After a tense period of 2 months and 9 grueling rounds of interviews, including an 8 hour modeling test, I finally did it! Got my offer letter today!
Fresher Chartered Accountant, no prior modeling experience. Doesn't sound like the ideal resume, right? I agree. So I thought I'll share how I managed to break in here on WSO. Considering how WSO has helped me over the past few weeks, I thought I ought to share my story here and hopefully help others.
I contacted a guy on Facebook who runs a "Business Updates" group with nearly a thousand members. I figured he would be having an incredible network, so I requested his help with networking. He is also a CA and he readily agreed to help. He said he has just one contact in PE, but agreed to send my resume. BAM! Two days later, I got a call.
While this may sound like I got things handed to me while sitting on my ass, this was actually the culmination of nearly 4 months efforts of networking. After having exhausted every other avenue I could think of, I contacted this guy without any real hope of it being useful. But like so many people before me have said, ALL IT TAKES IS ONE CONTACT TO PULL THROUGH.
Mostly fit interviews with some technical questions thrown in. My CA studies and intensive extra research had prepared me well for the technical questions, so no problems there. Hours and hours of practicing modeling at home helped me nail the modeling test. Didn't know I would be having an industry analysis as well but was able to manage that OK.
As for the fit interviews, I think those were what tipped the needle in my favor. My interviewer later told me that they all really liked the passion and interest that I conveyed for the role. So I guess I ought to say that genuine passion is an understated value while preparing for interviews.
So well, finally got the offer letter today and I start next week!
If anyone has any questions, I'll be more than happy to answer them. But I admit I'm a newbie as well as from a developing market, so I might not have some of the answers. Any advice for me would be welcome, too. Thanks WSO!
tl;dr - Contacted a guy on FB for networking help, landed an interview, passion and intensive research helped ace them.
P.S. If you're new to the industry and are trying to get yourself an edge, consider using the WSO Networking Guide (http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/guide/wso-networkin...) and the Private Equity Prep Package (http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/guide/private-equit...). I didn't use them at the time but I've taken a look since then and they're good, especially the PE prep pack.