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.

Abby Manke headshot on abstract background.

Abby Manke

Vice President, Municipal Bonds Underwriter
Tenure at Baird: 11 years

  • What is a typical day like?

    I get to my desk around 7:00 a.m., since my job revolves around market hours. Every morning, the underwriting desk holds a call with the sales group to discuss what deals are on our calendar for the day. From there, we begin pricings and typically have them wrapped up by mid-afternoon. Throughout the day, we focus on what’s happening in the market, following economic and other news, keeping track of how deals are pricing, and monitoring trades that are happening. Every day is different, which keeps things interesting!

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

    I’m most productive when I’m in the office, so I try to spend a lot of time every week at my desk. But once I leave the office, I try to disconnect from work, which means at a certain point I resist the urge to check my email or log on from home. I also think it’s important to spend time away from work, so I make a point of taking time off when my schedule allows.

  • Did you imagine when you first started that you would be a leader in a male-dominated profession?

    Definitely not. When I began my career, I didn’t think I had enough knowledge to take a job in a revenue-generating business. But when I took the job at the underwriting desk, I found that asking questions and having the motivation to learn the business were the keys to succeeding.

  • Who inspires you, and why?

    I’m inspired by all women who bring their best every day and who are leaders in their respective businesses. Successful women are resilient and persistent. They are confident in their abilities but also recognize their mistakes and learn from them. There are so many women at Baird who inspire me, and I’ve been lucky to get to know many of them during my tenure.

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

    I personally haven’t experienced this at Baird, but I do think, because the industry has been male-dominated, women have had a harder time advancing. That said, I think the industry is making strides towards becoming more diverse. At one point in my career, I found I was no longer being challenged by the job I was doing. It took me some time to come to terms with the fact that I needed to make a change and find something better aligned with my goals and vision for my career path. I was fortunate to have a trusted female contact in the fixed income business, and she was a huge factor in my decision to leave my prior role.

  • What advice would you share with young women entering sales and trading?

    Don’t underestimate what you’re capable of. Be confident in your ability to succeed. Don’t be afraid to speak up. And don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. The worst that could happen is someone tells you “no.” If you don’t ask the question, you’re robbing yourself of the opportunity for someone to tell you “yes!”