building their confidence,” says Carla Harris, managing director of global capital markets at Morgan Stanley. “I used the tools that I learned watching him as I went forward in my career.”
Shawn D. Baldwin, chairman and CEO of Capital Management Group (No. 10 on the BE INVESTMENT BANKS list with $10.8 billion in total managed issues) was inspired by McGuire’s acumen. “Most bankers have to call legal if they have this idea for a transaction, because they don’t know the legal ramifications. He already knows the legal ramifications because he’s such a good lawyer,” says Baldwin. “So it speeds up his ability to get a deal done. He’s able to simplify and streamline a transaction faster than most other bankers on the Street.”
William Wright, a managing director at Morgan Stanley who worked with Lewis at the financial services giant, is grateful for the pearls of wisdom provided by the veteran. “Bill was very much a mentor, very much someone who gave you career advice and guidance,” Wright says. “You could go into his office at any time and he’d help you sort things out. Working on a deal with him wasn’t merely about doing the transaction; he was trying to teach you how to do more and take on more responsibility on the deal.”
LEWIS: LEADING OTHERS TO THE STREET
For Lewis, it’s not about the fancy cars, lavish lifestyle, and all the things that money can buy. Despite his wealth, he remains modest and is reluctant to discuss his deals and accomplishments. What motivates him is the knowledge that he is a role model to younger people in the industry. He doesn’t shun that responsibility; he embraces it. One of his goals is to see more African Americans involved in the fin
ancial markets. In addition to providing sage wisdom, he lead
s by example, for instance, by pushing for the creation of scholarship programs for students at historically black colleges and universities who are interested in working on Wall Street.
Lewis says that one of the barriers keeping African Americans from the financial markets is lack of exposure at an early age. “If the first time you’ve really heard about investment banking is many african americans on wall street have lewis to thank for their success.
when you are a junior or senior in college, the game is sort of over because the vast, vast majority of the kids have heard about investment banking — my kids have heard about investment banking — since they were babies,” says Lewis. To that end, he travels to schools such as Spelman College, Morehouse College, and Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University. “We put programs in place that allowed us to identify kids when they are sophomores so that by the time they were seniors they had worked on Wall Street, they had heard the lingo.”
Lewis’ advice is often no-nonsense. There’s little hand-holding — there’s no time for that in the fast-paced world of finance. But the golden rule is simple: get the results and you’ll excel. “You either got the