Wealth Management to IB?

RBC / Finance Romerdim
Jul 17 15 Comments

Despite not deciding that I wanted to break into IB until my last semester of college, I was lucky enough to have landed an unpaid IB internship for that semester. In that role I worked directly with an MD on a couple different deals for about 5 weeks before unexpectedly receiving an offer for a paid Wealth Management internship at a large global bank for the remainder of the semester, which I ended up accepting bc I was a broke college kid and it was closer to campus, and there was no upward mobility at the IB firm.

I then ended up receiving a full-time offer for a Client Associate position with this company (glorified assistant to the FA's). I accepted this offer bc I did not receive offers for an IB analyst position despite my recruiting efforts. I started this position at the beginning of this year and although I am learning a lot, I definitely still want to break into IB one day. I know I need to do this within a year or two, or else I'll get stuck in WM for the rest of my life.

My plan is to pass the Series 7 next month and then complete the Wall Street Prep financial modeling course and earn that certification. Then begin hardcore networking again and hopefully eventually win an offer from a local/boutique investment bank in the DC metro area (of which there are ~30). Not sure that I want to take my chances applying to a BB as I had a low undergrad gpa (below 3.0) and don't think I could compete with 4.0's from targets.

So is this a realistic plan? Will I have to pursue a Masters in Finance (MSF) in order to rebrand myself and makeup for my low undergrad grades? Should I try to move to a valuation/M&A-related role before trying to break in to IB? Any advice is much appreciated

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TOP 15 Comments
  • New qtdv
    OP...you lost your chance for now by selecting WM and getting a sub-3.0 GPA!
    What you should do is, grind it out for a few years and rise within WM, then go get a Top 15 MBA. Target b-schools that are IB heavy. And this time go for the IB gig ;)
    Or you could just bust your balls for a FA that serves the HNW/UHNW market and eventually spins off as a multi-family investment office. ;)
    Jul 17 6
    • CBRE / Finance REGod
      High Net Worth and Ultra
      Jul 17
    • RBC Capital Markets
      NY90

      RBC Capital Markets

      BIO
      Finance, Capital Markets
      NY90more
      Listen to this person.
      Jul 17
    • RBC / Finance Romerdim
      OP
      You really don’t think my low GPA can be offset with a combo of Series 7, financial modeling cert, and some IB experience and a year of general finance experience? Rather not have to get a Masters first
      Jul 18
    • RBC Capital Markets
      NY90

      RBC Capital Markets

      BIO
      Finance, Capital Markets
      NY90more
      OP, anything is possible, sure. Just highly, highly improbable. You missed the cycle for analysts along with a low GPA from a non-target school. You can network your ass off and maybe something will pan out at a boutique - do it. Work on your story. Leverage alumni networks. Do whatever it takes to get in front of people.
      Jul 18
    • RBC / Finance Romerdim
      OP
      Appreciate the encouragement. Another question (for anyone), will it be possible to land an IB offer without my current employer finding out? In other words, I don’t want banks to contact my current bosses bc then they will know I’m looking to leave
      Jul 18
  • ADP / Mgmt
    Runner131

    ADP Mgmt

    BIO
    I call myself "Damage Control" as I turnaround poor performance of others and get results.
    Runner131more
    IB is VERY incestuous from schools they hire from to even get started.

    You're alternative is to work PE while trying for the MBA at a top school and see if that gets you there
    Jul 17 5
    • ADP / Mgmt
      Runner131

      ADP Mgmt

      BIO
      I call myself "Damage Control" as I turnaround poor performance of others and get results.
      Runner131more
      I hope you like NYC, Chicago, or SF. Very few other cities have opportunities.
      Jul 17
    • RBC / Finance Romerdim
      OP
      I think PE is the end game plan, or at least where I want to be in ~10 years, so I wouldn’t go back to IB from there
      Jul 17
    • ADP / Mgmt
      Runner131

      ADP Mgmt

      BIO
      I call myself "Damage Control" as I turnaround poor performance of others and get results.
      Runner131more
      Do you know what size of IB you want to get into? Or area of specialty? That might dictate the city and school to pursue.
      Jul 17
    • RBC / Finance Romerdim
      OP
      Ideally a larger bank but size doesn’t matter to me as much as the group/sector focus, which ideally would be aero & def (big in DC) or tech.
      Jul 18
    • ADP / Mgmt
      Runner131

      ADP Mgmt

      BIO
      I call myself "Damage Control" as I turnaround poor performance of others and get results.
      Runner131more
      I meant deal size, like small cap, mid market, bulge, etc. But yeah that is an interesting place to focus.
      Jul 19
  • Nuveen, for the folks in WM pulling in $500k, what firm are they with, and how long did it take them to get there?
    Oct 1 0
  • Nuveen Investments cfa
    I think the answer to your question is based on two factors:

    1) what sector do you want?
    2) what kind of a career do you want?

    IB’s are laying people off like crazy so the sector will determine the opportunity. There is a decent amount of junior staff with experience out there so your competitive pool is high. The bigger the city, the bigger the pool. You have a better chance for a job in Milwaukee and can build time in grade. Also - the more specialized the asset class, the fewer the jobs and the harder it is to rebrand yourself when that sector has a downtime.

    Next - in my experience, IB land is very incestuous. It’s hard (not impossible) to go from small boutique IB firm to Goldman. If you don’t care about that, it’s not an issue. The smaller the shop however, the more you “eat what you kill” and that gets old in a recession.

    For what it’s worth, I have friends in WM mid career pulling in 500k+ for a great lifestyle. My IB friends work more hours and don’t have nearly as good a life.
    Jul 19 0