Is it naughty to begin networking for FT before you even start your SA stint???

Title says it all! A little apprehensive to start networking before I start my SA - worried that someone I speak to might relay the info to the IB Im starting at in May or that I might just seem overly eager.. Kind of tough though given that I wont have time to network during my SA stint and FT recruitment starts in July/Aug

What are your thoughts on this??

Comments (39)

Best Response
Feb 13, 2018

You don't have to officially network "for" full-time. Just network. You've got no experience in the industry and you want to talk to people who do to learn about it. That's all your meetings should be about. Then once its time for FT recruiting, you've laid the groundwork and have a leg up.

Feb 27, 2018

...

Feb 13, 2018

Of course they know you want something. It's business and we're not here to make friends. But the overt agenda of the meeting shouldn't be about "how I can get a job here next summer?" It should be about introducing yourself, learning about the other person, their role, and their company, and then allowing that connection to work for you as it will down the line. That might mean a referral for a job offer this summer, or it could mean inroads to a deal 5 years later when you're a VP and he's switched to corporate development. Focusing on making connections without a specific intent will be better received by those you meet, and it will ultimately pay dividends.

Feb 13, 2018

Do you. No holds barred in this game, get every edge you can. Just don't get caught to avoid awkward conversations / offers revoked.

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Feb 27, 2018

Hey wegman, I'm the WSO Monkey Bot and I'm here since nobody responded to your thread! Bummer...could just be time of day or unlucky (or the question/topci is too vague or too specific). Maybe one of these topics will help:

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Calling relevant professionals! @RuRuMaster @arya180 @Ray Velcoro

Hope that helps.

Feb 13, 2018

I say go for it tactfully - make sure by the end of the conversation they know your #1 priority is to do a good job this summer and get the return offer (which you should also convey you would be "elated to accept" and not going to use for leverage later), and that the conversation is merely about learning more about the industry, the contacts firm, and building another relationship in the industry,

If you could do these well you should be on the firms short list for FT candidates (provided you do actually get a return offer at your current firm)

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Feb 13, 2018

Sounds good man - Ive done quite a few calls regarding FT so far and theyve gone well. Just wanted to make sure that this sort of thing isnt frowned upon and that I wasnt inevitably going to be shooting myself in the foot by proceeding

Thanks

Feb 13, 2018

Totally agree with everyone else. I've seen many other threads like this recently so I honestly think that if you're not reaching out to these people before or right around starting your SA stint, then you might be behind.

Good luck!

Feb 27, 2018

First off congrats. I would be interested in learning about the FT recruitment as well. I am sure it would have to be after you secure an offer and make sure your bank doesn't find out.

Feb 27, 2018

If you're at a target and/or have good OCR then it's not too bad. They will come knocking. Other than that if you know people working at places you'd rather be at, it doesn't hurt to meet up with them over the summer or early in the recruiting process next year. I wouldn't be too aggressive with going after the firms that you didnt get offers from until the end of the summer, when you can relate your new experiences.

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Feb 27, 2018

Thanks for the input. Fortunately my school has great OCR (all BBs and elite boutiques for the most part), but I spent the majority of my time networking with people in tech/generalists groups (through trial and error kindof realized my true interest was in Health care, albeit a too late). Do you think it would be odd to email them describing my realization, current position at the boutique, and asking them if they would be able to possibly put me in contact with someone in the health care group? I felt like I networked successfully and definitely left the door open for further discussion with some of my contacts, but not sure if asking for such would be going too far.

Feb 27, 2018

Being proactive is great. That said, I would wait a bit until after working this summer. You'll have much more to draw on, to talk about, and you might find new interests / deeper discussion points. That will help you get in touch with the right people later. At this point, relax and enjoy school. Work is coming soon and you'll be in the middle of all of it.

Feb 27, 2018

curious about this, also. what are the success rates of people placing Full time at a bugle bracket after they summer at a boutique?

What if they network with their contacts at the BBs during the summer while working at the boutique?

Feb 27, 2018

i was at a no name boutique unpaid my SA and then got a top MM for FT. start networking i'd say around april, IMO at least.

this way you could say im in this position at X firm, what do you recommend i try and do to best position myself for FT at your firm? what type of deals should i try to be placed on etc...how many SAs are you taking? how many FT did you take this year (so you'll know if they usually overhire for SA or underhire etc) how many of your FTs were kids that did FT recruitment vs were summer kids? etc...

plant the seeds in april, then end of may/beginning of june depending on when you end finals re-touch back in with them right before the internship to maybe ask for more advice, or things you are curious about, then stya in touch in summer maybe 3-4 times to show you're interested but not enough to be annoying and then later in august you can push harder to keep you in mind for FT if they have an opening...

i did this, but on a larger scale to many banks and was able to get many FT interviews. it can be done but you cant be lazy and have to stay focused! look at my previous post and you'll see in depth.

good luck and congrats on the SA position OP!

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Feb 13, 2018

curious too

Feb 27, 2018

Begin networking now, but when I did FT recruitment usually my contacts set me up with meetings and info interviews until late summer/early fall once they knew how many returning analysts/openings they had.

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Feb 27, 2018

To clarify -- when you say that your contacts set you up with meetings and info interviews, do you mean that they provided you with referrals to other bankers?

Feb 27, 2018

....

Feb 27, 2018

This probably depends. I was straightforward with people early in the summer and they knew I wanted to work elsewhere after graduation. However, your work probably has to be really on point to back that up and keep it outside work hours if possible.

Feb 27, 2018

Don't ever tell anyone at your SA firm you're networking elsewhere. You need a return offer otherwise it will be very tough to lateral elsewhere for FT.

IMO I would wait until a bit into the summer to start reaching out to people. It will be easier when you're actually in NY, and you don't look quite as disloyal as you would if you're trying to flip your offer before you even start the internship. You'll have more interesting things to talk to them about once you start your internship as well.

Feb 13, 2018

For you analysts/associates out there, how do you perceive it when students who already accepted offers, reach out to network with you?

It seems tough to spin it in a way that doesn't come off as you trying to leverage your offer. Although in today's market, everyone should network to have back ups.

Feb 15, 2018

Bump.

Feb 27, 2018

nah - so i faced this kind of awkward situation after I signed with my BB for SA. No reason not to hedge, right?
The problem is: by networking before having even started the internship, you'll look like you're not committing to the current bank. This will count as a negative (jumping ship).
Hopefully you've built a large book of contacts looking for the internship. What I did was basically update everyone a few weeks after signing the contract (people were receptive, and thanked me for keeping them in the loop). Tell them you'll keep in touch.
Mid-point in the internship, ask for a cup of coffee/informational interview. This is where you ask for FT opportunities.
I ended up doing this (just to hedge), but the BB came through with the FT offer and I chose to stay. Everyone I networked with understood. Business is business.

Feb 27, 2018

This is very normal.

Feb 27, 2018

Interested in this too

Feb 27, 2018

i would think its fine as long as you don't make it too obvious, but your no.1 priority is to perform well at that SA stint and learn as much as possible.

Feb 27, 2018

It's a little early. Maybe reach out to all of the connections you've made during SA recruiting and update them and let them know you're excited at this learning opportunity you've been given, but don't be too aggressive with saying you already know you want to lateral without having even started.

I would say give the internship at least a couple of weeks before actively sending out emails that indicate you would be interested in interviewing with X, Y, Z firms instead of the one you're currently at for A, B, C reasons.

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Feb 27, 2018

Agree, this is actually the path that I took. Another reason to not do it now is that you may be wasting your time with some contacts. A lot of people won't be at the same firm in 6 months, especially junior bankers. Even if they are, you'll have to reach out again when it's closer to the summer anyway.

Feb 27, 2018

What if you don't have strong connections from SA recruiting? Should u start developing new relationships for FT from now?

Feb 27, 2018

Wait a few more months until you're in your SA stint. Then you can include what you're working on and what you're learning and have more intelligent discussions. Also, it'll remove the timing weirdness you alluded to.

Feb 27, 2018

BUMP

Feb 27, 2018

What's left to bump? Yes, it's fine to reach out. Wait until May/June.

Feb 27, 2018
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