Informational Interviews in Hong Kong

I'm an international student at a uni in HK and by now I understand that most ppl (especially the mainland Chinese population) in HK do not prefer networking/ informational interviews. But for students, the online app is a black box and networking is usually the advice given on WSO to get an edge on the competition.

Do you guys have any tips on how to reach out to people in Asia/ Hong Kong while respecting cultural sensitivities? I usually target western looking faces so I don't come off looking too aggressive. 

WSOers in HK, what's your take on Informational Interviews? Any tips?

WSO Elite Modeling Package

  • 6 courses to mastery: Excel, Financial Statement, LBO, M&A, Valuation and DCF
  • Elite instructors from top BB investment banks and private equity megafunds
  • Includes Company DB + Video Library Access (1 year)

Comments (8)

  • Consultant in Consulting
Aug 22, 2020 - 4:09pm

I think most ppl still network but coffee chats are not as common. What Chinese people do is to reach out to their network, ask for contacts and then talk to people in their extended network if that makes sense to you.

Alumni network and student clubs are also key to knowing industry professionals.

  • Intern in Other
Aug 22, 2020 - 4:31pm

When I was trying to network with people in Singapore I didn't get a single response from ANYONE, even though my hitrate is fairly high locally. Even the people what were from or went on exchange to my school didn't respond. Either they hate Canadians or don't respond to networking emails/linkedin inmails.

Aug 23, 2020 - 2:29am

don't worry its probably the latter. But yep, I can totally relate 


  • Intern in S&T - FI
Aug 24, 2020 - 2:47am

OP - ur absolutely right that networking in HK is super tough and online apps are just one big crapshoot. Most mainland chinese folks wont give you the time of the day since they're fairly insular in their own circles but worth a shot to reach out anyways. Some will be willing to get on the phone etc. Also, there are senior folks (usually western/western-educated) who do appreciate the initiative and will make an effort to help you w/ referrals/pushing ur application. But do expect low response rates and do follow up when appropriate since ppl usually forget the 1st time, and do reach out to as many ppl as possible. Junior folks are great for initial chats/getting to know the biz but do skew efforts towards senior guys since they're the ones who can really boost ur chances wrt recruiting. Ask good (non-generic) questions and have your "story" on point. The networking game in HK is defo tough but not impossible. Good luck!

 - 2 cents from a guy who networked his way into BB S&T. Happy to chat more in PM if suits

Aug 24, 2020 - 12:15pm

Thanks, that's v helpful.

Congrats on breaking into BB S&T! Would be great to get to know more about your journey.
Can you PM me, you're anonymous so I'm not able to.


Learn More

300+ video lessons across 6 modeling courses taught by elite practitioners at the top investment banks and private equity funds -- Excel Modeling -- Financial Statement Modeling -- M&A Modeling -- LBO Modeling -- DCF and Valuation Modeling -- ALL INCLUDED + 2 Huge Bonuses.

Learn more
Start Discussion

Total Avg Compensation

May 2021 Investment Banking

  • Director/MD (9) $911
  • Vice President (35) $364
  • Associates (195) $233
  • 2nd Year Analyst (110) $151
  • Intern/Summer Associate (96) $145
  • 3rd+ Year Analyst (26) $145
  • 1st Year Analyst (405) $131
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (330) $82