First rejection

Get this may sound annoying but I'm not really sure how to handle it. There is a pipeline fund into Investment management programs at my school that offer great placement. I got rejected today. Never really took a rejection at anything before and I understand that it's a part of life. I want to ask how you guys changed your mentality after your first rejection and what you did to get better, because that's my only focus right now. Appreciate it.

Comments (30)

Most Helpful
  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Feb 11, 2020 - 10:28pm

I think everyone on this site has gone through multiple rejections. Be it from their dream school, dream freshman internship, sophomore internship, junior SA internship, or dream PE firm after their IB stint. Getting rejected by your school's Investment Management program sucks but it's the first of many, many more "nos" before you start getting a yes. Keep fighting, the more "nos" you go through, the closer you get to a yes. There are after all no losers, just quitters. Best of luck.

Feb 11, 2020 - 10:29pm

you need to develop an abundance mindset. there are so many ways to land a good job that if you have an abundance mindset it won't matter so much if one specific opportunity doesn't work out because there are so many other opportunities out there. not every opportunity is necessarily going to be a good fit for you as well so you need to vet the opportunity just as the opportunity is vetting you. i used to think that this kind of advice was a meme but had an experience which changed the way i look at it all - still very young so i could be off base but here is my actionable advice: go apply for a couple hundred internships within the span of a week if you have a decent resume you will get a number of phone screens and then when one of those phone screens does not progress past the phone screen or one of those on sites does not progress past the on site that will be okay because you have 30 more phone screens in the funnel. when i was going through recruiting for internships i would have many days or weeks between interviews because i didn't push out enough volume of applications and this was bad for my psyche because it meant that at any given moment i only had one company or at most a few that i was speaking with. when you are only speaking with one or two companies the weight of each opportunity seems more extreme but when you are talking to 30 companies it will help you realize that the individual company is not something to kill yourself over because there are many other companies like it.

Feb 11, 2020 - 10:31pm

Hey man. Just rmb that it's all about perspective. Always look forward that this little set back is what will get to your goal.

For context, my parents lost all their money during a crisis, and we moved from upper class to the ghettos overnight. They worked hard to put me in the best public school where I got second in my graduating class. Went abroad for a target and fell into addiction. Got kicked out. Contemplated ending it but got help. Ended up in a no-name school. Grinded and somehow I'm still where I wanted to be. Looking back at it, without my fuckup or what I thought was the ultimate failure I wouldn't be where I am.

Always. Always rmb that this little discouragement is what is needed to get to your goal....

Don't be discouraged and good luck.

  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Other
Feb 11, 2020 - 10:31pm

I went to a school that had a placement workshop / fund. Didn't get it and now I'm at a BB doing front office work.

It's not the end of any world. Reflect on why you might've not gotten in? My reason was mostly lack of strong technical knowledge at the time. I could present myself well, and I knew the purpose of the workshop / what front office jobs entailed. So I spent the following few months focused solely on technical knowledge - started to network hardEr. A few alumn asked me why I wasn't in the club and I just owned up to it and how I improved since, some respected the transparency alone, and some grilled me on technicals to make sure I knew the deal, and people from other schools I networked didn't even know about it.

Aside from that it doesn't ever matter what undergrad fund you're apart of, or not apart of, if you don't have the work ethic and humility to network and hustle through GPA / landing tangible work experiences. I saw smart kids think these type of "exclusive" workshops be the end all to getting a job on the street and get humbled real quickly / even hindered some of our relations with shops.

Long story short...reflect on your rejection - research how to improve - resolve your weakness.

Feb 12, 2020 - 1:17am

I went to community college, was rejected by 20+ banks for SA / FT roles. I'm currently at a lower BB in TMT. Keep grinding - get feedback and figure out why you were rejected. Implement that feedback and iterate on your review process until you land an offer.

Feb 12, 2020 - 2:48pm

your walls must be running out of space by this point

Thank you for your interest in the 2020 Investment Banking Full-time Analyst Programme (London) at JPMorgan Chase. After a thorough review of your application, we regret to inform you that we are unable to move forward with your candidacy at this time.
  • 2
Feb 12, 2020 - 8:58pm

if you make enough money, they'll overlook the ugliness and just see you as a cunt :)

Thank you for your interest in the 2020 Investment Banking Full-time Analyst Programme (London) at JPMorgan Chase. After a thorough review of your application, we regret to inform you that we are unable to move forward with your candidacy at this time.
Feb 12, 2020 - 2:43am

Non-core school guy here. It may sound cliche but you need to do this one step which helped me a lot; ask for critical feedback man to man from your interviewer(s) as to what was the tick which made you lose the role. You'll be able to tell pretty easily if it's something to do with not you directly (ie being from the wrong school / background whatever) vs something you did which made the interviewer go from being positive on you to negative. Use people to your advantage in this situation and collect what you can from them in terms of fungible criticism.

It's rough the first time for sure but it becomes a reflex after a while - as you will go through several rejections - and you'll be able to absorb and implement feedback like a pro once you get through a couple rep. Have written about similar stuff before in other threads but things like polish or how you enunciate yourself really comes into play here so pay close attention to both your performance but also your interviewers. Happy to conduct a mock interview btw so PM if that's something you'd need.

EDIT: Mock interviews were some of the biggest tools i had whether it was friends or family asking me stuff out of interview guides so please do not hesitate. I never practiced in front of a mirror as I felt it wasn't as useful as being able explain behaviorals / technicals to other people in a clean succinct manner without them crinkling their brow in confusion

  • 4
  • Incoming Analyst in IB - DCM
Feb 12, 2020 - 11:43am

After I got rejected for like 100 times I no longer have the power to care.

Seriously though getting rejected is a part of life. After all my rejections they make me cherish my offer more and provide fuel for me to fight even harder in my later interviews.

Feb 12, 2020 - 12:22pm

OP - I have been there. We all have. Everyone has a different way of coping. As so many others have pointed out, this will be something to get used to. So often it will have nothing to do with you, like so much in life. Sometimes it will be about something you said or did. Other times it will be the interviewer's mood or the weather, what they ate for breakfast etc etc etc. In other words stuff that you can't control.

Short term plan - get out. Get some beers, moan to some friends, work out, whatever it is that floats your boat.

Longer term plan - in addition to applying for a ton of other things (plenty of rejections will come and you'll soon be numb to them as another poster said), see below.

Another idea is to pick up a new activity or hobby or join something NEW. Like something you have never ever done or something that you know you truly suck at. You are in college so there will be tons of opportunities. Why? It will be a reminder that you can't succeed in everything and will give you an appreciation that life is multi-dimensional and that there is so much out there.

For example, I did Ikebana (The Japanese art of flower arrangement) once when in Japan. I was awful at it. Zero sense of the geometry or what flowers to pick or any aesthetic sense. But I loved it and would happily do it again. Like regularly. Why? Because I suck at it and that's totally ok. It's humbling and lets me appreciate different talents and skills that I neither have nor have put any time or effort into developing.

Hang in there.

Good Luck

I used to do Asia-Pacific PE (kind of like FoF). Now I do something else but happy to try and answer questions on that stuff.
  • 3
Feb 12, 2020 - 2:28pm

I got rejected from my schools IB club/workshop and had 120 rejections for my sophomore year internship. Eventually I realized that I have to prove my worth to everyone and rejections mattered less. Once I cared less about the rejections, I was able to perform better because I wasn't afraid of messing up.

Feb 12, 2020 - 4:54pm

Truth. Not caring about rejection and failure is one of the keys to life. It's liberating and it is probably one of the key traits so many successful people (across all fields) have.

I used to do Asia-Pacific PE (kind of like FoF). Now I do something else but happy to try and answer questions on that stuff.
Feb 13, 2020 - 1:44pm

Its hard at first, but getting over the fear of rejection and not caring about rejection itself is a huge component of success in not just your career, but all aspects of life. I'm not in IB, but here's a quick list below of what has happened to me in terms of rejection.

  1. Applied to over 200 jobs, landed one internship and another job from it.
  2. Offer rescinded due to a start date error by HR (Job needed someone in January, I was still in school until May).
  3. Offer rescinded after "failing a psych test" (it was given to show if you were depressed, bipolar, etc. The trends were easy to identify, no way I failed it).
  4. Interviews extended and then cancelled before I could have them.
  5. Received rejection from a phone interview 5 mins after it ended.
  6. Received rejection from an in person interview 20 mins after it ended.
  7. Ghosted for second round phone and final round Skype interviews during the times they were supposed to take place.
  8. Cancelled on for person interview (didn't happen until I showed up).

Rejection is a part of life. The sooner you come to terms with it, the better off and more successful you will be in the long run.

  • 5
  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Feb 13, 2020 - 3:04pm

Do you all know kids that basically have not been rejected from anything ? Like everything happens for them .

Feb 13, 2020 - 8:02pm

I think many of us think that there are kids that have never been rejected from anything, but the reality is that no one really knows nor cares what struggles people are facing or what failures that person has endured in the past. Nothing just "happens" for anyone.
You see a Harvard student with a 4.0 and a perfect job lined up for after graduation and think they have never made a single mistake in their whole life. Reality is that person probably has many just as many mistakes as anyone else, but they have learned from them and used it to motivate them to work harder.
Everyone in life has been rejected by something. No one is all-around perfect. It's how you handle rejection and keep your head held high that gets you places.

No one remembers when the fastest runner in the world came in second place, everyone remembers when he came back stronger the next year and got a world record.

Feb 14, 2020 - 8:07am

I'm not sure about not being rejected by anything but there are certainly plenty of people who have faced little, if any, rejection from things like schools, jobs etc.

While some are "superstars" others have made few career or life changes. There are many people who stumbled into an internship or job offer, took it and never left. Many stay because they like it or don't want to leave for whatever reason, others (and many more than you think) haven't left because they are scared to leave or try something new or set up a new social network, deal with new processes, new politics or because they fear they will get rejected and that is seen as screwing up etc etc etc.

All of this said, the truth is that everyone has their own challenges and issues.

I used to do Asia-Pacific PE (kind of like FoF). Now I do something else but happy to try and answer questions on that stuff.
  • 1
Feb 13, 2020 - 4:20pm

I got laughed off the phone by a recruiter at a mid-level firm. I'm now at a top tier firm (I'd argue the best).

I got told I have no business applying to a firm I was gunning for (even after having the interview set up by my father who was friends with the CEO)

I got rejected from business school 3 times (some undergrad, some grad)

I made it to final rounds of a lucrative AM opportunity and had every referral open the doors to me. it was to the point where I was looking at apartments and asked my current place the fees for breaking the lease, they stopped returning my calls and I found out I was passed over after being told I had the job.

I got told by a superior that I'd never make it in this business, I now make double what she makes.

rejections are just potholes on the road to victory. keep your chin up kid

Feb 14, 2020 - 12:42am
"Out the garage is how you end up in charge It's how you end up in penthouses, end up in cars, it's how you Start off a curb servin', end up a boss"
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