IBD Associate interview from PE


Currently working in PE as an associate within a large fund (have done this since undergrad), I am looking to lateral into IBD for various reasons.

Got interviews aligned at a top EB soon and I was wondering what should I expect for an IBD associate interview?

I don’t have a background in banking so I am a bit scared of the outcome - I expect interviewers to be technical and suspect that working the 400 questions guide/similar guides won’t be enough.

Any input appreciated.

Most Helpful

i would expect to be grilled in detail about your deal experience. make sure to have a strong and comprehensive understanding of the transactions on your resume. many of the technical questions you get may arise from your deal discussions.  

youre unlikely to get random questions on esoteric topics just because of your background. I’d simply expect you to have a firmer understanding of key concepts than a more junior candidate. a smart interviewer can suss this out pretty quickly. 


Make sure you can clearly articulate the basic rationales and weakness in the everyday analysis done in banking. In other words, come prepared to do more than just regurgitate formulas. For example, I've had like 5-10 minute conversations about the weaknesses of accretion/dilution analysis (e.g., its hugely sensitive to consideration structure, it only indirectly penalizes overpaying since goodwill isn't amortized).

You have more than enough deals to talk about.


Many thanks for this. Will focus my efforts on various M&A questions as well then. Until now, I spent a lot of time reviewing basic corporate finance concepts, deals, and anything around LBOs as I am coming from PE.

I am specialized in Real Estate and did mostly asset deals (one of the reason I wanted to transition into Real Estate M&A, to do more corporate related stuff), so hopefully my background will be enough to answer detailed questions.


I just used the M&A thing as an example. You're much better off knowing a few things very well than barely understanding a lot of things. Given your background, I do not advise trying to become an expert at M&A in the next few days. Anything is possible, but you're far more likely to be asked about stuff you should reasonably know already.

Good luck


Incidunt enim aliquam qui et vero vero. Nihil repellendus in eum dolores officia sint quidem. Sint aliquam minus ut necessitatibus vero culpa. Voluptates incidunt ut dignissimos iste blanditiis ratione. Cumque voluptatem cupiditate quia modi est eos.

Nemo voluptate reiciendis ab necessitatibus. Tempora velit aut commodi molestiae consequatur dolor qui. Alias saepe voluptas in voluptas at quasi dolorem. In qui ut atque nesciunt possimus eum quibusdam. Rerum enim et rem illo accusamus nostrum.

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

Career Advancement Opportunities

December 2023 Investment Banking

  • Lincoln International 01 99.6%
  • Lazard Freres (++) 99.1%
  • Jefferies & Company 02 98.7%
  • William Blair 12 98.3%
  • Financial Technology Partners 02 97.9%

Overall Employee Satisfaction

December 2023 Investment Banking

  • William Blair 04 99.6%
  • Lincoln International 10 99.1%
  • Moelis & Company 25 98.7%
  • Stephens Inc 11 98.3%
  • Jefferies & Company 08 97.8%

Professional Growth Opportunities

December 2023 Investment Banking

  • Lincoln International 01 99.6%
  • Lazard Freres 17 99.1%
  • Financial Technology Partners 07 98.7%
  • Jefferies & Company 03 98.3%
  • UBS AG 16 97.8%

Total Avg Compensation

December 2023 Investment Banking

  • Director/MD (6) $592
  • Vice President (34) $390
  • Associates (169) $258
  • 3rd+ Year Analyst (15) $187
  • 2nd Year Analyst (106) $168
  • Intern/Summer Associate (48) $167
  • 1st Year Analyst (322) $166
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (235) $95
16 IB Interviews Notes

“... there’s no excuse to not take advantage of the resources out there available to you. Best value for your $ are the...”


redever's picture
Betsy Massar's picture
Betsy Massar
Secyh62's picture
BankonBanking's picture
CompBanker's picture
kanon's picture
GameTheory's picture
dosk17's picture
pudding's picture
numi's picture
From 10 rejections to 1 dream investment banking internship

“... I believe it was the single biggest reason why I ended up with an offer...”