why do you want to do investment banking

The Question I see that you are an art history major (or any other non-business major) in college, so why investment banking / finance? This is a tricky question which tends to lead candidates down the wrong path if answered incorrectly. Many people enter the industry with the obvious intention of making a great deal of money and/or because of the myriad of exit opportunities. You want to be careful about being too honest in your answer. I am not saying lie, but you dont want to show your entire hand either. Poor answers to this question would be answers that somehow indicate you are going into the profession to earn large amounts of money or because you eventually want to go to business school/private equity/hedge funds. While all this may be true, you want the interviewer to think that you are committed to the industry even though he/she knows that more than likely youll be one of the Analysts that decides to leave after two years of service. As an interviewer, it is better to hear the reassuring answer rather than the brutally honest one even though the interviewer knows you are being political. Great answers to this question focus on skill-building, networking, and love for difficult challenges. You want to emphasize that being a non-business major you are excited to learn the complex accounting and finance skills involved on the job and eventually transform into an Analyst that has potential to significantly impact the group. You also want to relay that you are excited to build a large network of elite professionals (financial and industry) and are looking forward to pushing your limits from a work standpoint. You ultimately want to come off as a positive, go-getter type.


I do not regret majoring in art history. That said, my interests have evolved towards more analytically challenging pursuits. This past year, I have taken more
classes like computer science, economics, and accounting, and believe that investment banking is an exciting challenge that marries my interests in critical thinking and quantitative analysis. Specifically, banking interests me because it presents an opportunity to develop substantive analytical skills, while developing a close network of colleagues. While working long hours is scary to some, to me, it is in a strange way exciting. I have a very strong work ethic and I am excited to be involved in work that helps companies be better off strategically and financially. More Resources: Almost all investment banks and investment management companies will ask the question Why have you decided to apply to us?


AKA Why do you want to work for us? in online applications or at interview for graduate schemes or internships. To answer this question successfully, its not enough to demonstrate your interest in a banking or investment career and show youve done some research into the employer in question. You need to make a convincing case for why you would prefer to work for this particular bank rather than its competitors. There are unlikely to be many obvious, graduate-scheme-relevant differences between them, so it pays to plan ahead to discover those that do exist. Investment banking and investment management employers at the TARGETjobs Investment Banking and Investment Recruiters Forum stressed that an organisations culture is a key differentiating factor, and one that they would be keen to hear students cite as a reason for applying to them. Joanna Thompson, graduate recruitment and development partner at Citi, suggested that interactive media and interviews with senior staff online could be a useful starting point; however, all recruiters highlighted that theres no substitute for actually getting out there and meeting current employees face to face. Suitable opportunities include: Employer events, for example, Women in Investment Management, organised by Contacting alumni working for the relevant employer your university careers service may have a database of those willing to advise current students.


However big or small your chance to interact with employees is, do take the initiative and make the most of it. For example, banking and investment group Macquarie comments that many of the stronger applicants to the organisations graduate scheme have been those who had engaged with recruiters during the application process. Ask yourself whether you like the people you meet and whether you can see yourself being happy spending long hours working with them. Advice from recent graduates surveyed for the TARGETjobs Investment Banking and Investment Recent Graduate Survey includes: Apply to the place you liked the people the most and not just because of league tables; theres nothing worse than working long hours with people you do not get along with. Make sure you select the job that suits your personality and make sure you get along well with the team you are going to be working with. If you are genuine in your choices, this will come across in your applications and at interview. Have motivations for wanting the job that go beyond the salary. An overview of the banks size, history and other distinguishing features Its main divisions, and which ones it regards as its key strengths If relevant, the types of clients and products and the size of deals you could be working with Recent deals, news and events Current strategy and future direction.


TARGETjobs will help you with this research. Find one or two nuggets that particularly appeal to you or that tie in with previous interests or experiences. If you are particularly attracted to the organisations ownership structure or attitude towards risk, for example, this is relevant to mention and shows you have done your research. Or perhaps you have completed work experience with the types of clients you would be working with, or studied a relevant financial product in detail as part of your degree. Finally, dont forget to convince recruiters that youll be in it for more than the money. This does tend to be students main motivation for entering this career (as shown by the TARGETjobs Investment Banking and Investment Student Survey), but recruiters dont want to hear that this is your main driver. Instead, highlight what else you want to get out of the position, such as experience with a particular type of transaction or a step towards a long-term career goal. Follow us on Twitter.

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