Aaron Hurwtiz On The Investment Banking Job Market, Part II

This is part 2 of an interview with with Aaron Hurwitz, Director at IBI, a financial modeling training firm, for his perspective on today’s financial careers opportunities.

Is this a good time to invest in a financial career?

If this is what you truly want to do, there is no better time to get started.

I would never tell someone, “Wait. It’s not a good time right now.” Because getting hired is only the first thing you have to do. Once you’re on the job, you have to perform. And you have to be able to do that in bad markets as well as good markets. In down markets, you have to be even better at it. So are you telling me you’re not even going to try now because it’s hard? Don’t work in finance then. Get a job in a different industry where you can work 40 hours a week, 8 hours a day, collect your $45,000 a year, and be happy with it. If you’re afraid of hard work and scary times, do not work in finance because you may not be cut out for it.

Why might this be a good time to look for an investment banking job?

Right now, it may be more difficult, it’s true. But there also are fewer people submitting their resumes. Even though there have been layoffs, you do not have the whole group of people stampeding into the industry when times are good and they hear investment banking is the place to be.

Now is the time for serious people. If you’re applying for a job at this time, a firm will take you seriously. It’s obvious you’re not just a fair weather fan.

And remember, it always takes time to get a job. It’s not going to happen overnight. You have to want it more than anything. Even in good times, I’ve seen people take six months to get a job when there was nothing wrong with their background. They had lots of interviews but just didn’t find the right match.

I’ve also seen people find a job within 2 weeks of registering for our program. But we tell people not to expect such a fast turn around because this is something they need to commit to for the long run to be successful.

Any final advice for financial job seekers?

If you want to get into finance, just start doing it. Start practicing. Get good at it. Because you cannot go to a firm and say, “Please hire me, I’ll figure this out, and I won’t let you down.” You need to learn the business on your own and then go in and say, “Here’s how I can add value to your business.”

Understand what they’re doing. Practice on your own. Do it on daily basis. So the only difference is, when you’re hired, you’re doing it on their behalf. That way, you’ll be useful to them and you can justify your salary.

You also need to start getting your resume out there so that when things do turn around, which they will, you’re already in the game. You’ll have a lot of firms with your resume on file. They may have liked you and said, “Okay, once something opens up, we’ll call you.”

That’s how I hire people. I collect resumes all the time. I keep them on file. When I need somebody, that’s the first place I turn – to the best person in my file. And if that person is still available, that’s who I hire.

There are a number of reasons to start your job search now. But the most important one is that there are still jobs out there. And you’re not going to get one unless you try really hard for it.

On behalf of our members, JobSearchDigest.com has negotiated a special discount for IBI training. JobSearchDigest members receive $100 off the price of training simply by mentioning Job Search Digest when they call to register. Investment Banking Institute can be reached at 212-380-7027 or visit their website at www.ibtraining.com

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