How to Become an Investment Banker
Billions of dollars are invested and recruiters are looking for intelligent, proactive, and hard-working job applicants to fill job vacancies. Apart from a solid career, they want to believe that you can continue learning and keep up with the market and regulations that keep on changing from time to time.
The first thing that the investment banking recruiters are going to look at is your academic history. They want to hire those who have a top notch academic history. Investment bankers should be people with outstanding grades and capable of analytical and intuitive thinking.
Memorizing facts is not everything needed for the job. You should also be able to interpret and draw conclusions. When it comes to investment banking, critical thinking skills are just as important as maths and finance knowledge.
Join the best university you can get into. Since there is no major course for invest bankers, you need to choose related fields such as economics, finance, accounting or business. An Ivy League school or a similar is the best choice for those who wish to be employed at a top rated company.
Try to find information about your potential future employers in order to know about their educational requirements. Most of them require a master’s degree.
Whether they need it or not, it is a good idea for any applicant out there to have a masters. After getting your degree, enroll for a Master of Business Administration (MBA) course.
Read and interpret the financial press as often as possible. Form a habit of staying informed and practicing analytical thinking skills. Instead of just reading and absorbing everything, try to predict and analyze what you are reading and study your results.
Join university clubs and professional organizations related to banking and finances. This will help you gain valuable contacts and connections that you may need later. It is also great for brushing on your social skills as most investment bankers usually work in teams.
Get an internship at the bank of your choice. Most of the recruiters usually hire directly out of business schools from their pool of interns. Even though interns may earn little or no pay, they gain valuable experience and who knows? Maybe they could land on their very first job after the internship!
Apply for jobs and interviews. Always remember to relax and be yourself during the interviews. Those job applicants who are confident and comfortable are usually very memorable in the minds of the recruiters.
Teamwork is also very important and this is why you should show an ability to work with your peers as well as your superiors in a project based situation or a team.
After you get the job, you will have to spend several first months training. There is a lot to learn and a great big test to study for before you can once and for all be considered an Investment Banker. You’ll be expected to read share charts like this and know all sorts of jargon terms.
Investment Bankers usually work 80 hours a week, nights and weekends. Therefore, you have to ensure this is a commitment you are ready for.
You have to know that you are going to be the one responsible for buying and selling securities for you clients and also giving them advice on their financial future. This is a heavy responsibility which requires you to get a license.
In the US, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has a 6-hour test that you must sit for and pass before becoming an Investment Banker.