businessman hike on the peak of rocks mountain at sunset
Currently employed at Union National Bank, one of the leading banking institutions in the United Arab Emirates, senior executive Subhash Rajapakse marks his 18th year in accounting and corporate banking.

SubhashDespite being an executive in the banking and accomplished in his field, Subhash had his work cut out for him as he pushed his way through to achieve his CFA distinction.

Like many in his position, he accomplished this by being organized. He set a tight and disciplined schedule for himself and a feasible study plan. “Planning and sticking to that plan is the most important thing,” he says. “I am not saying that you need to have a very strict written plan, which may not be possible given other commitments, but at least you need to have a broad idea of what you’d like to achieve and when.”

Remember What Matters

One of Subhash’s valuable tips involves making sure you balance your work, family and other personal activities while pursuing your study. “Your family is the most important thing,” he says. “Give time to them so that they will support your study plan. Of course, work pays your bills, so you must continue to build your career. And finally,” he adds, “Never get into a shell. You have to still fit in what you like to do most in your life, like exercise, travel, socializing …”

In order to squeeze it all into a busy life, Subhash set aside specific time slots for studying. These included two weekday morning hours and four hours per day on the weekends. His study habits also include the use of a variety of materials. “I used Kaplan for Levels 1 and 2, and though I completed both on my first sitting, the study text was not very helpful,”  he confesses. “I had to rely mostly on the CFA text which is lengthy.”

But for Level 3, Subhash had a different result. “I used another test prep provider in the first sitting of Level 3 and failed.”

The setback surprised and disappointed him. So, before retaking the exam, he did a little research: “It was then that I discovered the Wiley material.”

Be Totally Comfortable

Preparing to retake the exam, Subhash read the Wiley text related to the specific area and completed the online review questions. If he didn’t score over 70% during his review, he would repeat the process. “It’s imperative that you are 100% comfortable in all areas,” he says. For Subhash, switching to Wiley made all the difference, and he passed the Level 3 exam on his subsequent try.

“I took the CFA as a challenge and managed to complete it,” says Subhash, who also holds a handful of other degrees and certifications as part of his ascent up the career ladder. “But to do it and do it effectively you need to have a proper plan and execute it. I must say it is a change in your lifestyle for the next two to four years, so be ready, and don’t try to cram for the exams! You need proper study time, and especially good study material or else you will fail, which is both a waste of time and money.”

Are You Ready to Conquer the CFA Exam? 

As Subhash learned, Wiley’s CFA Exam Review materials feature the very best CFA exam prep materials on the market. Our Platinum and Gold Courses feature the very best instruction and explanation, including in-depth video lectures, professional mentoring and weekly virtual classes with top CFA instructors, Peter Olinto, Basit Shajani, Darren Degraaf. They can and will make all the difference in your test prep – and we’re so confident, should you need it, you won’t ever need to pay twice to pass once! With our Partner Until You Pass Guarantee all updates and upgrades are free until you pass. It’s the best guarantee in the industry.

Studied with another provider and need to re-sit a level? Wiley offers a 50% re-take discount to help get you back on track.