Cold Calling

Has anyone had any success cold calling firms. I know there is a low success rate but is it just a complete meme? I'm a sophomore finance major, and all of these fucking internships want juniors or higher.

Let's hear some of your cold calling stories/experiences/tips etc.

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Makes you seem desperate. Just apply online and go to hiring fairs.

Well, I am a little desperate. I've applied to over 100 jobs online in the last 2 months and have only gotten one interview. There is a hiring fair at my uni next week, but I researched every position and they all require juniors. I may just go and hand people my resume anyways because there is nothing to lose.

It will be hard to reach someone who is actually important and might be able to help unless you have a direct line. If you just look up their phone number online and ask, you won't get much help.

>Well, I am a little desperate. I've applied to over 100 jobs online in the last 2 months
Lucky bastard. At least there are hundreds of jobs where you are at.

Liar. Apply to 100 jobs THEN cold call while you wait for an answer.

Yeah, I guess Chicago has some perks to it, but holy shit though all of the job descriptions are exactly the same and are sound either vapid or fucking impossible for an "entry level" position. An investment banker came to my school and basically told us that all the employers who post online apps most likely already have the position filled, and unless you really stick out you have no shot.

Dude, you're not going to get a degree based job in the field with only half the degree finished.
Consider yourself lucky even, in my country my degree is 6 years long and they mostly ask 4th/5th year students

SeeAnother thing that I should mention is that when I applied to most of those jobs, my resume was really shitty and I didn't realize it at the time. I did an overhaul and added more relevant info and omitted useless things. Now the sites won't let me re-apply because I'll just get redirected.

I'm not looking for a career, just a summer internship related to my major so I can get my foot in the door.

Cold calling only works if you can get in touch with someone who matters and the likelihood of that happening is slim unless you know the person you're trying to contact.
Also, you're putting yourself in a needy position. Negotiation is about acting like "I don't need you" until the deal closes, even if and especially if you really do need them. When you cold call, it's like asking someone on the street for $10. You have no leverage whatsoever and will be dismissed.
My advice is to get networking and form relationships with people who're where you want to be. For example, want a banking job? Meet bankers and impress them. Remember though, it isn't bad to play hard-to-get (within reason).

People in finance are typically unwilling to take a chance on anyone, because the stakes are high. So if you can develop a rapport with influential people and those people vouch for you, you're less of a risk and seen as more of an asset.

cold call is only successful if you direct the caller to a legimate website with a good deal

You're probably right. There is this one investment banker that I've been emailing back and forth. I was thinking about cold calling the bank he used to work at and name-dropping him. It may seem desperate because I really desire to work an internship over the summer, but since I know the chances are slim and I'm already factoring in rejection, then I feel like I have nothing to lose. I wouldn't exactly call that leverage for me, but the sky isn't falling if I get nothing.

Ideally you want him to call the bank and drop your name. What do you email about? Maybe try and meet him for lunch or something and tell him you're job hunting, ask him if you can use him as a reference. It could help you if he still has some connection with the bank/employees.
IB is a tough one to break into. Really you won't have any leverage unless you have an offer from another bank. For example, you walk in with an offer from JewBank for this salary under these terms. Then when you go to AnyBank you have: 1. Viable alternatives 2. Something to negotiate. I.e. "I know JewBank offered X salary but I like AnyBank so I'm willing to negotiate for half this salary, plus commission". This also makes you more attractive because you're paid by your productivity.
You might want to check out (, there's lots of content specifically about getting into IB.

By the way they'll try and put you on an email list, you don't have to. This link goes right to IB articles

Depends on the company size IMO. Large firms have set hiring processes that begin with online applications or hiring companies, and the middle managers who make hiring decisions do not have the authority to make an exception for you, so by calling you just create an unnecessary hassle for them. Small companies, on the other hand, have less strict rules, and you might find a position which is not advertised yet. This saves hassle for the hiring staff so they will like it.
If it's not far you should go in person instead of calling.

Well as I said somewhere earlier, he came to my school and took questions from ~20 finance major. I just emailed him to follow up on some of the points he made. I'm going to email him again to ask about more of my career options.

I know IB is hard as fuck to break into so I want to start smaller and work my way into it. This guy was a futures trader for ~10 years before going into IB. I can assume he networked his ass off. I'll definitely check out your link. I've been going on wallstreetoasis a lot and that's where I got the cold calling idea in the first place. Thank you.

I'll for sure look into smaller companies. Not so sure about going in-person. I've been on the reverse side of that (someone comes into my workplace and asks for a job and gets turned away. It looks pretty embarrassing.

Dude just lie. Say that you'll graduate early. The hell are they going to do when you tell them that you decided to do the full four years? You probably wouldn't even go back to the same company you interned with anyways.

I cold-emailed a boutique wealth management firm. I'm an 18yo hs graduate, just going into uni in a few weeks.

The Managing Director offered me a job, basically as an office bitch, and is interested in mentoring me.

I was very very fortunate, but obviously it works sometimes

I disagree. I think a good cold call is fine for job searching.

"Hi I'm user, and I'm interested in working at your company. Could I drop off a resume in person?"

> If you get a "yes"

*hand resume to hopefully the person making the decision"
"thanks for meeting me in person. Is there anything I can do or learn to distinguish myself from the other candidates?"


Wow, I wish I thought of that right out of high school. I'm only 20 and I'm glad to be starting now, but I wish I could've earlier.
I'm strongly considering giving this a shot.

Yeah let me save you some time champ. Are you related to anyone (or know anyone closely) who works at the firm you're applying to (or even in investment banking in general)?
If yes, then have that person make some calls for you and/or schedule lunch with you and a managing director at the firm you're applying to.
If no, then send in an application the old fashioned way (online), cross your fingers, and hope for the best. It sucks to hear and isn't fair but life isn't fair so get used to it.

Also, "because there is nothing to lose" is a dumb fucking reason to go hand in resumes to people who aren't looking for somebody as young as you. There's a reason we want juniors or seniors and it's because we can get them back next summer and/or offer a full-time position and not have to wait 2 years for them to start. You do have something to lose doing this, you'll get yourself blackballed from working in investment banking. Trust me, I've plenty of friends from other firms call me and warn me of weird applicants, desperate applicants, and other various undesirables.

Think about it this way, if you can't hide the fact that you're desperate during a fucking job interview, how can we expect you to hide that during negotiations on a 8-figure deal with other bankers? Maybe IB isn't for you man, do some soul-searching.

>Is there anything I can do or learn to distinguish myself from the other candidates?

-Old leathery HR lady smiles and winks at you-

Well, thank you for your help even if you weren't the nicest guy. I do know one guy in IB but not close enough that he can get me into somewhere yet. I'll just work on expanding a network for the moment rather than handing out resumes.