We recently caught up with Kieran about securing a role with Goldman Sachs, how he built up commercial awareness before the interview and his top tips for Bright Network members looking to follow in his footsteps.
What stood out to you about Goldman Sachs?
The smaller team sizes, compared to other major investment banks, was extremely attractive to me. The learning opportunities that come with this at Goldman Sachs was also a major positive as I would be able to spend time with experts in specific sectors. Even with smaller teams than many, Goldman Sachs continue to be market leaders which says a lot about the calibre of employees they have. This opportunity to learn from some of the best in the industry was an opportunity that I had to go for.
How did you build your commercial awareness before the interview?
I listened to the Financial Times and Bloomberg podcasts, as well as keeping up with major news stories within the markets. As I had a passion for this industry, I was following specific sectors and stocks, monitoring their progress and assessing how global events could impact these areas. Preparing stock pitches was a really useful thing to do as it gives you the depth of knowledge within sectors to be able to comfortably speak about. Speaking to people within the industry and their opinions on market-specific topics was crucial with such uncertainty in the world over the past year.
What would be your top tip to members going through the application process?
Practice, for sure. Before every stage of the application process, it is really important to practice, whether that be for psychometric tests or interviews. The more of each stage you do, the less nervous you get and the better you will do (at least from my experience). This will give you a better chance of doing yourself justice in the application process.
Keep going. The application process is a journey. However, with the right attitude and dedication, it is possible to achieve what you’re aiming for.
How did Bright Network help you secure this role?
Bright Network really helped. The networking events that Bright Network provide were invaluable for me as they allowed me to speak directly to HR and employees at some of the biggest firms in the world. These conversations not only made me more comfortable speaking to professionals within this industry but also gave me crucial insight into the culture and key values of the company. This made me feel like Goldman Sachs was a really good fit for my values.
What’s been the toughest interview question you've faced and how did you tackle it?
“How would you go about organising a friend’s 21st birthday party?”
The important thing here was to break it down into small segments and try and relate it to a similar situation that you might face within the workplace. Taking it step-by-step and always keeping the business aspect in my head helped as it would have been very easy to go off on a tangent and organise my own dream 21st. Asking questions to my interviewer throughout my answer helped as it allowed me to find out more information, as well as making sure my interviewer understood clearly what I was trying to explain.
What top three tips would you give Bright Network members looking to follow in your footsteps?
- Keep going - don’t let anyone tell you that it’s impossible.
- Practice - practice makes perfect.
- Network - reach out to school/university alumni that would be willing to speak to you and offer advice.