Breaking into IBD 3 years after graduating

Basically it boils down to this, graduated 3 years ago, and took a job in NYC that seemed alright in a BO/MO hybrid role. Mostly took it as the market was still in the shitter and i needed to pay the bills. Been promoted twice, but the luster has long since worn off. Just moved to San Francisco and pretty much im thinking new city, time to move to a new company and actually use my brain again. Not really sure how to go about trying to break into IBD (if its even possible not being an undergrad coming out of school) or anything else. Went to a semi-target dual major in Finance/German with relevant internship in Frankfurt at a boutique M&A shop.

Any advice or just a reality check is appreciated. Or if anyone has suggestions of shops out here that might be viable let me know.

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Comments (6)

Apr 16, 2014 - 4:07pm

I'd recommend looking into MSF programs (that's what I did - graduated in 2010, went back for my MSF in 2013; gonna be an IB analyst in a few months). Alternatively, you can start planning now to go back for an MBA in 2015 or 2016 - i.e. figuring out what MBA programs you're interested in and what they look for in applicants so you can begin to craft your experience and story accordingly; WSO has a bunch of great resources for that.

"There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing"
Apr 16, 2014 - 4:17pm

I'd also review threads on similar topics (they're out there); a bunch of great, informative comments. When I was in your position trying to figure out what career trajectory to take, @"TNA" was a great resource.

"There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing"
Apr 16, 2014 - 6:29pm

I think you might have a better shot at lateralling into IBD at a regional city (san diego, seattle, portland: West Coast cities) Start to network and reach out to alumn using linkedin or just simply cold-calling.

Start crafting a good story about why you want to move into IBD and be prepared to start from a more junior position. Good luck and keep us all posted!

i'm not smart enough to do everything, but dumb enough to try anything
Apr 16, 2014 - 8:03pm

@eggsandkaban i thought about the MSF/MBA route and am leaning more towards going for the CFA route instead. I had to do the Claritas certificate last year as required by my current job and it seems like most people think its a solid starting ground for the CFA so i figured i would keep it going in that direction. Considering that my current company will pay in full for the CFA i figured it might show some sort of intitiative when applying and maybe help me get a foot in the door via CFA Institute networking. Plus as much as i hate to say it i kind of adhere to the "go top 10 or dont go" theory. Dont think i can get into H/W/S at this point (if ever) so i dont know if its entirely worth it but on the other hand i could be 1000% wrong.

@thelittlemushrooms Not against starting in a junior role as moving back a step to junior IBD still puts me further ahead towards where i want to be than where i am now and seeing as i just moved here im still trying to stick around and avoid going the lateral city route. Hoping the NYC working mindset puts me ahead of most but at this point who knows.

Anyway thanks for the 2 cents.

Apr 16, 2014 - 8:40pm

I don't know if this might be an option, but GS has a huge presence in Salt Lake City, UT. I have heard from alums that work there that it is considerably easier to get in.

i'm not smart enough to do everything, but dumb enough to try anything
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