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The hedge fund interview process is a mystery to many.
But should you be lucky enough to score one, here's something that should help you prepare for the big day.
An applicant tells us that when he interviewed at a large, prominent hedge fund, the head guy asked him one tricky question. After he answered, the main guy said, "That's correct."
But the applicant could tell that something about the way he answered it was wrong. He wasn't surprised when he didn't get the job.
The question: "How much money do I have in my pocket?"
The question came out of left field, says the applicant, who called it an "impossible situation."
"I was told and had heard of this firm's selectivity when interviewing candidates, and it seemed like the thorough process was meant to make sure that no matter what, the candidate would be a good cultural fit. Part of the cultural fit was the ability to handle oneself smoothly in an impossible situation."
He thinks that's the part of the interview process he got wrong.
"The question meant to assess how a person would react in a high-pressure situation; even though the actual position was quite junior, here the candidate was: being interviewed by the CEO."
It sounds like under pressure from the CEO, tons of things were going through his mind.
"Think about how you would have responded to that question at a moment's notice... how impossible it was to tell what this person might have been thinking. Maybe a few dollars, because he was modest, despite his position. Maybe a few thousand, because of his position. Maybe nothing... because carrying money is beneath one. Maybe the money was a metaphor... maybe money was irrelevant and he was just judging your facial expressions... process that in 5 seconds and make a decision how...