blog Bonorum et Malorum

Here’s What Investment Bankers are Saying About their Experience

Written by Fmi.Online

The investment banking profession is highly sought after and one of the most difficult to break into. Investment bankers’ experiences have always attracted people’s interest and inspired them to join the industry. A great deal of assumptions, however, are also made about the industry such as the working lives of professionals, the industry structure, and the employment profile. 

Let us share the experiences of investment bankers from their own journeys to help you gain clarity. 

Please note that this article is a summation of views from investment bankers across various platforms. We have also made changes in the sentence structures and some of the terminologies used, however the basic views/advice remains intact. We don’t claim ownership of these views. 

What is investment banking and what does an investment banker do?

Investment banking very simply put is helping companies raise money or manage their money or advise them on mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and corporate transactions. 

What does a workday look like for an investment banker?

“As I was on the financing side, I did come in earlier at around 7:15 – 7:30 all the way to around 11 pm. So typically I would get up around  6:30 and by 7:15, I did aim to be at the office. During my short commute, I would catch up on my emails and then start to do some research as I reached office, since I had a presentation every morning at  8:30.  

The presentations are alternated between interns and are essentially market updates. We got to debrief the team, which goes on for 20-30 minutes, on things that had happened  the night before or what to expect during the day so it would take me about an hour to actually find the relevant news and typically I would do it on Bloomberg terminal. After that I would try to grab a coffee and basically just get myself ready for the day. Between 9 and 11 I would usually be on my desk and actually get started with my work. Followed by this, the entire day is spent between, PowerPoint, Excel, team meetings, and client meetings. Post dinner, the team makes final edits and calls it a day. I’d say that an investment banker works around 15 to 16 hours everyday, as a junior analyst.”

What’s the difference between Advisory and Financing with an Investment bank?

According to a banker, “In advisory there are things like mergers and acquisitions (M&A), Defence against forced Acquisition, and Restructuring while financing has more to do with Structure Finance, Leverage Finance, Equity Offerings and other such similar offerings. Financing is linked to the financial markets and therefore, their work schedule is tied with that. They do get to come earlier and maybe finish a little earlier than those in advisory, but that said if I had to pick one probably, advisory works a slight bit more.”

What was it like to work in a big Investment bank?

“I started my career in 2010 with Morgan Stanley. I can say I worked for an absolutely fantastic firm as blue chip as it gets. I think I cannot replace that experience with anything else, at Morgan stanley. I can tell you that Morgan Stanley also provides the right culture, it’s the place with a professional team is there, and they really will nurture you to be a better professional.  I couldn’t have started my career at a better place than Morgan Stanley.”

How does the hierarchy look at an investment bank?

“Just to give you a bit of background, basically within the investment banking division there’s different hierarchies and obviously the summer analyst is at the very bottom. In my division, after an analyst you have what’s called an associate then a vice president and lastly a managing directo,r and then there are partners and other senior bankers. However, we didn’t really see them so MD was usually the person, the highest ranking person, that we interacted with.”

Some Tips from Investment Bankers: 

Get your Fundamentals right! 

“For investment banking and corporate finance, fundamentals and advanced corporate finance fundamentals are extremely important. Do all of it – cost of capital, beta calculation, selection of beta,  ll of that you need to know, and the fundamentals of it. Those things are  frankly required to start with and then the sales part kicking in and managing your team comes in also.”


“There are two parts to it – first getting noticed to build your network and then using your network in the future. To get noticed, you have to stand out of the crowd, have some skills which make you unique apart from work. You can’t talk about deals in public, hence, you need to be able to discuss other matters and talk swiftly. If you are able to connect, have a good conversation which makes you memorable, then you have made an impact on your connection. This can of course help you later on with your career.  

As a recent graduate, investment banking offers great opportunities to gain business knowledge and skills that can be applied to other professional fields. At a very early stage, you could have the opportunity to work with some of the brightest entrepreneurs and industrialists around the world. To succeed in this field, you need to stand out and have very strong fundamentals.”

Summing it up 

Investment banking is a demanding profession with high rewards. You must remember that while it is highly useful to get advice from seasoned professionals, every individual’s experience is different, and you should be ready to embark on your own journey. Networking and having a strong foundation will certainly help you along this path, however, you must also work on your time management and resilience skills. 

More Articles

Is A Career As An Investment Banker For You?

A job as an investment banker comes with lots of perks, and a great salary. You work with smart people, get open doors and gain lots of experiences fast. Find out if investment banking is the right career choice for you today.

Read more
Investment Banking

How can you earn a six-figure salary at top investment banking firms without any experience in 2023

To earn a six-figure salary as a fresh investment banker, you need to work hard to get a full-time job at a top investment bank and maximize your bonuses. A strong educational background, relevant skill set, and investment banking internships can help you secure a job.

Read more

How you can get a front-facing role in a top investment bank without any experience in 2023

Learn how to get a front-facing role in a top investment bank without any prior experience. Understand what front desk jobs in finance are and the skills required, get the right qualifications, internships, network, and build the right skill set. Show your willingness and dedication to the role through internships, and make a good impression through networking.

Read more

What does an investment banking intern at top banks do on a daily basis?

An internship will involve working for long hours in a dynamic environment, with high standards for accuracy and work ethic. You must be aware of the practical workings of the industry to cope with your work

Read more

What are the latest investment banking internship hiring trends in 2023

To stay relevant and competitive, investment banks have adapted new hiring practices in the technology-dominated, post-COVID world. These hiring trends were visible across financial institutions. While in the previous calendar year institutes were worried about staffing and labour shortage, banks were predicting a long struggle for employees to continue to post the COVID-19 pandemic, according […]

Read more
Investment Banking

How to get the right investment banking certification

The lucrative growth prospects of investment banking make it a brutally competitive industry. Having done a relevant investment banking course improves your odds of breaking into the industry. However, investment banking courses come in different shapes, sizes and forms. The elementary investment banking courses provide students with an overview of the industry and its functions, […]

Read more
Investment Banking

What are the rarest skills the world’s top investment bankers are looking for?

Investment bankers are responsible for heavy corporate transactions like mergers, acquisitions, IPOs, fundraising, and investment advisory. A career in investment banking is demanding, highly competitive and challenging. The right skillset, however, can help you build a successful career in investment banking by making the job easier and more efficient. In this article, we will explore […]

Read more

How can you land an investment bank internship

Top investment banks offer investment banking internship programs, each year, hiring graduates to work for 3-4 months in their offices. Through these internships, interns get first-hand experience working in an investment bank, gain an opportunity to network with other bankers, and improve their resumes. More importantly, aspiring investment bankers can see if they have the […]

Read more
Interview Prep

What you might be lacking in your IB interview prep

Going through the fundamentals of finance, working on DCF calculations, and preparing financial models are some of the more obvious things that an aspiring investment banker prepares for before interviewing for a job at a top investment bank. But what about the subtle nuances that could determine whether you will land a job or not? […]

Read more
Investment Banking

You should be aiming for these 5 investment banks this year?

It is vital to start your career in investment banking with the right organisation, one that not only offers a healthy corporate culture but also supports your personal goals. Some of the critical aspects which you must consider while selecting an investment bank are corporate culture, compensation, core areas of focus, size of operation, history […]

Read more
Our Courses are designed to boost your career

Launch your career with Fmi’s Learning Pathway

Choose a learning pathway that best meets your needs and ambitions. Not sure which Fmi learning pathway is right for you? Explore our CareerBuddy videos for help and advice.

Investment banking pathway

Investment banking pathway

Monthly Subscription
  • courses-clock60+ hours
  • courses-desktop9 courses

Investment banking offers many exciting career opportunities for students. From Financial Analysts to Investment Management, and Sales & Trading to a wide range of roles in infrastructure such as IT, Risk or Compliance. This pathway is designed to help you understand the investment banking industry, the roles investment banks are recruiting for, and most importantly, help you to develop the practical skills you need to get into the industry and your preferred role whether this be as part of a school leaver, intern or graduate program.

FMI Online Student join-student-img2 FMI Online Student
55,000+ students currently enrolled
Global markets pathway

Global markets pathway

Monthly Subscription
  • courses-clock70+ hours
  • courses-desktop10 courses

Global markets provide a range of important products and services to corporates, institutions and governments worldwide from executing trades and managing risk to providing quality research content. A key business area in all investment banks, global markets offers a wide range of career paths for students to consider across all functions and at all levels from school leavers to internships through to graduate programs.

FMI Online Student join-student-img2 FMI Online Student
85,000+ students currently enrolled
Asset management pathway

Asset management pathway

Monthly Subscription
  • courses-clock50+ hours
  • courses-desktop8 courses

The asset management industry is a global industry worth over 100 trillion US dollars. It plays a crucial role in managing the assets of retail and institutional investors, offering a wide range of exciting careers in doing so. If you’re looking to forge a career in asset management, our Asset management pathway is perfect for you. We help you build the skills all asset managers are looking for and explore everything you need to know about the industry and the wide range of roles available in the sector

FMI Online Student join-student-img2 FMI Online Student
100,000+ students currently enrolled