From Community College to Fortune 500 Investor Relations: How to Defy the Odds Even When Everyone Tells You “No”

20 Comments | Case Studies & Reader Success Stories - From Non-Target Schools and Low Grades, Corporate Development & Corporate Finance - Recruiting

From Community College to Fortune 500 Investor RelationsThe “path.”

It never seems to die.

And neither does the assumption that you need to follow a certain “path” to get into the finance industry.

It’s like a cockroach: no matter how many times I drop nuclear bombs on it, it just won’t stay dead.

That’s why I wanted to share this story of a reader who did almost everything wrong in the beginning…

…But still managed to win a highly competitive offer in the corporate finance / investor relations team of a Fortune 500 company.

Forget about being from a “non-target school” – he originally attended a community college.

Forget about the recruiting process taking “months and months” – it took him almost 2 years.

And forget about being “discouraged” by your networking contacts – one guy actually told him: “You didn’t go to Harvard, so I don’t know what to tell you.”

But he overcame all that to break in anyway.

And here’s how he did it, along with a detailed explanation of investor relations interviews:

From Community College to CFO Consigliere

Investment Banking in Mexico: Win Bulge Bracket Offers Without an MBA or Previous Finance Experience?

11 Comments | Investment Banking - North America

Investment Banking MexicoThe finance industry in developed markets hasn’t exactly made a strong “recovery” post-financial crisis (if you want to be bold and label it a “recovery”).

Sure, hiring is up and more deals are getting done… but most teams have not expanded quickly in major markets like the US and UK.

But banks have been growing quickly in one country: Mexico.

And you don’t even need an MBA, CFA, or much previous finance experience to break in.

It’s also one of the few emerging markets where being a foreigner might actually help you.

You could even start out in commercial banking, get bored within 6 months, and then network your way into investment banking at a top bank – like our interviewee today did:

Whither Commercial Banking?

Infrastructure Investment Banking: How to Buy and Sell Airports, Stadiums, and More

9 Comments | Investment Banking Groups & Regions - Industry Groups

infrastructure-investment-bankingFrom our coverage of public finance (Part One, Part Two), or “municipal securities” as it’s called at some firms, you learned all about issuing bonds and responding to requests for proposals (RFPs).

And if DCM and the capital markets are for you, public finance is a great place to be.

But if you’re more into advisory – working on actual M&A deals – then you should take a closer look at the infrastructure investment banking coverage group, which is what today’s feature is all about.

You still get to take your interest in government/political science and combine it with finance…

But now you’re running all the standard M&A analyses on airports, stadiums, power plants, highways, and more – rather than on industrial or commercial companies.

And you may even earn higher fees in the process (warning: fees not guaranteed, void where prohibited).

Here’s what lies ahead:

  • How to get into the business of public finance acquisitions.
  • How to think about the sector and the key valuation drivers.
  • How to value companies that specialize in public infrastructure: power / utilities, parking systems, bridges, hospitals, and more.
  • Where to go after giving back to the public sector in a finance role.

How to Get In: Fit for Government Work?