When it comes time to find a job in investment banking, there are a number of hurdles that may keep you from finding the best option. Unless you have in-roads with the likes of JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs or have an ivy league school on your resume, it may be somewhat difficult to break into even some of the smaller firms on wall street. Here are some pointers on getting prepped to finding the best investment banking job or internship.
First, make sure you are prepared to speak the language of finance and economics. Those who are actively hiring in mergers and acquisitions advisory and general investment banking who will want you to be able to dive deeply into spreadsheets. That means experience in financial modeling, including working in Microsoft Excel to create highly complicated financial models of potential transactions, including potential synergies between company buyer and sellers. Honing these skills is somewhat simple when you are able to get the proper training from online courses.
Second, be prepared to discuss how you are willing to work long hours. Many in investment banking spend 60 to 100 hours per week working in their fields. While these individuals are highly compensated, analysts in these fields typically do not last in those positions for more than a couple of years. It is a matter of putting in your time, but be prepared to work very long hours. There are several examples one can find from a simple search online of where investment banking analysts and associates speak of the rigors and difficulties of
Thirdly, it will be helpful to know the differences in administration between various functions of an investment bank. For instance, there are those that provide corporate exit planning for entrepreneurs, those that raise large amounts of capital in private and public offerings and those that advise on other various types of capital markets transactions. For most interns, their job will likely consist of analyst responsibilities, including the Excel modeling assistance referenced earlier. In any event, understanding the firm itself, how it operates and how the various function of the bank interact with one another will be paramount to your overall success.
Getting the right investment banking internship for the jumping-off point for your career will be one of the most important things you do. Many of the top investment banks are not only decreasing hiring, they are getting pickier in the types of employees they hire. Be sure you are amply prepared for the position as well as the interview that can help you land the position.