Not a question of what's what but rather deciding what is the better move here.
- Major city (Most jobs are in this city - makes networking a lot easier)
- Commute is 1 hour door to door via train (allows for studying while commuting)
- Job is FDD, although, in the same group and there may be the opportunity to get some exposure, but that's not guaranteed
- This is the main team of 30+ M&A Advisory people which will handle all the largest deals
Other Big 4
- Smaller city, about 45-60 mins outside of the above major city, makes networking/interviewing elsewhere tougher down the road
- Commute is a mess, an hour driving or nearly 2h commute via public transit - would probably need to purchase a car or rent a place
- This is the corporate finance arm, so MM IB services, but given the size of the team it is probably boutique-like
- Main corporate finance team is in the major city, this one is only 4-5 people large, so not sure the quality of deals/dealflow
- That being said, small team is likely to lead to more meaningful work, but I'm not sure how transferable it would be to a large bank
- Enjoy doing CF-type work more than just FDD, and transferring to a pure CF role would be my ultimate goal whether it be pre or post MBA (ideally at a larger shop though)
- Comp is exactly the same between the two offers
- This is Canada, where moving out of FDD to CF/IB does not seem that uncommon
Right now I'm leaning towards Offer #1 and trying to hustle to get some CF exposure within the same firm. The commute to Offer #2 sounds rough and I'm not sure how valuable the work experience would be for lateraling from a shop with only 4-5 people, even though the brand name is undoubtedly stronger than most other tiny boutiques of that size. In my mind if Offer 2 was in the big city, it would be a no brainer.
If anyone has experience working at a regional B4 office in the CF arm or anything similar and are willing to share what kind of work you did that would be much appreciated. Also glad to hear any other opinions/words of wisdom.