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12 mistakes people make when trying to get into investment banking

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12 mistakes people make when trying to get into investment banking

It’s no secret that investment banking is a competitive field. And with the current economy, competition is only going to get tougher. So if you’re looking to break into investment banking, it’s important to avoid making common mistakes.

In this article, we’ll take a look at twelve of the most common mistakes people make when trying to get into investment banking.

  1. Not Networking

One of the most important things you can do when trying to break into investment banking is to network. But many people either don’t network at all or they don’t do it effectively.

If you want to be successful in investment banking, you need to start networking now. Get involved with industry organisations and attend events. And when you meet someone, make sure you exchange business cards and follow up afterwards.

  1. Not Doing Their Research

Investment banking is a complex and ever-changing industry. And if you’re not keeping up with the latest developments, you’re at a serious disadvantage.

Before you start networking or applying for jobs, make sure you do your research. Understand the different types of investment banks and the different roles within the industry. And stay up-to-date on the latest news and developments.

  1. Applying to the Wrong Investment Banks

There are hundreds of investment banks out there, and they’re not all created equal. So it’s important that you target your job search to the right firms.

Investment banks can be divided into a few different categories, such as bulge bracket firms, middle market firms, and boutique firms. Each type of firm has its own culture, compensation structure, and career path. So make sure you apply to firms that are a good fit for your skills and goals.

  1. Not Having a Plan B

Investment banking is a notoriously difficult field to break into. And the competition is only getting tougher. So it’s important to have a Plan B in case your investment banking plans don’t work out.

Your Plan B could be another financial services job, such as working in private wealth management or commercial banking. Or you could explore other industries altogether. But whatever you do, don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

  1. Not Knowing the Numbers

Investment bankers are known for their maths skills. So if you’re not comfortable with numbers, this probably isn’t the industry for you.

Before you start networking or interviewing, make sure you brush up on your maths skills. And if you’re applying for an analyst role, be prepared to take a financial modelling test.

  1. Not Having an Edge

Investment banking is a highly competitive field, so it’s important to have an edge over the competition. Otherwise, you’re just not going to stand out.

Your edge could be anything from being bilingual to having experience in a specific industry. But whatever it is, make sure you highlight it in your resume and during your interviews.

  1. Not Dressing the Part

Investment bankers are known for their sharp dress code. So if you’re not dressing the part, you’re already at a disadvantage.

Before you start networking or interviewing, make sure you have a professional wardrobe that meets the investment banking standards. And don’t forget to polish your shoes and update your hairstyle.

  1. Not Being a Team Player

Investment bankers are known for being team players. So if you’re not comfortable working in a team environment, this probably isn’t the industry for you. During your interviews, make sure you highlight any team projects you’ve worked on in the past. And be prepared to talk about how you work within a team and how you handle conflict.

  1. Not Being coachable

Investment bankers are always learning and growing. So if you’re not coachable, this probably isn’t the industry for you. During your interviews, make sure you emphasise your willingness to learn new things. And be prepared to talk about how you’ve grown and changed over the course of your career.

  1. Not Being proactive

Investment bankers are known for being proactive. So if you’re the type of person who likes to sit back and let others do the work, this probably isn’t the industry for you. During your interviews, make sure you emphasise your ability to take initiative and get things done. And be prepared to give examples of times when you’ve taken charge and gotten results.

  1. Not Being flexible

Investment bankers are known for their flexibility. So if you’re not comfortable with change, this probably isn’t the industry for you. During your interviews, make sure you emphasise your ability to adapt to change. And be prepared to talk about how you’ve dealt with change in the past.

  1. Not Being patient

Investment bankers are known for their patience. So if you’re the type of person who gets frustrated easily, this probably isn’t the industry for you. During your interviews, make sure you emphasise your ability to deal with difficult situations. And be prepared to talk about how you’ve handled adversity in the past.

Conclusion

Investment banking is a highly competitive field. So if you’re not careful, you could easily make one of these 12 mistakes and ruin your chances of getting the job. So take the time to avoid these mistakes, and you’ll be well on your way to a successful career in investment banking.

 

 

Minoas graduated with a Merit upon studying the full-time MPA Public Administration – International Development degree (MPA-ID) at the University of York. He is currently working as a freelance EU affairs consultant in Belgium.
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