by Mike Moran, CFA Comments (94)

How to Break Into Commercial Real Estate and Build an Empire

Commercial Real Estate Groups

This is a guest post from Mike Moran, CFA, a portfolio manager at a long-only asset management firm. He started Life on the Buy Side to teach you what it’s like working in asset management, hedge funds, and more.

When it comes to commercial real estate, you’ve got two choices: do something extremely risky, or do something boring and conservative.

OK, you could also pick something middle of the spectrum – but what fun is that?

If you have your sights set on building a real estate empire, you’re going to have to take the leap and embrace the risk with open arms.

Here’s how to do it:

Risk, Reward, and Reality

With commercial real estate, it’s easiest to think of investment opportunities from least risky to most risky and then analyze the players in each category:

Core Investing is all about stability and getting high single-digit returns by operating existing assets. There’s little risk when a building is already operational and generating rental income – think of the GM Building in New York or a class-A regional mall as example investments.

Since these are stable assets that provide a steady income stream to the owners, pension funds are the main investors in core funds – firms that specialize in acquiring and operating existing properties.

You also see Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) – both publicly traded REITs and private REITs – in this space, as well as core real estate funds run by real estate investment managers such as AEW and RREEF.

REITs are like private equity firms but for buildings rather than companies – they acquire, operate, (possibly) improve, and then sell properties to earn high returns.

Getting Riskier…

After you leave this Core Investing space, you get into Value-Add and Opportunistic Strategies – this is where the investors try to make substantial improvements and renovations to existing properties rather than just acquiring and operating them.

Returns are typically in the 15 – 20% range, but may go higher depending on how risky the strategy is. Some REITs and core funds managers dabble in this space, but you mostly see private equity shops like Blackstone here – a high single-digit return is horrible for PE, so it makes more sense for them to focus on riskier strategies.

At the riskiest end of the spectrum is real estate development, and the players there are all over the map.

Some REITs have large development pipelines and invest significant resources into constructing new properties – examples are AvalonBay [AVB] (apartments) and Prologis [PLD] (industrial), which often have multi-billion-dollar pipelines.

Private equity can sometimes be active in development, but usually only as the capital partner to developers.

There are also large private companies like Opus that focus on real estate development without the pressures that come from being publicly traded.

Risk = Reward?

Based on the descriptions above, you might think that real estate development offers the highest potential returns and the highest pay since it’s also the riskiest.

But you’d be wrong: It’s a boom-and-bust business, and developers are also the first people to get fired in a downturn.

While Prologis had a $4B development pipeline at the market peak, it dwindled down to less than $500MM after the market collapsed; three of Opus’ five major subsidiaries filed for bankruptcy in the past downturn.

This is not to say that real estate development is “bad” – it’s just that you shouldn’t jump into it expecting to make bank right away.

It’s great if you’re into the brick-and-mortars side of real estate, but if you’re not, think about the other options above.

There are also asset management firms and hedge funds that specialize in real estate securities, and even shops that invest in REITs – if you want to blend real estate and the public markets, both of these can be good options.

How to Break Into Commercial Real Estate

As with everything else in finance, at the entry-level you’re just a high-paid spreadsheet monkey who works on deals all day – whether that’s at the core funds or at private development companies.

A typical “path” for breaking in is to go to a target school and then get into real estate investment banking – that’s what many of the top people at the biggest real estate firms and REITs have done.

Mike Fascitelli, CEO of Vornado [VNO], is an example of a real estate big shot that followed this path. He went to Harvard for his MBA, started at McKinsey, and then went to Goldman as a real estate investment banker. After several years at Goldman, Steve Roth lured Fascitelli away from banking to work at VNO.

But you don’t have to follow that path to break in – and an MBA isn’t even a prerequisite.

The best example is Jonathan Gray, the co-head of Blackstone’s real estate group – Gray started at Blackstone with just an undergraduate degree from Wharton and worked his way up to become co-head of the entire real estate group by age 35. At age 37, he was busy pulling off the $36 billion Equity Office Properties acquisition, the biggest private equity buyout ever (at the time)!

Yes, Wharton is a target school and it also happens to be one of the top undergraduate schools for real estate – but more importantly, it has a great real estate alumni network.

Just like everything else in finance, leveraging your alumni network is essential to breaking in: I wouldn’t be surprised if Gray tapped his network to land his gig at Blackstone right out of school.

Other top undergraduate schools for real estate in the US include UC Berkeley, USC, and Wisconsin – these are well-known institutions, but they’re not the Ivy League and they’re not the ones that immediately come to mind when you think of a “target school.”

Real estate is very much a “who you know” business and having a well-connected alumni base is critical – if you’re at a school without much of a presence in real estate, your next best option is to get an MBA at a school with a strong real estate program.

If you’re already out of school and working, you could get involved in trade groups like ICSC, ULI, or YREP if there’s one in your area.

Whatever you decide to do, networking is even more important in real estate than in other industries so start pounding the pavement as soon as possible.

Got Real Estate Development?

While many top real estate jobs required work experience and/or more than an undergraduate degree, development is one area where undergrads from all different backgrounds can get in right out of school.

So if you’re in this boat and you’re interested in real estate, you’re better off using your career center and alumni network to break in and focusing on development rather than PE, REITs, or anything else.

Q: Do I need investment banking experience to break into development?

A: No, no, and no. In fact, you might have too much experience if you actually do real estate IB and want to break in afterward – an entry-level development role would be a step backward.

Development is significantly different from real estate IB or PE, and they shouldn’t even be in the same category.

Q: Wait, but what should I do with my life if I don’t do investment banking first?! Otherwise everything is meaningless!

A: Pick a major that lends itself to real estate development. Example majors: Real estate, civil engineering, architecture, or construction management.

Since development is much more bricks-and-mortar than other RE-associated industries, knowing these subjects is valuable for breaking in – and you’ll get the alumni network to help you land a development job.

If you don’t know what major and/or school is good for getting into RE development, just ask around and see what types of jobs most graduates get – if “real estate” is a common answer, you’ve found a good match.

Breaking Into REITs

Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) are investment vehicles that are exempt from corporate income taxes as long as certain criteria are met; the main one is that REITs must pay out 90% of their taxable income as dividends, which means they have little cash on hand and are constantly issuing debt and equity to fund their operations.

Historically, REITs were passive vehicles that focused on owning properties and escalating rents over time, but today they’re more dynamic, and many REITs buy, sell, develop, and manage properties and 3rd party joint ventures all the time.

A few of the larger REITs in different segments include the Simon Property Group [SPG] (shopping malls), Boston Properties [BXP] (offices), AvalonBay [AVB] (apartments), and Prologis [PLD] (industrial).

Since REITs use so many different investment strategies, there are all sorts of different job opportunities there.

On the operations side are developers, property managers, and acquisition people that deal directly with properties.

On the capital markets side, you’ll find finance people that work on equity and debt deals to fund the REIT’s operations.

If you want to get into the operations side of a REIT, it’s similar to what you need to break into RE development: Get a real estate-related undergraduate degree and network with alumni.

But if you’re interested in capital markets, you need real estate investment banking experience – REITs are one of the main exit opportunities for RE bankers since you advise REITs all the time as a banker.

Bottom-line: if you’re more interested in finance, go the banking route and look for REIT exit opportunities; if you’re more interested in the bricks-and-sticks aspect of real estate, skip banking and go straight into development or acquisitions.

Compensation: What Compensation?

Unfortunately, there are few good data sources on real estate compensation – but pay tends to be commensurate with risk and expected returns, at least in buy-side roles.

The main exception is development – it’s the riskiest investment class and yet the pay is also the worst.

The real money in development accrues to those that put their money at risk in the developments.

To complete construction of a new property, the developer itself only puts down a very small portion of the total equity – maybe 5% or less.

Many times, the developer simply contributes their land basis as the only equity in the project and then uses debt and mezzanine financing to fund the entire construction cost.

Most of the returns will go to the 3rd party investors that come up with the rest of the funds – and to make things even worse, there’s no cash flow from properties that are under development until tenants move in and rental income starts flowing.

Even the fees the developers charge are not great compared to the overhead, so there isn’t much money left to pay salaries to employees.

So, do not get into development if money is your main goal – only do it if you’re interested in building and construction side of real estate.

You will not make it big until you have enough money to invest in development projects yourself.

For core funds and REITs, pay is consistent with base salaries for recent graduates elsewhere in finance – the main difference is that you won’t receive Wall Street-like bonuses in these jobs because the fees and returns are lower than in PE, for example.

On the private equity, hedge fund, and asset management side, compensation is similar to what you would earn at non-real estate funds. So real estate PE is similar to normal PE, real estate HFs are similar to normal HFs, and REIT-focused asset management is similar to normal asset management.

And on the investment banking side, you don’t see much of a difference at the junior levels between real estate banking and other groups.

Exit Opportunities

As with other buy-side jobs, the buy-side itself is the end-game. Once you get there, it’s just a matter of working your way up until you become the next Jonathan Gray.

Be careful of getting pigeonholed: If you get into real estate and don’t like it, move on as quickly as possible or it will become more and more difficult to find a non-real-estate job.

In addition to moving up the ladder, investing in real estate yourself is another possibility: A number of friends have amassed nice little portfolios of multi-family assets.

And unlike buying entire companies, the capital requirements for real estate are far lower and you don’t need to raise hundreds of millions of dollars just to buy a house.

Raising a small fund of your own is also possible, but just as with starting a hedge fund you need to raise some seed money to get started – you would go to friends and family first, show solid performance, and then approach a broader set of investors once you can point to results.

Whither Real Estate?

It’s a great field, but keep your expectations in check.

Until you have enough cash to fund massive real estate developments by yourself, you won’t see your name on any buildings.

And if you want to become as famous as a certain real estate developer – and maybe even become President of the United States as well – it might just be easier to get your own reality TV series instead.

Even More on Real Estate

If you want to learn more about the modeling and valuation side of real estate, check out the BIWS Real Estate Financial Modeling Course, which covers both individual properties and REITs via case studies of an apartment complex, an office development and sale, a hotel acquisition and renovation, and Avalon Bay, a leading apartment REIT.

There are also real estate private equity case studies based on stabilized multifamily, value-added office, and pre-sold condo development deals.

About the Author

Mike Moran, CFA is a Portfolio Manager at a long-only asset management firm. He started Life on the Buy Side to teach you what it’s like working in asset management, hedge funds, and more.

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by Brian DeChesare Comments (139)

Weekend Trips: The Best Way to Break Into Investment Banking?

Investment Banking Weekend TripsAnd no, I’m not referring to weekend ski trips, a 3-day gambling spree in Monaco, or your feeble attempt to ask your MD for a vacation 2 months after you started.

These are the weekend trips where you travel to financial centers, meet dozens of bankers in a short period of time, and apply the 80/20 rule to networking.

They might not be as fun as hitting the slopes, but they’re one of the best ways to break into finance – if you play your cards right.

Why Weekend Trips?

In-person meetings are more effective than calls or emails – bankers are bombarded with dozens (hundreds?) of emails each day, and everything blurs together after awhile.

But they’re much more likely to remember people they’ve met in real life, especially when sifting through resumes at 3 AM.

Weekend trips are also more efficient than normal cold-calling or informational interviews, because you can meet dozens of bankers in the span of 2-3 days.

You can get office tours on the spot, and casual meetings can easily turn into real interviews – especially when recruiting season approaches.

Plus, they’re practice for real interviews because you’ll need to tell your story many times and answer tough questions about your background.

Finally, when I interviewed readers who broke in back when Breaking Into Wall Street was under development, every one of them had used some form of weekend trips to break in.

So if you don’t have a 4.0 GPA at Harvard and 3 internships at Goldman Sachs, weekend trips need to be part of your strategy.

What is a Weekend Trip, Exactly?

First, you plan to be in a financial center like New York, London, or Hong Kong for 2-3 days, usually on Friday-Saturday or Thursday-Saturday.

You could go for an entire week, but that is difficult to plan and you probably won’t have enough contacts to make it worthwhile.

Once you have the dates, you email bankers to set up meetings, trying to meet with at least 5 per day.

Then, you fly in and stay at a friend’s place or a hotel, meet everyone you’ve emailed, and go through the same informational interviews you know and love – only in-person this time.

At the end of each interview, you casually suggest a visit to the office or say that it would be great to meet other people there.

Follow-up afterward but keep it brief and direct – you want to schedule weekend trips close to recruiting season.

Weekend trips work at both the analyst and associate levels, but they’re usually more effective for current students.

Now, let’s answer your questions and concerns before jumping into this in more detail.

Wait, This Sounds Expensive!

Yes, it will cost money – but think about what it would cost you not to do it: a $100K+ job plus even higher pay in the future.

Plus, you can minimize expenses by staying with friends rather than at the Ritz-Carlton, or by getting a budget hotel if you don’t know anyone in the city.

In Europe there are discount airlines like Ryanair, so airfare is less of an issue there; it can be more expensive in the US and Asia, but if you plan this correctly you can still spend $1,000 or less for a 2-day trip.

Even if it costs $2,000, that’s still a 50x ROI assuming a very low $30K bonus in your first year.

I Don’t Have Time!

Translation: you have the wrong priorities.

Think about how much time you spend on Internet surfing, TV watching, and joining groups just to have a laundry list on your resume.

A single weekend trip represents a 2-3 day investment of time plus maybe another day to set up everything beforehand.

That is not enough to seriously impact your grades or activities, and guess what: even if it does, networking is way more important anyway.

Networking Doesn’t Work in Other Countries!

Yes, there may be some truth to networking being less effective outside the US, but more often than not this is just an excuse to do nothing.

Let’s say you spend 2-3 hours finding contact information for 10 bankers and emailing them to set up meetings.

You later find out that in your country, no one ever networks and a robot processes all applications sent to the bank, making all decisions based on the numbers and names on your CV.

If that outlandish scenario is true, all you’ve lost is 2-3 hours; and if it’s slightly untrue, you’ve now introduced yourself to 10 bankers and have boosted your chances – even if your weekend trip never happens.

Some regions may be more traditional with recruiting, but you lose very little by planning for weekend trips anyway.

How to Plan and Conduct Weekend Trips

One trip is probably enough if you haven’t networked like crazy, but you could also go for 2 trips and spread them further apart.

If you’re doing 1 trip, make it slightly before recruiting begins – this would be August / September for full-time recruiting and December / January for summer internships; for 2 trips, do 1 right before recruiting and the other one 2-3 months before recruiting.

Dates change depending on the year and what region you’re in, so you should check the application deadlines in advance.

Email bankers 3-4 weeks before your trip and let them know about your planned travel – just like with informational interviews, propose a specific date, time, and place (at or near their office) to meet.

Don’t buy your tickets or make reservations yet; wait and do that depending on the responses you get.

Bankers you’ve already spoken to or exchanged emails with are better to contact because they already know you – it’s a bit odd to email someone out of the blue and say, “Hey I’m going to be in Manhattan next week, let’s meet up… since you’re an alum!”

In that situation, you should suggest a quick call first so you can introduce yourself, and then bring up your trip at the end.

Aim to set up 5-10 meetings per day – 50% of bankers will cancel on you due to last-minute emergencies, so plan for the worst-case scenario.

The Details

When you’re proposing these meetings, keep in mind physical locations and schedule everything in blocks – you don’t want to be running back-and-forth between Midtown and Downtown.

Also make sure you have a backup list of other bankers you could meet with, in case you get more last-minute cancellations than expected.

Allot at least 30 minutes between your meetings – that gives you time for transportation and a buffer in case things go on longer than expected.

Make sure you take a smartphone or another device that lets you read email on-the-go, because you will need to check email constantly.

Wear business formal attire, just like in real interviews (guides for men’s fashion and women’s fashion).

I mentioned above that you should plan for Thursday-Saturday or Friday-Saturday – I left out Sunday because that’s the hardest day to catch bankers, especially more senior ones.

When the Day Comes…

Follow-up with everyone a day or two before your trip to confirm that you’re still set to meet; if there are cancellations, go to your backup list.

The interviews themselves will be very similar to standard informational interviews, but they may be more in-depth since they’re in-person; they could also turn into real interviews depending on the banker and how close it is to recruiting season.

You can ask the same types of questions as in informational interviews, but you might end up discussing business more than pleasure since you’re on their home turf.

The difference is what happens at the end: instead of just making a “mini-ask,” casually suggest a visit to their office or meeting others there.

If they like you, they may even suggest it first; if they seem unwilling to take you on a tour, you can just brush it off as a joke.

But if it works, you will gain a huge advantage because everyone at that office will know who you are – and that advantage may even carry over to real interviews when bankers decide who gets offers.

Going back to our eternal theme of not overestimating the competition, remember that 99% of applicants will never even take the time to make a single weekend trip.

So even if you don’t wear the right clothes, you’re late to meetings, and half of your contacts cancel on you, that still puts you ahead of 99% of other aspiring bankers.

What About Other Meetings?

What happens if you get invited to an office tour but you have other, conflicting meetings lined up?

Email your other contacts to say you’re running late or ask if they can meet the next day instead.

That may not look great, but you need to leap at opportunities when they come – and few opportunities beat the ability to meet everyone at the office before you apply there.

You don’t want to camp out at the office for 5 hours, but an extra 30-60 minutes is well worth it.

Follow-Up

Follow-up is less important because you’ve already met in-person, everyone at the office will have met you (hopefully), and weekend trips happen right before application deadlines anyway.

Write a quick email to the key bankers you met with and pose the same question in the informational interview guide: how to best position yourself for an interview.

That’s just to remind them that you’ve met in-person before – but they shouldn’t need much reminding in the first place.

What Now?

If you still have time, go and email alumni and anyone you’ve already networked with and schedule your first weekend trip.

See what the responses are like, and then follow everything I’ve outlined above.

And if it’s too late, just keep this strategy in mind for next year or for when you get to business school.

Further Reading

I spent hours looking for information online and came up with almost nothing – everything above was compiled via personal experiences and reader interviews.

The one other article on the topic is from Careers-in-Finance, right here.

And not to be blatantly self-promotional, but yes, there is also an entire module in The Investment Banking Networking Toolkit with even more detail on weekend trips and sample schedules/emails.

If you have anything else good, do share.

M&I - Brian

About the Author

Brian DeChesare is the Founder of Mergers & Inquisitions and Breaking Into Wall Street. In his spare time, he enjoys memorizing obscure Excel functions, editing resumes, obsessing over TV shows, traveling like a drug dealer, and defeating Sauron.

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by Brian DeChesare Comments (30)

From Nuclear Submarines to Investment Banking: How to Make the Leap from the Military to Finance

From Nuclear Submarines to Investment BankingCan you get into finance coming from a military background?

Just how many bankers each year break in from the Army, Navy, and Air Force?

I get a lot of questions on these topics, but up until now haven’t had solid answers beyond “yes” and “quite a few.”

But that changes today with an interview from a reader who broke into investment banking from a military background – keep reading to find out how he did it and how you can do the same.

Plus, advice on part-time vs. full-time MBA programs and starting in a location that isn’t New York.

Nuclear Submarines & Business School: Perfect Match?

Q: Tell us about your background and how you got started operating nuclear submarines.

A: Sure. I accepted a Navy ROTC scholarship right before attending college, because my priority at the time was to serve my country.

At school I picked a highly technical engineering track, but ended up taking a lot of financial math classes on the side – that’s how I originally got interested in finance.

After graduation, I wanted to work in a high-impact environment and since I had a technical background, I figured that nuclear submarines would be a good fit for me.

The Navy has a rigorous selection process for this kind of role, but I passed and started operating nuclear reactors aboard submarines.

After a few years there, I decided to attend a top MBA program as my next move.

Q: I guess you had an easy time proving your “attention to detail” in interviews. Coming from that background, why did you decide to go to business school as your next move?

A: I got a lot out of the Navy in terms of leadership, teamwork, and meeting deadlines, but I wanted to hone my financial skills and learn more about business.

I knew that moving into finance directly would be challenging since my background was unrelated, so I decided to use business school as a steppingstone.

I still had a commitment to the Navy, so I decided to attend a part-time evening program at a well-known business school while finishing my obligation of service.

Q: Most people would say that it’s very tough to break into finance coming from a part-time evening program – why did you decide to go that route instead of waiting and applying for full-time programs?

A: I could have waited, but that might have cost me 1.5 – 2 years due to my Navy commitment. I figured that I would be more competitive if I made the move sooner rather than later, so I opted for the evening program instead.

If you have the option, though, I would strongly recommend full-time programs.

I had a unique set of circumstances, and I ended up transferring to the full-time program anyway to take part in recruiting – looking back on it, starting out there may have made more sense.

Transferring & Recruiting

Q: You mentioned switching to the full-time program for recruiting purposes. When did you decide to do this, and how did you make the move?

A: In the evening program I couldn’t even drop my resume for recruiting purposes – I could still go to events and network with bankers there, but I couldn’t formally apply for internships or full-time jobs.

Recruiters also viewed me with a lot more scrutiny coming from the evening program – they would ask, “Was he not able to get into the full-time program? Were his GPA or GMAT scores not up to par?” If you’re not in a full-time program, you need good answers to those questions.

So I realized early on that transferring would make recruiting much easier.

As for the actual process, I just applied through the school after going through all the core classes, earning good grades, and developing a competitive profile.

The key is that the school doesn’t want you to hurt their average GPA / GMAT scores – as long as you’re above the bar there, it’s doable.

That doesn’t mean it’s easy – only a handful of people do it each year – but it is possible.

I would also add that a couple of classmates stayed in the evening program and successfully landed investment banking internships, so switching is not absolutely mandatory.

Q: Right, that makes sense. What about your networking efforts? Once you made the leap to the full-time program, did you just rely on on-campus recruiting or did you also use alumni networking?

A: I used both – early on, I relied more heavily on networking with military alumni. I started months before the school year began, and began by searching for former naval officers who now worked in investment banking, via LinkedIn.

I got around a 40% response rate, and leveraged the responses into phone calls and in-person meetings during the weekend trips I took to New York and other financial centers.

As the school year approached, I widened my net and started going beyond naval officers to other “military alumni” and also went through the alumni at my business school.

I waited to speak with the alumni last because they were in the best position to get me first-round interviews. Additionally, they were bombarded with emails from all my classmates so I wanted to ensure that I always made a strong first impression.

Q: What about the networking process itself? What did you do, and how effective was it?

A: In my initial emails, I would usually ask for 30 minutes to speak on the phone – but as I moved further in, I took trips to New York and other financial centers and met with bankers in-person.

Most “target schools” have a pretty regimented process for MBAs, and I used recruiting events to make a better impression on bankers in a social setting. That’s a huge advantage of target schools – these investment banking information sessions are the key to receiving first-round interviews.

Because I was aggressive with networking and made a good impression on the recruiting teams, I managed to win first-round interviews with most major banks.

How to Convince Them You’re a Financier

Q: So it sounds like you had a lot of practice with interviews, whether they were official interviews or unofficial informational interviews. What were the key challenges you faced coming from a military background?

A: The advantage of a military background is that you can sell your management experience, leadership, and teamwork skills more easily than, say, an accountant looking to break into investment banking.

And since I had operated a nuclear reactor, it wasn’t hard to convince bankers of my attention to detail. The same goes for unpredictable hours – going out to sea on a whim’s notice or being extended during a deployment were routine in the submarine force.

But there are a couple problems you’ll face coming from a military background:

  1. There’s the perception that ex-military guys don’t know finance.
  2. We also have a reputation for being overly blunt and trying to exert too much control over a situation.

Q: So how did you overcome these problems?

A: For the first one, I pointed to my high GPA and GMAT score as evidence that I could do quantitative work.

I know you’ve criticized it before, but I also enrolled in and passed Level I of the CFA – which at least showed them that I knew something about finance. Plus, I had all my finance classes from undergraduate.

On the second point – about being overly blunt – you just need examples of how you’ve compromised and worked successfully in a team without being overbearing.

A lot of this also comes across in your tone and presentation – if you’re a direct person, sometimes you have to take it down a few notches.

Regional vs. NYC Offices

Q: You ended up accepting an offer in a regional office rather than in New York – how did you think about this one, and why did you decide to start there instead?

A: Most people tell you that New York is the end-all when it comes to finance, at least in the US – but I’m not completely convinced of this.

For one, lots of regional offices actually do full deal execution themselves – SF is a hotbed for tech and biotech, LA for media and gaming, Houston for energy, Chicago for industrials, and so on.

If you already have an industry you’re interested in, going somewhere other than New York could be a good move.

Also, the cost of living is much less in other regions, the lifestyle is not much worse, and the deal teams are leaner which means more experience for junior bankers.

The main disadvantages of not starting in New York:

  1. You do miss out on networking opportunities by being around fewer bankers / financiers.
  2. You’re more limited in terms of moving to different regions / groups.

If you’re just out of university and you’re not sure exactly what you want to do, New York could be a better bet – but if you’re older, you have a family, or you have a good idea of what industry you want to work in, there are considerable advantages to starting outside of New York.

Q: Right, I agree completely. The obsession with New York in the US is similar to the obsession with exit opportunities. Thanks for your time – you have a very interesting story, and I learned a lot.

A: My pleasure.

M&I - Brian

About the Author

Brian DeChesare is the Founder of Mergers & Inquisitions and Breaking Into Wall Street. In his spare time, he enjoys memorizing obscure Excel functions, editing resumes, obsessing over TV shows, traveling like a drug dealer, and defeating Sauron.

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