8 years old with no finance experience, too late to get into PE?

Hi everyone.

I go to a top feeder elementary school and hoping to get into MM or hopefully MF PE down the line. I'm trying to transfer to a target middle school soon so I can work my way into an elite prep HS -> HYP -> BB -> MM/MF -> HBS -> MF. I just got a piggy bank but a few friends already have front office roles lined up and I don't want to fall behind.

I've lined up a few options for next summer:

Option 1
Local public sector position: I got a mail route in my neighborhood and daddy just taught me how to ride a bike so I think I'll be able to leverage that, but I'm afraid I'll be pigeonholed into federal work down the line. Early hours aren't great but might be good preparation for IB.

Option 2
International Tier-2 ice cream shop (think Ben&Jerrys/Coldstone): Networked with a family friend and he's letting me sweep the floors, $2/hour no bonus structure. I could probably leverage this into Tier-1 ice cream (DQ/BR) next summer and transition into a corporate role. Work life balance may be an issue.

Option 3
Tech start-up biz dev: Noah from down the street has an older brother with a 3D printer. He makes custom pogs and sells them and needs a guy to help expand to other playgrounds. The travel is a perk but concerned about risky stock options.

I'm getting a bit tired from my sugar crash and need to nap soon but any advice would greatly appreciated.

-Timmy

Mod Note (Andy): top 50 posts of 2017, this one ranks #1 (based on # of silver bananas)

 
Best Response

You're probably fucked to be completely honest. You should have started the process much earlier. The fact that you have no relevant work experience in industry is not good, complemented by how recruiting season for summer '18 is nearly over.

To contrast, I will tell you a bit about myself. I went to a target preschool and killed it. (All check pluses on my report card, organizer and founder of playground tag, had a dime gf, etc.) That's where you really made your first mistake. I networked hard with alumni and was able to find a SA position the local daycare. (think Kindercare) I worked on the M&A team where I brought in a substantial amount of deal flow and revenue for the firm. Worked on a $10 deal where I helped merge Jimmy's piggy bank with Sally's. Can't tell you how much I had to burn the midnight oil on that one, amiright? After that summer I was headhunted by KKR and Carlyle, and the rest was history.

My advice to you would be to try to secure a SA position at a boutique/MM ice cream shop (Dairy Queen, Friendly's, McDonald's) and then try to leverage your network to find your way into a MF/BB (Hood/Breyer's/Blue Bunny) after graduation. You've got a lot of work ahead of you, and I wish you the best. Good luck!

 

Thanks, I appreciate the honesty. My report card is above the cutoff but not great (3.7 rounded up, majored in Arithmetic minor in Arts & Crafts), but I've been building LBO's on the sidewalk using chalk and have a good recommendation from my piano teacher.

I know a few alum of my elementary school who have gotten into prestigious LDP's (think Toys'R'Us/GameStop) before a top east coast high school, so maybe they can help.

 

You may be able to make up for your less-than-stellar GPA with good extracurriculars and demonstrated passion. If you have done any trading in the past, you can show interviewers the models you generated when observing different assets.

An associate at a boutique lemonade stand was impressed when I showed him a Black-Scholes model I had utilized when analyzing lemon options to hedge risk against price fluctuations during summer vacation. I advise you to do something similar.

You can tailor your experiences to PE by explaining how the injection of capital into your piggy bank from mommy has helped you grow your Lego set, thus massively increasing both solvent play time and bedroom infrastructure. This has lead you to want to help other children, similar to you, with expanding and growing their toy sets over time.

 

OP doesn't know how to write in Ruby and Python yet? And no TensorFlow experience at all, at this stage?

I think you can scratch Venture Capital with a MF off the list as well. Maybe you can find a MM fund that backs lemonade stands and cookie sales first then lateral later on.

"Be the Disruptor, not the Disrupted" - Clayton Christensen
 

cloutape

You're probably fucked to be completely honest. You should have started the process much earlier. The fact that you have no relevant work experience in industry is not good, complemented by how recruiting season for summer '18 is nearly over.

To contrast, I will tell you a bit about myself. I went to a target preschool and killed it. (All check pluses on my report card, organizer and founder of playground tag, had a dime gf, etc.) That's where you really made your first mistake. I networked hard with alumni and was able to find a SA position the local daycare. (think Kindercare) I worked on the M&A team where I brought in a substantial amount of deal flow and revenue for the firm. Worked on a $10 deal where I helped merge Jimmy's piggy bank with Sally's. Can't tell you how much I had to burn the midnight oil on that one, amiright? After that summer I was headhunted by KKR and Carlyle, and the rest was history.

My advice to you would be to try to secure a SA position at a boutique/MM ice cream shop (Dairy Queen, Friendly's, McDonald's) and then try to leverage your network to find your way into a MF/BB (Hood/Breyer's/Blue Bunny) after graduation. You've got a lot of work ahead of you, and I wish you the best. Good luck!

I always get a hard-on when I read, hear, talk, and think about financier jargon.

Anyone like me? 😏

 

LOL. But honestly, what's stopping HBS from setting up a 4+4+4+2+2+2 program? 

 

Your parents should've started reading Principles of Financial Accounting and Advanced Excel while you were still in the womb. You never know if you're going to run into an MD on the elevator on your way home from the hospital so you need to be ready to pitch them. How else are you going to outpace the competition?

"I'm talking about liquid. Rich enough to have your own jet. Rich enough not to waste time. Fifty, a hundred million dollars, buddy. A player. Or nothing. " -GG
 

Have you considered going into Trading (as an alternative to PE/IB)? My advice is save your monthly salary and start purchasing booster packs. If you manage to collect enough cards and make the trade for a holographic Charizard from Toyo's Card Shop down the street, some HF's may be willing to give you a chance at an unpaid internship.

Sayonara
 

Lemonade stands are a great option to build your resume and is a great segway into restructuring. A lot of kids are borrowing money from their parents to start these stands and then spending it all on candy, triggering covenant breaches. Seeking employment at one of these stands is a great opportunity for you.

 

Any particular reason to chose PE over VC? From what I read I clearly see a startup->VC path, but no clear way into PE.

Entrepreneurial experience is always a plus in any VC interview, and the exposure to "avant-gard" tech will set ground for strong interview stories. I assume this tech startup is prolly on series B (given they have proven both product AND market), which means they've already secured some serious sponsors (I'm talking grandma/granddad money).

As for the stock options in early stage startups, they're always WORTHLESS -especially if you don't plan to make a career out of it. Instead, you can try to capitalize this experience by getting more exposure to the sponsors and maybe get invited for cookies at their headquarters from time to time.

If you don't have a strong GPA, you can try one of many out-of-the-box options to make up for the lack of an analytical background. My brother taught himself accounting in order to show mommy that I was stealing pennies from his piggy bank, a story that eventually got him an offer from a top-tier auditing firm. Another friend got into several ib interviews after successfully launching a search-fund that focused on high-end souvenirs from his family vacations.

Best of lucks in your search and feel free to contact me if you ever feel like further discussing this over juice.

 

You're screwed.

I attended a non-target womb, but I kicked and screamed and landed at a top firm (C-Section). Presently, I head up C-Section's early birth team.

Recruiting is over for next year, so you may have to look at lesser shops, like Exit-by-Vagina. However, since you claim to be in elementary school, you may not qualify.

Good luck!