Comments (22)

Apr 29, 2014

What are you even asking?

Apr 29, 2014

If someone told me it would take them a month before they got any work done, I wouldn't be jumping the gun to hire them. It seems weird to me. But apparently it's successful? IDK. I wouldn't suggest it.

Apr 29, 2014

Do you know what junior bankers do?

Apr 29, 2014

Clearly the answer is no.

OP, just study technicals and why you want to work at that particular bank.

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Apr 30, 2014

Stick to the script, but be the best actor.

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Apr 30, 2014

also interested

Apr 30, 2014

hope to get response from someone experienced

Apr 30, 2014

I have had a few second/final round interviews and I didn't feel that they were particularly different from first round interviews so that might explain why there is not so much information on that topic.

Imho, prepare in the same way you have for your first round of interviews and you will be ok.

You mentioned that candidates fail in the second round because they lack understanding. Well my guess here is that they already lacked understanding in the first round but it just wasn't discovered. Probably because some candidates in round one were even worse and you tend to have more interviews in round two.

Apr 30, 2014

But isn't round 2+ with MDs etc who grill you on more details or make you talk about a topic in depth for 30 mins? These are stories I have heard.... anyone who can verify this? I hear Round 1 is breath, Round 2+ is depth.

Apr 30, 2014
inews:

But isn't round 2+ with MDs etc who grill you on more details or make you talk about a topic in depth for 30 mins? These are stories I have heard.... anyone who can verify this? I hear Round 1 is breath, Round 2+ is depth.

breadth

Apr 30, 2014

from experience, it really depends on the firm.

some firms do a first round interview to just screen terrible candidates that know how to put together a good resume. so it might be more technical from the get-go, and the second round interview is more of a balanced mix between fit and technicals.

i've also had first rounds that are purely fit based, no more than 15 minutes, simply checking whether I pass the airport test. the next rounds were - not surprisingly - more technical.

in general, what's more telling is who is interviewing. at least for me, interviews with associates have been more technically oriented and with MDs more fit oriented. VPs can go either way, but they usually want to know if you have good business sense as.

perhaps the biggest difference between a first and second round is that second rounds are more thorough. you'll go through a series of interviews where they try to wear you down. technical questions shouldn't necessarily differ much from a first round (either you know it or you don't), but second rounds - if they are in person - can include more case-like questions. had a second round interview a couple of months ago and had a 1-hour modeling exam as well. nothing too complex, but you if i didn't know what i was doing, I probably would have shit my pants.

in sum, hope for the best, but prepare for the worst. many prospective monkeys make the mistake of focusing too much time on the technical part and assume the fit component is a given. while being technically proficient is definitely important, it's more important to be upbeat, confident, and have your story down cold so you can hook the interviewer from the outset of the interview.

best of luck

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Apr 30, 2014

esBanker. Thank you for your response. Helpful to a lot of interviewees. Would you mind saying what positions and what firms made you do a modelling exam?

Apr 30, 2014

I was applying to pre-mba analyst positions (with a couple of years of work experience). i had a basic lbo modeling exam with a private equity firm (very typical) and I had to build a basic accretion/dilution model for an M&A team at a European BB bank.

I was already working in the field, so they expected me to know financial modeling. But even if you are still an undergrad, I would suggest you to learn some basic financial modeling - you never know what they can throw at you these days, and you want to be prepared for any curve balls.

i highly suggest Breaking Into Wall Street's Fundamental course - it really covers everything you need for an entry-level interview. but don't get carried away with the modeling and remember that fit is just as, if not more, important.

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Apr 30, 2014

Nicely put, esbanker.

I had 9-10 FT Associate first round interviews and then went to 6 'Super Days' (some of them on the same day). Expect anything at anytime, but most time I was interviewed by associates the questions were very technical - especially since I was coming from a non-finance background. The reason for this is that VPs and up are not always current on exactly what an MBA student is expected to know from a technical standpoint.

Apr 30, 2014

esbanker - you the man!

Apr 30, 2014

My degree has 'finance' in the title but we only study 1-2 modules of finance (which doesn't cover valuation or anything) in the entire degree. Yet I'm grilled like I'm some sort of pro. Is there a way out of this? Or just learn everything I can? :s

Apr 30, 2014

even if you don't study anything related to finance, you are still expected to know the basics of the job: accounting, valuation methodologies, how to analyze a business, general market trends, etc. if i'm an interviewer, and you can't get these down, then you're signaling me that you are not that interested and motivated.

if the questions are ridiculously hard and you know that it's beyond what you are expected to know, then the interviewer is testing you how you react and think under pressure. can you keep yourself composed? is your answer (and the assumptions behind it) reasonable?

again, there are plenty of resources out there to be well prepared, starting with the WSO guides, accounting and valuation books (some of the best are not text books, like Pearl and Rosenbaum's book) and online modeling programs.

Apr 30, 2014

esbanker's first post really hit the nail on the head. The only difference you may note is that I highly doubt you will have modeling tests for an analyst position in IB. Having gone through 4 superdays for FT, I never once received a modeling test. However, a friend of mine did have to build a Statement of Cash Flows given an Income Statement and the current and previous period's Balance Sheets. If you know your accounting basics inside and out, you will be fine. I actually had an Associate ask me to work through basic accounting problems on a dry erase board (T-accounts) in which he would give me hypothetical scenarios. Aside from basic conversational technicals, this is the only actual 'work' I ever had to do in IB analyst interviews

To reiterate esbanker, 1st rounds are used to screen out candidates who are not fit for the job but are able to throw together a good resume. Following rounds typically consist of 4-8 sessions of 30 minute 2-on-1 interviews consisting of technical and fit questions. MDs focus more on fit. VPs could go either way. Associates more than likely will grill you on technicals. If there is an analyst sitting in, he will more than likely just be used as a prop-- However, I highly recommend you asking the analyst pertinent questions as this will give you the best idea of firm/group culture

Best of luck

Apr 30, 2014

Are these comments mostly for MBA and beyond or undergrad? Or is there a difference at all? Thanks

Apr 30, 2014
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