Things that might surprise you about a career in Investment Banking
At our Investment Banking and Management Consultancy Evening this month, we held a Q&A with representatives from Macquarie, Barclays, Deutsche Bank and HSBC. We heard what it’s like, and what it takes, to work in this fast-paced and exciting sector. Read on for a few things that might surprise you about a career in investment banking
Learning doesn’t stop when you leave University
The learning curve when you start any new job will be steep, but it’s perhaps particularly true for Investment Banking. For most firms there is an intense training period and, then with new clients and complex problems in an industry that is continuously evolving, the learning will continue throughout your career. The reward for this is an intellectually challenging and exciting career, but it will be hard work.
You don’t need a degree in Economics or Finance
Banks are increasingly looking to recruit a wide range of talent – from all degree subjects. As long as you can demonstrate a passion and commitment to the career, you will be trained in the technical knowledge you need.
Your potential and skills are what matter most. The top 3 listed by the panel were:
- Resilience and flexibility to respond well when priorities change
- Work ethic to work hard and keep learning throughout your career
- Interpersonal skills to build relationships with clients and your team
A Spring Week or Internship is a great route into the sector … but it isn’t all you need on your CV
Most firms now offer work experience opportunities – from ‘Insight days’ through to Spring Weeks and summer internships. Most also use these to recruit for their graduate roles, so getting on one of these programmes can be a first step to a career in Investment Banking.
However, this doesn’t mean that other experience doesn’t count. On the contrary, anything you have done that demonstrates your skills and makes you an interesting candidate will help you to stand out.
Doing your research really does matter
The work, culture and lifestyle can vary hugely between banks and divisions, so do your research and find where you fit. Start now by looking at our sector pages, and explore company websites. The connect with with alumni and professionals in person and on LinkedIn to find out what it is really like.
There’s no one career path in Investment Banking, so take time to find yours.