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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Some Quick Tips For Summer Internships (Investment Banking and Otherwise)

Mergers and Inquisitions is rapidly becoming one of my favorite blogs - it's got a lot of good advice for those trying to get into the Investment Banking field. In his latest piece, the Inquisitor (nice name, BTW) puts up some helpful tips for those on a summer IB Internship. With minor modification, much of the advice holds up pretty well for almost any internship, no matter what field. Here's my take on the "important" stuff, with a few more thrown in to boot:
  • Don't expect to work on a high-profile things. There's big money involved and high stakes, so they're not going to put it in your hands. So don't ask to do an LBO model right away. Expect to do a lot of grunt work - in any event, if you get a job offer, you'll be doing a lot of this anyway.
  • Don't screw up. Ask questions if you're not sure. But don't ask the higher-ups. That's what (1) your peers, and (2) your "Analyst Master" are for. Never go higher up the food chain (like a Managing Director). Just. Don't.
  • On a related note, Always check your work - multiple times. Get a reputation for doing sloppy work and you won't get an offer.
  • Don't bad-mouth the competition. Word gets around, and there's a lot of shop-hopping. The person you bad-mouth the competition to this month might end up there next month.
  • Even if you are working long hours (and you will be), stay cheerful and upbeat. Even if they know it's fake, it still scores points.
  • Don't try to suck up to anyone above your analyst.
  • When in doubt, keep your mouth shut, and don't brag. Chances are, the company folks around you will know far more than you. If they do, you'll get exposed as a poser or a jerk. If they don't, they won't appreciate your "superior" knowledge. So keep your yap shut - you almost never get in trouble for keeping quiet.
Read the whole thing here.

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