Interview Advice - 2009 Grad from a non target

I'm a 2009 grad from a non-target, mediocre GPA with no banking experience. I got an offer last week from an elite boutique (w/ a signing bonus) and thought I'd share some advice. I think it really applies to those of you w/out a finance background, but really I'd recommend it to anyone.

Go into interviews w/ a hard sell mindset. I mean fucking HARD SELL. I arrived at this strategy after a weak phone interview; I was shocked to get a face-to-face, so I decided that I'd try to set a completely different tone, control the flow of the interview, and really sell myself hard. I basically went in there pretending to know everything about everything related to the specific industry I'll be dealing with (my internship experience was in this industry, so that obviously helped), and I think I made it pretty clear from the beginning that I expected to get the job. I asked a ton of questions (spent almost an hour at the end of the interview) and developed a very strong rapport w/ the guys interviewing me. Also framed a lot of my questions from the perspective that I already had the job (ex. I'd ask "How much time will I spend doing XYZ?).

I think my final question is really what locked it up for me (can't take credit for it, I read something similar in an interview prep book and thought it fit well w/ my hard sell strategy). I said something along the lines of "I really want to work for you guys and I'm positive that I could do great work here. That being said, do either of you have any concerns about my ability to do this job and if so is there anything regarding my qualifications that I can clarify now? I think this shit is pure gold, and I will undoubtedly be using this in every interview I have for the rest of my life. The interviewers seemed pretty shocked, looked at each other not really knowing what to say, and basically said we don't have anymore questions. I got a call the next day w/ an offer - both the MD and VP who interviewed me were on the phone to give me the good news. In hindsight I think I could have negotiated a higher salary, but I was so excited to get the job I just accepted immediately.

In conclusion, you don't need to go to an Ivy and you don't need a 4.0 to work on Wall Street. You just need to act like you have a 10 inch cock. Now that I think about it, getting a banking job is a lot like picking up chicks: In a 1.5 hour time frame, you need to demonstrate confidence, intelligence, wit, and most importantly, make it known that "no" is not an acceptable answer.

Comments (12)

Apr 13, 2010 - 4:02pm
Marcus_Halberstram, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Thats fuckin awesome, congrats!

Array
Apr 13, 2010 - 4:05pm
firefighter, what's your opinion? Comment below:

do either of you have any concerns about my ability to do this job and if so is there anything regarding my qualifications that I can clarify now?--->

is this a good question to ask? i feel that during the superday every candidate can do the job well (hell most who gets a phone interview can do the work) so they are narrowing on fit, not whether or not you would be able to spread comps

Apr 13, 2010 - 4:14pm
Marcus_Halberstram, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Thats a good question because it gives you the opportunity to address any major cracks the interviewers see in your candidacy.

Every now and then I would get a "Is there anything else you want me to know?" question from an interviewer and it wasn't until I got the hang of interviewing that I was able to really capitalize off of that question. This kids question if executed correctly is one better... Since the is there anything else you want me to know puts the ball in your court and you have to accurately identify what the weakest point of your candidacy is and address it. If you ask that question, they (hopefully) come right out and tell you what the biggest chink is, and you can nip it in the bud.

It also shows confidence.

Array
  • 2
Apr 13, 2010 - 4:42pm
Blank999, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Great man, good last interview question also. Congrats!

Apr 13, 2010 - 5:47pm
Gekko21, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Well, aren't you the Big Swinging Dick.........Congrats

"Greed, in all of its forms; greed for life, for money, for love, for knowledge has marked the upward surge of mankind. And greed, you mark my words, will not only save Teldar Paper, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA."
Apr 13, 2010 - 6:38pm
feenans, what's your opinion? Comment below:

im not an expert but for those getting excited to use this be very very careful. its good to display confidence in your abilities, if you are confident the interviewer will be more confident in you also. but asking questions that imply you've already gotten the job can very easily sound much too arrogant.

also the weakness question i think works well in most cases, but it can backfire if you do have a disadvantage to other candidates. if, lets say, you went to a non-target and dont have a good excuse (ie cost), like if you were hungover at the SATs or something, you wouldn't want tobring that into his attention as your whole strategy would be based on making people disregard that and a bullshit answer wouldnt do much anyways. just my 2c

Apr 15, 2010 - 1:31am
MikeJuno, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Friend was in similar situation - he had no offers and was down to his last superday interview. He used a very similar line at the end of his interviews, and got an internship at an elite boutique as well.

Apr 15, 2010 - 2:56am
pygmalion, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Wow, for real? congrats, looks like you have the balls lol. How was the whole job-searching process? Was that elite boutique something like the light at the end of the tunnel, 'cuz if it were, I can't imagine how it feels for ya now.

Best Response
Apr 15, 2010 - 3:20am
LTV, what's your opinion? Comment below:
whiskeytango:
I think I made it pretty clear from the beginning that I expected to get the job. I asked a ton of questions (spent almost an hour at the end of the interview) and developed a very strong rapport w/ the guys interviewing me. Also framed a lot of my questions from the perspective that I already had the job (ex. I'd ask "How much time will I spend doing XYZ?).

I would like interviewees to take a note on this. I can say from personal experience that this is a golden strategy to landing a job. A lot of interviewees treat an interview like it's an oral examination; it really isn't. Treat it instead as a 2-way conversation. I landed my 1st choice job because I asked my interviewer as many questions (if not more) than he asked me. This tactic also has an added advantage - it allows you to really understand what the interviewer is looking for in a new employee. Massage your answers to make him realize that he just found his man for the job.

Apr 15, 2010 - 9:24pm
youngblood, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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