Why Do You Want to Work for Us Question – How to Answer This Tough Banking Interview Question

Although you’re more likely to get asked the why investment banking interview question, it’s still worth considering this question, because if you don’t use the answer during any interviews you’ll at least use it in your cover letters.

When all the banks seem to be carbon copies of each other, how are we meant to answer this question?

Well, you could take the easy road and just trot out the same things every student does for every bank in every interview. Almost verbatim from some crazy Vault Survey or D grade investment banking interview guide, students will say;

“Work with the smartest people, access to world class training, program rotation, steep learning curve, real responsibility, meritocracy, entrepreneurial culture and top transaction experience” or some variation of that.

But if you want to stand out and make it look like you’ve actually given this question some thought, first mention three bank-specific things you love. E.g. a particular training program only they have or a group’s focus on certain types of deals.

The smartest way to find this information is by asking the banks own analysts why they joined the analyst program and why they like working there.

Not only is this method painless since you only have to attend a networking event or email an alumnus, but it can also yield real ‘insider’ reasons that you can’t pull off a recruitment website, e.g. a recently implemented initiative at the bank.

Bonus marks up for grabs with this interview question

You’ll turn in a 10/10 answer if you relate your reasons “why work for Goldman Sachs” back to an experience you mentioned in your story and/or to a banker you spoke with.

Combining good research with thoughtful self-analysis like this will convince bankers you genuinely want to work for them.

What else do you need to crush the why Goldman Sachs question?

Apart from what a bank’s analysts may tell you, it’s wise to mention that you are attracted to the bank because of the people you have met there, followed up with their names and the stories of how you know them. This alone can put you in the ‘inner circle’.

Feel free to rattle off 3 standard reasons for wanting to join them at the end of your answer. The #1 way to deliver this like a good little sycophant-in-the-making is by saying “and obviously Goldman Sachs works on the leading deals, has the best people in the TMT world and offers first-class training”.

As you can see these seemingly tough investment banking interview questions aren’t so difficult once you have inside advice on how to answer them. Get more free advice on banking interview questions now, including the hugely popular why investment banking interview question.


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