How to ask a GS partner for a referral?

gaba's picture
Rank: Monkey | banana points 49

Hello,

I am good family friends with two global head Goldman Sachs partners and was wondering:

(1) how should I go about asking for a referral so I come across as respectful and not entitled?
(2) should I take a 1st year job at a boutique and ask for the referral next year? (my school and gpa would make breaking into GS very difficult)

I have a 3.2 cumulative and 3.9 major GPA at a top 40 ugrad bschool. Poor grades freshman year were due to a sickness. I am very driven and have an above average understanding excel/ modeling/ global markets.

Thanks

Comments (27)

Jul 30, 2015

"Hi ______, finance is something I'm really interested in, could we have a chat about your career sometime?"

During the talk, bring up the area of the bank you're interested in, ask them about it, then ask them if there's anyone they know who works there more directly who they could introduce you to.

Jul 31, 2015

Thanks for the response. Do you think it is more strategic to approach them now or next year after I have IB experience?

Jul 31, 2015

just ask

Jul 31, 2015

Yeah, just ask them. If they are really global heads, they should be able to get you through the door with a 3.2 at your school for an interview.

Just be prepared to really impress people on fit/technical questions.

Jul 31, 2015

I appreciate the advice

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Jul 31, 2015

i always thought partnership ended after an ipo and partners just became MDs

Jul 31, 2015

No there are still partners, collectively they only own like 10% of the company though, or maybe even less.

We've got half a million shares in the bag!

Jul 31, 2015
PeakLapel:

No there are still partners, collectively they only own like 10% of the company though, or maybe even less.

Talking out of our ass, are we now? Partnership is just in name, they get fatter bonuses than non partner MDeez. He may have connections outside his group, the only way to find out is to ask.

Jul 31, 2015
YourWorstEnemy:
PeakLapel:

No there are still partners, collectively they only own like 10% of the company though, or maybe even less.

Talking out of our ass, are we now? Partnership is just in name, they get fatter bonuses than non partner MDeez. He may have connections outside his group, the only way to find out is to ask.

Well you just proved yourself as a real idiot. What is your point exactly? There are around 500 "partners" all of whom hold shares of the company totaling around 10% maybe (my % might be off but its around there). as well as get a special bonus pool, ....am I wrong?

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-11-17/goldman-s...
Obviously it doesnt operate as a real partnership....but that wasnt the OP's question.

Beat it loser.

We've got half a million shares in the bag!

Jul 31, 2015
PeakLapel:

No there are still partners, collectively they only own like 10% of the company though, or maybe even less.

Actually 6%

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/mh?s=GS+Major+Holders

Jul 31, 2015

Is it more difficult to make partner coming from Investment Banking (M&A) vs. Trading? And what is the difference between a partner and a managing director in terms of what they do / pay?

Jul 31, 2015

He's a high ranking person who's been there for a while - yes, he can help you meet bankers.

Jul 31, 2015

GS's management decision to went public was wrong...

Private Partnership during 2000-2007. Woah, nothing compared to the public listing benefits.

Jul 31, 2015

any other insights?

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Jul 31, 2015

Don't. I doubt he has any pool outside his line of work.

Even if he did, thats exteremely awkward.

Jul 31, 2015
Bernankey:

Don't. I doubt he has any pool outside his line of work.

Even if he did, thats exteremely awkward.

My personal opinion is that approaching him has a potentially big upside and virtually no downside - exams are anonymous and it's not that he's going to try to blacklist you, so I don't really understand why you think it's bad to do so.

Jul 31, 2015

I disagree. Get friendly with him. If he's a partner, he's got friends all over the place.

Professors are often connected as hell, so a guy with a job is going to be a very useful contact.

Jul 31, 2015

Obviously talk to him, professors are usually very easy to network with and from my experience are eager to help their students.

The way id approach is talk to him after class about how you are interested in GS and would like to sit down and talk to him about the industry and advice for how to break in.

Jul 31, 2015

people aren't dumb. just talk with him and tell him that you are interested in working for a place like GS.

Jul 31, 2015

Everyone at GS has at least one pool outside of work, Bernankey

Jul 31, 2015
Boothorbust:

Everyone at GS has at least one pool outside of work, Bernankey

Unless I misread OPs post...if hes in ops then he works in jersey city...kinda hard to build a network from there

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Jul 31, 2015

But its not hard to build a pool, Jersey has lots of open space.

Seriously though, as others said there is limited to no downside. Also Ops guys work very closely with traders and if he's a partner he definitely knows and interacts with many senior FO guys. IF the OP wants to work in finance it would be foolish not to at leas talk to the guy.

Jul 31, 2015

He's not in OPS, I never stated this. He is the head of investment banking @ GS in G10 country.

Jul 31, 2015
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Jul 31, 2015