File PDF .it

Condividi facilmente i tuoi documenti PDF con i tuoi contatti, il Web e i Social network.

Inviare un file File manager Cassetta degli attrezzi Ricerca PDF Assistenza Contattaci



Vault MBA Career Bible 2006 .pdf



Nome del file originale: Vault_MBA_Career_Bible_2006.pdf
Titolo: MBA-Bible-web-complete.pdf
Autore: meleazar

Questo documento in formato PDF 1.6 è stato generato da PScript5.dll Version 5.2.2 / Acrobat Distiller 5.0 (Windows), ed è stato inviato su file-pdf.it il 07/09/2021 alle 09:14, dall'indirizzo IP 27.125.x.x. La pagina di download del file è stata vista 190 volte.
Dimensione del file: 1.6 MB (264 pagine).
Privacy: file pubblico




Scarica il file PDF









Anteprima del documento


The media’s watching Vault!
Here’s a sampling of our coverage.
“For those hoping to climb the ladder of success, [Vault's] insights are priceless.”
– Money magazine
“The best place on the web to prepare for a job search.”
– Fortune
“[Vault guides] make for excellent starting points for job hunters and should be purchased
by academic libraries for their career sections [and] university career centers.”
– Library Journal
“The granddaddy of worker sites.”
– US News and World Report
“A killer app.”
– The New York Times
One of Forbes' 33 “Favorite Sites.”
– Forbes
“To get the unvarnished scoop, check out Vault.”
– Smart Money Magazine
“Vault has a wealth of information about major employers and job-searching strategies as
well as comments from workers about their experiences at specific companies.”
– The Washington Post
“Vault has become the go-to source for career preparation.”
– Crain’s New York
“Vault [provides] the skinny on working conditions at all kinds of companies from current
and former employees.”
– USA Today

MBA
CARE
BIBLE
THE VAULT

MBA CAREER
BIBLE

VAULT EDITORS

Copyright © 2007 by Vault.com Inc.

All rights reserved.

All information in this book is subject to change without notice. Vault makes no claims as to the accuracy and reliability of the
information contained within and disclaims all warranties. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or
by any means, electronic or mechanical, for any purpose, without the express written permission of Vault Inc.
Vault, the Vault logo, and “the most trusted name in career informationTM” are trademarks of Vault.com Inc.
For information about permission to reproduce selections from this book, contact Vault.com Inc.150 W. 22nd St. New York,
New York 10011-1772, (212) 366-4212.
Library of Congress CIP Data is available.
ISBN 1-58131-498-1
ISBN 13: 978-1-58131-498-4
Printed in the United States of America

Acknowledgments

We are also extremely grateful to Vault’s entire staff for all their help in the editorial, production and marketing processes. Vault also would like to acknowledge the support of our investors, clients, employees,
family and friends. Thank you!

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

vii

Table of Contents
INTRODUCTION

1

MBA Hiring Overview

1

THE MBA JOB SEARCH

3

Resumes

5

Ten Seconds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5
It’s What You Did, Not What Your Name Tag Said . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6
Think Broadly

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6

Selected History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6
Sample MBA Resume . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7

Cover Letters

9

The Cover Letter Template . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9
MBA Summer Internship Cover Letter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13
MBA Full-Time Cover Letter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14

MBA Interviews

15

Case Interviews . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15
Sample Case . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19
Sample Guesstimate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20
Finance Interviews . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20
Sample Finance Interview Questions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23

MBA DIVERSITY

27

The Importance of Mentors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29
Vault Diversity Q&A: Pipasu Soni, Financial Analyst, Honeywell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31
Vault Diversity Q&A: Ann Silverman, M&T Bank . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34
Diversity Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .37

MBA ROTATIONAL PROGRAMS

39

MBA Rotations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41
Vault Q&A: Federico Sercovich, Citigroup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41
Vault Q&A: Rebecca Preston, Chevron . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .43

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

ix

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
Table of Contents

INDUSTRY OVERVIEWS
Aerospace and Defense

45
47

Aerospace and Defense Industry Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .47
Working in the Industry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .48
Aerospace and Defense Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50

Agriculture

51

Agriculture Industry Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .51
Vault Q&A: Darryl Barbee, Archer Daniels Midland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .55
Agriculture Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57

Brand Management/Consumer Goods

59

Functional Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .59
Careers in Marketing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .60
A Day in the Life: Assistant Brand Manager . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .63
Brand Management/Consumer Goods Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .65

Energy/Oil and Gas

69

What is the Energy Sector? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .69
Which Job Function? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .70
What Type of Company? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .70
Who Gets Hired? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .74
Energy/Oil & Gas Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .76

Fashion

79

Fashion and the MBA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .79
Getting Hired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .79
Pay and Perks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .79
Vault Profile: Judy Chang, Fashion MBA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .80
Fashion Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .81

Financial Services and Insurance

83

Credit Card Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .83
Ratings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .86
Financial Services and Insurance Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .88

Government and Politics

91

Federal Government . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .91
Areas of Interest to MBAs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .92
Government and Politics Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .94

Health Care

95

Health Care Industry Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .95
MBAs in Health Care . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .99
x

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
Table of Contents

Health Care Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .102
Health Care Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .105

Hedge Funds

109

What is a Hedge Fund? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .109
Distinguishing Characteristics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .110
Organizational Structure of a Typical Hedge Fund . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .113
Director of Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .114
Risk Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .115
Hedge Funds Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .117

High Tech

119

Technology is Everywhere . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .119
The MBA in Tech . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .119
Tech Experience and the MBA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .121
Vault Q&A: Catherine Wang, Inuit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .122
High Tech Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .125

Human Resources

127

The History of Human Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .127
Human Resources Today . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .128
What Do HR Professionals Do? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .128
Why HR? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .131
Human Resource Management (HRM) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .132
Human Resource Development (HRD) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .133
Human Resource Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .135

Investment Banking

137

The Firms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .137
Corporate Finance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .137
The Players . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .138
A Day in the Life: Associate, Corporate Finance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .140
Investment Banking Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .141

Investment Management

145

History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .145
The Industry Today . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .147
Portfolio Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .147
Investment Research . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .148
Investment Managment Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .150

Add Leveraged Finance

153

What is Leveraged Finance? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .153
Leveraged Finance vs. Corporate Finance/Investment Banking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .153
Opportunities in Leveraged Finance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .155
Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

xi

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
Table of Contents

A Day in the Life: Leveraged Finance Structuring/Origination Associate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .159
Leveraged Finance Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .161

Managment Consulting

163

What is Consulting? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .163
Consulting Skill Sets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .165
The Traveling Salesman Problem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .166
A Day in the Life: Associate Strategy Consultant . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .167
Vault Q&A: Heather Eberle, Deutsche Post WorldNet Inhouse Consulting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .169
Management Consulting Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .173

Manufacturing

177

Manufacturing Industry Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .177
What is the Supply Chain? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .180
Supply Chain Careers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .183
The MBA in Supply Chain Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .184
Manufacturing Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .185

Media and Entertainment

191

Media Business Positions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .192
Our Survey Says: Lifestyle and Pay . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .194
A Day in the Life: Strat Planning Executive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .196
Media and Entertainment Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .197

Pharmaceuticals and Biotech

201

What's in a Name: Big Pharma, Big Biotech and Biopharma? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .201
The Global Pharmaceutical Industry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .202
MBA Level Sales and Marketing Jobs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .204
Business Development in Biotech . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .206
Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .208

Private Wealth Management

211

What Do Private Wealth Managers Do? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .211
Career Paths . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .212
Job Responsibilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .213
Uppers and Downers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .215
A Day in the Life: Analyst at a Wall Street Firm . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .216
Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .218

Real Estate

221

Real Estate Industry OverviewReal Estate Industry in the United States . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .221
Industry Trends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
The Real Estate MBA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .225
Job Seeking Advice for Real Estate MBAs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .225
Real Estate Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .227

xii

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
Table of Contents

Sales and Trading

231

The War Zone . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .231
Shop Talk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .231
S&T: A Symbiotic Relationship? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .231
The MBA in S&T . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .232
A Day in the Life: Sales-Trader . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .233
MBA Career Path . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .233
Sales and Trading Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .235

Technology Consulting

239

The State of Technology Consulting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .239
A Day in the Life: IT Consultant . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .242
Technology Consulting Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .244

Telecommunications

247

Telecom Industry Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .247
Working in the Telecom Industry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .250
Telecommunications Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .252

Transportation and Airlines

255

Transportation Industry Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .255
Airline Industry Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .259
Transportation and Airlines Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .264

Venture Capital

267

The Financial Industry and Venture Capital . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .267
A Day in the Life: Venture Capitalist . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .269
VC Uppers and Downers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .270
Employer Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .272

APPENDIX

273

About the Author . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .274

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

xiii

Introduction
MBA Hiring Overview
So you’ve spent a few years in business school and (if you’re like most B-school grads) a few years in the workforce before
that. All of a sudden, you’re back on the job market, with a new degree and newer skills, and you want to make sure that
they pay off. Déjà vu?
Never fear, Vault is here! And the MBA hiring climate keeps getting better and better. According to a May 2007 article in
The Economist, MBA graduates and programs have the best reputation among employers since the economic slump of 2002.
That higher confidence means a higher rate of job offers—so candidates, get ready: touch up your resumes, press your suits
and prepare to interview!
MBA hiring on the rise
MBA hiring began to strengthen in 2005 and continued to do so in 2006-2007, according to surveys focused on the hiring
landscape for new business school graduates. In its annual 2007 Corporate Recruiters Survey, based on the responses of 1,382
recruiters representing 1,029 companies, the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) found that companies
planned to do more MBA hiring in 2007 than in 2006, as measured by planned on-campus recruiting, percentage of new hires
expected to be new MBAs and other metrics. Recruiters surveyed expected to sign on 18 percent more MBA-holders in 2007
than in 2006, a larger increase than for any other type of hire.
“The heat is on for corporate recruiters,” says Ronald Alsop of The Wall Street Journal. Competition for MBA graduates is
so high that companies are increasing their recruiting efforts—visiting business schools earlier and more often. In the future,
they’re going to be looking at more candidates, too: the National Association of Colleges and Employers’ (NACE) 2005 MBA
Benchmark Survey notes that companies are visiting more business schools year after year.
From internships and recruiting to interviews
For many full-time business school students, on-campus recruiting and summer internships following the first year of are the
most important methods of finding employment. According to GMAC’s Global MBA Graduate Survey, which surveyed
5,641 graduating MBA students about their experience, 51 percent of MBA students surveyed received their job offers
through internships or work projects.
But landing a great internship isn’t the only way to get your foot in the door—far from it. On-campus recruiting is another
fast track to employment, and, as mentioned above, it is on the rise. Of the employers polled in GMAC’s Corporate Recruiters
Survey, 40 percent have formal recruiting programs. Even more encouraging, according to the Global MBA Graduate Survey,
more MBA-holders—53 percent of the survey’s respondents—were recruited while still in school.
And where recruiters go, interviews will follow—check with career services and fairs for dates. While companies usually
make presentations and send representatives to business schools throughout the year, actual on-campus interviewing and
recruiting tends to be structured on a predictable schedule. Investment banking and consulting firms, which hire large classes of both summer interns and full-time hires from business schools, tend to interview second-year students for full-time positions in October and November, and first-year students for summer internships in January and February. On-campus interviewing for Fortune 1000 companies traditionally happens later, with interviews in March and April for both full-time and
internship hiring.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

1

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
Introduction

Shaking hands
In addition to a good hiring climate, MBA grads have the advantage of high starting salaries. For example, GMAC reported
that 2007 salaries may start at an average base of $80,452, with 99 percent of employers adding other compensation and benefits. Though MBA starting salaries have stayed somewhat fixed in the past year, the numbers still soar above the salaries of
other graduate school and undergraduate program graduates (by 27 and 76 percent, respectively). Signing bonuses are hefty,
too: according to GMAC, two-thirds of 2006 job offers to MBA grads averaged $17,603.
Taking stock
So is the degree worth it? You bet. According to former MBA CSC President Mindy Storrie, “Companies have stepped up
recruiting at business schools and MBAs are getting more job offers.” The current president of GMAC, David Wilson, agrees:
“We have long referred to the MBA as a global currency—a degree that symbolizes value all over the world.”
MBA grads concur. According to GMAC’s 2007 MBA Alumni Perspectives Survey, 97 percent of MBA-holders say getting
their degree was personally rewarding. Among alumni, 50 percent said that they were “extremely satisfied” or “very satisfied” with their current job position, and 64 percent have been promoted within five years of graduation. So go ahead,
grads—get happy and get hired!
Good luck!
The Team at Vault

2

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA
CARE
BIBLE
THE MBA
JOB SEARCH

Resumes
Ten Seconds
Studies show that regardless of how long you labor over your resume, most employers will spend 10 seconds looking at it.
That’s it.
Because of the masses of job searchers, most managers and human resource employees receive an enormous number of
resumes. Faced with a pile of paper to wade through every morning, employers look for any deficiency possible to reduce
the applicant pool to a manageable number. Thus, your resume must present your information quickly, clearly, and in a way
that makes your experience relevant to the position in question. That means condensing your information down to its most
powerful form.
So distill, distill, distill. Long, dense paragraphs make information hard to find and require too much effort from the overworked reader. If that reader can’t figure out how your experience applies to the available position, your resume is not doing
its job.
Solve this problem by creating bulleted, indented, focused statements. Short, powerful lines show the reader, in a glance,
exactly why they should keep reading.
Think about how to write up your experience in targeted, clear, bulleted, detail-rich prose. Here are some examples.

Before
Primary Duties: Computer repair and assembly, software troubleshooter, Internet installation and troubleshooting,
games.

After
Primary Duties:
• Assembled and repaired Dell, Compaq, Gateway and other PC computers
• Analyzed and fixed software malfunctions for Windows applications
• Installed and debugged Internet systems for businesses such as Rydell’s Sports, Apple Foods and Eric Cinemas

Before
Responsibilities included assisting with artist press releases, compiling tracking sheets based on information from
reservationists and box office attendants, handling photo and press release mailings to media, assisting in radio
copywriting and performing various other duties as assigned.

After
Experience includes:
• Wrote artist press releases that contributed to an increase in sales by 23%
• Compiled and maintained mailing list of 10,000—Cambridge Theater’s largest-ever list
• Handled press release mailings to Anchorage Daily News and Fox Four Television
• Contributed to copywriting of promotion radio commercials for selected events

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

5

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: Resumes

It’s What You Did, Not What Your Name Tag Said
Resumes should scream ability, not claim responsibility. Employers should be visualizing you in the new position, not
remembering you as “that account assistant from Chase.” While some former employers can promote your resume by their
mere presence, you don’t want to be thought of as a cog from another machine. Instead, your resume should present you as
an essential component of a company’s success.

Think Broadly
Applicants applying for specific job openings must customize the resume for each position. Many job hunters, particularly
those beginning their careers, apply to many different jobs.
A person interested in a career in publishing, for example, might apply for jobs as a writer, proofreader, editor, copywriter,
grant proposal writer, fact-checker or research assistant. You may or may not have the experience necessary to apply for any
of these jobs. But you may have more skills than you think.
When considering the skills that make you a valuable prospect, think broadly. Anyone who has worked a single day can point
to several different skills, because even the most isolated, repetitive jobs offer a range of experience. Highway toll collection, for instance, is a repetitive job with limited variation, but even that career requires multiple job skills. Helping lost highway drivers read a map means “Offering customer service in a prompt, detail-oriented environment.” Making change for riders translates as “Financial transactions in a high-pressure, fast-paced setting.” But unless these toll-booth workers emphasize these skills to prospective employers, it’ll be the highway life for them.

Selected History
A lot of things happen in everyone’s day, but when someone asks, “How was your day?” you don’t start with your first cough
and your lost slippers. You edit. Resumes require that same type of disciplined, succinct editing. The better you are at controlling the information you create, the stronger the resume will be.
When editing your history to fit the resume format, ask yourself, “How does this particular information contribute towards
my overall attractiveness to this employer?” If something doesn’t help, drop it. Make more space to elaborate on the experiences most relevant to the job for which you are applying.
Similarly, if information lurks in your past that would harm your chances of getting the job, omit it. In resume writing, omitting is not lying. If some jobs make you overqualified for a position, eliminate those positions from your resume. If you’re
overeducated, don’t mention the degree that makes you so. If you’re significantly undereducated, there’s no need to mention
education at all. If the 10 jobs you’ve had in the last five years make you look like a real-life Walter Mitty, reduce your
resume’s references to the most relevant positions while making sure there are no gaps in the years of your employment.

6

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: Resumes

Sample MBA Resume

EUGENE H. HUANG
5050 S. Lake Shore Dr., Apt. 1407
Chicago, IL 60615
(773) 555-1234
ehuang@uchicago.edu
EDUCATION
MIDWAY SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Master of Business Administration – Finance and Strategic Management

Chicago, IL
June 2004

• Dean’s Honor List
• Active member of Management Consulting, Corporate Management and Strategy, and High Tech Clubs
ANDERSEN COLLEGE
Boston, MA
Bachelor of Arts in Physics (Cum Laude)
June 1999
• Andersen College Scholarship for academic distinction; Dean’s List all semesters
• Violinist in Andersen College Symphony
• Physics tutor for Bureau of Study Counsel; active participant in Habitat for Humanity
• Completed dissertation in the field of condensed matter theory
EXPERIENCE
SMART BROTHERS
Technology Project Manager – Investment Banking

New York, NY
June 2000 – July 2002

• Managed project teams to develop profit and loss systems for proprietary trading group
• Promoted to project leadership role in two years, well ahead of department average of four
• Developed an original mathematical algorithm for trading processing module, improving performance
by 1,200%
• Led team of six analysts in firmwide project to re-engineer loan syndicate trading flows in firm’s
largest technology project of 1999. Recommendations established new firmwide standard for realtime trade processing
• Appointed lead developer of interest accrual team after just three months in department. Initiated
and designed project to create customized, improved interest accrual and P&L applications for fixedincome controllers
• Selected to work on high-profile project to re-engineer corporate bond trading P&L system. Reduced
overnight processing time from six hours to 20 minutes and improved desktop application speed by
350%
• Devoted 20 to 25 hours a month to instructing junior members of the team in interest accrual and
trading
FINANCIAL TECHNOLOGY GROUP
Analyst

New York, NY
June 1999 – May 2000

• Developed cutting-edge analytic software for use by Wall Street traders
• Worked on a daily basis with clients to create and implement customized strategic software solution for equity traders. Helped create and deliver extensive training program for clients
• Initiated, created and documented new firmwide standard for software module development
OTHER
• Winner of Mastermaster.com stock trading competition in November 2000. Won first place out of
over 1,600 entrants worldwide with one-month return of 43.3%
• Other interests include violin, soccer and the harmonica
• Recent travel to Yemen, Egypt and Venezuela

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

7

Cover Letters
The Cover Letter Template
Your
Your
Your
Your
Your
Your

Name
Street Address, Apartment #
City, State Zip
Email Address
Home Phone Number
Fax Number

WONDERING WHAT GOES ON A COVER LETTER? HERE’S A STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE

Contact’s Name
Contact’s Title
Contact’s Department
Contact’s Name
Contact’s Street Address, Suite #
Company City, State Zip
Company Phone Number
Company Fax Number

Date
Dear Ms./Mr. CONTACT,
The first paragraph tells why you’re contacting the person, then either mentions your connection
with that person or reveals where you read about the job. It also quickly states who you are.
Next it wows them with your sincere, researched knowledge of their company. The goal: demonstrating that you are a worthy applicant, and enticing them to read further.
The second and optional third paragraph tell more about yourself, particularly why you’re an ideal
match for the job by summarizing why you’re what they’re looking for. You may also clarify anything unclear on your resume.
The last paragraph is your goodbye: you thank the reader for his or her time. Include that you
look forward to their reply or give them a time when you’ll be getting in contact by phone.
Sincerely,
Sign Here

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

9

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: Cover Letters

Date
Placement of the date, whether left justified, centered or aligned to the right, is up to your discretion, but take the time to write
out the entry. If you choose to list the day, list it first, followed by the month, date and year, as follows: Tuesday, July 9, 2004.
(Europeans commonly list the day before month, so writing a date only in numbers can be confusing. Does a letter written
on 4/7/04 date from April 7th, or July 4th?)
Name and address
Your name and address on the cover letter should be the same as the one on your resume. Uniformity in this case applies not
only to the address given, but the way the information is written. If you listed your street as Ave. instead of Avenue on your
resume, do so on your cover letter, too.
Your header can be displayed centrally, just like the resume header – including your name in a larger and/or bolded font. But
in most cases, the heading is either left justified or left justified and indented to the far right-hand side of the page.
If you choose to list your phone number, make sure that you don’t list it somewhere else on the page.
Next comes the address of the person you are writing. In many circumstances, you’ll have the complete information on the
person you’re trying to contact, in which case you should list it in this order:
• Name of contact
• Title of contact
• Company name
• Company address
• Phone number
• Fax number
However, in many cases, you have less than complete information to go on. This is particularly true when responding to an
advertisement. If you have an address or phone or fax number but no company name, try a reverse directory, such as
Superpages (www.superpages.com), which lets you trace a business by either its address or phone number.
When you’re trying to get a name of a contact person, calling the company and asking the receptionist for the name of the
recipient (normally, though not always, head of HR) may work. But usually, companies don’t list this information because
they don’t want you calling at all. So if you call, be polite, be persistent, ask for a contact name, say thank you and hang up.
Don’t identify yourself. If you have questions, wait until the interview.
If you don’t get all of the info, don’t worry. There are several salutations to use to finesse the fact that you’ve got no idea
who you’re addressing. Some solutions are:
To whom it may concern: A bit frosty, but effective.
Dear Sir or Madam: Formal and fusty, but it works.
Sirs: Since the workforce is full of women, avoid this outdated greeting.
Omitting the salutation altogether: Effective, but may look too informal.
Good morning: A sensible approach that is gaining popularity.

10

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: Cover Letters

Format
Unlike the resume, the cover letter offers the writer significant room for flexibility. Successful cover letters have come in
various different forms, and sometimes cover letters that break rules achieve success by attracting attention. But most don’t.
Here are some basic guidelines on what information the body of a cover letter should deliver.
First paragraph
To be successful, this first paragraph should contain:
• A first line that tells the reader why you’re contacting them, and how you came to know about the position. This statement
should be quick, simple and catchy. Ultimately, what you’re trying to create is a descriptive line by which people can categorize you. This means no transcendental speeches about “the real you” or long-winded treatises on your career and philosophy of life.
• Text indicating your respect for the firm’s accomplishments, history, status, products, or leaders.
• A last line that gives a very brief synopsis of who you are and why you want the position. The best way to do this, if you
don’t already have a more personal connection with the person you’re contacting, is to lay it out like this:
I am a (your identifying characteristic)
+
I am a (your profession)
+
I have (your years of experience or education)
+
I have worked in (your area of expertise)
+
I am interested in (what position you’re looking for)
And thus a killer first paragraph is born.
Middle paragraph(s)
The middle paragraph allows you to move beyond your initial declarative sentences, and into more expansive and revealing
statements about who you are and what skills you bring to the job. This is another opportunity to explicitly summarize key
facts of your job history. The middle paragraph also offers you the opportunity to mention any connection or prior experience that you may have with the company.
Tell the employer in this paragraph how, based on concrete references to your previous performances, you will perform in
your desired position. This does not mean making general, unqualified statements about your greatness, such as “I’m going
to be the best you’ve ever had” or my “My energetic multitasking will be the ultimate asset to your company.”
Comments should be backed up by specific references. Try something along the lines of “My post-graduate degree in marketing, combined with my four years of retail bicycle sales would make me a strong addition to Gwinn Cycles’ marketing
team.”
Or, “Meeting the demands of a full-time undergraduate education, a position as student government accountant, and a 20hour-a-week internship with Davidson Management provided me with the multitasking experience needed to excel as a financial analyst at Whittier Finance.”
Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

11

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: Cover Letters

Many advertisements ask you to name your salary requirements. Some avoid the problem altogether by ignoring this requirement, and this may be the safest route—any number you give might price you out of a job (before you have the chance to
negotiate face-to-face at an interview). Alternatively, you might be pegged at a lower salary than you might otherwise have
been offered. If you must give a salary requirement, be as general as possible. The safest bet is to offer as general a range
as possible (“in the $30,000s”). Put the salary requirement at the end of the paragraph, not in your first sentence.
Some cover letter writers use another paragraph to describe their accomplishments. This makes sense if, for example, your
experience lies in two distinct areas, or you need to explain something that is not evident on your resume, such as “I decided to leave law school to pursue an exciting venture capital opportunity” or “I plan to relocate to Wisconsin shortly.” Do not
get overly personal—“I dropped out of business school to care for my sick mother” is touching, but will not necessarily
impress employers.
Final paragraph
The final paragraph is your fond farewell, your summation, a testament to your elegance and social grace. This should be the
shortest paragraph of the letter. Here, tell your readers you’re pleased they got so far down the page. Tell them you look forward to hearing from them. Tell them how you can be reached. Here’s some sample sentences for your conclusion.
Thank you sentences:
Thank you for your time.
Thank you for reviewing my qualifications.
Thank you for your consideration.
Thank you for your review of my qualifications.
Way too much:
It would be more than an honor to meet with you.
A note of confidence in a callback:
I look forward to your reply.
I look forward to hearing from you.
I look forward to your response.
I look forward to your call.
Over the top:
Call me tomorrow, please.

12

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: Cover Letters

MBA Summer Internship Cover Letter
February 1, 2008
Kimberly Sharpe, Recruiting Manager
Hexagonal Consulting
666 Avenue of the Americas
13th Floor
New York, NY
Dear Ms. Sharpe,
I am a first-year MBA student at State Business School. I was extremely impressed with Hexagonal
Consulting’s approach to management consulting after attending the presentation given by your firm
earlier this year. I also learned more about your firm by talking with William Field and several other
summer interns. My discussions with them confirmed my interest in Hexagonal Consulting, and I am
now writing to request an invitation to interview for a summer associate consulting position.
After graduating from Northern College with a degree in accounting, I worked as an associate in the
finance department of AutoCo, a well-known automotive manufacturer. I gained solid analytical and
problem-solving skills there. I was responsible for identifying and resolving financial reporting issues,
as well as generating innovative methods to improve our processes. I also fine-tuned my communication and consensus building skills, as I often needed to present and market my work to middle and upper
management. Finally, during my last year of employment, I took on a team leadership role, managing
the daily work of five junior members of our team and taking an active role in our training for new hires.
I am excited by the strong potential fit I see with Hexagonal Consulting. I feel that the analytical,
leadership and teamwork abilities gained through my employment and academic experience have provided me with the tools and skills necessary to perform well in a consulting career, and will allow
me to make a significant contribution at your firm. I am particularly intrigued by the shareholder
value focus of Hexagonal Consulting’s methodology, since it fits well with my experience in finance.
I have enclosed my resume for your review. I welcome the opportunity to meet with you when you
recruit at SBS for summer internships later this month, and I would greatly appreciate being included on your invitational list.
Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.
Sincerely,

Laura Haley
314 Broadway, Apt. 15
New York, NY 10007
lbethhaley@hotmail.com

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

13

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: Cover Letters

MBA Full-Time Cover Letter
Ms. Margaret Jones, Recruiting Manager
Mainstream Consulting Group
123 21st Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02145
November 19, 2008
Dear Ms. Jones:
It was a pleasure to meet you in person last week at the Mainstream Consulting invitational lunch
on the Boston Business School campus. Having spoken with your colleagues at the event, I believe
that Mainstream would be an exciting and challenging firm in which to build my career.
My background fits well with a position in strategy consulting. As a Midway University physics
undergraduate, I developed an analytic, creative mind geared towards solving complex problems. I
applied and enhanced my problem-solving skills as a technology project leader at Smart Brothers
Investment Bank, where I focused on making business processes faster, more effective and more
efficient. Creating these results for traders, financial analysts and senior management taught me
how to effectively partner with clients throughout the various phases of business transformation. In
addition, I gained valuable team leadership experience at Smart Brothers, guiding many project teams
through the successful design and implementation of cutting-edge technology strategies.
As a telecommunications strategy intern at Global Consulting Associates this summer, I confirmed
that strategy consulting is indeed the right career for me. Our project team helped a major telecommunications provider formulate a wireless data services strategy. I led the industry analysis and market opportunity assessment. This experience showed me that I am an effective contributor in a consulting environment, where industry knowledge, creative problem-solving skills, fact-based analysis
and client focus are rewarded.
Mainstream appeals to me over other firms because of its focus on pure strategy projects, small firm
atmosphere and accelerated career growth opportunities. Please consider me for your invitational
campus interviews this fall. I am particularly interested in positions in the San Francisco and Chicago
offices, and I have enclosed my resume for your review.
Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Sincerely,

Michael A. Thomas
100 Wellany Way
Boston, MA 02111
michaelt3@bostonu.edu

14

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Interviews
Interviewing during on-campus MBA recruiting can be a harrowing process for several reasons. First, there is the sheer volume of interviewing: some students interview with a dozen or more companies within a few week period, all while maintaining a busy class schedule.
At each interview, students work to convince interviewers that they represent a good “fit” with the company. Part of being a
good fit, of course, means that students have specific interest and knowledge of the companies they are interviewing with.
This crucial element of interview performance requires students to research the employers as thoroughly as possible in order
to convincingly make their cases to many companies, a feat made more difficult by the large number of companies many students interview with. To help students prepare for their interviews with specific companies, Vault publishes 50-page employer profiles of major MBA employers, as well as “snapshots” of thousands of other major employers online at www.vault.com.
Interviewers use a variety of techniques to test students. According to the Graduate Management Admission Council’s
(GMAC) Corporate Recruiters Survey survey of more than 1,000 MBA employers, behavior-based interviews (during which
candidates describe specific examples of skills such as leading a team or managing a difficult employee) are used by 79 percent of recruiters, and are the most common technique used by MBA recruiters. More than half of the recruiters surveyed (53
percent) use “case” or situational interviews in which the interviewers describe a hypothetical or real business situation and
ask the job seeker to work through a course of action out loud. And more than one-third (36 percent) use question that measure position-specific knowledge (such as the ability to price a bond for a fixed-income finance position).
Case interviews and technical finance interviews can be particularly stress-inducing, as students cannot as easily predict questions and prepare answers for these types of interviews as they can for behavior-based interviews. (In fact, some interviewers, most notoriously in the investment banking industry, choose to deliberately make interviews stressful in order to assess
how business school students respond to stressful situations.) To help students prepare for these types of interviews, we discuss case and finance interviews in detail in the next two sections.

Case Interviews
What is a case interview?
Simply put, a case interview is the analysis of a business question. Unlike most other interview questions, it is an interactive
process. Your interviewer will present you with a business problem and ask you for your opinion. Your job is to ask the interviewer logical questions that will permit you to make a detailed recommendation. The majority of case interviewers don’t
have a specific answer that you, the candidate, are expected to give. What the interviewer is looking for is a thought process
that is both analytical and creative (what consultants love to call “out-of-the-box” thinking). Specific knowledge of the industry covered by the case question is a bonus but not necessary. Business school students and candidates with significant business world experience receive case questions that require a deeper understanding of business models and processes.
The interview with a consulting company normally lasts about half an hour. Of this time, about five to 10 minutes is taken
up with preliminary chat and behavioral questions and five minutes of you asking questions about the company. This leaves
five to 15 minutes for your case interview question or questions. Make them count!
Why the case?
Your impressive resume may get you an interview with a consulting firm, but it won’t get you the job. Consultants know that
a resume, at its very best, is only a two-dimensional representation of a multifaceted, dynamic person.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

15

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

And because consulting firms depend on employing those multi-faceted, dynamic people, the firms rely heavily on the case
interview to screen candidates. The interview process is especially pertinent in the consulting industry, since consulting professionals spend the lion’s share of their business day interacting with clients and colleagues and must themselves constantly interview client employees and executives.
Consultants must have a select set of personality and leadership traits in order to be successful. The consultant’s work environment is extremely turbulent. There are nonstop co-worker changes, hostile client environments, countless political machinations, and near-perpetual travel. These factors mandate that an individual be cool under pressure, be influential without
being condescending, be highly analytical, have the ability to understand the smallest aspects of a problem (while simultaneously seeing the big picture), and have the ability to maintain a balance between the personal and professional.
Consultants are often staffed in small groups in far-flung areas. As a result, the individual must be able to function, and function well, without many of the traditional workplace standards: a permanent working space, the ability to return home each
night, easily accessed services such as administrative assistance, faxing and photocopying, and the camaraderie that develops
among co-workers assigned to the same business unit.
All these factors necessitate a unique interview structure focused on assessing a candidate’s ability to manage these particular circumstances with professionalism and excellence. The case interview has evolved as a method for evaluating these characteristics.
Types of case interviews
What case interviews are not designed to do is to explore educational, professional or experiential qualifications. If you’ve
reached the case interview stage, take a deep breath—the consulting firm has already weighed your background, GPA and
experience, and found you worthy of a deeper skill assessment. This means that the case interview is yours to lose. Triumph
over your case interviews and chances are that a slot at the firm will open for you.
Case interviews vary widely, but in general they fall into three groups: business cases, guesstimates and brainteasers.
Case interviews
Case interviews vary somewhat in their format. The classic and most common type of case interview is the business case, in
which you’re presented with a business scenario and asked to analyze it and make recommendations. Most cases are presented in oral form, though some involve handouts or slides, and a few (like Monitor Company’s) are entirely written. (In a written case, the interviewer will not contribute any other information besides what’s on the handout.) Another variation on the
case interview is the group case interview, where three to six candidates are grouped together and told to solve a case cooperatively. Consultants from the firm watch as silent observers. Though you should certainly be prepared for these variations
on case interviews, you are most likely to come across the traditional, mano-a-mano case interview.
Guesstimates
Whether freestanding or as part of a case, learning how to make “back-of-the-envelope” calculations (rough, yet basically
accurate) is an essential part of the case interview. As part of a guesstimate, you might be asked to estimate how many watermelons are sold in the United States each year, or what the market size for a new computer program that organizes your
wardrobe might be. (For example, you might need to figure out the market size for the wardrobe software as a first step in
determining how to enter the European market.) You will not be expected to get the exact number, but you should come
close—hence the guesstimate. Non-business school students and others who appear to be weak quantitatively may get standalone guesstimates—guesstimates given independently of a case.
Brainteasers
Brainteasers are normally logic puzzles or riddles. They may be timed. Often, brainteasers are meant to test both analytic
and “out-of-the-box” thinking, as well as grace under pressure.
16

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

Skills assessed in the case interview
Following your case interview, your consulting interviewer will complete a written evaluation form. The evaluation forms
often include a list of qualities, traits and abilities, and ask the interviewer to assess the candidate against the list. Following
is a list of these special traits that, according to consulting insiders, interviewers will be keeping an eye out for as you work
through the case interview:
Leadership skills
You’ll hear this from every consulting firm out there—they want leaders. Why, you might ask, would a consulting firm need
a leader? After all, many beginning consultants are consigned to independent number-crunching and research. The fact is,
however, that consultants are often called upon to work independently, shape projects with very little direction and direct others. You should demonstrate your leadership skills by taking charge of the case interview. Ask your questions confidently.
Inquire whether the case interview relates to the interviewer’s own experience. While your resume and previous leadership
experience will probably most strongly convey your leadership ability, your demeanor in the case interview can help.
Analytical skills
The core competency of consulting is analysis—breaking down data, formulating it into a pattern that makes sense, and deriving a sensible conclusion or recommendation. You should display this skill through your efficient, on-target and accurate
questions while wrestling your case to a solution.
Presentation skills
Presenting your analysis is an essential part of consulting. Once consultants have analyzed their case engagement and decided on the proper course of action, they must present their findings and recommendations to their case team and to their clients.
Interviewers will be watching you closely to see if you stumble over words, use inadvisable fillers like “um” or “like” frequently, or appear jittery under close questioning. Remember: When you’re speaking, slow down and smile. If asked a question that temporarily stumps you, take a deep breath and pause. It’s always better to pause than babble. Ask the interviewer
to restate information if necessary.
Energy
Even the most qualified and analytical hire won’t be much good if she quits at 5 p.m. during a long and arduous engagement.
Interviewers look for zest and energy—firm handshake, sincere and warm smile, bright eyes. Remember that consulting firms
expect you to take a long flight and show up at work the next day alert, perky and ready to go. If you must, drink lots of coffee and use eyedrops—just be energized.
Attention to detail/organization
Consultants must be as painstaking as scientists in their attention to detail. And consultants who juggle two or more flights
a week and engagements all over the world must be extremely organized. You can display this skill through a disciplined,
logical approach to your case solution and by showing up for your interview prepared. You’ll want to take notes, so bring a
pad of paper and a pen. Interviewers notice when candidates must ask for these materials. You must arrive on time.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

17

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

Quantitative skills
Those spreadsheets you’ll be working with as a management consultant need numbers to fill them. Consulting interviews
will inevitably test your grasp of numbers and your ability to manipulate them. Many interviewers will assess your quantitative skills by giving you a “guesstimate,” either within the case question or separately.
Flexibility
Consultants may have to arrive at the office one day and be packed off to Winnipeg for six months the next. This kind of
flexibility of schedule is mirrored in tests for mental flexibility. To test your grasp of a case interview, the interviewer may
suddenly introduce a new piece of information (“OK, let’s say the factories must be opened either in Canada or China”) or
flip the terms of the case interview (“What if this labor contract is not guaranteed, as I said earlier?”) and then watch how
quickly you’re able to alter your thinking.
Maturity
Consultants must often work with executives and company officials decades older than they are. (This is why consultants are
taught the right way to answer the question, “How old are you?”) Eliminate giggling, fidgeting and references to awesome
fraternity events you may have attended, even if the interviewer seems receptive.
Intelligence, a/k/a/ “mental horsepower”
Rather straightforward—consulting interviewers are looking for quickness of analysis and depth of insight. Don’t be afraid
to ask questions for fear of looking stupid—smart people learn by asking questions and assimilating new information. At the
same time, asking your interviewer to repeat an elementary (or irrelevant) concept 20 times will not do you any favors.
What kind of case will I get?
While there’s no way to tell for sure what case question you’ll get, there are some things that can tip you off to the kind of
case you’ll receive.
If you’re an undergraduate or other non-MBA student, you can probably be safely assured of getting a creative or “openended” question. “We don’t expect our undergraduate candidates to know that much about business,” confides one interviewer. “What we do expect is the ability to break down and articulate complex concepts.” Undergraduates are also much more
likely to get guesstimates and brainteasers than MBAs.
Are you a business school student or graduate? Then your case question will probably be less open-ended and drive toward
an actual solution. Your interviewer may posit something from her own experience—knowing what course of action the consultancy actually ended up recommending. This doesn’t mean you have to make the same recommendation—but you’d better be able to back up your reasoning! Alternatively, one thing case interviewers love to do is look at your resume and give
you a case question that relates to your past experience. “For example,” says one consultant, “if you were on the advertising
staff for the school newspaper, you might be given a question about investing in advertising agencies.” For this reason, advise
consultants, “it makes sense to follow up on your field in The Wall Street Journal because you may be asked about recent
developments in it. If you know what’s going on you’ll be that much more impressive.” Some guesstimates, like figuring
out the total worldwide revenue of Tarzan, are broad enough so that most people can make a reasonable assumption of numbers.

18

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

Sample Case
You are advising a credit card company that wants to market a prepaid phone card to its customers. Is this a good idea?
Whoa! Better find out more about this prepaid phone card first before you even begin to think about recommending it.
You: What is the role of our company? Do we simply market the card or must we create them ourselves? Are we expected
to provide the telephone services?
Interviewer: This card will be co-marketed with an outside phone company. We do not need to perform telecommunications functions.
You: What are our expenses connected with the card?
Interviewer: We must pay 15 cents for every minute we sell. We also have to pay $1 as a startup cost for the card and card
systems.
You: What are our marketing expenses?
Interviewer: We normally use slips of paper that are attached to the backs of our credit card payment envelopes. We sometimes also send customers a direct mailing in a separate envelope. Or we can have telemarketers call selected customers.
You: What’s the cost of each of these marketing techniques, and what is their response rate?
Interviewer: Telemarketers have a 2 percent response rate and cost $1 per call. Direct mailings cost us 40 cents per mailing and have a 0.50 percent rate of response. Our payment attachments have a 0.25 percent rate of response, but only cost us
5 cents each.
You: I’m going to assume we will sell one-hour phone cards. That will cost us $9 for the minutes and a dollar per card—so
each card costs us $10.
Interviewer: OK, that sounds reasonable.
You: And what is our expected revenue on a one-hour phone card? What is the current market rate for a 60-minute phone
card?
Interviewer: Assume it’s 50 cents a minute.
You: So if we sell the cards for $30, we have a $20 profit, minus our expenditures on marketing.
Interviewer: What’s our cost structure look like?
You: OK, let’s figure this out. To sell 1,000 cards through telemarketing, we would need to contact 50,000 people. That
would cost us $50,000. To use direct mail, we would have to contact 200,000 thousand people, which, at 40 cents per mailing, costs us $80,000. Since the envelope inserts aren’t very reliable, we will need to contact 800,000 people using that
method. But at 5 cents each, it costs only $20,000 to sell 1,000 cards.
We make $20 profit on each card. But even using the cheapest promotional vehicle, at $20 profit, we would only break even,
because our profit on 1,000 cards would be $20,000. We shouldn’t market this card, unless we can further cut our marketing
costs or increase the price of the card. If we could slice the cost of the envelope attachments a penny or so, or sell the card
for $35, or convince our co-marketer to reduce our costs, it might be worth selling.
Interviewer: What are some other issues you might want to consider? (Notice how the interviewer is nudging you to add
to your analysis.)

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

19

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

You: We should also consider the competitive landscape for this business. Is the per-minute rate for calling card minutes
expected to fall? If so, and our costs are held constant, we may lose money. Of course, we can learn more from marketing
these cards. It could be that the people likely to buy these cards might be frequent travelers and could be targeted for other
promotions

Sample Guesstimate
How many square feet of pizza are eaten in the United States each month?
Take your figure of 300 million people in America. How many people eat pizza? Let’s say 200 million. Now let’s say the
average pizza-eating person eats pizza twice a month, and eats two slices at a time. That’s four slices a month. If the average slice of pizza is perhaps six inches at the base and 10 inches long, then the slice is 30 square inches of pizza. So four
pizza slices would be 120 square inches. Therefore, there are a billion square feet of pizza eaten every month. To summarize:
• There are 300 million people in America.
• Perhaps 200 million eat pizza.
• The average slice of pizza is six inches at the base and 10 inches long = 30 square inches (height x half the base).
• The average American eats four slices of pizza a month.
• Four pieces x 30 square inches = 120 square inches (one square foot is 144 inches), so let’s assume one square foot per person.
• Your total: 200 million square feet a month.

Finance Interviews
An overview of finance interviews
Investment banking positions and other finance positions are some of the more stressful and demanding positions on the planet, and this is reflected in the interview. In fact, insiders say that occasionally, an interviewer will yell at an applicant to see
how he or she will react. Interviews normally go three or four rounds (sometimes as many as six or more rounds), and these
rounds can have up to six interviews each, especially in the later rounds. Investment banking and finance interviews are also
known for being deliberately stressful (as opposed to the attendant nervousness that goes with any interview). Some firms
may ask you specific and detailed questions about your grades in college or business school, even if your school policy prohibits such questions. At other firms, interview rounds may be interspersed with seemingly casual and friendly dinners. Don’t
let down your guard! While these dinners are a good opportunity to meet your prospective co-workers, your seemingly genial
hosts are scrutinizing you as well. (Hint: Don’t drink too much.)
There are generally two parts to the finance hiring process: the fit part and the technical part. In asking technical questions,
the interviewer wants to judge your analytical and technical skills. If you don’t know the basic concepts of finance and
accounting, your interviewers will believe (rightly) that you are either (1) not interested in the position, (2) not competent
enough to handle the job. An important part of the interview is what is called “fit.” As you go through recruiting in finance
interviews, understand that you compete with yourself. Most firms are flexible enough to hire people that are a good fit.

20

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

The fit interview
They call it the O’Hare airport test, the Atlanta airport test, or the whatever-city-you-happen-to-be-applying-in airport test.
They also call it the fit interview or the behavioral interview. It means: “Could you stand to be stranded in an airport for eight
hours with this person?” Although bankers may have reputations for being aggressive individuals, don’t act that way in your
interview.
And while your performance in the fit interview partly depends—as the airport test suggests—on how well you gel with your
interviewer, it also depends on your ability to portray yourself as a good fit as an investment banker, asset manager, etc. In
other words, interviewers will try to figure out what your attitude towards work is like, how interested you are in a career in
the industry, and how interested you are in the job for which you are applying.
I’m a hard worker
As a general rule, you should emphasize how hard you have worked in the past, giving evidence of your ability to take on a
lot of work and pain. You don’t have to make things up or pretend that there’s nothing you’d want more than to work 100hour weeks. In fact, interviewers are sure to see through such blatant lying. Says one I-banking interviewer, “If somebody
acted too enthusiastic about the hours, that’d be weird.” If you ask investment bankers and others in finance what they dislike most about their jobs, they will most likely talk about the long hours. Be honest about this unpleasant part of the job,
and convince your interviewer that you can handle it well. For example, if you were in crew and had to wake up at 5 a.m.
every morning in the freezing cold, by all means, talk about it. And if you put yourself through school by working two jobs,
mention that, too.
Got safe hands?
As with all job interviews, those for finance positions will largely be about figuring out whether you can handle the responsibility required of the position. (In many cases with finance positions, that responsibility will mean making decisions with
millions or billions of dollars at stake.)
An interviewer will try and figure out if you’ve got safe hands and won’t be dropping the ball. “This is a critical I-banking
concept,” says one banker about safe hands. “The idea is: ‘Can I give this person this analysis to do and feel comfortable that
they will execute it promptly and correctly?’ The people with safe hands are the ones who advance in the company. They
are not necessarily the hardest workers but they are the most competent.” Make sure you bring up examples of taking responsibility.
A mind to pick things apart
The world of finance is largely about number crunching and analytical ability. While this doesn’t mean you have to be a
world-class mathematician, it does mean that you have to have an analytic mind if you are to succeed. Explains one insider
at a numbers-heavy Wall Street firm, “You can’t be any old English major. You’ve got to have a really logical, mathematical
head.” Make sure you have examples of your problem-solving and analytic strengths.
T-E-A-M! Go team!
Teamwork is the buzzword of these days not just for the investment banking industry, but for every employer. Every finance
position (except, perhaps, for research) requires that an employee work closely with others—whether this be in the form of
investment banking deal teams, or finance officials working with marketers at a corporation. Interviewers will ask questions
to make sure that you have experience, and have excelled, in team situations. Yeah, you can break out those glory days stories about the winning touchdown pass, but lots of other situations can also help describe your teamwork ability—previous
work experience, volunteer activities, etc.
Preparing for finance interviews
When you review career options, don’t discount the amount of time it takes to prepare for finance interviews. First of all,
you should evaluate whether you actually want to be in investment banking, commercial banking, venture capital, etc. In

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

21

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

short, you should know what you’re getting into. Not only should you know this for your own sake (this is your future, after
all), but your interviewers want to know that you understand the position and industry.
You should use the opportunity of nonevaluative settings (i.e., not an interview) to get answers to these questions. These are
questions to which we strongly suggest you have answers to before interviewing. Make a point to attend recruiting presentations by firms. Your informational interviews with alumni and (for those in business school) second-years are also good
ways to get answers to some of your questions.
As for written materials, you can start with general business publications like The Wall Street Journal, The Economist,
BusinessWeek and The Financial Times. From there, you can move on to trade publications that will give more industry-specific news and analysis. American Banker, Institutional Investor, Investment Dealers’ Digest and The Daily Deal are some
examples.
Your interaction with alumni can have direct results. The results can be good if you prepare properly before contacting them.
You can also assure yourself a ding if you don’t handle a meeting or phone conversation correctly.
Here are some questions about finance positions you should ask before you have your first interview:
• What is a typical day like?
• What are the hours in the industry really like? Are they 100 hours every week or every other week? Is it the same for every
firm?
• How do people cope with the lifestyle issues in the industry?
• What kind of money do people make in the industry?
• What are the things I-bankers (or commercial bankers, venture capitalists, etc.) like about their jobs? What would they like
to change?
• What is the future of the industry for the next few years? How will the industry change? How will the margins change?
The return on equity?
• What is the career track in the industry? What skills are required at what stage?
• What is so exciting about this job?
• What is the culture of an I-banking firm as compared to a Fortune 500 company? Compared to a startup?
• What are the exit opportunities after 10 years in the industry? After two years?
Research individual firms
Once you’ve answered questions about the industry, you should begin to narrow your research to specific firms—both to
know which firms to target, and to be knowledgeable for your interviews. Good sources for research are easily accessible
publications like The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek and Fortune. If you have the resources (perhaps at a school library),
you can also read through recent issues of trade publications like Investment Dealers’ Digest.
Insiders at business school who have gone through the recruiting process suggest that you form research and interview practice teams. There is a lot of material to cover, and it is not possible to do it all by yourself. Form teams for researching industries and firms. Later, you can use the same teams to practice interviews. If you are in business school, your school will
undoubtedly have such a club, or you may want to team up with other students who are looking into finance careers. Teams
of four to six work quite well for this research process.
Practice your interviews
You should prepare answers to common questions given at finance interviews—whether they be fit questions, technical questions, or brainteasers. While this may be easiest for technical questions and brainteasers (after all, we can help you to nail
those questions with the right answers), it is also important to prepare for fit questions even if there are no right or wrong
answers. We can steer you onto the right path with these questions, but you’ll need to fill in the blanks. What’s the hardest

22

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

thing you’ve ever had to do? Can you give me an example of a time when you came up with a creative solution? You don’t
want to be cursing yourself after an interview, thinking about what you should have said, or examples you could have brought
up.
One of the best ways to prepare answers to these questions is to use mock/practice interviews. You can practice by role-playing with your friends and classmates, or by taking advantage of interview training offered by your school. Many MBA career
centers offer students the opportunity to perform mock interviews, which are normally videotaped. These practice sessions
are conducted either by professional career counselors or by second-year students. The mock interviewees are given the
videotape of their critique to watch at home (again and again). Students may choose what kind of interview they’d like to
receive: finance, consulting, etc.
What mistakes are commonly unearthed by the videotaped interview? One business school career counselor says that he finds
that “most MBAs don’t have their story down. They can’t elaborate why they came to business school, and why they want
to work in the industry.” The best candidates are able to describe their background and career history, and make a pitch about
why they are interested in a firm, all in a minute or less, career counselors say. Another problem is that many students apparently “can’t elaborate their strengths. They have them, but can’t sell them. They are too modest.” While there’s no use
demurring when explicating your good points, career center professionals warn that “there is also a danger of tooting your
horn too much”—so make sure you’re not making any claims for competency you can’t back up with relevant experience.
To take full advantage of their mock interviews, career counselors say, students should take them as seriously as possible.
Dress professionally “to get into the interviewing mindset.” Afterwards, the interviewer will go over the session, assessing
the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. It’s a good idea to take notes on this feedback.
Mock interviewers also coach students on appropriate answers. “For example,” explains one mock interviewer, “many candidates are asked to name their top three weaknesses. Answering with your actual weaknesses is not a good idea. So when
I identify a student’s weaker point—maybe they are weak on real teamwork experience—we strategize on an appropriate
answer. It’s better to say something like ‘I wouldn’t call them weaknesses, but there are three areas in which I still have room
to grow,’ and then choose three areas that are not deal-breakers.”
Do interviewers thus end up hearing the same canned answers over and over again? “I do hear from some interviewers at
certain schools—not mine!—that they do hear identical answers to certain questions,” says one insider. “My advice to students is to always put answers into their own words.”
Prepare questions
Finally, don’t forget that finance interviewers often ask candidates whether they have any questions. Don’t get caught looking like a job applicant who hasn’t done research and is not curious about the opportunities. Read about the firms, read about
the industries, and prepare some intelligent questions.

Sample Finance Interview Questions
What happens to each of the three primary financial statements when you change a) gross margin b) capital expenditures c) etc.
This problem tests your understanding of the interconnection between all three statements.
a) If gross margin were to say, decrease, then your income statement would first be affected. You would pay lower taxes, but
if nothing else changed, you would have lower net income. This would translate to the cash flow statement on the top line.
If everything else remained the same, you would have less cash. Going to the balance sheet, you would not only have less
cash, but to balance that effect, you would have lower shareholder’s equity.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

23

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

b) If capital expenditure were to say, decrease, then first, the level of capital expenditures would decrease on the Statement
of Cash Flows. This would increase the level of cash on the balance sheet, but decrease the level of property, plant and equipment, so total assets stay the same. On the income statement, the depreciation expense would be lower in subsequent years,
so net income would be higher, which would increase cash and shareholder’s equity in the future.
c) Just be sure you understand the interplay between the three sheets. Remember that changing one sheet has ramifications
on all the other statements both today and in the future.
How do you calculate the terminal value of a company?
The value of the terminal year cash flows (usually calculated for 10 years in the future) is calculated by calculating the present value of cash flows from the terminal year (in our case, Year 10) continuing forever with the following formula:

TY FCF =

FCF10 (1 + g)
(rd – g)

Here “g” is an assumed growth rate and rd is the discount rate. (Remember that you could also calculate the terminal value
of a company by taking a multiple of terminal year cash flows, and discounting that back to the present to arrive at an answer.
This alternative method might be used in some instances because it is less dependent on the assumed growth rate (g).
If you add a risky stock into a portfolio that is already risky, how is the overall portfolio risk affected?
a. It becomes riskier
b. It becomes less risky
c. Overall risk is unaffected
d. It depends on the stock
Answer: D. It depends on the stock. In modern portfolio theory, if you add a risky stock into a portfolio that is already risky,
the resulting portfolio may be more or less risky than before.
A portfolio’s overall risk is determined not just by the riskiness of its individual positions, but also by how those positions are
correlated with each other. For example, a portfolio with two high-tech stocks might at first glance be considered risky, but
if those two stocks tends to move in opposite directions, then the riskiness of the portfolio overall could be significantly lower.
So the risk effect of adding a new stock to an existing portfolio depends on how that stock correlates with the other stocks in
the portfolio.
When should a company issue stock rather than debt to fund its operations?
There are several reasons for a company to issue stock rather than debt. If the company believes its stock price is inflated it
can raise money (on very good terms) by issuing stock. The second is when the projects for which the money is being raised
may not generate predictable cash flows in the immediate future. A simple example of this is a startup company. The owners of startups generally will issue stock rather than take on debt because their ventures will probably not generate predictable
cash flows, which is needed to make regular debt payments, and also so that the risk of the venture is diffused among the
company’s shareholders. A third reason for a company to raise money by selling equity is if it wants to change its debt-toequity ratio. This ratio in part determines a company’s bond rating. If a company’s bond rating is poor because it is struggling with large debts, they may decide to issue equity to pay down the debt.

24

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
The MBA Job Search: MBA Interviews

If inflation rates in the U.S. falls relative to the inflation rate in Russia, what will happen to the exchange rate between
the dollar and the ruble?

The dollar will strengthen relative to the ruble.

This section was excerpted from the Vault Guide to Finance Interviews and
the Vault Guide to the Case Interview. Get the inside scoop on consulting
and finance interviews:
• Vault Guides: Vault Guide to the Case Interview, Vault Case Interviews Practice Guide, Vault Guide to Finance
Interviews, Vault Finance Interviews Practice Guide, Vault Guide to Advanced and Quantitative Finance
Interviews
• Career Services: One-on-One Finance Interview Prep, One-on-One Case Interview Prep
• Vault Employee Surveys: See what employees say about their interviews at top finance and consulting firms

Go to www.vault.com/finance
or

www.vault.com/consulting
or ask your bookstore or librarian for other Vault titles.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

25

MBA
CARE
BIBLE
MBA
DIVERSITY

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Diversity

The Importance of Mentors
What makes the difference between a career that thrives and one that stalls? For many women and minorities, the narrow gap
between failure and success is bridged by mentorships. Mentors are people who share their general business knowledge, as
well as their knowledge of a specific company, with lucky mentees (someone who is mentored). Here is some advice on how
to make these valuable relationships work for you.
Mentors can keep you with an employer
After several years at the prestigious consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, Cathy Mhatre had her first child. Mhatre credits
her mentors at Booz Allen with keeping her at the firm. “I’ve now been at Booz Allen for six years, which is unusual for any
consultant. One of the main reasons I am still here is because there were people who wanted to keep me here.” Mhatre
estimates that she has “four to six” mentors at the firm, and advises, “Because women mentors are scarce in general, find
enlightened men.”
Have many mentors for many reasons
Do you need help on balancing your family life and career without sacrificing your career viability? You could probably use some
help from a mentor who’s done just that at your company. Your work/life balance mentor, however, may not be the same person
who can help you polish your presentation skills and confidence. If you seek someone who will be your advocate at performance
and promotion reviews, look for someone at least two levels above you (or with four or more years of experience at the company).
Find out if your employer assigns you a mentor—then keep looking
Increasingly, employers assign mentors to incoming associates—a practice that has been common at law firms for some time
and is spreading rapidly to other industries as well. Some consulting firms have entire mentor family trees—with a “founder”
mentor, his or her mentees, their mentees, and so on. Make sure to take advantage of these mentors, who have specifically
volunteered to serve as resources.
At the same time, the most valuable mentors are normally the ones that evolve from everyday working relationships. If
someone appears willing to share their experience and skills with you and takes an interest in your career, it is likely that they
would like to mentor you in some way.
Don’t expect your mentor to share your background
While it’s terrific to have mentors that share your ethnicity or gender, it’s no sure thing. Some of the MBAs we spoke to
indicate that the old “succeed and close the door behind you” ethos is still in existence. “When I was working,” says Lanchi
Venator, a NYU Stern MBA graduate, “it seemed that most successful women were not open to helping other women out. It
was almost as if they were saying, ‘I made it when it was tough on me. Why should I soften it for you?’”
Be careful of having only one mentor
One-on-one mentorship has its pitfalls. Corporate historians may recall the case of Mary Cunningham and William Agee at
Bendix Corp. After rising rapidly through the ranks of Bendix, Cunningham, a 1979 graduate of Harvard Business School,
was accused of sleeping with her mentor. Cunningham eventually left the firm. Even when the shadow of romance doesn’t

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

29

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Diversity

enter a close mentorship, mentees with only one advisor run the risk of being seen as an appendage or sidekick, not a full
professional. Whenever possible, seek mentorship from a wide variety of people.

Tips for mentees
It’s not enough to find a good mentor—it’s just as important to use them correctly. Here are a few tips to make
the most of your mentor relationship.
• Find mentors at all levels of the company. The classic mentor is someone a few levels above you in an
organization—close enough to your experience to guide you upwards in the ranks, experienced enough to have
some pull. But you can also gain experience from mentors at your level and at other companies as well. Your
business school professors are another invaluable set of potential mentors.
• Don’t approach someone and formally ask them to be your mentor. This kind of artificiality is akin to handing
your business card to someone and asking them to be your contact—it’s too artificial to take root. If someone
wants to be your mentor, they will indicate that fact through the interest they take in you.
• Keep in touch with your mentors. Mentorship is a relationship, and relationships are built from frequent, informal
contact. This is important even when your mentor is assigned to you by your company. If you move on from
a company, stay in touch with your mentor there.
• Establish trust. Everything you discuss with your mentor is between the two of you.
• Have realistic expectations. Your mentor is an advisor and advocate—not someone to do your career networking
for you, or someone to cover your errors.
• Find your own mentees. Mentorship is a two-way street. As soon as possible, start finding people who are
willing to learn from you. You never know when the mentee will become the mentor!
• Don’t pass up the opportunity to have a mentor. Having a mentor can make a major difference in your career
path and your self-confidence.

Vault Diversity Q&A: Pipasu Soni, Financial Analyst, Honeywell
Pipasu Soni is a 2003 graduate of the Johnson School of Management at Cornell University. A former engineer of Indian
descent, he previously worked at Ingersoll-Rand before getting an MBA. He currently works in Minneapolis as a financial
analyst with Honeywell’s Automation and Control Solutions (ACS) division, an $8 billion division encompassing seven
different strategic business units including environmental controls, fire solutions, security systems and more. He took time
out to talk to Vault a bit about being a minority MBA and working at Honeywell.
Vault: How did you end up in your current position? Did you go to business school knowing you wanted to do finance?
Soni: Actually, I was initially interested in going into marketing, but after the very first semester, my focus shifted to finance.
Previously I worked in new product development for Ingersoll-Rand. There’s always some tension between the engineering
and marketing side during new product introduction, and I was interested in exploring the marketing/product management
aspect, to get more of a general management perspective.
But as an engineer, I enjoyed the technical side of finance and the role it played within an organization. When it came to
recruiting, I really liked the Finance Pathways Program and the fact that the finance group at Honeywell is one of the keys to
implementing the strategic vision of the organization.
Vault: Did you intern at Honeywell?
Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

31

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Diversity

Soni: No actually, I interned with a consulting firm. I wanted to find out more about the consulting field, and decided it
wasn’t for me. I enjoyed being part of the day-to-day operations of an organization where I could influence the performance
and visibly see the product. I knew Honeywell would be a great place to leverage my past experience with Ingersoll-Rand.
Vault: What sort of program were you hired into?
Soni: I was hired into Honeywell’s Finance Pathways Program. It’s one of their career development programs for MBA
graduates. The program consists of two 18-month assignments across different Honeywell businesses. I’m in my first
rotation, which ends this December. My current assignment consists of working in the corporate finance group supporting
the annual operating plan, strategic plan, corporate initiatives, and other functional areas—Six Sigma and Technology. At the
end of the assignment I’ll move into an operational finance role at a business unit level.
Vault: Is there a formal mentorship program with the Pathways program?
Soni: No, not “formal.” Mentoring takes several forms at Honeywell. All employees are encouraged to seek out mentors as well
as offer to mentor others. My particular businesses assisted me in identifying a formal mentor at the beginning of my assignment.
The main focus of my mentor is to provide a contact that can give me insight and advice as I move throughout my career.
In addition, you receive mentoring through working with managers on assignments. Also, your supervisor gives you regular
feedback on performance and instructs you on training you should pursue.
Vault: Are there diversity organizations for you at Honeywell?
Soni: Yes, there’s an Indian and Asian Association that meets on a regular basis. These groups usually meet once a month
for a networking hour or a guest speaker presentation. Honeywell also has several other minority employee groups
throughout the company, like the Hispanic Network and the Black Employees Network.
Vault: Did you get the feeling during recruiting that Honeywell targets minorities and women for diversity hiring purposes?
Soni: No, I don’t think Honeywell specifically targets minorities, but focuses on recruiting individuals that are the right fit
with the company. Honeywell defines diversity more as individual uniqueness. I don’t think it’s just gender, race and ethnic
background, but also things such as educational and cultural background and work experience.
With that said, Honeywell’s incoming Pathways class is a diverse group similar to what you would find in a typical MBA class.
Vault: What attracted you to Honeywell?
Soni: The things that attracted me the most were the people and the job assignments. For me, having a first assignment in
financial planning and analysis at the corporate level allowed me to understand the strategic vision of the organization before
moving into a business unit role.
Other things unique to Honeywell included the ability to work across several functions, mandatory green-belt training and
certification for all incoming MBAs, and ability to switch roles—from finance to marketing if desired. I spoke with several
Cornell alumni and other Pathway program members before joining and it seems that our perspective of Honeywell is very similar.
Vault: What aspects of your MBA education do you think have proved most helpful in your experience so far at Honeywell?
Soni: In my current assignment, finance, accounting and leadership classes have been the most helpful. The classes in accounting
and finance have been invaluable in reviewing business unit results. The classes in leading, communicating and team building
have been also valuable in day-to-day communication getting people to meet deadlines and goals.
You learn about metrics in business school and using metrics to drive performance, but you don’t realize the significance until you
actually use it. It’s been a great experience, and I feel like I’m going to the next level in my ability to lead teams and drive results.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

33

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Diversity

Vault Diversity Q&A: Ann Silverman, M&T Bank
A 2004 graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Ann Silverman was a project manager and
exhibition developer at the Smithsonian Institution in New York prior to business school. She decided to get an MBA in order
to have a greater impact on the community in which she lives and ended up choosing to join the executive associate program
at M&T Bank in the Washington, D.C. metro area after graduation. She took time out to talk with Vault about her choice of
regional banking and about being a woman professional in finance.
Vault: Going into business school, did you know that you wanted to go into finance and commercial banking?
Silverman: I knew that I wanted to go into finance, but I suppose coming from such a different background, I didn’t know
what individual buckets [in finance] there were. Once I got into business school and understood more, I knew that
commercial banking in particular was what I wanted, and that I wanted a regional bank.
Vault: What in particular about regional banks and commercial banking appeals to you?
Silverman: At the Smithsonian, one of the things I loved most was the community impact of the job, but I felt that I wasn’t
going to have a real impact until I had a profession that hits people’s wallets. When I looked at the landscape out there I
thought, “Wow, commercial banking is really a wonderful area that contributes to the businesses in the community and the
community at large.”
Vault: Why did you choose M&T?
Silverman: Looking at all of the mergers and acquisitions activity that have gone on in the banking industry, I really wanted
to find a place where I would have opportunities for business development and client interaction earlier rather than later and
a smaller, regional bank seemed the best place to get this experience and the chance to contribute in meaningful ways. And
M&T’s mission emphasizes being really involved in the community, and I take that very seriously.
Vault: Can you describe the program that you were hired into? Is it a rotational program?
Silverman: M&T has what’s called the executive associate program. It’s not really a formal rotation program; you’re hired
into a functional position. I was hired into commercial lending as knew I wanted to be a lender. In my case, my title is
relationship manager. “Executive associate” is more of a hiring title.
Vault: How long are you in the executive associate program?
Silverman: The first year is the more defined part of the program, though the bank does track us as executive associates
throughout our career.
The first year has really been a mix of both project work, which gives you exposure to people throughout the bank, and
learning the skills to being a lender, everything from the financial and industry analysis and the business development skills
to integrating yourself into the community.
Vault: Are there training sessions for executive associates outside of on-the-job training?
Silverman: In the first year, we have seminars. Almost once a month, all the MBAs are brought together at the bank’s
headquarters in Buffalo. Each time, there’s a lunch with one of the members of the executive committee, and bookending
that in the morning and afternoon are presentations from departments throughout the bank. This way, you get a chance to
meet the other EAs that you’ve been hired with and the managers and staff that work across the bank.
Vault: How many executive associates were there in your class?
Silverman: I believe there were 21 that were hired in my class.

34

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

Vault: Did you have any concerns about going into finance, which is notoriously male-dominated? And do you find, in comparing
notes with your business school classmates, that commercial banking is any better than other areas of finance, such as investment
banking or investment management?
Silverman: I would agree that finance is an area where women are underrepresented. I knew that that would be part of the world that
I would enter regardless of where I went into finance. I don’t feel that there’s a difference between investment banking and commercial
banking.
With the issue of representation of women in finance, it’s only going to change as more of us come into the field. There are a lot of
women who have certainly gone before me, and we need to keep that momentum. Taking my peer group at Wharton as an example,
many of the women that I was friends with are going into finance, so there’s continued progress.
Vault: How many women are there in your executive associate class at M&T?
Silverman: There were three of us. I know them quite well—we speak frequently and try to foster close relationships with each other.
One thing that was important to me about M&T is that it has a diversity council. It’s a bank-wide initiative that’s headed up by a
gentleman on the senior committee of the bank. Particularly as the bank has grown in the last three years, it has made an effort to
takes issues of diversity seriously, as evidenced by the formation of this group. The idea that you’ve really got to grow and nurture
that, it doesn’t happen overnight.
Vault: What types of companies and organizations are you working with as a lender?
Silverman: We service middle market companies, which are companies that have revenues above $10 million. The economy in D.C.
is incredibly diverse. There are lots of life sciences and biotechnology companies, there are government related contractors, high
technology companies. Just everything under the sun.
Vault: And how do you go about developing business with these organizations?
Silverman: One of the ways that we get a lot of business is through referrals. And one of the ways to do that is to make sure you’re
really well networked with accountants and lawyers in the region and others that work with businesses. People in the bank are very
generous about making sure you get the external introductions you need. There are many business organizations in the county that
have breakfasts, lunches, dinners, etc. Let’s just say that my evenings are quite full.
Vault: Do you work with professional groups for women with respect to business development initiatives?
Silverman: Oh, yes. In the D.C. region, there’s a group called Women in Bio, there’s one called Women in Information Technology—
there are a lot of those groups, and those are definitely resources I tap into.

Diversity Employer Directory

Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.

Credit Suisse

P.O. Box 4000
Princeton, NJ 08543-4000
Phone:609-252-4000
www.bms.com/career

11 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10010
www.credit-suisse.com/careers

BMS offers opportunities for MBA students and graduates to
join summer and full-time associate programs in the following
areas: marketing, finance, information management, and
technical operations.
Different perspectives make it possible. At Bristol-Myers
Squibb, we’re a diverse team of talented and creative
people—each with a different perspective. We value each
person’s unique contributions and inspire each other to
develop the innovative solutions that extend and enhance the
lives of our patients around the world.
Flexibility makes it possible. At Bristol-Myers Squibb, our
people find fulfillment in their work, extending and enhancing
the lives of patients around the world. And they have fulfilling
lives at home too. Bristol-Myers Squibb offers a flexible range
of work/life programs that help our employees at each stage
of their lives. We’re proud to be ranked in the top 100 of
Working Mother magazine’s Best Companies for Working
Mothers.

Cultivating and fostering an inclusive workplace is a top
priority and an integral part of Credit Suisse’s business
strategy. Credit Suisse’s entrepreneurial spirit and innovation
are enabled by our diverse backgrounds, experiences,
expertise and ideas.
Our robust commitment to Diversity and Inclusion has
brought significant external recognition across all our
markets. We have received awards in numerous categories
including:
• 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers
• Best Companies for Multi-cultural Women
• Setting New Standards in Diversity
Business schools Credit Suisse recruits from:
University of Chicago, Columbia University, Barnard College,
Cornell University, Duke University, Georgetown University,
Harvard University, Howard University, New York University,
University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, University
of Michigan, Yale University, and many other top universities

Opportunities make your growth possible. Ask yourself—how
far do you want to go? At Bristol-Myers Squibb, we’re
determined to be the company where our employees can
achieve their career goals. We offer a range of opportunities
to help you get there. It’s simple. Your growth helps us to
better extend and enhance the lives of patients around the
world.
Business schools Bristol-Myers Squibb recruits from:
Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke, NYU, U. Michigan, North
Carolina, Thunderbird.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

37

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Diversity

Mattel, Inc.

Osram Sylvania

333 Continental Boulevard
El Segundo, CA 90245
Phone: 310-252-3777
www.mattel.com

100 Endicott Street
Danvers, MA 01923
Phone: (978) 977-1900
Leah Weinberg
Manager, Diversity Inclusion
www.sylvania.com/AboutUs/Diversity/
Recruiting E-mail: Diversity.recruiter@sylvania.com
www.sylvania.com/AboutUs/Careers

Recruiting E-mail:
MBAIntern@Mattel.com
UndergradIntern@Mattel.com
Mattel, Inc., (NYSE: MAT, www.mattel.com) is the worldwide
leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of toys and
family products, including Barbie®, the most popular fashion
doll ever created. The Mattel family is comprised of such bestselling brands as Hot Wheels®, Matchbox®, American Girl® and
Tyco® R/C, as well as Fisher-Price® brands (www.fisherprice.com), including Little People®, Rescue Heroes®, Power
Wheels® and a wide array of entertainment-inspired toy lines.
With worldwide headquarters in El Segundo, Calif., Mattel
employs more than 25,000 people in 42 countries and sells
products in more than 150 nations throughout the world.
Mattel’s vision is: the world’s premier toy brands—today and
tomorrow.

38

CAREER
LIBRARY

Osram Sylvania is honored to have received 2007 Best
Diversity Company recognition. Affinity groups, a mentoring
program, and strategic relationships with professional
organizations and colleges all support Osram Sylvania’s
commitment to an inclusive environment where every talented
individual can be proud to work.
Business schools Osram Sylvania recruits from: Bentley, GA
Tech, Notre Dame, Ohio, Bryant, Penn State, UKY, UNH,
Arizona State, Univ. of IL, Northeastern

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA
CARE
BIBLE
MBA
ROTATIONAL
PROGRAMS

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Rotational Programs

MBA Rotations
The internship after the first year of business school is a great opportunity for MBA students to experiment a bit and get a
taste of a specific job or company. What if you’re now in your second year and looking for your first position after business
school, but still would like to try your hand at a variety of positions?
Some major employers provide rotational MBA hiring programs for new business school graduates that provide just this
opportunity. MBAs who join rotational programs are hired into a specific function such as finance or marketing, but then can
rotate through different specialties within the broader function (for example, treasury vs. risk management in finance).
Rotations also allow for new MBA hires to gain experience with different business units at a large organization.
The following Vault Q&As will help give you a sense of how some of these rotational programs work.

Vault Q&A: Federico Sercovich, Citigroup
Upon graduating from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business in 2003, Federico Sercovich, joined
Citigroup’s rotational MBA Management Associate program with the company’s North American credit card division. The
program consists of two one-year rotations. Now finishing up his second rotation, he spoke with Vault about why he chose a
rotational program and his experience with it.
Vault: Tell me a little bit about your pre-business school background.
Sercovich: I’m originally from Argentina. I spent four years doing marketing in Chile, in a variety of industries and functions
within marketing. First I worked with the country’s largest global advertising firm, BBDO, then at L’Oreal in brand
management, then with B2B marketing for a smaller regional telecom.
Vault: Did you want to do a career change from marketing when you went to get your MBA?
Sercovich: Overall the idea of doing the MBA was the opportunity to expand my skill set and move on to a more general
management-oriented career path.
The management associate program at Citigroup allowed me—in a rather “safe environment”—to gain more experience in
different business functions. While marketing is still my passion, I’ve expanded my skill base to achieve my long-term
aspirations.
Vault: What do you mean by a “safe environment?”
Sercovich: You know it’s a one-year term job, and so you get to learn a lot and to add value at the same time. However it’s
not something you will be doing for more than 12 months, it has a defined term, which allows you to go beyond your
professional comfort zone
For example, during my current rotation which I’m finishing up this week, I’m in a CFO role supporting a new product
function clearly outside my comfort zone. I was encouraged to take the risk and I’ve seen other people doing it and
succeeding at it. The program gives you the opportunity to go ahead and do these kinds of things.
Vault: So tell me a little bit about the program and the rotations that you’ve done.
Sercovich: It’s a two-year program, with two one-year rotations in different areas. My first rotation was in a
marketing/strategy role in our merchant acquiring business. With that group—the customer is not the cardholder unlike the
rest of the North America Cards, it’s merchants who want to take credit cards as payment instruments. During said rotation,
I had the opportunity to leverage my B2B skills, and it provided me with a broad view of the payment landscape and the
consumer’s behavior at the point of sale.
Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

41

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Rotational Programs

Vault: Did you know that you were going to that type of position when you joined the management associates program?
Sercovich: I was actually first a summer associate during the summer between my first and second years of business school.
I was in the e-business department, working with the strategic alliances team with various partners on different cross-sell
initiatives.
At the end of the summer, at the end of my performance evaluation I was offered a position in the MA Program, which I
happily accepted. The way it works—you know you have a job, but you initially don’t know in which business you’re going
to be working. When it’s closer to the point of joining, you start an interview process. You meet with different managers and
network. I think it’s pretty cool because you are completely in charge of your career choices—you get to decide for which
opportunities you want to interview.
Vault: So what about your second rotation, your current role.
Sercovich: It’s a CFO role in an area called cross-sell. I provide financial planning and analysis support for a new set of
products under the umbrella of the alternate lending franchise. The products are unsecured personal loans.
These are new products, and this is a function I haven’t been exposed to in my past. In this role, I do financial forecasting
and profitability analyses, I have been solely in charge of the development of the 2006 financial plan for these products.
Vault: As a role outside of your “comfort zone” how have you found this experience?
Sercovich: Well, it’s definitely stressful, but very exciting. The numbers I report roll up all the way to the CEO of Citi Cards
and that’s a big responsibility. The value I contribute to the business is clear and tangible.
Vault: So what are you drawing on to do your job, given that your background is in marketing?
Sercovich: It’s part business school theory, part on-the-job training, and a lot of common sense. It’s not rocket science—the
math is fairly straightforward—but it was definitely a good challenge. I was able to put together from scratch the forecasting
models for the business, which are now used every month.
Vault: Is there a formal mentorship program component to the program?
Sercovich: Last year, we joined the overall Citi Cards mentorship program, through which the MAs are paired up with a
mentor who has been in the company for a while. But I think there is a huge component that is totally informal. As an MA,
many doors are open, many times you can just call up a senior member of the organization and ask them for some time in
their calendar. They are open to help you, and they give you wise career advice. It’s sort of weird sometimes to be talking
with these senior leaders who are dedicating part of their valuable time to giving career advice to a management associate.
Vault: So what will you be doing once you finish this rotation?
Sercovich: I have accepted a role in Citigroup International Cards, I will be working on strategic initiatives with different
regions—global competitor analysis, different practices and products, taking a look at what’s been successful in North
America which could be rolled out elsewhere.

42

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Rotational Programs

Vault Q&A: Rebecca Preston, Chevron
After graduating in 2001 with her MBA from the University of Michigan Business School, Rebecca Preston joined Chevron’s
finance MBA development program, one of several MBA hiring programs maintained by the company. After stints in London
and Houston in a variety of roles, Preston returned to the company’s corporate headquarters in California to oversee the
program. She talked to us about the program, which has been around for close to 60 years.
Vault: How many MBAs does Chevron hire a year?
Preston: For the finance program, we just increased the target this year. Historically it’s been six to eight and it’s now eight
to 10. The HR program does about four, the marketing program hires about four, supply and trading out of Houston hires
about three, global gas is considering starting and MBA program, and procurement hires in the neighborhood of four. Every
group has MBA summer interns. Finance has also increased its intern target, from six to eight; the other programs do between
two and four.
Vault: How long has the finance MBA program been running?
Preston: The program started in 1946. We’ll be 60 years old next year. The other programs are more recent.
Vault: I’d imagine that would mean that a lot of the company’s leaders have come through the program.
Preston: Yes. The former chairman came through the program. The current vice chairman is off the program, our head of
international upstream (exploration and production), vice president of government and public affairs, and our CFO are all
program alumni. The finance heads for major strategic business units are off the program; the comptroller, the treasurer,
they’re all from the program.
Vault: Is there any crossover between the various MBA programs in terms of rotations?
Preston: Not in terms of rotations. Functionally the programs are quite different. However, we do some joint events.
Typically these would be around general industry or company knowledge. For example, we bring in external instructors—
last week we had a geophysics professor, Dr. Hines from University of Tulsa, lecture about topics from how the earth was
formed and how oil was created through to drilling and production of resources. It’s a very complex industry, so getting
fluency outside of your discipline is important.
Vault: In what types of roles and locations are incoming MBA hires for the finance program placed?
Preston: I’ve got eight people coming in this year. Six are starting here in California, two are overseas…
Vault: You’re already sending them overseas for their first positions?
Preston: These two are returning interns. If they’ve had an internship at HQ and so grounding with us, we’re comfortable
in sending them overseas right off the bat. One’s in Aberdeen [Scotland] in the North Sea, and another’s in Singapore with
our treasury function. The international component is increasingly important.
Vault: How long is the program and how many rotations do employees do?
Preston: It’s a two-year program. They do three or four rotations. Domestic rotations are typically six months long.
Sometimes the international assignments will be longer, and someone may elect to do three rotations with a longer, more indepth experience overseas. This is particularly true of people who have interned here. Other people might feel strongly they
need to see four different areas while on the program.
We always try to maximize the diversity of experience with different business units, and different finance functions. I get
contacted from Chevron businesses all over the world looking for the talent. Every month I send out an update that shows
where everyone in the program is in the company, and what opportunities have come in.
Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

43

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
MBA Rotational Programs

We encourage people to do a rotation outside of the finance discipline, too, and we have had many people cross over in past
years.
Vault: What sort of rotations would they do outside of finance?
Preston: Typically people cross over into two areas: planning and business development. The planning roles are corporate
strategy roles within the business units—developing the business plan, the strategic plan for the organization, within overall
corporate strategy. The business development roles might be supporting commercial teams looking for new opportunities.
For example, you might be supporting a team that’s negotiating for new opportunities in Russia.
Vault: With the program having been in place for so long, there must be a lot of alumni from the program.
Preston: Yes. There are about 150 alumni and we’ve got a very active alumni network for the program. As the program
manager I maintain all that information. We have two to three events a year that pull in all the alumni. We do a “family
picnic” every year. We have a summer cocktail, where people meet the interns and the new hires. This year, the CFO was
there, the head of investor relations was there, and other senior people. And every year we do the holiday luncheon and that
pulls in all the alumni as well. These are typically in the Bay Area.
About a quarter of the alumni are international now. There are alumni in Moscow, Kuwait, London, Singapore, Scotland,
Barbados, Beijing, Bogotá, Angola, Venezuela…
Vault: Is there any resentment among other finance professionals toward what might be thought of as an elite group?
Preston: There’s definitely the risk of it becoming sort of an elitist group, and if that were to happen, the program would lose
much of its effectiveness. But that hasn’t happened because we’re highly selective in who we bring in. Our industry is
enormously comples, so you have to be humble and learn from the experienced people around you. You also have to be very
capable so that you can take these learnings and produce superior results in a short period of time (six months or less for the
rotations). Fit is very important—we have a highly collaborative and cooperative culture at Chevron.
Bringing in people with strong teamwork orientation, combined with demonstrated performance, means that rather than
resentment, there’s a lot of respect for the program and its members. They’re able to perform at a high level quickly so people
are clamoring for program members to work on their teams.
There’s brisk, brisk demand for program graduates once their 24 months on the program is over. A big part of my job is
matching the right opportunity with a program member’s individual interests and development goals. It’s quite common to
move every 18 months to three years after you’re off the program, because you’re building up a broad base of experience.
Vault: Do most of the people who join the program have energy industry experience?
Preston: Not necessarily. I’d say it’s less than a quarter that have direct industry experience, although a lot of them have
technical backgrounds, such as engineering or geosciences. A lot of people have finance backgrounds or economics
backgrounds.
Vault: But when interviewing, you’re trying to make sure they are interested in the industry.
Preston: That’s very important. In the first round for full-time hires, I spend almost all of the time trying to understand fit
and motivation—is energy something they’re passionate about? Will they thrive in our culture or clash with it? I then use
the second round to push on the technical skills. Can they do the job? We’re looking for every hire to be a career hire. We
have 90 percent retention over 10 years. Fit and motivation is what’s going to sustain you over the long run.
Vault: Is there a formal mentoring program?
Preston: We do not do a formal mentor matching in the finance program, but some of the other programs do. Instead, our
alumni are very receptive to program members. I facilitate connections and our members find diverse and successful
mentoring relationships that way. For interns we do match them with a “buddy,” someone who’s currently on the program
and can help them evaluate us as a full-time employer.
44

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA
CARE
BIBLE
INDUSTRY
OVERVIEWS

Aerospace and Defense
Aerospace and Defense Industry Overview
The Wright stuff
The aerospace industry consists of companies which produce aircraft, spaceships and the jets, engines and rockets that propel
them. The defense industry produces a complementary group of goods, including satellites, ships and submarines, tanks and
armored vehicles, and guns, bullets, explosives and other weapons. These industries are closely allied, with companies
frequently participating in both spheres.
The aerospace industry makes most of its money by supplying individuals and commercial airlines with planes for business
or pleasure. The commercial airline industry is notoriously cyclical, operating at the mercy of the business cycle; factors like
the price of airline tickets and terrorism (or the threat thereof) can also affect the number of people who travel by air—and
hence the rate at which airline companies purchase new planes.
The lucrative nature of defense contracts shouldn’t be underestimated, either: the U.S. government is planning to spend a
whopping $480 billion on defense in 2008—give or take the odd hundred million allotted for special items during the year.
Since making fighter jets and cargo planes doesn’t require wildly different skill sets, and defense contracts are a generally
recession-proof form of revenue, nearly all many aerospace and defense companies have arms that handle both commercial
and military production. Major manufacturers of engines for planes include Pratt & Whitney, a subsidiary of United
Technologies, Westinghouse and GE, Rolls Royce and Daimler-Benz, which put the vroom in more than just cars.
Take it to the skies
The commercial aircraft market is dominated by archrivals Boeing and Airbus, who also have interests in defense contractsBoeing derived nearly half its revenue from government contracts in 2006, while archrival Airbus is partly owned by EADS,
the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company. Smaller players, like Textron (which owns Cessna), Embraer and
Bombardier also have interests in both commercial and military aircraft and technology. Other major defense contractors
include contract leader Lockheed Martin; and ship- and submarine-builder Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics,
Raytheon, BAE Systems and United Technologies.
Plane dealing
The biggest rivalry in the industry is between U.S.-based Boeing and European-owned Airbus. These companies are the two
largest suppliers of large jets to airlines, and the summer of 2007 saw them battling it out with their newest offerings. Airbus
hopes to tempt buyers from the airlines that ferry large numbers of people between major airports with its A380, a doubledecker a double-decker plane of Brobdingnagian proportions. It seats 500 passengers, give or take, but has been plagued by
problems with its assembly and wiring, which delayed its release by two years, driving Airbus into the red—and its customers
to Boeing’s offerings, like the proven 747, which seats about 400. Boeing’s newest offering, the 787 Dreamliner, is set to
debut in July 2007. The plane has been designed to ferry comparatively smaller numbers of passengers—only about half as
many as the A380—but its carbon-composite construction offers several advantages. The plane is lighter, and hence more
fuel efficient; the construction also mean that the plane requires less maintenance and isn’t as prone to metal fatigue—a boon
to airlines, whose margins have been falling as customers become more savvy about comparison-shopping for tickets. The
composite structure also means several passenger-pleasing features, like larger windows and higher cabin pressure and
humidity. As of a few days before its official launch, the plane is the fastest-selling commercial airliner yet.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

47

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
Aerospace and Defense

A new player enters the game
Boeing and Airbus may face a third competitor, however. China is reveling in its newfound industrial might, and plans to launch its
own aircraft manufacturer. Already AVIC, the China Aviation Industry Corporation I, has produced the ARJ-21, a short-haul plane
tailored to the vagaries of air travel in China that can carry about 80 people; it is scheduled to enter service in 2009. The Chinese
government is loath to see its rapidly growing market for air transport—which is expected to create a demand for 1,500 planes by
2010—farmed out to foreign companies, however, and AVIC has its sights set on producing large jets for the international market.
DE-fence!
Speaking of international relations, the defense portion of the industry has been affected by a wave of large mergers, as well as a
shift in the way wars are fought. The industry inked 350 deals worth some $40 billion in 2006, and by the first half of 2007 had
already announced 225 deals worth $33 billion. Aside from all that getting and spending, the defense industry is also coping with
changes in the methods of warfare. Modern battles are unlikely to be fought on a traditional battlefield against a professional army
fielded by a government, and to be more like the agonizing and protracted conflict going on in Iraq and Afghanistan. Of course,
this means that enormous tanks are out—and smaller, faster and lighter equipment is in. Automation is also a growing trend.
Machines, unlike humans, never need to sleep or eat, are always paying attention, and can be easily repaired or replaced in the
event they are damaged. In 2007, Honeywell’s MAV (micro air vehicle) was sent to Iraq in order to help troops identify and defuse
bombs and other threats. The device, which is about the size of a breadbox, consists of a fan in a cylindrical housing (which
provides lift) as well as a small payload of wireless cameras and other sensors. The MAV can hover inches above a suspected
bomb, allowing it to be more closely examined, or climb to about 10,000 feet for surveillance of a larger area. Remotely operated
sensors are also the latest trend in border surveillance. In 2007, Boeing set up its first 27-mile stretch of monitored border between
the U.S. and Mexico. Aimed at preventing smuggling and illegal immigration, the border security consists of a series of towers
outfitted with radar, cameras, loudspeakers and data links. The towers are tall enough to see over trees and other obstacles, and
allow rangers to monitor the movements of people as far away as several miles.
Spatial relations
Then, of course, there’s space, the final frontier, which is soon to become as crammed with tourists as Times Square the
weekend before Christmas. After Richard Branson, owner of a number of Virgin properties, announced that he would be
offering space tours via Virgin Galactic in 2004, EADS Astrium, the space wing of the European defense giant, announced
in 2007 that it would be offering 1.5 minute stints in a weightless environment for € 200,000. The space ship, which has yet
to be built, would take off like an ordinary jet before lighting its rocket.
More prosaically, most effort in the space division of aerospace is devoted to the design, launching and maintenance of satellites for
GPS devices, communications, weather prediction and research, television and radio. Specialized leaders in this field include Alcatel
Space, Astrium, Orbital Sciences and Arianespace, a division of EADS. Government and military demand for satellite bandwidth is
expected to quadruple in the next decade—and, as such, the two groups (which can’t seem to launch satellites fast enough) have been
attaching their tech to civilian birds. Other companies involved in the sector include Boeing, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed
Martin. Major aerospace and defense companies continue to build space activities into their long-term investment plans, even though
shooting for the stars won’t turn cash flow positive in any time frame outside of a science fiction novel.

Working in the Industry
According to the AIA (Aerospace Industries Association), in 2006, 630 million people were employed in the aerospace
industry, and only about half of those jobs were in manufacturing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the aerospace
industry has a higher-than-average number of people with advanced degrees in subjects like mechanical and electrical

48

CAREER
LIBRARY

© 2007 Vault Inc.

MBA Career Bible • 2008 Edition
Aerospace and Defense

engineering. In addition to engineers, defense industry employers are perennially seeking employees with security
clearances. In order to obtain one, an employer (either a corporation or the government) must sponsor an employee, who
must be a U.S. citizen and submit to a thorough investigation of his background.
Giving the kids their wings
Companies are trying to recruit the latest crop of young’uns, as a quarter of their workforce will be ready to retire in 2008.
In order to woo their newest hires, major aerospace firms like Boeing and Lockheed Martin are getting all Web 2.0. Boeing
lured in potential job seekers with the promise of a shot at winning an iPod, as well as sponsoring a Facebook group for former
interns. Lockheed, on the other hand, allows potential job seekers to IM recruiters, while Rolls Royce’s engine department
instituted a fast-track management program that will promote new hires into management positions after a few years.
Roger, niner
So you’ve electronically networked your way into an interview. Now what? Insiders report that questions include behavioral
questions—“Tell me about a time when you were working in a group and something when wrong. What went wrong? What was
your role in the situation? What was the outcome?” while some engineers report being given technical questions to test their
expertise: “Have you ever had to resolve a complex technical challenge without all of the necessary information? If so, how did
you find out what you needed to know?” Companies can give as little as one interview, or as many as three and these vary from
an informal chat on the phone with a recruiter to a panel interview. Another common question relates to the interviewee’s
eligibility for security clearance, a necessary attribute when working in some defense sectors. Only U.S. citizens can be granted
security clearances, and must submit to having their backgrounds thoroughly searched in order to obtain it.
Looking up
In the long term, both the aerospace and defense industries are poised to grow. Worldwide air travel is forecast to increase to
9 billion passengers by 2025—twice the number that fly the skies today, and someone’s got to build all those planes. Growth
in this sector might be tempered by an economic downturn in the U.S. or Europe, which still account for the majority of airline
customers, but it will be tempered by expansion in Asia.
In addition, the debacle in Afghanistan and Iraq, not to mention the increase in religious fanaticism in general, is highly likely
to produce a bumper crop of terrorists, so the defense industry looks as if it’s got its hands full for the time being. The U.S.
defense budget is up about 60 percent over its 2001 levels, and politicians are unlikely to reduce it lest they appear to be
neglecting domestic security.

Visit Vault at www.vault.com for insider company profiles, expert advice,
career message boards, expert resume reviews, the Vault Job Board and more.

CAREER
LIBRARY

49



Parole chiave correlate