomberg mobile by 5:30 p.m. to go coach soccer practice for my U8 and U10 girls’ teams. My husband or I will make dinner, then it’s time to help the kids with homework and get everyone to bed by 9:00.

  • When you began your career, did you ever imagine that you would be a leader in a field traditionally led by men?

    I was never intimated by working in a male-dominated profession – I grew up the only girl in a family of six kids! Being the second oldest and a leader among my five brothers has certainly contributed to my success and confidence in this industry.

  • What challenges have you encountered in your career?

    I’ve worked for bosses who do not have families and don't understand the many hats a working mother wears. I’ve had supervisors email or call at 7 p.m. when I’m super busy with homework and getting the kids to bed. I am always available for an immediate work need, but if it’s something that can wait until the next day, I’d rather they respect my family time.

  • Do women in your field have a hard time advancing in their career?

    I think women who don’t have a solid support network at work think their only option when they have kids is to leave the workforce. I’ve had co-workers who supported me through every pregnancy and maternity leave. They also help cover if I ever need to take a kid to the doctor or want to watch them perform in a school event – and I in turn am more than happy to do the same for them.

  • What attributes do you see in successful women?

    In my world of sales, the ability to successfully multitask is crucial to success. At any given moment I might be on the phone with a customer, corresponding with a trader and eyeing any news or market movements that might impact a trade. I also think a willingness to be open and responsive to constructive criticism is beneficial. We can all become better at what we do.

  • What advice would you share with young women entering the banking profession?

    Don’t try to be someone you’re not in an effort to fit in. Be confident in who you are and don’t lose your identity along the way. There is room for all personalities in any business. What you bring to the table is valuable and unique – make sure you keep it that way.

    I also think it’s important to remember that it takes a village – don’t be afraid to ask for help. Have enough trust in your teammates to rely on them when you need it, and be there for them when they need help.

  • At Baird we value work-life balance. What do you do to achieve that balance in your own life?

    I try to bring the best of myself to both work and life by segmenting the day into “me time,” “family time” and “work time.” In doing so, I can give 100% of myself to each part of my life, which leaves me feeling fulfilled and hopefully those around me happy too.