Log 5: Sorry for Being Late


Alright, I guess I'm back. I've come to realize that my 100 cold messages were minuscule compared to some of my piers. I've heard stories of people who would send thousands of cold emails through out a week, and others who have had 6 internships before graduating. It's pitiful but I'm becoming overwhelmed hearing about all these individuals.

Please critique me.

Log for Week 10/7/2019-10/17/2019

Yeah... this was bad. I had 4 calls, and ended up doing dog shit on all of them. I've come to realize, I highly lack personal skills when talking to bankers. I'm fine talking to closer individuals, but I get nervous around people I hold high esteem to. The last call I had really hurt my self confidence, the whole call was extremely awkward and I honestly think I should cut ties with that bank. Aside that, I still did manage to get three calls this weeks, but I am dreading the thought of having to do them.

In other news:
I started competing in an equity analysis competition where, ironically, I will end up doing a DCF. The whole competition will go to the beginning of December where we'll eventually be judged by industry professionals. It's great to put on your resume and a good opportunity for practice.

My Thoughts: (New Section)
I'm making this sections to vent my thoughts. I try to ignore the thought of this but I am really bad at socializing. I'm not a complete weirdo but I have a really hard time talking to people outside of my personal groups. I'm just gonna hope that the more you talk, the better you get at it.

How do you guys maintain a positive outlook? It's only been 5 weeks since starting this and I'm already in a slump.

- Go for roughly 200 emails.
- Finish my current book.
- Talk to 4 more industry professionals over the phone.

Comments (17)

Oct 14, 2019 - 2:49pm

Its a numbers game. Keep emailing, keep taking calls, keep on keeping on. You will get better, you will improve your response rate, and you will improve your calls and ability to maintain relationships from those calls. Just think of it as a numbers game and the law of large numbers, you will get closer to that mean/expected value of getting that job.

Oct 14, 2019 - 3:54pm

Also dont worry about fucking up those calls, it happens. When I first started my first calls were also pretty bad, just like everything in life besides sex (Im still bad at it) the more you do it, the better you will get. Reflect on what you think went wrong and how you can be better on your next call and so on. There are thousands of people in the industry, just cause you fucked up with some, it doesnt mean that you have no chance at that bank in the future. You will get better and you will find people that will help you out, but if you give up on knocking on doors cause you are tired of people closing them on you then you might never find these people.

Oct 14, 2019 - 4:04pm

In regards to doing well on networking phone calls, the most important tip that allowed me to do well on calls is to remember that bankers are people too. Just because they hold a job that you want, doesn't mean they are to be revered, especially if you're not speaking with a superstar MD. They accepted your request to set up a call, which should show you they respect you enough to take the time to speak with you for a bit and answer the questions you have.

Another tip is to do your research before the call. Obviously, understand what the basic services offered by Investment Banks, especially the group of the person you are speaking with. Understand any recent news regarding the bank and their role on recent transactions. Additionally, know your story. Why are you interested in banking? Are there any particular things you want to know more about? What have you done to set your self up for recruiting? These are topics that will come up during the call.

People will always tell you networking is a numbers game, but I had a lot of success with a limited/targeted approach. If there are alumni from your school, target those connections more than others. And like countless people before me stated, reach out to people who share some sort of experience with you, your answer rate increases significantly.

Investment Banking is not rocket science, it is not insanely challenging. IB attracts a specific personality, and if you come off as desperate to break in or as a super try hard, I guarantee that you won't make it. You need to keep your options open and realize that life isn't IB or bust like many on here believe. If you don't get an offer, there are other great opportunities out there for you to pursue. Next time you get on a call, drop the attitude that you absolutely need to be in IB and try to have a normal conversation where you are genuinely interested in the person's background and career. Your main priority should be to learn more about the industry and their bank. If the call goes well, you won't even need to ask them to push your resume, they will ask you for it. That my 2 cents. You can choose to follow some of these tips or not. But if you only follow one tip, I hope it's the fact that there is more to finance than IB.

Oct 14, 2019 - 5:16pm

I think everyone on here would agree that your transparency in your posts and documentation of your journey is refreshing. Keep it up.

5 weeks is nothing. Keep going. Like others have said, the only way to get better is brush off the 'losses', learn, and keep trucking forward. Nothing worthwhile materializes overnight, not even 5 weeks.

The key to positive outlook is - relish in the failures and get used to hearing 'no'. Every time you hear it you are one 'no' closer to the 'yes'.

"Out the garage is how you end up in charge It's how you end up in penthouses, end up in cars, it's how you Start off a curb servin', end up a boss"
Oct 15, 2019 - 3:20am


How do you guys maintain a positive outlook? It's only been 5 weeks since starting this and I'm already in a slump.

- Go for roughly 200 emails.
- Finish my current book.
- Talk to 4 more industry professionals over the phone.

I disagree. You're not in a slump, but you're setting the bar too high. There is no way to consistently pump out 200 good emails/week and follow up on the ones that yield results. If I were you I'd say 5/day that are of high quality will be better than 25 that are mediocre.

Keep up the grind and best of luck!

I don't know... Yeah. Almost definitely yes.

Oct 15, 2019 - 1:54pm

It's tough to stay positive when all hope seems to be lost. The process is a grind, but it is also a war of attrition. The longer you stay on board while others jump ship, the less competition you have. For me personally, it was a matter of 6-8 months of nonstop hard work. The recruitment process is tough because it weeds out the losers, the quitters, and the disorganized. You're correct in that the more you do it, the better you will get. Don't overthink. Just approach every conversation with openness, intellectual curiosity, and genuine intentions of getting to know that person and their experience. PM me if you want to talk further.

Oct 15, 2019 - 2:51pm

You're really overshooting here. 200 emails is overkill. Focus more on reaching out to certain people that you can connect with somehow. If you can't, then shoot for whoever will listen. I probably sent around 80 or so cold emails not including university alumni (Non-target) from February 2019-August 2019. I probably averaged around 3-4 calls per week. I signed with an UMM IB in NYC in September. My strategy was reaching out to people in banking that used to work at the F500 I was interning with at the time. Got tons of great responses from that.

I ended up with 7 superdays for SA 2020 and only 1 was thru alumni. (School sends around 30 to the street per year). Be personable. Just be a normal human being. My first calls were horrible and I sounded like a robot. Needless to say, that bank didn't work out. You're just at the beginning of networking most kids haven't even started yet for SA 2021. You'll be fine. Keep up the good work.

Oct 17, 2019 - 4:31am
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