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Top 250 Investment Banking Career Tips 

General Tips

1.    Have an enthusiastic and positive attitude at all times (even at 3 am and the next morning)

2.    Say hello in the morning and greet people in the hallways. Be respectful of your assistant

3.    Ask a lot of questions, especially in your first couple weeks

4.    Set up 1:1 meetings/calls when you join to get to know people, create opportunities to introduce yourself to Managing Directors (MDs) and get to know them

5.    Be approachable

6.    Walk into MD’s offices and develop real relationships if possible

7.    Network internally with people outside your group. Having friends in other product groups will help you to get quick response when you work on an urgent project

8.    Take responsibility and admit mistakes

9.    Client is always right, even when they're wrong

10.    Maintain positive personal and professional image even when you are very tired

11.    Develop thick skin: high stress career, it's never personal

12.    Never eat alone, grab lunch/coffee/dinner with different people every day, or order your own food but eat together in the kitchen

13.    Ask for best templates for valuation, DCF, financial model, management presentation, firm slide master, who is binding books, etc. from experienced analysts/associates in your first few months. People who seem to know a lot have the best templates and precedent files

14.    You should almost always be available to communicate, generally from the hours of 7am to midnight. Be in the office on time, 9am latest

15.    Goal is to sleep between 12am to 7am, unless there is a pre-scheduled call earlier than that. Yes, many night you won’t be able to log off at 12am, but you should not push your arrival to the office past 9am (unless you were up past 3am)

16.    Don't be indecisive, always have an opinion and defend it even if you change it later, that's how you'll become a leader

17.    Have a good relationship with analyst and associates and build relationship with VPs and above, too. Make them look good and you’ll be good

18.    Say, we’ve (as a team) prepared this analysis even if you were the only person working on it, don’t say I’ve prepared this as you’ll make the rest of the team look bad

19.    Give and ask for clear deadlines, often VPs/associates don’t tell you exactly when they expect to receive it back, but they have a day/time in mind. Good to know if you should be working on this all weekend, or Monday is totally fine. Helps to maintain your sanity long term

20.    Raise hand how you can help! Ask before going to sleep if you can help with something else (yes you prefer to sleep, but it will differentiate you)

21.    Over-communicate, respond to emails timely, drive process, take ownership (instead of simply saying, we’ll do and 3-4 hours later not sure what to do exactly -> say: We’re doing this, doing that, what do you think about this approach?

22.    Send daily/weekly update to MDs/VPs with workstreams

23.    If an MD doesn't respond to a question, send the email again. Or call

24.    Ask at least one question during every meeting

25.    Always remain calm, cool, and collected. If needed take a 10-minute break

26.    Present yourself well both internally and externally

27.    Respond to all emails in 15-20 minutes, to at least acknowledge that you received it and we’ll send it this afternoon / by end of the day / started working on it

28.    Be responsible at social events and use your common sense; not an excuse for being late the next day

29.    No social media during working hours. All electronic communication via firm's approved devices at large investment banks dealing with public client. Personal / home systems are monitored / prohibited at these firms

30.    Take ownership, be proactive, have a daily-to-do and schedule, time

31.    Review all workstreams daily even if only for 5 minutes. Additionally, review all your projects once a week in great detail. Check your calendar both 2 weeks ahead and back and set up to-do list and deadlines, did you forget anything?, should you plan ahead for a meeting in 1-2 weeks? Reach out to your senior and ask and show that you own the process instead of just blindly following instructions. One example is to know the steps for an IPO process and when your team needs to go to internal committee meetings

32.    Be diligent about updating trackers / internal databases to save others time (creds book, profile tracker, etc.). Keep status report organized and thorough and up to date constantly. Be an expert of keeping and organizing lists (your personal to-do list, lists for each deal you’re on, etc.)

33.    Manage your seniors and remind them to certain deadlines, they might have more important things to track

34.    Verify time zones when scheduling meetings (Outlook has a great feature for that)

35.    Always keep mark-ups (you may have to refer back or someone might ask for it); scan them to your drive just in case

36.    If you are an associate, talk to analysts instead of sending emails all the time and hiding behind your desk

37.    Always add value, don't just pass on task blindly. Own the process. It's easier to tell than you may think who actually does work. Think about how you would do it, and draft a few pages, ask supervisor if needed to confirm. 

38.    Never delegate a task you personally don’t know how to do (do it first and delegate next time)

39.    Don’t just copy client slides and reformat them, always think about how the presentation flows from one page to the next. Typically, we can re-use many client slides, but we need to create a few new from scratch to connect the story and flow and show we did some work and added value

40.    Imagine that you are a Private Equity firm: Would you invest? What things we might not want to mention and what is not clear?

41.    Think like you were the Founder, what would you do? How would you approach this problem?

42.    Always think about: what else could we do for our client? Our job is to make people love us

43.    No task is to small. Even your MDs do administrative tasks occasionally. “Managing Analysts” do not succeed

44.    Under-promise and over-deliver, especially around deadlines

45.    Always flag hardest tasks and do them first, this way you can ask questions immediately if anything is unclear before seniors log off around 10-11 pm. Easy tasks can be done at 2 am without additional instructions and without a fully functioning brain 

46.    Stay on top of Market, M&A and your industry news. Subscribe to daily newsletters

47.    Forward your desk phone when you’re OOO and learn how to use the conferencing feature on your office phone or cell phone

48.    Set up the same signature line (format/size) on your cell phone as on your laptop. It will make it less obvious to clients and MDs if you respond from a gym or from a dinner party

49.    When you get staffed to a new client, start pulling together a very draft shell immediately with a lot of TBU/placeholder slides to move the project along and you can immediately ask questions and show your VP or associate that you are proactive and won’t just sit tight and wait for instructions all the time

50.    Don’t delay process. Act confidently even if you are not, make decision even if only 90% sure unless you are sending it directly to the client

51.    Have a sense of urgency, act immediately when you get a task from supervisor

52.    Don't be afraid to speak up, you’re paid to have an opinion -> Always have an opinion and defend by a reason or story (you can change your mind later), don't look ambivalent as it will make you look weak

53.    Take good notes and always bring your notebook and calculator with you to VP / MDs’ offices

54.    Don t answer your phone on speaker to external callers.

55.    Always print and leave physical copies of decks on VP / MDs’ desks after you turn comments

56.    If a senior banker asks to leave a printout copy in their office, leave it on their chair, not desk

57.    Make comprehensive list of questions to efficiently make use of senior bankers’ time

58.    Know how to negotiate an NDA

59.    Organize your thoughts before leaving a voicemail. Be concise. Speak slowly and clearly and repeat your telephone number twice

60.    Be patient with yourself. It takes time to come up to speed. You are not supposed to understand what’s going on in your first 6 months

61.    Always use spell check

62.    Request vacation in advance (at least one month) and provide enough notice to deal team members. Send reminders 2 weeks and 1 week before. If any conflicts, work to resolve them proactively to minimize disruption to vacation plans. Send a to-do list to your team about project status on your last day before vacation so everyone knows where we are and assign responsibilities and timeline if appropriate

63.    Don’t take on too much and don’t over-commit. Remember everything will take longer than expected

64.    Create folder and subfolders in your inbox. Check with your team for best practices

65.    Communicate if a task is taking longer than expected

66.    If you know you will not be able to deliver work on time contact your staffer or manager immediately

67.    When you work with other groups, make sure you are viewed as a partner

68.    Spend time researching the Company – as juniors you can add a lot of value here when meeting with senior bankers, and it will be noticed

69.    For public companies, equity research (especially initiating coverage), earnings transcripts, investor presentations and S-1 filings are a great place to start

70.    Couriering books to a senior banker: Make sure books are in an opaque envelope for confidentiality + Leverage assistants to find out where a banker is staying (if traveling); don’t wait till late at night for this

71.    When there is a question to CEO try to answer yourself how I would answer and pay attention how the CEO answered the smaller the gap is the more ready you are

72.    If you are an associate, review every turn, don’t let analyst cut you out and send it to VP or above directly (VP will know it is signed off by associate if it comes from associate, but if VP receives materials directly from analysts, he/she doesn’t know whether the work has been reviewed)

73.    Additionally, if you are an associate, don’t let VP cut you out, understand why we do things (ask VP) so you could explain analyst why this is urgent. You need to be visible to directors and MDs otherwise you will not have the support to be promoted from associate to VP

74.    Most important thing is to move along the processes and client interaction timely (HR and admin emails can always wait, it’s not the HR who will evaluate or promote you but your supervisors) email if needed and prioritize MDs emails (MDs/VPs will not give you better valuation if you had 200 coffee chats vs 40, but they will remember how quickly your responded to emails and turned materials)

75.    Set your voicemail announcing yourself, otherwise the client will not leave you message

76.    This is one of the most important steps in our clients live. Treat it as such

77.    Treat the firm like an owner

78.    Treat your clients like they hired YOU specifically

79.    Treat banking like it is your long-term career even if it isn't. I promise you'll have more fun (in addition, recognize that it is the long-term career for some and be mindful of that)

80.    Once you have at least 1 year investment banking experience it is pretty easy to find a position at a bigger bank where you most likely get paid more, work less and have much better chance to get into a premium private equity shop. If you wait too long you will be seen as someone who specialize on smaller deals. You can find 1,000+ banks and close to 5,000 contacts with email addresses if you click to here

Become the Highest Rated Staff

81.    In short, the more time you can save for your supervisor, the better rating you’ll get. Always think, how you can save time for them. If you do, they will want to work with you as they can spend more time with their family and less on work. (e.g., if you are on top of processes and do things before, they would even ask you such as sending them weekly/daily updates or pre-client call materials and reminders what to cover during the meeting

82.    Quality over speed. Yes, you need to be fast, but there is nothing that would slow down the process more than turning comments 3-4 times instead of once or twice. If it takes you 60 minutes to save 30 minutes to your VP, do it

83.    You could do a few little things they don’t except you: e.g., add a few bullet points / suggestion to a slide they told you just leave blank as they would do it. Yes, it means you work when they didn’t expect you to work. Nobody will notice the first 95% of your effort as everyone will finish the work they are asked to do, but the last 5% will go towards tasks nobody asked you and that’s how you will stand out 

84.    Don’t just ask them what you should do. Describe what the issue is, tell them what you tried to do (e.g. researched here and there, but found nothing, asked people, send them document/report that might be relevant and helpful for them to make a decision). Tell them 1-2 proposed solutions you are not sure of but want to double check before moving forward. It shows that you think ahead and do some homework first before start bothering them for instructions

85.    You could do a few little things they don’t except you like adding a few bullet points to a slide they told you just leave blank for them to fill in

86.    Don’t just pull the research reports they asked you to do, but skim through / highlight sections and tell them that the 10 reports saved to shared drive, here are 3 most relevant ones and pages 10 and 11 have some highlighted part that seemed to be the most relevant. You just saved them 30 minutes going through all the reports and identified the parts that are likely important to focus on

87.    They often tell you they will get back to you on which public comps to include in the valuation analysis, but you could just send your thoughts and they will appreciate it even if they ignore most of it. You could say, we could have a bucket for this industry here are 6 relevant US companies, there could be a 2nd bucket for companies with similar financial profile (e.g., high growth companies, cash flow negative, etc.)

88.    When sending work, flag anything you are not 100% sure so they know where they should spend more time when reviewing

89.    Always repeat to-do at the end of the meeting to ensure your understanding is correct

90.    Keep a status report organized, thorough and up to date at all times

91.    Your goal should be that people request you on their projects

92.    There is not a "master plan" to manage your career. You are responsible for managing it. What projects are your getting on? Are you being exposed to different sectors? Have you mastered every type of typical financial analysis? Have you worked on multiple products? Are you gaining increased responsibility?

93.    Be aggressive: staffing, work product, coffee chats, meetings, questions, etc. Don’t wait for things to come to you

94.    Take calls from the senior banker’s office to increase presence and interaction

95.    Invite yourself to pitches, negotiations, client calls. Simply tell your Vice President (VP) that you would like to join the client meeting to learn and whether it is OK (most of the times it is OK)

96.    Say yes to opportunities

97.    Be a leader in the office. Organize events. Contribute. Mentor. Volunteer. Give presentations

98.    Share initiatives / your opinion with influencers

99.    Stay on top of industry news and what’s happening in the markets

100.    Seek feedback at the end of every project, don’t wait till year end to get development point feedback. You obviously get better rating if you can show that you already started to make steps to improve in certain areas


Impress Your Client
101.    Every Sunday set up reminder and ask yourself: What can I do for my client especially something they don't expect us to do?

102.    When do I talk to CEO / My contact 1:1?

103.    What work process should be prepared during the week? Think about random things we could do for our clients

104.    Become a trusted partner by the client, understand the numbers and be insightful of your industry

105.    Demonstrate professionalism

106.    Be able to give big picture guidance on process and analytics

107.    Set up alerts with your client names

108.    Follow them on LinkedIn and Twitter

109.    Send news articles, congratulations, industry pieces to your client contact that might be relevant to them

Emails

110.    Triple check emails before hitting send especially sent to and subject line. No grammatical errors, typos and don’t forget the (right) attachment. This happens more often than you think and can have devastating consequences
111.    Always open and check every attachment before sending
112.    Respond to Client MDs emails/calls within 5-10 minutes, acknowledge task immediately even if no time currently (don't worry about wordings of quick internal emails)
113.    External emails: assume it will be forwarded, proofread subject, body of email and email chain below, make sure you copy the right people. Some people use 30 second delayed messages in Outlook so they could make changes right after they hit send
114.    If you are an analyst, give your associate 15-30 minutes to respond (you don’t want them to think you try to cut them off), but if they don’t you should go ahead and acknowledge receipt directly with an email so Client/MD is not wondering too long if it is on our radar
115.    If you are an associate, same thing, give your VP 15-30 minutes to respond first so they don’t feel like you try to cut them off, at the same time you want to ensure timely response as a team
116.    Communicate. Keep the right people informed
117.    Don't communicate to people who don't need to know (i.e., some processes are confidential even internally)

Work Products

118.    Attention to detail, no formatting error is too small to fix!, spell check, correct font, quality is more important than speed most of the time
119.    A typo in presentation is similar to a typo on your resume. It ruins our credibility
120.    Print everything out -> It Is easier to see mistakes with tangible version -> alternatively print it in a PDF and double check
121.    Don't do the same mistake twice, make a list of things you had to correct previously (and keep it on your desk for reference)
122.    Use Ctrl + H to find and replace double spaces
123.    Pay even closer attention to “sensitive” parts of the analysis such as: Are the client’s numbers correct? Are the names of the management team spelled correctly?
124.    [TBU] use brackets for sentences to be updated. Bankers will search for “[“ in a presentation to see what is still outstanding
125.    Use [bracket] for any word, fact, you are not 100% correct, so it can be easily found / searched for in presentation
126.    When repurposing existing documents: check headers, master slides, check/delete named cells, check footnotes and references
127.    Make 5 minutes break and reopen documents to get a new perspective if you work on it for a long time
128.    Understand big picture, why we do this. It is often very obvious if someone doesn’t get the context
129.    Footnote everything, but never have a footnote on the title of a page
130.    Understand every number and how to calculate it, Check consistency in numbers (does the LTM revenue on one-page matches to the number one page later? Are we showing $ signs in a table for all numbers or just the first one and the total?
131.    Once you send a document to review you took ownership of the whole deliverable even if you were not the one who prepared the calculation. You need to be able to explain all numbers
132.    Don't pass work to reviewer until you think it is client ready. You’d be surprised how rarely this happens
133.    If you are stuck. Ask for help. Spend 15-30 minutes to figure out a problem, but never more as you will slow down the project
134.    Know how to hand check a work product
135.    Become an expert in building and manipulating financial models. Do not skip this step. This applies to Associates.
136.    Do models and analyses in parallel with your mentor and compare what you did to what they did and reconcile
137.    Get in the weeds. It'll help you later.
138.    Don't develop holes in your arsenal: flow of funds, stock options, working capital analyses, overlaying financing options on top of an m&a model, etc.
139.    Reviewing live is much faster than reviewing alone and writing long review notes
140.    Positioning: think of talk track how you would connect the slides, be creative. Attempt to come up with something that no one else has thought of regarding how to position a company. This can actually impact whether we win business
141.    Check every sentence. Is it necessary? Does it add value? Does it follow the previous sentence? Is it well written? Typically, the shorter the better, the less text heavy, the easier to follow
142.    Read every sentence and tie every number. Footnotes. Side Bars. Does every sentence make sense?
143.    Footnote all your research, assumptions and judgement calls
144.    Keep track of your judgement calls, footnote them, and discuss them with your associate at the appropriate time
145.    Never hardcode a cell in excel without explanation
146.    Check for consistency: Do some sentences have periods and others do not? Are numbers and bullets aligned? Are numbers tying throughout the deck?
147.    Search for stats -> Use Google Image to search, use key words: "Infographics" and/or "G2 Crowd" to find relevant stats, then check the source on the bottom of the page and trace it back original source/website to see if we can reference it
148.    Graphical displays of information are more important than you think. Visit the dailyinfographic site. The ability to simplify and display complex analysis is a key work-life skill
149.    When we want to show dramatic growth, compress longitudinally 
150.    Be mindful of things looking different on paper than on screen
151.    Make the bars look as high as possible to make the jump/growth look bigger than it is
152.    Bullets should be well-written, succinct, and necessary (avoid fluff). There is no excuse for a misspelled word (F7)
153.    Don't just copy client materials or website, at least reword and reorder
154.    We get hired for financial advice. Don't cut corners or let it be sloppy – ever
155.    Make sure we show our bank in the best possible light. Examples: Are our deals in the comps? Are our deals in the buyer profiles? Is our best contact really the Manager of business development at IBM? Are we showing the most investment bank ranking? For example, if we are pitching a $2bn sellside, should we show our rankings on sub-$1bn sellsides?
156.    Learn how to leverage other people's work. We create far too much stuff over and over again. Maybe even take responsibility for fixing this

 

Turning Comments

157.    Create Review Checklist section which you could put on your desk. Some examples: Are forward revenue multiples lower than trailing? Is the shares calculation correct? Do the sensitivity tables relative increases (or decreases) make sense? Do any multiples look off (.2x revenue? 17x revenue? 2x PE?)? How was the discount rate calculated?
158.    Make sure you understand all the comments/edits that you’ve been requested to make / turn
159.    As you turn comments, mark/highlight/tick them on the markup as a confirmation that you’ve turned them
160.    Once you turn comments that are part of sentences, read the sentence to make sure it makes sense (grammatically and from a commonsense perspective)
161.    Once you’ve turned all comments on screen, start from the beginning, and quickly check that you’ve turned all of them
162.    Upon double-checking everything on screen, print out the work and check it again (often, work that looks correct on-screen is wrong/incorrect when printed)
163.    Always print out your work and read and check everything over before sending it off to your Associate or VP
164.    As an analyst you will make mistakes but the analysts that submit work with very few or no mistakes are generally the highest ranked (this really stands out as you save time for your reviewer)
165.    Read every single word in the document, checking for spelling, sentence structure, tense, consistency, context
166.    Tick and tie every number in the book, including calculated numbers
167.    Read every footnote; check that every footnote reference matches the footnote and search for stray footnotes
168.    Review for general look of the document: object spacing, line spacing, colors, formatting consistency
169.    Then, hand a printed copy / send it (based on person’s preference) along with the original markup so that the person can check it
170.    At that point, if there were any issues that came across when turning the comments, let the person know (depending on your relationship with the person / their style, this can be done as you turn the comments; you may not need to wait till the end)
171.    If he/she is busy, put a post-it note on the page or a TBU box saying that you would like to discuss this comment or page
172.    Remember: be proactive when turning comments, not reactive
173.    Make sure you understand what the point of the task/pitch/etc. and if the comments you are turning make sense in accomplishing that goal
174.    Footnote references are superscript, a superscript space is present between the text and footnote reference (1)
175.    Source then Notes should always come before footnotes
176.    A period should appear at the end of each source/note/footnote

Calls

177.    Always ask VP if I can join the client meeting
178.    Be on time Dial in Zoom calls 5 minutes early. Take a note who has joined the call and when VP joins give a summary who is on, who is missing
179.    Check conference call numbers before sending it out
180.    Be on mute unless you’re speaking
181.    Prepare 10 min before and practice what would you say, if your are on the spot and VP/MD doesn’t show up
182.    Have client names and contact information readily available
183.    Send cheat sheet email to MD before the call if appropriate or even better if you have a cheat sheet so you could chime in
184.    Prepare before the call, know background, who will be on the call, what do they know
185.    Always announce yourself on calls, don’t hide, be visible
186.    Always be prepared to turn on video camera for Zoom meetings (typically you don’t need to when you have not speaking role, but if everyone else turns it on you have to do so. You don’t want to be the stalking person who is afraid to turn on the video because your hair looks messy, and you wear an orange T-shirt
187.    When in doubt turn on your video on a Zoom call. It is a way to build relationship with the client even if you don’t have a speaking role
188.    Know how to introduce yourself. Practice it with your VP. They won’t think this is odd
189.    Come up with small talk and phrases when joining the call early and you’re the only one from the bank
190.    Write down how other opened the call and finished the call (sentences that can help you when your VP is late from calls)
191.    Clients like personal contact, get to know your client, but keep things appropriate
192.    If you dial in to a call and are waiting for a third party (buyer, client) to join, draft a polite email with the dial-in info and send it around 2-3 minutes after the scheduled start time. Stay on for at least 10 minutes before hanging up
193.    If the senior banker still doesn't join, call them on their mobile to conference them in. Small talk or on hold until they join; don't start without them
194.    Practice what you would say to client if you were the MD, (but if MD doesn't show up, don't start the meeting)
195.    Do your homework before we make a call to a buyer. Who are we calling? Does someone else in the firm know them? What level are they? What is their bio?
196.    Speak up. Speak clearly. Ask at least 1 question
197.    Don't limit conversations to "checking the box" topics use the time as an excuse to learn a bit more about the business, be ready to have some commentary about the market and be conversant on our recent deals even if they're not yours
198.    Don't ever bad mouth colleagues or anyone on the client side, if they complain just nod and smile
199.    Take many notes, use laptop if possible, as hard copies disappear and hard to refer back to them 6-12 months later
200.    Be proactive about follow-up requests

In Person Meetings

201.    Logistics matter for client meetings. Do we have the address and floor? How gets the car? Get the driver’s cell phone number at the beginning of the day if applicable
202.    How many attendees are coming and what are their titles? Do we have their contact information?
203.    Is there a projector in the room or do we need to provide? I there a spare bulb?
204.    Is the meeting space clean and reserved?
205.    Is there lunch provided? Do we have food and refreshments? How about dinner reservations?
206.    Who is driving the presentation and on what laptop is it on? Is the room big enough for the number of attendees? If logistics are messed up, we look bad.
207.    Have we printed hard copies? Who will carry them to the meeting? This is your responsibility
208.    Bring business card, laptop and phone chargers, pen and pencil, corporate credit card, calculator
209.    Always carry something to write with and on to take notes or your laptop
210.    Know how to dress appropriately
211.    Ask one question every meeting
212.    Don't schedule meetings too close to one another (buyers might run into each other)
213.    Have we sent briefing materials to the client about the counter party? If the client wants to change hotels for the meeting, is there a change fee and have we told the client? If it's a closing dinner, should there be a seating chart? 
214.    Story about behavior in a pitch mirroring behavior on a deal. Meet with the company ahead of time. Send follow-ups. Invite to dinner. Send more follow-ups. Ask questions
215.    The first few weeks of a new client are particularly sensitive. Overdeliver. Think of additional things we can do so that they trust that they have our full attention
216.    During trainings, team meetings sit in the middle / front
217.    Attendance at internal events is just as important as attendance at client meetings

Printing

218.    Clarify binding and cover format
219.    Tabs before section dividers
220.    Flip through presentation to make sure there are no errors
221.    If delivery is needed, try a courier service

Things to Avoid

222.    If news is sensitive, pick-up the phone, it is better telling over the phone (especially if we missed something) than sending the bad news via email that can be easily forwarded and shared
223.    Keep it clean on email and chat because everything is monitored
224.    Don’t ever badmouth other employees or clients. Using initials is not a loophole
225.    Don’t express valuation viewpoints about clients or companies you are pitching to (e.g., “no way they’re worth $500M” or “I’d be surprised if we get any bids” or “I couldn’t find any research so invented the growth rate”) – these messages are monitored, archived, and may be used as evidence if there is a lawsuit involving counterparties
226.    If you inadvertently receive or distribute an email containing confidential or material, nonpublic information, contact the Control Group immediately for appropriate next steps
227.    Don’t take shortcuts around any legal, due diligence or risk processes. Elevate any concerns or problems you encounter in these areas to more senior people as soon as you identify a potential problem
228.    Don’t be political
229.    Don’t assume anything
230.    Don’t decide yourself the priority of work assignments. Always ask
231.    Don’t walk around boasting about how busy you are or how much you’ve done
232.    Don’t save project files to your personal hard drive
233.    Don’t leave office with work outstanding on next-day deliverables or without checking in with your project teams
234.    Don’t go to your team with work that you haven’t checked or comments you haven’t turned – It’s the easiest way to lose trust. Reputations spread upward
235.    Don’t run multiple versions of a file. You’d be surprised how common versioning issues are
236.    Don’t start working from a read-only version and save-up without asking
237.    Lack of attention to detail
238.    Being reactive instead of proactive
239.    Never, ever violate expense or trading policies. Career limiting move

Financial Model

240.    Never hide rows or columns -> collapse cells in groups if you must
241.    Beauty save = put your cursor to the top left corner on every tab before saving

242.    Same columns (D, E, F) across tabs should refer to the same month

243.    Color code in Excel (black = formulas , blue = inputs , green = link , red = issue/CapIQ/FactSet)
244.    Include all source files received from clients in model. Keep notes on all inputs / assumptions you receive from clients (can be in comments or noted in far right) -> will be deleted before final version
245.    You will never run out of rows so rather than building an overly complex formula, do one step at a time in a new row (easier to follow for other people)
246.    If absolutely no info to calculate anything accurately use % of Revenue for everything to project e.g., payroll, marketing, etc.
247.    In the financial model code clients as Client 1, Client 2, etc. instead of revealing their name so it could be shared with investors as needed
248.    Typically, you set up multiple cases (base, upside, downside) -> Use Offset function and refer to the "Case_Number" cell which is on the first tab of the excel typically
249.    Prepare a Dashboard Tab (for quick review) + a separate tab for Printing (all fonts are black) for client or to copy into presentations

250.    Sanity check: Check annual numbers and Dashboard - Does it make sense?

 

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