September 2016

Posted by Anton Murray Consulting on . Posted in 2016

The 5 Worst Questions to ask in an Asset Management Interview

Your first interview with an asset manager is a great opportunity to learn more about the fund and to demonstrate how your experience can add value. To show your excitement in the firm, it is often a clever tactic to propose some canny well-directed questions. There’s no interview textbook and it comes down to the interviewer and the nature of the role you are applying for. It is worth considering the purpose of the interview so you can tailor your preparation. Whether it’s with HR or your 1st, 2nd or 8th round interview, here are some questions you might want to avoid.

1. Are you a hedge fund?
Hedge funds typically pride themselves on being hedge funds and under the radar, while traditional asset managers pride themselves on not being hedge funds. Either way this question is unlikely to get a great response, and will make you seem ill-informed.

2. How quickly can I become a Portfolio Manager?
If you are not applying to join the investment team then it might be an idea to keep this ambition clandestine initially – at least until you get the job. The path to becoming a PM is a long road and it’s best not to query the length of the road.

3. Are the bonuses better than Investment Banking?       
It’s always nice to get a feel for the total earnings available in the role you’re applying for, but using investment banking bonuses as a benchmark may be misleading. In an interview situation, asking whether the bonuses rival banking incentives will likely do two things: the question may annoy the interviewer or the answer might disappoint you.

4. What are your total Assets-Under-Management?  
This you should find shouting at you on the homepage of the company’s website. If not, then there’s probably a reason why. Rather than asking for the AUM directly, it is best to wait until the information is provided.

5. Are the hours better than Investment Banking?
This is often the case for Buy-Side positions, but to emphasise your impressive work ethic, let them know there are reasons beyond the hours that you’re excited about. Similar to the bonus question, go easy on the investment banking comparisons

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