Blog: One year in pensions

Today marks somewhat of a special anniversary for me as it is one year to the day that I began my journey into the pensions industry as a news reporter for Pensions Age.

The past year has been a bit of a whirlwind for me from jumping into a crash course of pension terms, covering pension conferences, a historic rise in the gilt market, three pension ministers in the same year, the death of the sitting monarch, and huge strikes from many different industries over pension conditions.

However, amidst all the breaking news and flashy headlines, I have over these past 12 months been trying to build up an understanding of pensions and get to grips with this new industry in which I find myself, something that has, at some points, appeared to be quite a difficult prospect.

One of the things that struck me the most when I first started was how rich and varied the pensions industry was in terms of knowledge and information and just how little of it I knew or understood.

It was quite intimidating initially when, on my first day, I was hit with a barrage of technical terms, foreign acronyms and strange concepts, all of which were crucial to my job.

Being expected to understand all these new ideas did seem quite difficult at the start but, after a year with exposure to pension concepts, I have developed a greater understanding and a richer appreciation for all aspects of the pension industry.

However, this is not something that I was expected to achieve on my own as I was provided with a number of helpful resources to assist me in getting to grips with pensions knowledge with one resource in particular being more helpful than others.

The most important resource I have had available to me over my first 12 months has been the help from the people that I have met, not just the people on the Pensions Age team, but also the professionals from across the entire industry.

Everyone I have met since starting has been very helpful, incredibly understanding, very generous with their time and always more than happy to assist in whatever way they can.

I have got the impression that people in the industry have so much passion about pensions that they are happy to explain the topics any chance they can , something that has really endeared me to the industry as a whole and has, far and away, been the most encouraging aspect of my journey into pensions.

Aside from just being helpful, I was also surprised to see just how close knit everyone working in pensions was.

Looking from the outside in, I assumed that the pension industry was so large and vast that it would be almost impossible to develop a friendly relationship with the majority of industry members, but I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the industry felt very personal and close and that everyone knew each other and would stop at social events to chat and catch up.

My first year in pensions has certainly been an experience for me, far richer and more positive than I could have ever expected this time last year and whilst it has had its difficulties, I can think of no better industry to be spending my 2023; bring on the next year!

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