Giving back to those who help you

Hello everyone,
I have been in contact with an VP at an investment bank who has been helping me. I have done a few informational interviews with him and he has helped me with a few other things. I am just looking for something that I can do to sort of "re-pay" him for the time he has taken to help me with my career and job search.

Any thoughts?
Thanks for the help!

 
Most Helpful

Best repayment for now is to land that job, take him out to a nice dinner, and continue to seek his mentorship. While you benefit directly, he also benefits by being able to give back as I'm sure many have helped him along the way.

That said, I must applaud this concern you raised. Most people don't care to give back and just take, take, take.

 

Funny, I'm in an identical situation where if it weren't for my mentor I don't think I would have found my passion so early let alone be interviewing for BB internships this cycle.

I agree with the above comment and would add if you are fortunate enough to join his team - don't just keep your head down and do the work, be aware of your surroundings and develop your emotional intelligence so that you can slowly make a more significant impact in the day-to-day of the teams responsibilities.

 

If you want to actually "repay" him, the best thing you can do is work hard to seize every single opportunity he helps you with and exceed his expectations. That way he will feel that you are not wasting his time and really treasure what he helps you with, which is the best way to pay him back.

 

Good thought process, it's always important to reward anyone that helps you. Like the others said, make sure you make it clear to him how he's impacted you and helped because a lot of mentors end up not knowing the full impact of what they've done for people, which can be a little disheartening.

Definitely offer to take him out for a nice dinner and when you get the opportunity to, find out how you can help him in some way and reciprocate. Obviously he isn't expecting much given your position as is, but one day... :)

 

Great thread. I will share a few of my experiences:

  • For someone who has been a very close and dedicated mentor and friend, you can do something for them that is more personal. One of my key mentors is older now, and I collected an array of photographs and letters from many of his close friends and mentees, publishing them as a book for him. It was a wonderful gift and showed him how he has impacted many lives.

  • For a mentor that you know fairly well but not quite on that level, try to find something that matches their personal interests. Perhaps a book that you think they would like, or introduce them to a contact that you think they would get along with, personally or professionally.

  • Additionally, with mentors that you are just getting to know, potential mentors, or people you are building a relationship with, try to spend more time with them. Invite them golfing, trap shooting, tennis, out to dinner, etc. They will appreciate you thinking of them and extending an invitation.

Showing effort and the desire to give back goes a long way. At the end of lots of my initial networking calls, I usually will say: "You know, I'm speaking with a wide range of people as I go about this networking process. Is there anyone that would be beneficial for you to know, personally or professionally?" Then I'll keep my eye out and make an introduction if I can.

 

Great question, and something I've been thinking of myself lately.

I want to send thank you notes and/or a small gift to people who have helped me a lot over the last year or so, but it's unlikely I'll have a chance to meet some of them any time soon due to various reasons. I don't have a mailing address for a few of these people - anyone have any thoughts on how to proceed here?

Move along, nothing to see here.
 
Bateman Begins:
Great question, and something I've been thinking of myself lately.

I want to send thank you notes and/or a small gift to people who have helped me a lot over the last year or so, but it's unlikely I'll have a chance to meet some of them any time soon due to various reasons. I don't have a mailing address for a few of these people - anyone have any thoughts on how to proceed here?

Mail to their work address.

 

I thought the same thing when alums would go make the extra effort to help out. Even though you know you can't in most cases because you're so young, I would always tell them to let me know if there's something they need help with that I can assist with in the future. Very generic but again, it shows that you're not just there to receive. In the short term, all you can do is make their extended effort look good with by having a solid interview, introduction, job performance, etc. Small gestures like a meal also work.

Not too high, not too low
 

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