Landing Your Dream Job or Internship – The Best of Ivan Kerbel

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Investment Banking and Consulting: Can you interview for internships for both?

Jack Boughs

I am currently exploring career opportunities in both investment banking and consulting. In your experience, is it feasible for a first-year student to partake in summer internship recruiting for both banking and consulting simultaneously (given a pre-MBA background outside finance / consulting)?

Ivan 

From a purely schedule-specific standpoint, it may be possible to undertake first-round interviews (and potentially even second-round interviews) separately for banking and consulting, but that is a very rare possibility…there is so much overlap in terms of employer presentations, coffee chats, Fridays spent traveling to meet with alumni and firm representatives, interview preparation, mock interviews, etc., that pursuing a simultaneous recruiting process in banking and also in consulting is simply not feasible.

Of course, that hasn’t prevented MBAs from trying in the past, but unless there is some other mitigating factor (for example, you are pursuing a very small, select set of target employers — let’s say 3-4 total (which in and of itself may not be a good strategy), trying to do this is a recipe for failing on both fronts. Last but not least, because it’s unlikely that you can keep your consulting recruiting efforts “secret” from the banking recruiters, and vice versa, that kind of effort tends to send a mixed message about what kind of work you’re trying to pursue, and can be a reason for employers doubting your sincerity/true interest in a career in consulting vs. banking, etc.

[Check out Where Top MBAs Work in Consulting or How to Land a Coveted Investment Banking Internship]