Bob thought that it was a good idea to exaggerate his knowledge of the financial markets. He was wrong.
He tried to play it cool, pretending to know a little too much about how to trade options. But when Frank (the man who would have become Bob’s boss) started asking specific questions, Bob scrambled. His true colors were shown, and Frank left the room thinking that he had just interviewed a fraud.
Fortunately, Bob isn’t real, and neither is Frank; they’re fictional characters I created for this article. But their story is all too real. More often than not, a job seeker walks into an interview with the assumption that he/she must know everything. This leads to lies, and lies lead to disaster.
“Never try to BS a prospective employer,” Scott Andrews, the President of Master The Gap, Inc., told StreetID. “It is utterly amazing how many folks I have interviewed who think they are smarter than they are and try to hide what they don’t know. If you don’t know, don’t guess. Just say so. Candid honesty will carry you far further.”
Getting the Job Done Right
Andrews said that while there are “plenty of quantitative jocks and mathematicians,” there aren’t very many “that truly understand how the markets operate.”
“Take some time, even a few months, actually trading the markets with your own capital,” Andrews recommended. “It will redefine your understanding of fear and greed and risk management.”
Further, Andrews said that job seekers should be themselves, be honest, bring original thoughts, and be “pleasantly persistent.”
Don’t Bother Making Predictions
A lot of people will tell you what they think is happening — or will happen — on Wall Street. But while Andrews thinks that Wall Street is finally on its way to a recovery, he has given up on making predictions.
“I just don’t know if we are in the 3rd inning or the 7th inning of the recovery,” he said. “I gave up trying to predict the market’s next big move many years ago. ‘Guru’ forecasts (mine included) that are more than a few months out are too conditional and reliant upon too many variables to be of much value in my opinion.”
In addition to his duties at Master The Gap, Andrews is also the author of Understanding Gaps.
“It’s an intro to trading gaps using historical probabilities,” said Andrews. “I include a number of historical analyses and introduce the core of my gap trading methodology: opening zones. I also share quite a few examples and tips for gap trading. I wrote it to be a short, easy read and use a number of simple flying and military analogies to present my ideas.”
Get Hired Now
These days, job seekers have a million options. But we know where they should turn: StreetID. We built StreetID (a financial career matchmaking website) from the ground up to accommodate Wall Street’s growing community of financial professionals. In good times and in bad, current job seekers and those looking to move on in the future can turn to StreetID and sign up for a free account and make a direct connection with relevant candidates and employers.