'What it takes to be in the game,' according to this $4.3M UBS advisor

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This profile appeared earlier this year as part of On Wall Street's Top 40 Under 40. All details are as of Sept. 31, 2017. To see who else made the top 10, please click here.

From a young age, Keith Apton knew he wanted to work in finance. But it wasn't until college that he set upon the path that would lead to him becoming a UBS advisor.

“I was very fortunate to take a semester off at school to work for what ended up being the largest ESOP at the time,” says Apton, who was studying business administration at Virginia Tech at the time. With $4.3 million, he ranked No. 8 on On Wall Street's Top 40 Under 40.

Apton graduated in 2000 and in 2002 began working for Morgan Stanley, where he would spend the next seven years before moving to UBS in 2009. He knew difficulties were waiting for him in his chosen field, but those didn’t deter him from pushing forward.

“To build a business in this industry requires sacrifice,” Apton says. “You work harder I believe than many of your [generational] peers, longer hours, and you often make less…for a good three to five years, and that’s kind of what it takes to be in the game.”

Even 17 years into his career in the financial services industry, Apton is still working those long hours and traveling constantly for business.

Apton explains that when he started out his approach was typified by targeting scale and concentrating on centers of influence.

"I spent a lot of time developing good personal relationships with foundations,” he explains. “Getting to know who they were as human beings and having them get to know me.”

Developing trust and confidence with professionals that entrepreneurs were already working with would help generate a “warm introduction," Apton says.

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