Need Help Choosing Full-Time
This might be a bad idea to post here, but I need some advice. Summer is coming, I have a few paths in front of me, and I need help figuring out which one to take. My mentors are mostly either removed from finance, or still on the ground level. I know you guys are all extremely busy.
I am really grateful to any and all feedback and help.
About me: I'm 21, finished college, doing something really unconventional, and am looking to (at least start off in) finance. I'm PSD (poor, smart and deeply want to succeed). I have a large personality, I'm a bit loud, I'm funny, I can sell, I have lots of interests, and I can do analysis. In the long run, I'm thinking of doing wealth management (stability and build a network), maybe starting some sort of alternative investment fund, or perhaps starting a tech start-up.
My first option is IB at a great BB (M&A in a European country). The second is private capital advisory at an elite boutique (major American city). The third option is going to work for a mentor type, who runs a top sell-side alternative investments shop. I would probably be doing DCM there in RE acquisitions.
Why I want to do M&A IB at a BB:
Because of what it leads to. I could work in any sort of finance afterwards, have the stamp of approval from a major firm, and would have seen a lot. The prestige doesn't hurt, too.
What I'm concerned about:
The hours. Unless I love what I'm doing, I can get pretty crushed, and I don't know if I'll "love" doing M&A. I am also the kind of guy who needs some space. Maybe where I got the offer, it wouldn't be worth it (because it's a foreign office). Transitioning back to America could be challenging, and the network I would have built might not help me in the long-run.
Why I want to do PCA:
I love meeting people, raising money, and playing with ideas. I could meet a lot of great contacts in PE, and I think roadshows could be really fun. It just seems like something that'd play to my love for meeting people and selling ideas, and the analysis would probably play to my strengths too.
I'm not sure. Maybe exit opportunities? Or maybe exit opps are great given the connections.
Sell-side alternative investments shop:
In college I happened to meet someone who runs a very well known firm. I went to public schools my whole life, my family is "poor," but we hit it off immediately, and he decided to pay for my tuition. I recently asked him if I could come on board. He told me I could do whatever I wanted to do at his firm. They have great deal flow, are known by most everyone in the industry (in the US), and the culture and hours are phenomenal. And they're always expanding. It could be great for connections and to be close to this person in general, because he's just awesome and magnetic.
Maybe the long-run. I'd have very specialized knowledge within real estate, so it could be harder to change paths if I decide that I should or need to?
I have deadlines coming up and I need to choose, and I'm a little more confused than ever. I feel like this is a really important decision to make, and I don't want to blow it. I'm nervous I'll end up choosing wrong move and blowing it. I haven't worked full-time yet.
What do you guys think? I know these options are all pretty different from one another, which is what gets to me too.