What would you do if you were sitting next to a BB senior banker on an airplane?

I'm a student at one of those non-target schools in NY. As the semester was over, I flew back home to see my family. On my first flight, I sat next to this mid-aged gentleman who dressed in a full suit. I didn't pay attention to him until my eyes caught "Goldman Sachs," "JP Morgan," "Barclays," and "Bank of America Merrill Lynch" on those papers that he was reading and note-taking the whole time. From my past experiences, I immediately knew that these are research reports. I turned over and talked to him. It was a short conversation but I found out that he works for one of those BBs - IBD.
I would have kept the conversation longer if he didn't seem so busy with reading and note-taking these research reports. At least I introduced myself and he also introduced his first name in return. Before he left the airplane, he said "good luck!" Did I screw it up? I didn't get anything out of it because I didn't want to disturb him. What's your opinions? What would you do if you were me?

Comments (27)

May 21, 2014

if he was sitting in coach then he isn't a rain maker anyways

May 21, 2014

He was flying commercial.. that was the first give away!

Best Response
May 21, 2014

Try and ask for a card next time. Say something along the lines of, I'm interested in the field and learning more, would you have 15 minutes over the next week or two for an informational call?

I've actually met several contacts whom I regret not keeping in touch with after I got their cards.

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May 21, 2014

I was thinking of the card but I had no idea how to ask. Thanks man!

"Never settle for less"

May 21, 2014

What do you expect? that he asked for your number? Unless you saved the whole plan from hijackers, there's no way you could impress him enough to say "hey you're pretty cool I really want to talk to you again."

May 22, 2014
kyc133enydc:

What do you expect? that he asked for your number? Unless you saved the whole plan from hijackers, there's no way you could impress him enough to say "hey you're pretty cool I really want to talk to you again."

I have made multiple contacts by overhearing conversations in Starbucks. I hear someone mention even something slightly interesting or relevant to my field and I find a way to introduce myself and ask for a job / internship or future contact. I have had a VP send me a page long email about our 2min conversation just because I was bold and creative to turn a studying opportunity in Starbucks to my own personal networking event.

Also, I started working at my current company by delivering a sandwich. The president of the company just happened to be in the office that day and overheard me asking an associate for a job, he liked my attitude and told me to come back Monday to chat.

I came back that Monday and kicked ass, and the rest is history. I was later named employee of the year along with several promotions. I have my own office overlooking the beach. All this stemmed from me not being lazy but getting out and creating opportunity.

The world is not fair, you need to take what you want from it.

You can't wait for opportunity, you need to create it.

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May 22, 2014
Licked:
kyc133enydc:

What do you expect? that he asked for your number? Unless you saved the whole plan from hijackers, there's no way you could impress him enough to say "hey you're pretty cool I really want to talk to you again."

I have made multiple contacts by overhearing conversations in Starbucks. I hear someone mention even something slightly interesting or relevant to my field and I find a way to introduce myself and ask for a job / internship or future contact. I have had a VP send me a page long email about our 2min conversation just because I was bold and creative to turn a studying opportunity in Starbucks to my own personal networking event.

Also, I started working at my current company by delivering a sandwich. The president of the company just happened to be in the office that day and overheard me asking an associate for a job, he liked my attitude and told me to come back Monday to chat.

I came back that Monday and kicked ass, and the rest is history. I was later named employee of the year along with several promotions. I have my own office overlooking the beach. All this stemmed from me not being lazy but getting out and creating opportunity.

The world is not fair, you need to take what you want from it.

You can't wait for opportunity, you need to create it.

Awesome story. I'd love to hear more details about this.

May 22, 2014
Licked:
kyc133enydc:

What do you expect? that he asked for your number? Unless you saved the whole plan from hijackers, there's no way you could impress him enough to say "hey you're pretty cool I really want to talk to you again."

I have made multiple contacts by overhearing conversations in Starbucks. I hear someone mention even something slightly interesting or relevant to my field and I find a way to introduce myself and ask for a job / internship or future contact. I have had a VP send me a page long email about our 2min conversation just because I was bold and creative to turn a studying opportunity in Starbucks to my own personal networking event.

Also, I started working at my current company by delivering a sandwich. The president of the company just happened to be in the office that day and overheard me asking an associate for a job, he liked my attitude and told me to come back Monday to chat.

I came back that Monday and kicked ass, and the rest is history. I was later named employee of the year along with several promotions. I have my own office overlooking the beach. All this stemmed from me not being lazy but getting out and creating opportunity.

The world is not fair, you need to take what you want from it.

You can't wait for opportunity, you need to create it.

regardless if this is true or not, points are still valid

don't be a btch, just go for it

speed boost blaze

May 21, 2014

And also, in which class were you sitting?

May 21, 2014

It was a small plane, like a jet (for short flying route). There is only one class.

"Never settle for less"

May 21, 2014

I had a similar situation on the LIRR. I didn't get to talk to him though because he was on his cellphone talking up how to divvy up the bonus pool the whole time. He was also pissed off because he had to leave work on a weekday because his house in the Hamptons got flooded and I happened to be dressed like a homeless person that day. It was probably best to not say anything given the circumstances.

Competition is a sin.

-John D. Rockefeller

May 21, 2014
Hooked on LEAPS:

I happened to be dressed like a homeless person that day.

So how you dress normally?

speed boost blaze

May 21, 2014

When I roll out of bed hungover and I have nothing important to be dressed up for... yes.

Competition is a sin.

-John D. Rockefeller

May 21, 2014

Tell him about my time at the OWS rallies for the entire flight

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

https://arthuxtable.com/

May 21, 2014

You have to go for "the ask". Phrase it however you want but you need to get his contact info. You're a kid trying to break into finance and suddenly find yourself sat next to someone that has the power to help you. He knows exactly what you're thinking and how nervous you are and there's no hiding it. Just ask.

    • 1
May 21, 2014

what I'd do is do it at the end of the flight unless he/she says something during the flight that gives you an opening. that way, you're not disturbing the work/sleep and you can always bail if it gets awkward.

I'd say something like: I couldn't help but noticing what you were reading had names like JPM bac bcs etc, what do you do? if it's something you're interested in, ask if they're local. if yes, ask for a meeting over coffee, if no, ask if you can have their card & call them if you're ever in their area.

    • 1
May 21, 2014

That is a good idea

"Never settle for less"

May 21, 2014

Basically hope that he doesn't breath too loud.

"That dude is so haole, he don't even have any breath left."

May 21, 2014

The first time I went home for Thanksgiving I sat next to this guy in a suit (no tie) and his wife, and if I remember correctly his children were across the aisle. I was wearing thw sweatshirt of my school (target) and randomly opened up a conversation with "headed back home for the weekend?" I politely spoke back and we got into a short exchange of basic info (what year I was in, which city I live in, what I was studying, etc.)

In hindsight I should have asked him what he did, considering the city he said he lived/worked in. Something about his demeanor seemed very Wall Street/finance.

"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt." --Abraham Lincoln

May 22, 2014

Two thoughts you should keep in mind every time you talk to someone:
What do you have to lose?
You miss 100% of the shots you don't take

speed boost blaze

    • 2
May 22, 2014

I would kill myself because that would mean I would have to be flying commercial.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays

Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne

    • 1
May 22, 2014
heister:

I would kill myself because that would mean I would have to be flying commercial.

@"heister", Looks like someone MS'd you because they're jealous? Once you fly private, it sucks flying commercial.

May 22, 2014

I'd spit on my palms and get to work. Only one way to get ahead in this game.

May 22, 2014

So not a networking story, but one of my co-workers got fired (not laid off, shit canned) from my bank. A year or two later he was on a flight and when he looked over he saw his old MD sitting in the seat next to him. Easily his most awkward flight ever.

May 23, 2014
Comment

"When you stop striving for perfection, you might as well be dead."

May 24, 2014