Do you have a passion for the financial markets and are considering a career as an investment banker? Find below the different stages you have to go through in your investment banking career path.
- Analyst or grunts.
This is the lowest position in the investment banking industry. They are usually straight out of undergraduate school and will join the career for a minimum of 2 years in the position as they learn the job. It is the analyst’s job to do the work that the senior members would not want to do including presentations, analysis, and administration.
They handle the work of preparing presentations used by the most senior members for meetings. This work can be extremely frustrating and mundane and has most analysts questioning whether they really want to join the career.
They also play the role of analysis. These include data entry, evaluations and interviews and require a lot of patience, critical thinking, and attention to detail.
Administrative work is part of their day to day roles. They schedule meetings, make travel arrangements, and organize working groups to make sure that everyone is doing what they’re supposed to be doing.
Associates are usually straight from MBA programs or the analysts who have served for 2 years and in some cases 3 years depending on the company. The associate position lasts for approximately three and a half years although different banks have different timelines, some going up to 7 years. After the period elapses, most associates move to the VP position. Associates perform the same roles as analysts, but they have the added functions of acting as a liaison between the junior and senior bankers and may also deal with clients directly.
The associates are also in charge of making sure that the analysts are doing the work they’re supposed to be thus a supervisory role.
- Senior management: V.P/account managers, Directors, Managing Directors
Senior bankers are composed of the V.P’s or account managers, directors and Managing Directors who are at the top tier in the investment banking sector. The years of experience means they have a large knowledge base and understand the market very well. They are able to maintain relationships with the clients and negotiate for best deals for the best interest of the clients and the company. Their understanding of the market means they can anticipate when companies need to raise capital. They will then draw up the relevant strategies and guide the implementation process.
Is a career in investment banking worth it?
A career in investment banking is an exciting experience; do not be afraid to start somewhere, even the senior management or rainmakers started at the most basic level. The most important thing is to continue to improve upon your knowledge base so that you are able to contribute positively and be able to get the promotion that will get you to the next level of your career.
Most of all continue to learn and expand your knowledge base.