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Moderator Note (Andy): Best of WSO - this post originally went up 3/31/2009 and we thought it deserved to go back on the homepage for those who may have never seen it.

How about a thread where we post some of the worst mistakes we've made in interviews, or perhaps an interview that just went REALLY badly for you.

For a Goldman internship back in college, the interviewers asked me to tell them about myself. This was one of my first interviews so I was very inexperienced, and I was pretty nervous. I didn't know where to begin, so I panicked and ended up giving them my life story, from where I was born all the way to college. The rest of the interview was very harsh and they really grilled me on every single thing on my resume. It was more like an interrogation than an interview. It was a typical stress interview, and I ended up finishing it with a headache, and clothes drenched with sweat. I didn't get called back.

Interview Coming Up? Be Prepared.

Comments (160)

  • senior88's picture

    Citi S&T. Didn't care for the interview, already got offer, hated Citi, got interviewed by some scrawny 22 year old analyst or temp hire who had no idea what he was doing. He asked me a bunch of quant questions which I did well on but then I bombed the next few. He then asked me about myself and I made up this entire story about how I love Habitat for Humanity and worked for hundreds of hours planting trees and handing out resumes to the homeless in order to register them for jobs. I didn't get a call back but it was probably due to bombing the problem sets, not because of the b.s.

  • SAC's picture

    UBS Summer Analyst interview in San Fran. I had one of my alums gunning for me and managed to screw up one of the interviews really badly. It was an associate and analyst interviewing me and they asked me a question about something on my resume. I can't remember what it was but I had worked with an actuarial science professor, and had basically put some of that stuff on my resume without fully understanding what it was. I rambled on for like 5 mins bumbling through some haphazard explanation. The look on their face was priceless.
    Needless to say, I didn't get a callback. I did have fun in SF though so the trip wasn't a total waste.

  • MoneyKingdom's picture

    I had a FT first round interview with GS Merchant Banking. I always welcomed the technical questions because I knew all of the answers...except to these.

    The guy asked me "So what is a current ratio and what does it tell us?"

    I was like, "CA/CL and it tells us if the firm can convert its short-term assets to cash and cover its liabilities for the next period.."

    He said "Good. Ok, I have a company that is a great company and it has had a current ratio under 1 for a long-time, how are they doing this?

    Then I fucked up the answer and the correct response was because they kept no inventory (service firm, and they had minimal A/R's)

    So my ass was a little sore, but then he gave me pen and paper and asked me to unlever beta (which I fucked up on) then he asked me "So which beta would be larger unlevered or levered? I said unlevered.

    Needless to say I do not work for Goldman Sachs, but we own them on this year's league tables!

  • youngmoney's picture

    I posted on my resume "intermediate french" which at some point might have been true but i stopped speaking it at work (worked in high school and first year of college for Air France) and stopped taking classes. I had the "luck" of walking into this VP's office who after a few pleasantries in English saw the French language skill on my resume and started conducting the rest of the interview in french. I think I probably had the language skill of a six year old trying to explain why I'd give mez financing to whatever company. Didn't get the offer.

  • LondonE1's picture

    My freshman year summer, interviewed with Soros Fund Management...

    Interviewer: "Tell me about yourself"

    Me: "My name is..."

    got dinged

  • monty09's picture

    JP Morgan - full time

    interviewer asked me about where did I see the dow heading.

    I said frankly I think its going to get a lot worse before it gets a lot better and bush is killing us with this war.

    I have no clue why I said the last part but I had two more questions and interview ended. By the time I got home I had a voicemail that I was not moving on.

  • harry12's picture

    I just bombed my interview for summer internship at headwaters investment bank. I had 3 interviews but the guy guy who took my technical i was certainly not ready, he asked me what is asset= libalities+? i knw that it is onwer's equity but couldn't think of that at that time
    then my downfall started, he asked how would you value a private company, i said through PE ratio, he said i told u that it is private lolzz
    Then he asked me to rate your MS skills i said excel to be first becoz i knw to break into IB u have to be good in that but certainly that was BS and he asked me few Q's on that i F up
    Haven't heard yet but certainly will get NO

  • In reply to monty09
    senior88's picture

    monty09:
    JP Morgan - full time

    interviewer asked me about where did I see the dow heading.

    I said frankly I think its going to get a lot worse before it gets a lot better and bush is killing us with this war.

    I have no clue why I said the last part but I had two more questions and interview ended. By the time I got home I had a voicemail that I was not moving on.

    Haha, never bring politics into the interview, and even if you did, did you really have to use diction that includes the word "kill"?

  • jimbrowngoU's picture

    harry, can't believe people like you get interviews. It's one thing to say something stupid or mess up on a difficult technical, but to go into an IB interview and not know the simplest equation in finance/accounting is ridiculous. And valuation methods?

  • In reply to harry12
    dipset1011's picture

    harry12:
    I just bombed my interview for summer internship at headwaters investment bank. I had 3 interviews but the guy guy who took my technical i was certainly not ready, he asked me what is asset= libalities+? i knw that it is onwer's equity but couldn't think of that at that time
    then my downfall started, he asked how would you value a private company, i said through PE ratio, he said i told u that it is private lolzz
    Then he asked me to rate your MS skills i said excel to be first becoz i knw to break into IB u have to be good in that but certainly that was BS and he asked me few Q's on that i F up
    Haven't heard yet but certainly will get NO

    lol wow......

  • In reply to harry12
    PaperTrail's picture

    harry12:
    I just bombed my interview for summer internship at headwaters investment bank. I had 3 interviews but the guy guy who took my technical i was certainly not ready, he asked me what is asset= libalities+? i knw that it is onwer's equity but couldn't think of that at that time
    then my downfall started, he asked how would you value a private company, i said through PE ratio, he said i told u that it is private lolzz
    Then he asked me to rate your MS skills i said excel to be first becoz i knw to break into IB u have to be good in that but certainly that was BS and he asked me few Q's on that i F up
    Haven't heard yet but certainly will get NO

    How did you land an interview in the first place?

  • daemonavn's picture

    This was for a SA Research position at a Hedge Fund, last year.

    After a discussion on increasing globalization, capital flows and Asian countries.
    Director: Have you heard of outsourcing?
    Me: I am from Asia, you bet I have heard of outsourcing.

    Then he proceeds to ask me three questions on outsourcing and related effects, none of which I am able to answer.

    Feedback: Over-confidence.

    My defense- Well i had 'heard' of outsourcing, I hadn't done a PhD in it.. jeez

  • In reply to harry12
    Diesel's picture

    harry12:
    I just bombed my interview for summer internship at headwaters investment bank. I had 3 interviews but the guy guy who took my technical i was certainly not ready, he asked me what is asset= libalities+? i knw that it is onwer's equity but couldn't think of that at that time
    then my downfall started, he asked how would you value a private company, i said through PE ratio, he said i told u that it is private lolzz
    Then he asked me to rate your MS skills i said excel to be first becoz i knw to break into IB u have to be good in that but certainly that was BS and he asked me few Q's on that i F up
    Haven't heard yet but certainly will get NO

    Headwaters is a sinking ship anyway.

  • bluechimp's picture

    I interviewed for GS Strategies during my sophomore year. Didn't know how did I get it, since I am not a math/coding genius, and didn't really know how to prepare since it was their first time coming on campus.

    I think I coasted through their quant questions just fine -- brainteasers I happen to think the correct way. But I spaced out during the behavioral: "What is your biggest weakness?". Me: "Um.. I think I am a perfectionist". Obviously bullcrap, which I cannot elaborate upon and only fueled the interviewer's appetite for more stupid answers. Him: "How would your friends describe you?". Fuck, I definitely never thought about this. Somewhere along my feeble attempt to squirm through this question I think I mentioned "friendly", and "balanced" -- two traits that surely sealed my fate.

    When I left the building, the interviewer escorted me through the door, gave his business card, shook my hand and said: "We'll see you during next year's interview rounds." And then he closed the door.

  • In reply to harry12
    Devils Advocate's picture

    harry12:
    I just bombed my interview for summer internship at headwaters investment bank. I had 3 interviews but the guy guy who took my technical i was certainly not ready, he asked me what is asset= libalities+? i knw that it is onwer's equity but couldn't think of that at that time
    then my downfall started, he asked how would you value a private company, i said through PE ratio, he said i told u that it is private lolzz
    Then he asked me to rate your MS skills i said excel to be first becoz i knw to break into IB u have to be good in that but certainly that was BS and he asked me few Q's on that i F up
    Haven't heard yet but certainly will get NO

    Lmao...wtf man?

  • mwgr5's picture

    My sophomore year I had a phone interview with UBS for a sophomore program. This was one of my first phone interviews with an investment bank. My school is not in the eastern time zone. I expected UBS to call meat 10am my time, but got a call at 10am eastern. The interview was not that difficult, but the timing threw me off, and I stumbled through the interview.

    www.sharpeinvesting.com

  • Jay Buhner was sweet's picture

    I had my first superday ever with Merrill S+T. The first 3 interviews, all behavioral, went really well. The fourth was with an MD, and it was all technical. After I got a few easy ones, he gave me a very difficult options question involving rolling hedges, which I had never heard of at the time. Needless to say, I stumbled through the answer, and we ended up spending 20 minutes going over it on a dry erase board in his office.

    The interview ended and I was thoroughly embarrassed. I meekly apologized for my performance, saying "Sorry Ken, I'm just not familiar with some of the terms you used."

    He responded, "Well, my name is Carl, and that's with a C, not a K. Maybe next time you'll at least remember my name."

    End of interview. Didn't get the offer.

  • In reply to Jay Buhner was sweet
    Mainstreet_wallstreet's picture

    Jay Buhner was sweet:
    I had my first superday ever with Merrill S+T. The first 3 interviews, all behavioral, went really well. The fourth was with an MD, and it was all technical. After I got a few easy ones, he gave me a very difficult options question involving rolling hedges, which I had never heard of at the time. Needless to say, I stumbled through the answer, and we ended up spending 20 minutes going over it on a dry erase board in his office.

    The interview ended and I was thoroughly embarrassed. I meekly apologized for my performance, saying "Sorry Ken, I'm just not familiar with some of the terms you used."

    He responded, "Well, my name is Carl, and that's with a C, not a K. Maybe next time you'll at least remember my name."

    End of interview. Didn't get the offer.

    The sick thing about this whole story, is that had you remembered his name and explained to him that you would study harder, you would have prob got the offer. He did take the time to go over it on the board, so right there I think you should have been able to closed. BTW good stuff with the name, made me laugh. It reminded me of one of my interviews with Citi.

  • BudFox24's picture

    Wow it sounds as though majority of BB interviewers are rather harsh.

    KICKIN ASS AND TAKING NAMES

  • AlgorithMIT Trader's picture

    I interviewed with a financial data supplier / data base as a business analyst. My interviewer knew absolutely nothing about finance but plenty about databases, so proceeded to ask me databasing questions the entire interview that had nothing to do with the position that I applied for.

    Best example, he asked me to create a relationship logic diagram, which I had no idea what the hell he meant by it. I proceeded to draw an elaborate diagram for about 15 minutes while he watched and smiled as I suffered my way through it. After I was finished, he picked up the pen, drew 3 boxes and 5 lines connecting all the boxes together and told me that was the correct solution.

  • stk123's picture

    I was interviewing with a big four firm (didn't really care for the job) and got an interview for the city I wanted. A few days before the interview they told me that weren't any openings for that city, so I had to choose another city which really ticked me off, so I didn't go to the pre-interview dinner party the night before the interview.

    During the interview the partner asked me why she didn't see me at the dinner party, and I told her that I was busy working on a group project for school. Needless to say I didn't get an offer.

  • In reply to mwgr5
    MonkeyToBe88's picture

    mwgr5:
    My sophomore year I had a phone interview with UBS for a sophomore program. This was one of my first phone interviews with an investment bank. My school is not in the eastern time zone. I expected UBS to call meat 10am my time, but got a call at 10am eastern. The interview was not that difficult, but the timing threw me off, and I stumbled through the interview.

    www.sharpeinvesting.com[/quote]

    Well, guess that just goes to the whole making an ASS out of U and ME deal...

    I had an interview with Bain Capital that went very poorly. It was my third interview of the day (in a long week of interviews) and rather than the standard first round behavioral chit chat interview, it was a very technical case interview (with no preparation time - just a "here's the scenario, what do you think about x" followed by follow-up after follow-up after follow-up). I wasn't interviewing for consulting firms and hadn't prepared for case interviews, so it was an utter disaster. I knew I wasn't getting called back and just wanted to get the hell out of there, so when he finally took me out of my misery and asked if I had any questions, I just blurted out "nope," stood up and left. In retrospect, I should have kept myself more under control, asked a question or two, shook his hand, asked for a card and thanked him, but I think he got a kick out of my honest reaction too because he was chuckling as I left.

    www.gottamentor.com

  • IBnutz's picture

    I don't know what I had for breakfast but I couldn't stop busting ass and it really stunk. Like something straight out of monkey business.

  • jackofalltrades's picture

    I was really eager to impress my interviewer for Citi IBD SA when he asked me where else I was applying. I told him only Citi (which was true at the time, since official OCR was still a month or two away).

    Needless to say, the appearance of all eggs / one basket dinged me, I believe.

    --
    Support WSO.com and visit these links!
    Financial Modeling Training
    Guide to Finance Interviews

  • T4KUZA's picture

    I recall having another unfortunate interview over the phone with UBS. I didn't care too much for the position, but it was the only other option I had at the time. I tried to make sure I wouldn't have disturbances during the interview, so I picked up the phone and we got started. 5 minutes into the interview my incredibly loud and obnoxious door buzzer starts ringing and completely throws me off. Moments later, there is knocking on my door and it turns out to be UPS. This entire time I was trying to talk to the interviewer, and apologized profusely for the noise. He didn't seem to mind, but I couldn't focus for the rest of the interview. Needless to say, I didn't get the job.

  • grandpabuzz's picture

    When I was interviewing for Citi Sophomore Rotational last year, I forgot that the time was eastern not central for my call. So I get called out of the blue on my cell phone an hour early, unprepared. I wasn't expecting to use my cell phone, because I had reserved a room at my school to use a land line phone in a quiet room. So when she would have called I would have called her back with that phone. Unfortunately that didn't happen.

    So when she gave me the unexpected ring, I noticed that I didn't have many bars on my phone. So I tell her I'll call her back in five minutes as I get to a better location. When I get there, I call her again and start the interview. Things were going fine, until...yeah you guessed it...my batteries died. fml. So I run back to my dorm room like a mad man and nearly tear my backpack open looking for my charger. I plug it in and call her again for the third time. I apologize profusely, and she still seems fine. We continue the interview.

    I thought nothing would go wrong from there on out, but nope-my dorm is of course in a shitty area, and I didn't get many bars. So once again the call ends abruptly. At this point I was fuming and threw my phone against the wall causing the battery to fall out and creating a dent on one side of the phone so I couldn't put the battery cover back on. So I get some duct tape and tape the battery back, hoping it wouldn't fall out on its on. A few seconds later, the recruiter calls back and asks what happened. I again say I'm sorry, while at the same time trying to control myself from shouting. I do manage to get through the rest of the interview fine. The actual interview itself was probably one of the best phone interviews I'd ever had in terms of getting good questions and expressing myself articulately. But of course, I knew I was dinged and got a rejection a couple weeks later.

    I really wish I was telling an April Fools joke, but it's not. I did learn some valuable lessons from that experience, however.

  • senior88's picture

    ^ Good story, but I think you won in the long run looking at where Citi is now.

  • grandpabuzz's picture

    Well this year, I did manage to get into Citi's close cousin bank which is in a similar situation, so I won't put the medal on just yet.

  • In reply to stk123
    senior88's picture

    stk123:
    I was interviewing with a big four firm (didn't really care for the job) and got an interview for the city I wanted. A few days before the interview they told me that weren't any openings for that city, so I had to choose another city which really ticked me off, so I didn't go to the pre-interview dinner party the night before the interview.

    During the interview the partner asked me why she didn't see me at the dinner party, and I told her that I was busy working on a group project for school. Needless to say I didn't get an offer.

    Lol that reminds me of a Capital One internship I applied for. So Cap One has an early quant test which I aced. Then comes the case study interview which I signed up for. However, on the afternon before my case interview I received an offer from a firm I would definitely pick over Cap One.

    Unfortunately, it was too late to cancel the interview for the case. Therefore, in order to cancel the interview since it was through OCR, I had to write an apology letter and probably get my advisor pissed at me. I decided to dress up anyway instead of going through the hassle of apologizing. Plus, I figured the case was going to be good experience for me.

    I go to the case, it is stupid easy and its mostly simple math and logic. Marketing for a cell phone company with simple logistics and operations (finances, break-even analysis, SWOT, etc.) However, since I didn't want the job, I was very laid back. Perhaps too laid back as 5 minutes into the case I started giving him joke answers before giving my real answer. The most inappropriate example is when he asked me about different ways of raising capital and I said "ponzi scheme".

    Finally he asks me stuff like if I ever have problems working in teams and I said "no, unless I don't get along with someone." He didn't laugh after a second so I gave him a real answer. I didn't want to be rude, afterall, and I didn't want to be blacklisted even if I didn't care for the firm.

    Funny thing is, at the end, I got the offer which I respectfully declined.

  • The Phantom's picture

    This is not my story, but one of my friends. He had a very close relative working at one of famous BB. He was worried about tech questions, but over 5 different employees including VP told him not to worry about tech, there will be no questions.

    Guess what? First 20 minutes of interview the guy got grilled on tech only... then some fit. Didn't even get to 2nd round.

  • lorican's picture

    It was during an interview that the guy started asking me about valuation, and naturally the conversation went along the DCF route. I was quite chilled as I've already accepted another bank and was merely doing the interview because the bank's tower had some awesome views (I had my camara with me). So we were chatting about DCF and come P/E ratios as well, not hard, I relaxed, and then out of the blue the guy asks me about WACC. The first thing that came into my mind was the "Baby got WACC" song (youtube it), and I started giggling. The look on the guy' face was so epic that I started full on laughing and by the time I've finished I knew that we would not be working together.

    But the best part is, my rejection feedback said "too dogmatic".
    __________
    Just my 2c.

    __________
    Just my 2c.

  • ringtailedlemur's picture

    Junior year, interviewing for GS Quant internship. I'm in way over my head - had only taken a couple quant classes in college.

    Two interviewers, I'd met them the night before during the shmoozing, I think one was a Physics PhD and the other had a crazy CS background. They already knew I wasn't legit from the night before when I told them I was a bio major (and not a quantitative one at that).

    First question, they write an integral on a pad of legal paper and slide it over to me. I immediately shit myself, not having done an integral by hand for at least two years. No problem though, I think, I can pull this off - but, shit I definitely don't remember how to do an integral by parts.

    In desperation, I say "Hmm, well, this doesn't look like an integral by parts." They chuckle at me. I have some gallows humor, stare at the problem for a couple minutes, then just admit to not knowing how to do an integral by parts. The interview couldn't have lasted longer than 10 or 15 minutes, but it felt like an eternity.

  • powertime's picture

    Last fall I really began to heavily network so that I could hopefully land an internship this summer. I had emailed and called every alumni I found on our alumni network. I ended up talking with two alumni at the same time about what I wanted to do with my life and other bullshit. After a couple of these questions, they immediately started drilling me on technical questions which I wasn't prepared for yet because it was still early Fall. I fumbled through those questions and realized they were both big douches for turning what was supposed to be a casual conversation into a technical interview.

  • BlackDog's picture

    My friend was interviewing with GS, I don't know what division. He arrives early and waits in a room with someone who looked she was a secretary. She starts asking him questions about himself, and he responds casually, thinking it's just small talk before the interview. 20 minutes later, the secretary tells him that he could leave now. He asks what about the interview, and she said that that was the interview.

  • In reply to powertime
    sofib09's picture

    That wasn't very cool of them. At the same time, they knew why you really wanted to contact them, so they figured it's better to cut to the chase than waste around with that other "casual conversation" bullshit.

    But they could've shown a bit more class than that.

    powertime:
    Last fall I really began to heavily network so that I could hopefully land an internship this summer. I had emailed and called every alumni I found on our alumni network. I ended up talking with two alumni at the same time about what I wanted to do with my life and other bullshit. After a couple of these questions, they immediately started drilling me on technical questions which I wasn't prepared for yet because it was still early Fall. I fumbled through those questions and realized they were both big douches for turning what was supposed to be a casual conversation into a technical interview.

  • aachimp's picture

    i had a phone interview with a BB. I was talking about the credit crisis and I mentioned the TED spread. The interviewer asked me what the TED spread was. In a moment of stupidity, I said that the TED spread was the difference between 90 day LIBOR and Fed Funds. We talked some more, but the interview was done as far as getting 2nd rounds was concerned.

    not knowing A = L + E..... that can't be beat.

  • In reply to BlackDog
    senior88's picture

    BlackDog:
    My friend was interviewing with GS, I don't know what division. He arrives early and waits in a room with someone who looked she was a secretary. She starts asking him questions about himself, and he responds casually, thinking it's just small talk before the interview. 20 minutes later, the secretary tells him that he could leave now. He asks what about the interview, and she said that that was the interview.

    Wtf? That sucks, are they allowed to do that? How did your friend not realize it was an interview from questions like "Tell me about a time when you worked in a team setting" or "How do you price xxx" etc. As a future SA there, I'm quite shocked.

  • drunktrader's picture

    I was interviewing with Morgan Stanley for a Tech associate position. I was asked to write some program that involved hashtables in Java. Strangely i've never heard of hashtables being used in java, but I've used hashmaps. So I just said I had no idea and pretty much left.

    When I went home I looked it up and realized that hashtables and hashmaps are the same thing, they just call it hashmap in Java. The problem would've been so easy to solve. Felt like a total idiot. Luckily I got a better offer the following week.

  • BlackDog's picture

    well she just asked him questions about his resume. maybe his experiences weren't impressive enough.

  • lkc's picture

    "So, how was your last interview?"
    It was ok. These guys took me out to a really fancy lunch to try and impress me or something. So what's the agenda for today?
    "Well, we were actually planning on taking you out to lunch with a few of our guys..."

    Didn't get an offer. One of my first interviews, give me a break. lol.

  • In reply to drunktrader
    The Phantom's picture

    Somewhat unrelated experience of failing.

    I was taking programming class required for my math major, and one of final's problems involved hashmaps (it's basically a train with information, each cell contains an info and link to next cell, but you cannot go from 1st cell to 5th). We were allowed to bring any books/notes/printed material on midterms & finals (and averages were still 30-40%, the teacher is the worst teacher in department).

    I was extremely stressed about my final (I did average on midterms). I got the results back, course grade B+, I am the happiest person alive. I get my final back (way ahead of very sensitive curve), on the problem that involved hashmaps, I copied part of source code from notes w/o changing names of variables!!! Counted as mistake and (8%). If I were to just pay a tiny bit more attention and change the name of 3 variable in 3 different slots to appropriate ones, I would've gotten an A in class. I went to teacher's office and begged him to have a mercy (I am math person, it was a weed-out class with 95% of wanna-be computer engineers). He said, "Oh, I know it was just an incident. Your solution is correct." He didn't bother changing anything...

    devanti:
    I was interviewing with Morgan Stanley for a Tech associate position. I was asked to write some program that involved hashtables in Java. Strangely i've never heard of hashtables being used in java, but I've used hashmaps. So I just said I had no idea and pretty much left.

  • In reply to senior88
    you-down-with-SEC's picture

    juniorr:
    BlackDog:
    My friend was interviewing with GS, I don't know what division. He arrives early and waits in a room with someone who looked she was a secretary. She starts asking him questions about himself, and he responds casually, thinking it's just small talk before the interview. 20 minutes later, the secretary tells him that he could leave now. He asks what about the interview, and she said that that was the interview.

    Wtf? That sucks, are they allowed to do that? How did your friend not realize it was an interview from questions like "Tell me about a time when you worked in a team setting" or "How do you price xxx" etc. As a future SA there, I'm quite shocked.

    Why wouldn't they be allowed to do that? I've never done such a thing, but I have heard of similar being done. We want people who are genuine, not someone who puts on an act for a 30 minute interview but is an asshole to those who he doesn't think is there to judge him. Honestly, it's one of the best interviews you can land (no technicals, no standard fit q's... just BS'ing and trying to have a good conversation..). Your interview starts as soon as you step foot off of the subway.

    As a future ops SA, I'm not sure how you really expect to know much about the firm..

  • models_and_bottles's picture

    I interviewed for a Bank of America IBD SA position (stupid me, I know) two years ago...

    Two interviewers show up 30+ minutes late (I'm in the first interview slot), so I'm already pissed / don't care since I have a Lazard interview in ~20 minutes.

    The interviewer asks me about my perception of BofA's IBD reputation and I tried to sound sympathetic by saying something like "I think it's impressive how BofA's gone from nothing to one of the better investment banks".

    Said interviewer was quite pissed off by this remark and begin listing BofA's "impressive" league table rankings of various irrelvant subsectors and deal sizes. He then said some bullshit like "We're even beating JPM in M&A" to which I openly, and quite loudly, laughed by reflex. Of course I didn't mean to laugh out loud, but what can you do?

    The interview ended without the usual shaking of hands or me receiving their business cards. Some HR rep called later that night to deliver the bad news.

  • In reply to you-down-with-SEC
    senior88's picture

    you-down-with-SEC:
    juniorr:
    BlackDog:
    My friend was interviewing with GS, I don't know what division. He arrives early and waits in a room with someone who looked she was a secretary. She starts asking him questions about himself, and he responds casually, thinking it's just small talk before the interview. 20 minutes later, the secretary tells him that he could leave now. He asks what about the interview, and she said that that was the interview.

    Wtf? That sucks, are they allowed to do that? How did your friend not realize it was an interview from questions like "Tell me about a time when you worked in a team setting" or "How do you price xxx" etc. As a future SA there, I'm quite shocked.

    Why wouldn't they be allowed to do that? I've never done such a thing, but I have heard of similar being done. We want people who are genuine, not someone who puts on an act for a 30 minute interview but is an asshole to those who he doesn't think is there to judge him. Honestly, it's one of the best interviews you can land (no technicals, no standard fit q's... just BS'ing and trying to have a good conversation..). Your interview starts as soon as you step foot off of the subway.

    As a future ops SA, I'm not sure how you really expect to know much about the firm..

    Well I'm more surprised that the person didn't know it was an interview (I'd think it'd be obvious from the kind of questions). Furthermore, yea people shouldn't be fake during the interview but catching people offguard (such as simply not being formal enough) doesn't really reveal much about the candidate IMO. Now if he was rude and/or incompetent it'd be a different story but from the way he told it it seemed like he was dismissed simply because he was not formal enough (too relaxed).

    Furthermore, I'm doing a rotational, not pure Ops, but even so (I'm not sure what firm you're with) but GS Ops definitely looks better now and will look better in the future when compared to how things were done before this crisis. Things are changing on Wall St. and especially with Goldman (I picked the program over UBS IBD as I did it soph year). If you want to talk about this further I can PM/give you the contact of 2 VP's who have quite a bit of inside information on this.

    Cheers.

  • xqtrack's picture

    you picked GS Ops over UBS IBD?

    you, my friend, just bought a load of crap. i can't believe you let 2 VPs sell you on their bullshit. and you just ate it hook, line, and sinker?

    wow.

  • senior88's picture

    Did it last year, didn't like it much. Could go back (have a person in there) so we'll see what happens next year. Don't think I'm missing much looking at their bonus cuts and also the UBS-LA location. My goal is to work in Asia and take over my family's business after getting a MBA anyways so I'm trying to find an enjoyable 2-3 year stint.

  • dipset1011's picture

    I had an interview with pimco did not go so well.

    Start of the interview the lady asked me to name 3 adjectives that my friends would say to describe my personality . Answered those pretty easily. She then asked me to name three adjectives that my mother would describe me with. I stumbled through this part. She then had the nerve to ask me to name another three adjectives that my father would use to describe my personality. By this time I was talking out of my ass and sweating bullets.....we repeated this with weaknesses.........did not get the internship.

  • sternmasta's picture

    my first interview from OCR as a soph. my response to "Why do you want to work here?" was a bunch of B.S. I did well on the quant questions though but near the end he asked me where else I applied and I blurted out "a lot of places". he asked me what I would do to deal with a troublesome coworker and I told him more B.S. about how I would try to make friends and try to be understanding, it was prob. the most obvious B.S. i've ever said.

    Long story short, basically he knew I didn't know crap about the company and I had my eggs elsewhere. I didn't get 2nd round.

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