Transitioning To Budgeting

« Back to Home

Working Toward Your MBA? Is a Career in Private Equity Right for You?

Posted on

If you've just begun a master's in business administration (MBA) program, you're likely excited about the doors this degree will open for you—but you may not yet know which door you'd like to enter. For those who enjoy the salesmanship involved in chasing deals or who have aspirations of a salary that far exceeds the median wage for MBA graduates, private equity may be the way to go. Read on to learn more about what is involved in becoming a private equity broker, as well as what you'll need to do to achieve this potentially lucrative career.

What does a private equity broker do?

Unlike the stockbrokers who research and recommend publicly traded stocks to their clients (or invest in these stocks on their clients' behalf), private equity brokers seek investors for non-publicly traded companies. Because these privately held and traded companies aren't governed by the same disclosure rules as companies that trade on one of the major stock exchanges, being a private broker can be challenging. In order to do your due diligence before recommending clients invest in a company, you may need to engage in a variety of offbeat research methods, from personally visiting a company's warehouse to ensure it's able to quickly fulfill orders to wining and dining C-suite executives to get the inside scoop on a business. You'll then often need to spend your time cold-calling potential investors and touting the merits of the various equity funds your employer manages.

How can you turn your MBA into a private equity gig?

While an MBA isn't required in order to become a private equity broker, this degree shows potential employers you're well aware of the mechanics of a sound business and should significantly improve your job prospects. The collaboration and presentation requirements inherent in the MBA course of study will also hone your negotiation skills and improve your salesmanship.

However, MBAs are becoming a more popular degree, so you'll need to do something else to set yourself apart and nab a job offer at one of the biggest private equity firms. In many cases, beginning your post-MBA career as a banking analyst at a large national bank can give you the experience and prestige you need to get an interview with a top-ranked firm. Those working at smaller banks may find it harder to break into a career with one of the main private equity firms, but could still have good luck with smaller or boutique firms.

To learn more about what it takes to be involved in private equity, contact a representative from an establishment like RLS Associates.