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# How's everyone's internship hunt going?

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GMAT Club Legend
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How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  30 Nov 2007, 09:05
Judging by my conversations with some current and former MBA students, right now is hot and heavy recruitment season for a lot of industries. So I am assuming that most of the current students here are in full internship interview mode.

Hows it going for everyone? Anyone already decide on an internship already?
Current Student
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  30 Nov 2007, 12:34
riverripper wrote:
Judging by my conversations with some current and former MBA students, right now is hot and heavy recruitment season for a lot of industries. So I am assuming that most of the current students here are in full internship interview mode.

Hows it going for everyone? Anyone already decide on an internship already?

Two rejections so far, but they were just practice interviews anyway. I'm snipering in on another couple for this January.
Senior Manager
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Banking is ridiculous, it feels like our recruiting season has been going on since I stepped foot on campus. It's hard to tell how well it is going until you actually get an offer, but 1st rounds are coming up after the new year so hopefully it gets resolved soon.
Current Student
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  02 Dec 2007, 16:51
riverripper wrote:
Judging by my conversations with some current and former MBA students, right now is hot and heavy recruitment season for a lot of industries. So I am assuming that most of the current students here are in full internship interview mode.

Hows it going for everyone? Anyone already decide on an internship already?

3 offers. Brand management. All through career fairs.
SVP
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6
KUDOS
Yes, IB recruiting is crazy. Things are going well for me personally. I hope to be on many of the closed lists for the top banks. I think people applying this year might be interested in recruiting procedure, and what we've learned thus far, so I'll share what I know.

For IB, the procedure is something like this.

1. They have a briefing early in the fall - most banks were on campus the 2nd-3rd weeks of school. This is a general presentation and 150+ (out of about 330) attended the early events.

2. Firms come back a few weeks later for office hours, or some kind of open event like lunch or cocktails. Students start to weed themselves out.

3. There is a "getting to know finance careers" conference where some firms set up a booth.

4. Firms come back again for invite only events. These include golf, cocktails, whatever.

5. Our big on-campus event of the year is our Finance Conference (different from the earlier "getting to know" deal). All the bulge bracket firms, a whole bunch of smaller firms, PE shops, VC firms, IM and research firms all gather on campus for 2 days. The first night includes an organized dinner where you get to sit with reps from one of the firms. Then, the party breaks up and the various firms take their targeted students out for drinks. The following day, we have an organized lunch where you get to sit with a different firm, and small presentations on a variety of subjects - which are really just another way to spend some QT with various firms.

6. Firms come back for additional invite-only events. At this point, the list has been whittled down to 15-20 people per firm. These events are generally sit down dinners, but I've also seen wine tastings & fancy cocktail events, with about 2-1 students per firm rep. If you're invited to these events, an interview is yours to lose.

This is where we are at now, so future steps are just based on what 2Ys have told me.

7. We have to submit our resumes online by the end of this week.

8. Immediately after finals, we have our "Week on Wall Street" where everyone heads up to Wall Street and we get to spend some more time with these firms. So far, 22 firms are hosting events open to all students. Students can also arrange informational interviews to get a little more face time (as if we really needed that). Firms will also be taking "their target guys (or gals)" out for dinner, cocktails, etc. I understand that firms will intentionally schedule events at the same time (we're only there for a week) to make students choose and that top candidates will be booked solid morning, noon and night.

9. Over winter break, firms will make their decisions on who they will interview. Firms are required to keep 25% of their interview slots open for bidding, so generally about 15 people make the closed list, and about 5 slots are available for bidding. I've been told that for many firms, bidding for an interview slot is a waste of time (and bid points) because they will only make offers to people that they selected for the closed list.

10. Interviews commence a week before classes start back up - and all of the banks try to interview as early as possible. As I understand it, those that donate the most money to the school get to interview first. Firms will typically conduct 2nd round interviews the next day after first round interviews, and they hand out bids at dinner the night of the 2nd round interview. The whole process takes 2 days.

So for those of you still working on applications, and for everyone that will be deciding where they want to go next year, I have the following observations on IB recruiting based on my experiences here at Darden.

1a. Chances of landing a job are much improved if an employer recruits on campus. Sure, all firms say that they will accept online applications from anyone who is interested, but the reality is that they will only turn to these applications if they aren't able to fill their summer class. My sense is that the only people that land jobs through unsolicited resume drops are people that have experience in the industry.

1b. Talent will win through, as long as banks recruit at your school. As stated in the above paragraph, you're in for an uphill fight if a firm doesn't recruit at your school (and there can be differences in "core" or "non-core"); but generally, I think that as long as a bank interviews at a schools, it's more about the individual than the school. I'm really pleased with the opportunities that I have here, and I don't think my opportunities in banking would be better at Columbia or Wharton (PE or HF might be a different story). By the same token, people that are jackasses here wouldn't have a better shot at landing a job if they were at Wharton because they would still be jackasses.

As a 2Y pointed out to me, about 1/3 of the folks here (100 people or so) are interested in banking and about 2/3 of those (60+ each year) get top-end banking jobs. As mentioned above, banks like to hire former bankers, and the talent pool here has fewer bankers than a place like Columbia for example. Obviously, I only know my situation here, but I imagine that competition can be extremely fierce at places that are "banking feeder" schools where a lot of students have banking backgrounds.

2a. It is almost impossible to land more than, say, 3 banking job offers. Just like business schools, banks are concerned about yield and they hate wasting interview slots and handing out offers to people that don't accept. Therefore, they will purposefully schedule events at the same time to make students choose. They will try to schedule 2nd round interviews in conflict with other first round interviews that a student might have to force their hand.

2b. The corollary to the above is that you don't want to be that guy holding 6 different offers. It might sound like an accomplishment, but it really just means that you're an ahole. If you continue to rack up offers, you're hurting the chances of fellow students to land a job. So, basically if you receive an offer, you should be able to filter some other firms off your list. If your dream firm is still yet to come, then hold the one you have and gear up for that.

3. I definitely understand why schools make applicants write about their MBA goals. If you're interested in banking, you need to be ready to start recruiting right away ASAP immediately. Banks start coming the 2nd week of school, and if you're undecided, you'll be playing catch-up the entire semester.

4. If you're interested in banking, practice schmoozing now. I'm pretty lucky, because I directed recruitment for my fraternity for several years and I've had lots and lots of practice at schmoozing; it comes naturally for me and the comfort level has really paid off. Schmoozing is really really important, and the people who aren't good at it or haven't had practice have been efficiently weeded out. Here's some tips:

- Don't be a jackass. Banks notice boors and people with "sharp elbows" and stop inviting them.

- Learn to make your point briefly with impact. Some people just don't understand how boring they are.

- Erase canned questions from your brain. Bankers talk to 20-50 or more students at a give event. The last thing they want to do is answer the same question over and over and over...and over...yet some people ask the same 3-4 questions over and over and over... You can see how how asinine this could get. It always drives a splinter into my craw when someone asks "what are some good questions to ask" (at an interview or recruiting event). Just don't do it. Skill at conversation takes practice, and never includes anything canned.

- Don't gesticulate wildly. Cultures vary, and this seems to be a challenge for some international students (India and South America come to mind), but do not waive your hands around or thrash about when you speak. I read about this tip last fall while doing my applications, but I didn't realize how important it was until I observed it first hand. It can be really disconcerting, and it will get you scrubbed off a closed list.

- Don't travel in packs. Another thing that I've noticed is that some groups like to spend all their time together. Don't do this. First, it makes recruiters wonder if you're able to adjust to their working culture. Second, it's sometimes hard for people of other ethnicities to differentiate during brief encounters (this might not be PC, but it's a fact of life). I'm Chinese, so I try not to spend all my time around other Asian folks. I pointed this out to a friend, and she thought it was the best advice she'd heard all fall.

- You're being observed at all times. Obviously, if you get too drunk that can be bad (though not always). If you're rude to wait staff that can be bad. If you have bad manners that can be bad. But it's also bad if you're always standing off alone in a corner. When moving around recruiting events, try to engage not just the recruiters, but your fellow classmates as you move around. Recruiters will notice which students seems to get along with a wide variety of people, and which aren't welcomed by their peers. This definitely matters.

- There are others, like give a firm handshake, hold your drink in your left hand (you shake with your right and you don't want to have icy hands), don't eat until everyone has been served, eat with your mouth closed (surprisingly necessary advice), don't shovel food and always remember people's names.

So, that's what I can think of off the top of my head. If you don't have a lot of experience, I would definitely advice practicing schmoozing. It's kind of like manners (also important) - you don't want to be thinking about it at recruiting events and dinners. It's got to come naturally, and the only way to improve is through practice.
VP
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This post deserves a sticky!
GMAT Club Legend
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I can't make it a sticky in this forum but I agree, Pelihu's post really made this thread worth while. Hopefully some more current students really give some thoughtful posts like that. Not only because its interesting but it really could help applicants narrow down schools and give insight what a field really takes.
Intern
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Fantastic post! You make a compelling argument against canned question. I guess I should practice my schmoozing skills. It sounds like students spend a lot of time with recruiters, and students who are only armed with canned questions will quickly run out of topics to discuss.

I guess I better practice my schmoozing skills.
SVP
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Don't want one. Too tired. Finals coming...can't wait till break.

On a more serious side, a consulting firm has been stalking me, so I'm dropping for them. And then I'm looking at a variety of retails banks.
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wow, just found this piece of gem from pelihu! Intern offers by December, scary...

Will have to read it more when I have time!
Senior Manager
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Great info, as always, Pelihu! I have to check this entire forum more often.
CEO
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I suggest peli start another thread titled 'pelihu's guide to schmoozing' This is sensational information. Thanks mate.
Manager
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  01 Jan 2008, 22:21
How long are summer internships typically?

Edit: Learnt via pelihu that these are 10-12 weeks with Banking closer to 10 weeks and General Management closer to 12 weeks. Thanks p!

Last edited by collegesenior on 05 Jan 2008, 05:21, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: [#permalink]  02 Jan 2008, 11:07
river, how about posting this info into the wiki. May be we can create a section on "Recruiting".
riverripper wrote:
I can't make it a sticky in this forum but I agree, Pelihu's post really made this thread worth while. Hopefully some more current students really give some thoughtful posts like that. Not only because its interesting but it really could help applicants narrow down schools and give insight what a field really takes.
Intern
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  02 Jan 2008, 11:12
With a solid experience and great resume, you do not need to go to all events hosted by top consulting firms. But experience is not enough to sercue you an offer. For career change guys, yes, you should go to the party!
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Re: [#permalink]  04 Jan 2008, 17:31
bsd_lover wrote:
I suggest peli start another thread titled 'pelihu's guide to schmoozing' This is sensational information. Thanks mate.

Thanks everyone for the compliments. I didn't want to jump the gun and post bad/uninformed advice, but I've had good success during the early part of the recruiting and I think I have some good tips to share about landing the interview. I'm going to start a new thread, or perhaps series of threads, in this sub-forum about recruiting and schmoozing. In 2 weeks, hopefully I'll have some useful things to share about interviewing and if all goes well, actually landing the summer internship.
Current Student
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Re: [#permalink]  07 Jan 2008, 08:26
pelihu wrote:
Yes, IB recruiting is crazy. Things are going well for me personally. I hope to be on many of the closed lists for the top banks. I think people applying this year might be interested in recruiting procedure, and what we've learned thus far, so I'll share what I know.

For IB, the procedure is something like this.

1. - 7.

Wow. Kudos pelihu!

Thanks for this, Although I am only in the application process and waiting to hear back, I am contemplating where I want to go during my internship.

I am currently set on consulting, but I was wondering if I should try to get into the niche between finance and consulting - I am speaking of the work of firms like Alvarez & Marsal or AlixPartners. This would require me to get extensive finance know how.

Anyhow, my question is a different one:

If I am not set on one course, and say I want to look into BOTH finance and consulting: Judging by what you wrote, I will barely have the time to go through TWO such processes, correct?

Thanks.
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  07 Jan 2008, 10:27
I think it would be pretty much impossible to do a full slate of banking recruiting and still have time for anything else. I had a friend who was undecided and tried to do both consulting and banking for a few weeks, but he had conflicts almost every day and finally had to choose (he went with consulting).

I think you could potentially try to select 4-5 firms from both banking and consulting and give that a shot, but that could still be very challenging. The problem is that banking and consulting firms tend to be the most time consuming (I think banking takes the most time). Another option would be to target either banking or consulting, and then look into some other stuff. Most other recruiting tracks are far less time intensive.
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  07 Jan 2008, 10:50
Just to offer a different perspective:

I didn't even think about consulting until one firm got interested in me. I went to one afternoon tea, one dinner, and stopped by office hours. Then I did a mock interview. Didn't do company presentations, didn't do any of those hoke-y emails. Made the closed list.

Figured if I was applying to one company, i might as well do another. Had never done anything whatsoever with these folks and still made their closed list.

Of course, the closed list isn't a job, but I do think that students sometimes get a little out of control with networking. It probably depends on the company - some really don't care that much if you don't show up at everything they do. Some really do care.
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going? [#permalink]  07 Jan 2008, 10:56
thank you for the different perspective aau! Yeah, I might do something similar to you if I'm interested in consulting (right now I'm not) at all. I mean, if a company looks interesting, and they find me interesting, then it should be a friendly "get to know each other" process, not this crazy networking thing that sucks up all your time...

then again, that's probably because I really don't care much about consulting right now that I have this attitude
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Re: How's everyone's internship hunt going?   [#permalink] 07 Jan 2008, 10:56

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