Why do people not get return offers?

Intern in IB - Gen

Recently talked to an analyst, and he told me that generally if you're hired as an intern, there's a spot for you in full-time. Banks want you to return, and historically, everyone who hasn't gotten a return offer was just someone who was stupid or something, like making careless mistakes or coming off as too cringe/hardo.

I keep freaking myself out at return offer rates that are like around 70-80%, but is it really true that the other 20-30% of interns are just interns that were really just bad workers? He was telling me how getting a return offer was a lot easier than you would expect, like all I have to do is not be dumb, and he thinks the virtual environment will make it even easier. He told me that I'm underestimating the amount of people who lack common sense/are just actually stupid who get an internship offer, and really thinks that I don't have to worry. Can anyone offer any insight on this?

Comments (66)

Jun 25, 2020

Yeah, there will for sure be a couple interns who will do stupid things and be idiots like ask stupid questions or don't fit with the group. People who are socially awkward and plain weird af are not going to do well in banking and will not receive an offer. we're in a client facing role so they have to take into account this. Know a couple Yalies who didn't get an offer at banks like STRH and HL because they were awkward AF

Ask yourself if you think you've been called awkward before. Then ask your firends and family. They'll tell yo if you're weird. If they say yes, then really work on yourself and make sure you don't screw yourself over. kendall

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jun 25, 2020

Thanks Richard.3 for the solid answer, usually you're trolling but this seems like a legit answer, thanks for not trolling this time, you're finally growing up and it makes me really proud.

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Jun 25, 2020

Dude, I'm an experienced professional and I know my shit - wiser than most. What do you expect?

My trolling is done for my personal pleasure as I am a well-ranking individual otherwise

Why do people not get return offers?

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.

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Jun 25, 2020

Lol....kids, don't listen to Richard.3. He doesn't know his shit. Banks care about your smarts only. Your ability to generate revenue is the number one thing the bank cares about. If you act weirdly or awkwardly but you have the honest potential to become a big revenue generator, the bank will beg you to stay.

Array

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Jun 26, 2020

If you act weirdly or awkwardly but you have the honest potential to become a big revenue generator

These are mutually exclusive.

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jun 26, 2020

Thinking you're a revenue generator as a summer analyst is a sure way to not get that return offer

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Most Helpful
Jun 25, 2020

Generally speaking if you show up, put your head down and maintain a good attitude you are fine and will get your offer. All interns are awkward, so I wouldn't worry about that too much. There are going to be a few cases of people who do all of the above and the group simply doesn't have enough spots available, but usually it is pretty obvious who isn't going to get one. Bear in mind that the analysts / associates are the ones who generally provide 90% of the feedback that gets used in deciding who gets / doesn't get an offer. Below are a few reasons I've seen of people not receiving an offer / tips on how to make sure you get yours.

  1. Some sort of idiotic behavior outside of the office / at intern events or otherwise. Go out with your analysts if they take you out, but be responsible, know your limits. If you aren't 21 yet, then don't drink at office events. If you have a fake ID, please don't use it when you're out with your colleagues or at an office event. You'd think this would be obvious, but I've literally seen people do this and get in trouble with HR and not receive an offer.
  2. Show up on time. If you are asked to come to the office on a Saturday, come in at the agreed time. If everyone shows up by 9am daily, come at 9am daily. And be able to understand how late you need to stay -- I'm not saying to put in face time, but don't leave at 5pm if you're done with your work when everyone else is clearly sitting there. On the other hand, don't be the intern that feels it is necessary to stay until 3am, when everyone knows you aren't working on anything (and also charging overtime hours to the firm). Have seen interns show up 1-2 hours later than agreed on the weekend (they had gone out the night before and came in hungover) and this really irritated the analyst / associate they were working with (and rightfully so).
  3. Don't talk back or argue with your analyst / associate, and don't be a know it all. You might very well be smarter or have more finance knowledge than them (honestly, a lot of IB associates are quite weak in many areas), but please don't show it as an intern. If you're in a meeting with your team, don't feel you need to voice your opinion or speak unless asked to speak by the MD. Some people might push back on that as 'bad culture,' but as an intern you're expected to listen and learn, nobody is expecting you to really add meaningful value.
  4. Check your work. Mistakes are fine, ask questions if required, but don't be sloppy. And if you make a mistake once and it gets caught, make sure the same mistake isn't repeated. This is cliche but it's true.
  5. Try to be proactive. It can be difficult for analysts to delegate work to interns because it honestly often ends up taking more time explaining and there isn't much value added. Speak to the analysts if you can help with anything, communicate, ask if you can see what they are doing. Do all of this while also understanding what sort of hours they are working / how slammed they are getting to make sure you're not being annoying. Check with your analyst before you leave if there is anything else you can help with -- any good and sensible analyst will be happy / encouraging of you to leave before them if there isn't work for them to give you, no need for you to sit around until late night just because they are.

The bar at most banks / groups is very low in terms of what to do to get your offer, and the quality of your work output is much less important then your demeanour, attitude, etiquette and self-awareness.

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Jun 25, 2020

99% of the time this is correct, but I've seen politics/"fit" play a big part too. One MD was close to an intern (they were part of same rowing club), the other intern on the team who was clearly technically superior and got on with the juniors (but from a working class background) did not get an offer.

I'm certain lots of interns each year get binned for reasons similar to the above.

Opened my eyes to work politics, corporate hierarchy and how promotions work for a career in this industry. I wish it was all performance / talent based but that would be too easy...

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Jun 25, 2020

This is a good answer. Especially 1,3,4. I've seen a ton of dumb stuff done at the drinking events including, not showing up to work the next day because you were too hungover and not calling in or throwing a beer at another intern "as a joke" that always getting people nixed. There always seems to be one or two of those instances every summer. You also often see kids who think they know better than the analyst, associate, or VP - they almost never do (or they quibble about the "right way" to do something per their finance class vs. the quick and dirty way I need it done for a meeting in 2 hours) and you can see it in their attitude. They also often don't want to do the more mundane things (if you're an M&A analyst/summer, you might need to do a diligence log - it's boring and can be time consuming, but that's the job).

Lastly, you're expected to suck over the summer. That's fine. But you need to show improvement. If you're a 1 on the scale and then a 5 by summer end it tells me you can pick things up and are willing to do the work. If you are a 3 but don't get any better, I'm more concerned about you long term.

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Jun 26, 2020

Yes, not sure what poster above was saying, but cannot think of an intern situation that isn't at least a little awkward.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Jun 25, 2020

can anybody comment on s&t and those who don't get return offers on the trading floor?

Jun 25, 2020

Bump

Array

Jun 25, 2020

S&T is a dying industry. Who the fuck cares about S&T anymore?

Array

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Jun 26, 2020

Thanks for your stupid ass remark!

Array

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  • Intern in IB - Restr
Jun 26, 2020

again, can u block this bitch @andylouis

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  • Prospect in IB - CB
Jun 25, 2020

The suggestions above are not applicable to this year because everything is virtual. Why getting return offer is much easier in virtual internship? Communication is so hard. Usually having coffee chat and networking lunch with FT bankers are so natural and smooth. But now you can only talk with somebody you don't know over phone. Things get much more awkward. The environment is socially awkward, not us.

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Jun 25, 2020
Prospect in IB - CB:

The suggestions above are not applicable to this year because everything is virtual. Why getting return offer is much easier in virtual internship? Communication is so hard. Usually having coffee chat and networking lunch with FT bankers are so natural and smooth. But now you can only talk with somebody you don't know over phone. Things get much more awkward. The environment is socially awkward, not us.

I think nobody can comment on how it will work this year, but the attitude going in by full time people within groups is that interns will have to especially try hard to not get the offer this year as compared with previous years. It is always said that the offer is "yours to lose," and that should hold even more true this year. A few interns might get some staffings, but I know at least a handful of banks and groups that are planning for largely case studies / projects this year for their interns

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  • Prospect in IB - CB
Jun 25, 2020

Now the only way to be proactive is to reach out to as many people as possible. Honestly, it makes me feel like I am still in the recruiting season. The distance makes the connection very fragile. I think everyone has bad networking calls and I hope they won't label us "socially awkward" based on them.

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Jun 25, 2020

This is the future. I don't think working from the remote locales is going to be a one off situation. It will continue in some way, shape, or form

Array

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Jun 25, 2020

Also -- Don't try to compete with other interns. It's very easy to see when there's one intern who is staying later and coming in before everyone else but doesn't have any work to do, or tries to find ways to subtly undermine the other summers.

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  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Jun 26, 2020

how hard is FT recruiting if you don't have a return offer from SA?

Jun 26, 2020
Prospect in IB - Gen:

how hard is FT recruiting if you don't have a return offer from SA?

It is one of the first questions you are asked in FT recruiting, so there is no way to get around it. If you are looking to move to the same level or a higher quality bank, I would imagine not having an offer would be a deal breaker (there are obviously always going to be exceptions). I.e. guy doesn't get an offer from BAML, unlikely GS will pick him up.

In any case, if you don't get an offer you should have some explanation for it -- group only had x spots (maybe good to exaggerate here and make it seem more competitive if you were in reality the only 1 to not get an offer) or some other reason. The people who did not receive offers that I've seen:

GS/MS >> FT to Nomura
GS/MS >> FT to CS
GS/MS >> FT to William Blair

All landed on their feet, so it isn't the end of the world.

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  • Incoming Analyst in IB - Gen
Jun 26, 2020

were they sad? seems like a big drop

  • Intern in IB-M&A
Jun 26, 2020

No going from GS to Nomura made them very happy....

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Funniest
  • Incoming Analyst in IB - Gen
Jun 26, 2020

what are u trying to say about Nomura bro

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jun 26, 2020

Person at my school didn't get a return offer at Citi/Barclays/CS and got a FT offer at Laz/Evr/Moelis. Assuming this is not common

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jun 27, 2020

It's not the end of the world if you don't get a return offer. I'm a student at HYPSM and a few of my classmates didn't get returns this past summer:

MS/JP --> BAML/Citi

Cowen/William Blair --> Barclays/CS (Yes, I know)

Just say you weren't a cultural fit and/or lie about overall group return rates.

Jun 26, 2020

Yes, my bank doesn't have any live deals where interns can contribute and it's a shortened internship so confidentiality is taken more srly. They'll be doing case studies and big projects taht will help the group internally.

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.

Jun 26, 2020

You don't have to be a rocket scientist. You must be smart enough (which by virtue of obtaining the internship you basically check that box), good to be around (they have to work long hours with you), and they must be able to visualize you with a client downstream. That's key as they can hire monkeys to model and run numbers. It's ultimately about growth and development into client facing roles.

Jun 26, 2020

It honestly depends where you work too. Not only the bank but also the specific group. Some places like GS have quotas of how many interns to cut others don't really care as long as you can do the basics. It all depends.

Array

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jun 26, 2020

Do you think a lot more banks have quotas this summer because of COVID?

Jun 26, 2020

Probably the opposite to be honest. With few exceptions, this is probably going to be one of the few years that you are allowed to be at the bare minimum a mediocre analyst and still get a return offer.

Array

Jun 27, 2020

From anecdotal experience:

  1. They do something objectively stupid in the office or around coworkers.
  2. They purport to be know it alls.
  3. Simple politics - especially for members of minority groups. They seem to get judged much harshly (even if they are sharp and cool to be around for members in the intern class).
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  • Intern in IB-M&A
Jun 27, 2020
Comment
Jun 28, 2020