How did you break into finance industry?

You didn’t have finance related education and work experience but somehow you managed breaking into finance industry. So you either are very smart or hardworking or both. Your experience will be extremely valuable for those who are in the similar situation as were you.

Even with a finance related education, I still had to network like hell. Networking is key, contact everyone you know for help.

KJH, But what if a person doesn’t have friends from finance background? How does one go about working towards entering this field? What are different ways a person can go about networking?

Opions: Close your eyes and pray real hard till the phone rings or Be innovative and do something that will make quality employees take notice (place an entire page add in WSJ {Better be wealthy for this, in which case just threaten to pull your money from the investment firm if they don’t offer you a position}) or Network, Work-the-net, Network, Work-the-net

I posted my response under the general discussion section, but I would recommend networking with anyone and everyone, and continue learning about the industry. Try to join finance-related groups (City CFA chapters ring a bell?), think about going back to school - although that is a daunting proposition when faced with no savings from a previous nice job and large student loans, with no previous relevant experience going in to grad school, and the difficult prospect of getting into a top tier university to take advantage of the networking/ recruitment opportunities. But, keep your chin up and keep looking for a crack in the door where you can firmly place your foot.

I think the best way for someone with no connections to meet people is to set up informational interviews. Get in touch with people that do what you’d like to do, and ask if you can have 15 - 20 mins of their time to sit and talk about their position and how they got there. People generally like to talk about themselves (especially in this industry), as it is the subject they know the most about. Just do it in a way that you are prepared to ask some intelligent questions, and not waste that persons time.

Even if your friends are not in finance, they should know people in finance (ie their bankers, loan officers, accountants, brokers, etc). It’s a big web in a way, someone will know someone who know’s someone, etc. I played that card, talked to friend’s bankers, real estate agents, accountants, etc.

A friend of mine who had no network googled alumni from his school who were in Ibanking. He met with enough people until he got an analyst job. Be creative.

Wow, Thanks for the replys. Thank mcthorp twice because of your very helpful reply in the General Forum. So I guess networking is the key and learning more knowledge of finance is also instrumental.

You don’t break into finance before your bank account is broken. Then you are eligible to apply for positions. Remember first few years, is not what the hypocritical media makes it out to be. It is all work, no pay and lots of networking. Payoff comes later. I’d do a NPV projection to see if it is really worth it. "Remember if IRR is less than your cost of kapital then you will have a positive NPV which is not what you are looking for. "