IB or bust?

How crazy is this mentality? I've done an F500 corporate finance internship and can't imagine wasting my life doing that nonsense. It seems like to get any worthwhile job in finance you have to start in IB or work your way up the corporate ladder for 25 years like a normie to make what a 30 year old banker makes. I dont have an accounting degree so i dont think transaction advisory is an option. A career in credit analysis is about as cool as showering with your dad and equity research is pretty much as hard as IB to get into. If I don't get a FT offer in the fall i think im going to abandon finance completely. Am I on the right track here?

Comments (44)

Jun 5, 2018

Absolutely

    • 3
Jun 6, 2018

What did you study at uni?

Jun 6, 2018

Finance

Array
Jun 6, 2018

Consider than within IB you go from BB all the way to no-name boutiques so there are PLENTY of places for potential employment. If you don't manage and don't want a CF role then consulting (more specifically economic or financial consulting) may be an option.

Jun 6, 2018

You realize you don't necessarily have to start in IB from day 1 to eventually break into it right? If anything this kind of shows that you're not that committed to it, saying you'll just drop finance if you don't get an offer immediately? Show a little dedication bro!

Learn More

7,548 questions across 469 investment banks. The WSO Investment Banking Interview Prep Course has everything you'll ever need to start your career on Wall Street. Technical, Behavioral and Networking Courses + 2 Bonus Modules. Learn more.

Funniest
Jun 6, 2018

Idk man. I don't want to be the 30 year old Uncle Rico still gunning for an IB analyst spot

Array
    • 8
Jun 6, 2018

I've seen guys lateral over to analyst/assoc. spots at 28 before, if you aren't dedicated enough to grind like that to be where you want to be then pick another industry.

Jun 6, 2018

What's the alternative plan, assuming you abandon finance altogether? Not wanting to be in F500 finance or Commercial Banking at 40 can make sense to me, but it depends on what you would be doing instead.

Jun 6, 2018

,

Array
    • 1
Jun 6, 2018
BillPonderosa:

If I don't get a FT offer in the fall i think im going to abandon finance completely.

Lol, this is like saying "If I don't get into Harvard, I think I'm going to abandon college completely."

It's not the end of the world. You're really young. Stay dedicated and hungry to achieve your goals. If you're not dedicated enough now to reach your goals in finance, you won't be dedicated enough to reach your goals in other areas later.

Also, lose the "normie" talk. It doesn't make you sound cool.

    • 3
Jun 6, 2018

To everyone concerned about the use of the word normie: this was used strictly for entertainment purposes and should not be assumed to be a part of my everyday vernacular

Array
    • 3
    • 3
Most Helpful
Jun 6, 2018

Funny how you don't want to be a 28-30+-year gunning for an analyst spot. I actually have a couple of friends who had a very late start in their career because they were working random jobs for 5-8 years to support their family, then went back to school for a Masters and broke into banking at 30 and 32 respectively. Now, a few years later, one is in PE and the other a VP in M&A, making bank and being considerably better off than they would have been had they not broken in. According to the logic around here they should have rolled over and died at 30 because they were "too old". This just goes to show the intellectual level most of the crowd here at WSO operates at.

I broke in at a later age (though not that late) as well and let me tell you my bonus last year felt as good as it would have at 22! Everybody's life is on a different track and everyone has their own timeline, just something to think about.

    • 9
Learn More

7,548 questions across 469 investment banks. The WSO Investment Banking Interview Prep Course has everything you'll ever need to start your career on Wall Street. Technical, Behavioral and Networking Courses + 2 Bonus Modules. Learn more.

Jun 6, 2018

This is an important thread for all the students currently interested in IB. Don't be OP.

    • 2
    • 1
Jun 6, 2018

The way I see it, the only real short cuts to interesting jobs are:

starting in a services industry job working with corporates (IB, consulting, marketing/pr, law, big4 accounting and ER/CR)

starting a company (or joining early) and scaling it

owning and overseeing a product at scale (Product Manager)

route switching via grad school (top MBA, PhD, MD etc)

getting into a gig that pays extremely well for high performance and innate skill like markets jobs (S&T, HFs, quant etc), sales (all types), software engineering, data science, creative roles etc

starting in a leadership development program that fast-tracks you to management

Otherwise, you're going to have to pay your dues like everyone else before you get to the high level, well compensated and interesting stuff. Tough pickles. Not everyone can be good enough to skip the line.

    • 2
Jun 6, 2018

Tough pickles indeed. These are the pickles of our times really. Im just going to keep hitting the alligator closest to the canoe and hope for the best

Array
    • 3
Jun 7, 2018

There are many ways to make a great living in finance, in and out of IB. Assuming you're at a good school, it sounds like you're off to a good start. If for some reason you end up not making IB when you graduate, all hope is not lost as you could transfer in later.

I do agree that credit analysis does not sounds too fun.

Jun 8, 2018

Like if those are your goals then banking is definitely the way to go, in my opinion. Being an analyst at a bank will give you some serious cred for any business jobs you try to move into down the road.

Dayman?

Sep 21, 2018

This kid is a joke... no wonder he hasn't been successful landing a gig on the street.

Sep 21, 2018

yep

Sep 21, 2018

I dont know man...you should probably apply to boutiques where you'll do IB as opposed to something else at a BB.

BossMode

Sep 21, 2018

definitely apply to boutiques over BB. From what i've heard, its MUCH easier to move to IBD at a BB from a place like Harris Williams, Cowen, or Jeffries, then it is from goldman operations. When you lateral later on, people are going to want to hire banking analysts, not people who work in the finance department, as 1) you have no banking experience and 2) you'll likely get little to negative respect from the bankers there, since you are coming from, no offence, a pretty dead end job. Its also significantly harder to get into the above places verses Goldman operations in general, so it shows a lot more about yourself if you have already got into banking. Push for banking at all costs, screw Goldman ops.

Sep 21, 2018
dealcomps:

definitely apply to boutiques over BB. From what i've heard, its MUCH easier to move to IBD at a BB from a place like Harris Williams, Cowen, or Jeffries, then it is from goldman operations. When you lateral later on, people are going to want to hire banking analysts, not people who work in the finance department, as 1) you have no banking experience and 2) you'll likely get little to negative respect from the bankers there, since you are coming from, no offence, a pretty dead end job. Its also significantly harder to get into the above places verses Goldman operations in general, so it shows a lot more about yourself if you have already got into banking. Push for banking at all costs, screw Goldman ops.

Hehe, I do agree with you and curious why you hate GS ops that much =)
Actually I know a guy who moved from GS tech to GS IBD, after preparing a lot and passing rounds of grilling interviews.

Sep 21, 2018

I'd go boutique as a back up....you can find an extensive list of regional boutiques here: //www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/regional-boutiques

Elite GMAT Tutors: //www.wallstreetoasis.com/page/one-on-one-gmat-prep
Invite Monkeys Here: //www.wallstreetoasis.com/invite
WSO Guides: //www.wallstreetoasis.com/wsoguides
Follow WSO on Twitter: http://twitter.com/wallstreetoasis

Sep 21, 2018

.

Sep 21, 2018

that's a terrible way to live. be thankful you have a job that pays more than most.

Sep 21, 2018

I'm definitely thankful that I have a job. I'm just trying to get to the light at the end of the tunnel by finding something else besides ibanking analyst.

Sep 21, 2018

Military will take more than 25% travel...most likely.

My backup plan is Big 4 accounting. It wouldn't be that bad of a B-Plan: less hours than banking, better location than Wall Street, and I actually like accounting (But I haven't done anything related to finance, yet).

I think that we are all clinging to a great many piano tops...

Sep 21, 2018

Don't be so anxious to get into banking... be happy with your job where you make decent money and can go home at night not having to worry about getting a call that you have to come back to the office, or cancel your vacation, or miss a family friend's father's funeral (my week this week).

Sep 21, 2018

Yea the military would definitely require more than 25%; sometimes even more than 50%-75%. Big4 Accounting might be something I could look into; just don't want to be bored to death on a daily basis.

Wow Billy that's terrible. I mean I do see it happen to the bankers at work all the time and I think, "ah well it's part of the job." ..but it's probably a different feeling if it were to actually happen to me. The problem is that I'm not really happy doing what I do now (despite the perks and benefits being great), so I wanted to see if you guys had any ideas of some alternative careers within finance that I can research and see if they're something that I'd be interested in.

Sep 21, 2018
Comment
Sep 21, 2018