Well here I am, at it again giving back my two cents for the whole dollar I got from this great website.
A few people know my background and for those who do not; here is the Reader's Digest version.
I am a former business owner who lost his business thanks to the small business credit freeze back in 2009. Watching the news and the bailout buzz made me realize I was in the wrong business. So I took to the big city in search of a better education, got me an internship at a BB from some connections I have and wound up dropping out of school because finance is not rocket surgery, I met an investment banker who took me under his wing. He came out of retirement after his wife took him to the cleaners with a divorce.
Working at a small shop of about 60 people I learned the ins and outs of this great wonderful world of adding salt and pepper to valuations of growth companies looking for money and then presenting said companies to the so called "buy-side". I saw four deals go to fruition of which only two of the companies actually have a chance of some day becoming a great blue chip company which I will tell my grandchildren how I was the BSD who took the company where it is today!
After getting to see how much the sales & trading division monkeys are making I decided to make the jump to the S&T business. With my Engineering background I became an Ideal candidate (any @$$hole could do what I do as the software is really the one doing the work). I have gone head to head with the biggest names on the street trading treasury bonds leveraged out of the wazzooooo (do I see 8 zeros?) to only take a few tics here and there (made a ton and lost more than you will ever see in your bank account).
So here I am this week Interviewing with three of the biggest names on the street for a VP position in Asset Management. I will tell you how to get to where I am today taking the less traveled road and bending all of the rules which those who came before me set forth.
Is that YOU DO NOT TALK ABOUT FIGHT CLUB!
Move to New York ASAP (or a major financial hub) you will not get anywhere behind a computer in east hackachaweea, Iowa.
Get a job at a bank I don't give a crap if you start out as a teller, the fact of the matter is that you need an income if you move to NYC to live on and get out there and network your ass off which leads me to ..
Network your life away, Join match.com and date finance girls (girls will always be willing to help and pass your resume along as long as you pipe them right), go to networking events (you will meet idiots most of the time but you never know, roll deep with girls when you go to a club and TRADE those girls against a banker contact (I've gotten bankers laid and it has helped my career in ways you can not imagine. Go to wine tasting events and meet people if you have a network of high net worth people it makes things easier.
Always be honest. Do not lie to people on what you do people as they will remember you for being genuine.Tell them your story and what you want to accomplish, people will respect the fact that you left your inbreeding family back in Iowa to fulfill your dream of being a BSD on Wall Street. (Always ask for a business card and to stay in touch)
If you can not get into the Big leagues in your first try perhaps you should do what I did and go into a MM bank or a no name bank with a decent workforce. I have read about many people here who go for the no salary let me suck some bankers penis and hope someday he will pay me option. DEMAND A SALARY! IF THEY CAN'T PAY YOU ONE Daddy in Iowa will whoop you.
RULE #7 (One of the most important)
Be humble, be ruthless and never let anyone talk down to you.
Remember... STEVE JOBS was a college drop out and he didn't know shit about computers (except for some basic electronics). Capitalize on other people and their talents. Be an outgoing individual and always make people smile. It will come back to you in Spades.