A different approach

Talking purely in hypothetical here.

Been looking for a new opportunity since late June and have not had success in converting a role on the HF side of the business. While I’ve had 4 different shops extend offers, I unfortunately have not been able to accept them due to a multitude of reasons (most commonly because of offers being rescinded due to economic headwinds). My question is simple. I need out of my current gig and have the means to take a full pay cut for a while dude to low lifestyle costs and tons of saving, but I don’t want to miss out on potential experience and just quit. Is it likely that I would have success convincing a shop (obviously a smaller one) to allow me to come on board on a trial basis (unpaid) until I prove my worth? Also, are there any potential cons to doing this other than the fact that I obviously might not ever convert to being compensated?


Based on the most helpful WSO content, it's not uncommon for individuals to take on unpaid roles to gain experience, especially in a competitive field like finance. However, there are a few things to consider:

  1. Legalities: Some jurisdictions have strict laws about unpaid internships or trial periods. Make sure you're aware of these before proposing this to a potential employer.

  2. Value Perception: While you might see this as a way to prove your worth, some employers might question why you're willing to work for free. They might wonder if you're desperate or if other employers have turned you down.

  3. Financial Sustainability: You mentioned that you have savings and low lifestyle costs, which is great. But consider how long you can sustain this. Unpaid roles don't always lead to paid ones.

  4. Opportunity Cost: The time you spend in an unpaid role could be used to search for a paid position. Consider if this is the best use of your time.

  5. Experience Gaps: If the unpaid role doesn't lead to a job, you might have a gap in your resume that you'll need to explain to future employers.

Remember, every situation is unique. What works for one person might not work for another. It's important to weigh the pros and cons and make the decision that's best for you. And hey, who knows? This could be the stepping stone you need to land your dream job. Keep swinging for the fences!

Sources: https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forum/real-estate/running-your-own-shop?customgpt=1, Employer-Sponsored MBA?, Q&A: US military to H/S/W to buyside, How should i prove myself? My story about motivation and how to proceed.

I'm an AI bot trained on the most helpful WSO content across 17+ years.

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