How to best prepare for a good exit as an IB Analyst

Freshly started a full-time job in an EB in London and want to start thinking about how to best position myself for a good exit (not sure if I would want to but better think ahead). For people who already exited:

  1. What tips do you have for an IB Analyst?
  2. What work and deal exposure should I make sure to have during my Analyst years?
  3. When do you start looking into exiting? How do you find job openings (I don't think it's on the websites)?
  4. How did you decide on your ideal exit or narrow down your choices (eg. Corp Dev, Venture, Growth, Buyout, HF, Credit...)? 
  5. Have you considered the Middle East?

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Comments (11)

Sep 12, 2021 - 2:35pm

Not sure what that was meant to mean but I'm just trying to be candid. I would 100% lateral first if I could go back. Just makes getting your foot in the door much easier. Interviews etc, it's all pretty standard stuff that you know after being an analyst. It becomes numbers game

Most Helpful
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Sep 13, 2021 - 3:00am

About to move out of IB after 1 year and recieved multiple offers.

1. Always be keen, hungry to learn, build good relationships within your team, you cannot imagine how many people don't consider that

2. At an EB you will only do M&A, honestly so try to do both some sell side and some buyside, a large deal is nice to have but I prefer small ones where you get more responsibility rather than be on a team of 20people for a single deal.

3. Speak to HHs, you can do interviews from I would say 8 months in - but I would say only take these if you feel ready, no point in rushing yourself into processes to exit and get a bad reputation for failing interviews.

4. Personal interest for 90% of the people, ask yourself if you like transactions, if so do you like to be an advisor? Ask yourself if you want to do 1 deal a year and be operational (i.e. PE) or focus on tech (VC if you love sourcing/GE if you prefer modeling) and do many deals per year. Or if you want to do many deals per year, have better hours and look across industries (Credit). Maybe you are interested in the strategic rationale for doing deals, ensuring fit both operationally as well as culturally then CorpDev is for you. If you hate deals but like looking at a wide range of companies then HFs may be for you. 

For me the thought process was very much thinking what I don't like to do: 1) work in deal teams with 3-4 MDs with various stupid comments, I like to work in very lean teams 2) I liked the transactional aspect, 3) I liked doing multiple deals per year, 4) I did not want to specialise too much industry wise, but 5) I did not want to be too operational or look at small deals where you have to implement basic best practices and/or proper reporting and KPIs. And so when I considered these things, I figured broadly what I wanted to do in terms of fund structure and type of work. Also I hated working with corporates clueless about M&A having to teach them basic things.

Sep 13, 2021 - 1:23pm

Thank you for your elaborate post and congrats on your offers! Wishing you all the best.
Quick follow up:
1. Can you elaborate on what exactly you mean by having good relationships with the team (be super close or just nice and respectful?) and why it matters?
3. How do you speak to HHs? Do you send them messages on LinkedIn or is there another way? Does recruitment start at a specific time of the year like in IB entry level or is it all year long?

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Sep 14, 2021 - 5:12am

1. Up to you but I am quite close with my team, and whilst I may not be the analyst that works the most I was top ranked as my team likes me - given that we are quite close they don't throw me under the bus like they do with some other analysts. It matters because people speak - before you get a final offer they will likely call your boss and ask if they would recommend you - I know for a fact that someone in my team that is not really close to the team missed out on an offer after a senior at a fund called an MD and the MD said he is not very personnable.

3. They will contact you directly, most likely on linkedin as a place to start. You can move anytime really but there is a big wave of recruting taking place in the fall as bonuses have been just paid and that funds are looking to get you to join by January given that they have a january bonus cycle.

  • Works at Other
Sep 14, 2021 - 8:01am

Your thought process about your goals is somewhat similar to mine, what did you end up deciding for yourself or would recommend as an alternative, and has it met your expectations?

  • Works at Other
Sep 14, 2021 - 8:01am


Sep 17, 2021 - 7:21am

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