I am looking for some advice on how I should proceed with my life, now that I am committed to get into banking or equity research.
I have been working for a large but not necessarily prestigious consulting firm for 1.5 years after leaving school. However, instead of working in information technology or systems implementation which is often the reputation of my company; I have been on c-level strategic plan and strategy implementation engagements since I arrived at the company(basically more MBB type work without the name). This has allowed me to bank client facing experience as well as top 5% company ratings since I arrived. However, my industry experience is not in financial services but in Logistics, Government, E-commerce, and Education. This I suppose is somewhat interesting, but not necessarily directly related to anything investment bankers do on a daily basis.
Its been really bugging me lately how badly I want to work in investment banking. I was a finance major in college, graduated magna cum laude and held an internship at a small M&A firm doing pitch books, due diligence, and some valuation work. Ever since I have never experienced an environment so challenging and fulfilling.
My dilemma is that I am from a non-target who has really no non-internship finance experience(outside of some DCF work and revenue projection models on a couple of consulting projects). However, I am a CFA Level 2 candidate and am close to a wiz at excel.
Every job I want seems to be looking for someone who has 2 years of experience at a bulge bracket or is looking for a fresh out from a top 5 undergrad business program. I am just now getting serious about submitting applications for a number of positions but am worried about getting interviews given my unconventional background. My questions are:
- Who should I reach out to/cold email/cold call at the target firms I want? Is it okay to target non-alumni and what story should I be ready to tell? Is requesting an informational interview a fair thing to do?
- How do I convince companies to give me a chance at new hire jobs even if I have been out of school for awhile? Especially if they seem to focus on pulling talent from on campus interviews?
- What is best to emphasize on my resume for someone with my background? My experience, education, or reason for wanting to be a banker?
- Do any of you happen to know any good places to reach out to in the DC area besides Houlihan Lokey and FBR? I would really like to stay here if possible, but banking opportunities here seem really hard to come by.
Also if anyone has any personal recommendations given my circumstances, feel free to PM me.