I went back to school to get a top MBA degree. I had considerable experience in software development for financial firms. Now I feel I am in an awkward situation to compete I-Bank job with people that don’t have much experience but a MBA. So far, it seems that they are much easier to be placed than me. Is my age (mid 30s) an issue? I believe my interview skills are much better than younger ones.
First, mid thirties is not old to be making a career change. Second, age may or may not be an issue. I imagine that if they sense you might have problems taking orders from people younger than you, or expect special treatment based on your previous work experience, age could be a factor. Also, if you expect higher pay than some wide eyed rookie who has fundamentally the same technical skills as you do, but will work for 50k less, this could also be hampering to your cause. Of course, I suspect you, will be questioned why you gave up what I imagine was a pretty good job in development to become an IB analyst/associate. How you handle these situations/questions I believe would be important to someone deciding whether to hire a slightly older candidate. However, there is upside to your age. For example getting placed in a technology banking group may be easier for you, if you can show your above average aptitude for that type of business and have good contacts in the industry.