How Finance Interviews Have Changed in the Past 5 Years (2009 – 2014) – and How to Prepare

24 Comments | Recruiting Mindset

Finance Interviews - Changes from 2009 to 2014“Change.”

Saying it over and over again might just get you elected President…

…and it might also sink your chances in finance interviews if you’re not properly prepared.

People like to claim that “interviews don’t change over time,” and that’s partially true.

But the recruiting process itself, interviewers’ expectations for you, and the way they evaluate you definitely change over time.

Of course, it’s not just the interviewer and the questions he/she asks that determine your fate – it’s also determined by the quality of other interviewees (your competition).

So to answer this question of how interviews have changed in the past 5 years, you need to look at how the recruiting process itself has changed, and how people themselves are changing and preparing differently.

What Is This Based On? How Do You Know This?

How to Position Yourself for Investment Banking as a 1st or 2nd Year University Student or High School Student: Be a Line, Not a Dot

23 Comments | Recruiting Mindset

What to Do as a 1st/2nd Year University Student or High School Student to Get Into Investment BankingWhen do you start?

Your first year of university?

High school?

Middle school?

Elementary school?


Your mother’s womb?

No one knows, but it seems like you need to start “preparing” for your future career earlier and earlier each year.

One day, parents might start modifying their unborn babies’ DNA to give them an advantage in the recruiting process… 20 years in advance.

In the absence of time travel or genetic modifications to boost your accounting proficiency, though, you need another way to prepare long in advance of the recruiting process.

Especially if you just entered university, you’re still in high school, or (gasp) you’re even younger and just realized you want to break into finance in the future.

Wait, What? DO People Actually Start Preparing When They’re 5 Years Old?

How to Achieve a Net Worth of $100+ Million USD Without Working 80-90 Hour Workweeks: An Interview with Richard Koch

25 Comments | Recruiting Mindset

Richard KochIf you’re reading this site, there’s a good chance that you wouldn’t mind being worth at least $100 million USD one day.

And while you’re willing to work hard to get there, you’ve probably also realized that working investment banking hours for the next 20-30 years is unsustainable.

If that’s you, then today’s interview with Richard Koch is right up your alley (yes, that’s a link to his Wikipedia entry).

This is unlike any other interview on the site – even those with senior bankers – because it’s with someone who has had a successful 40+ year track record in business.

Among other things, he:

  • Worked at BCG and Bain, became a Partner at Bain, and then founded L.E.K. Consulting, which later grew to 1,000+ consultants.
  • Wrote over 20 books on business, personal success, and philosophy, including The 80/20 Principle, which sold over 1 million copies.
  • Became a successful investor and returned between 5x and 53x his capital in numerous private equity investments.

So it’s safe to say he’s accomplished many of your own goals.

We chat with him about all of that, his advice to recent graduates and current students just starting out, and what it takes to start your own firm and become a successful investor:

Management Consulting: Got Transferable Skills?