Interview Preparation

Ready to join the team at Morgan Stanley? Here are a few helpful tips on how to prepare for your interview.

So you’re getting ready for your interview with Morgan Stanley? This is an exciting time. First of all, enjoy the process. It’s fun to meet new people at the top of their game and experience an iconic firm first hand.

Remind yourself why we conduct interviews in the first place. This will help you focus on your relevant skills and determine the impression you want to make. Remember, we use interviews to find out who you are and what motivates you. We want to see if you understand our business and what the job entails. This is an opportunity to show us what you could bring to the team at Morgan Stanley.

Every interview is different. Your discussion will depend on what the job requires and who you are. Anticipate the questions you might be asked by reading through the application materials and the job description. If you were meeting yourself for the first time, what would you ask?

Enjoy the conversation, be honest, and don’t be afraid to show the real you. We’re looking for exceptional individuals.

Your Story

Think about how to best tell your story.

It starts with knowing your resume. Be able to articulate everything you've listed without reading or referring to it. Have confidence. Be yourself. Know your strengths and be able to articulate the areas you want to develop.

Answer each question the best you can. We don’t always expect candidates to have the right answer during an interview—we’re just as interested in seeing how you work through a scenario. Interviews could be competency, strengths based, skills based or technical. You may be asked about situations when you have used particular skills or asked to demonstrate your problem-solving skills.

Be prepared to talk about past experiences that demonstrate why you would be an ideal candidate. Present a diverse background of experiences by highlighting relevant jobs, projects, coursework, and extracurricular activities. Tell us why you’re the right person for the job.

When you learn how to tell your story in an engaging way, you’ll make us want to become a part of it.

Your Personal Brand

We all have a personal brand. What makes you unique? Envision the impression you want to make. Your interviewers are meeting several candidates. How do you want to differentiate yourself and be remembered?

Present yourself professionally. Be conscious of your body language, maintain eye contact, and let the interviewer finish their thought before you respond.

We know you may be nervous, so try to collect your thoughts before you speak. Take your time to answer questions, and communicate concisely. Remember, we want you to succeed.

It may seem excessive, but it helps to practice interviewing, whether in front of a mirror or with another person. Get comfortable speaking about yourself, but avoid sounding too rehearsed. It’s important to be genuine, enthusiastic and stay true to who you really are.

Your Interests

Have a compelling reason for why you want to work in this industry, our firm, and the division you’re interested in. Passion is imperative—it’s what sets Morgan Stanley apart from others in the industry. We genuinely want to make a difference in the world.

Show how the position you are interviewing for aligns with your goals and expertise. Express your interest by asking the interviewer questions. Be sure the questions are relevant and specific. Enhance your understanding of what we do and who we are so you avoid generic questions like, "What is the culture like at Morgan Stanley?"

Do more than state your interests. Express your knowledge gained from experience and education and how you can use that in the role.

At Morgan Stanley, we believe that diversity and inclusiveness make us stronger. How will you enrich our culture

Our Firm and Industry

Familiarize yourself with our history, principles and core values. Learn how we are organized. Research our management and key senior leaders. Stay up-to-date on the latest financial news and Morgan Stanley’s positioning in the marketplace. Understand the basics of how government regulation affects the financial industry. Learn about the financial crisis: what happened and why? Research the program and division you have applied to and keep up to date with its current affairs, trends, and innovations.

We don’t expect candidates to understand all spheres of the markets, finance, and economics. But it’s a good idea to choose one or two areas of the industry that you can discuss with knowledge and enthusiasm. Make an effort to understand what professionals at your level do in the industry and at Morgan Stanley.

Be sure to use all the resources available to you—refer to our online resources and publications. Also, take a moment and explore our Recommended Reading list. It can be a great starting point for discovering more about our culture.

Enjoy your time preparing for the interview. Life-changing opportunities only come around once in a while—this is one of them.

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