You must have heard of Goldman Sachs if you are interested in banking or finance. It is one of the biggest institutions globally when it comes to investment banking, securities, and investment management. It has a rich client base, mostly made up of Fortune 500 companies. In case you are eyeing a position in this global giant, here are a few questions that you should anticipate:
1. What Do You Like Most about Goldman Sachs?
You will probably be asked this in the first round of interviews. Goldman Sachs is a global leader, and therefore, your reason should be pretty good. Make sure that you praise them as much as possible and convince the interviewer that this is your dream workplace.
As a banker, Goldman Sachs has always been my dream workplace. I love how you have revolutionized banking over the years. I grew up reading a lot about you and how you handle investments for fortune 500 companies. You have managed to stay on top despite competition from other institutions. I would therefore love to be part of your fantastic organization.
2. What Do You Dislike About Us?
Even though this may not be asked in the interview, you still need to have a pretty good answer. Hiring managers love honest people. Your response will also show that you know a lot about the institution. There are several things that Goldman Sachs has been accused of over the years. Please do not shy away from mentioning them.
Even though I have always lived in awe of Goldman Sachs, there are some scandals that you have been part of, which I dislike. I’m not too fond of the role you played in the 2008 financial crisis, which saw many people lose their investments. Your 987 subsidiaries in offshore tax havens located in the Cayman Islands also encourage appropriation and Stealing of funds, especially from governments and CEOs.
3. Who are Our Main Competitors?
By now, you must have realized that all the questions we have covered are mainly testing your knowledge of Goldman Sachs. It would therefore help to research extensively on this financial institution before your interview. Find out as much information as you can about Goldman Sachs and use it to answer this question.
You have quite a number of competitors. The main ones are Credit Suisse, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley, Charles Schwab, Raymond James, Edward Jones, Merrill Lynch, Bank of America, and JP Morgan Chase. ( These are just a few of Goldman’s competitors. You can mention as many as you want)
4. Why Should Clients Choose Us Over Our Competitors?
Do you know some of the things that make Goldman Sachs outstanding? Why should clients pick them over some of the other institutions that we have just mentioned? You can say their return on investment for clients, security, or any other factual reason. Your answer will also tell the interviewer that you have done your homework well.
You are a global leader in investment banking, a reason that single-handedly makes you better than your competitors. People should choose you because you offer a higher return on investment as compared to your competitors. Your clients can therefore rest assured that their investments are safe.
5. What Worries You Most When You Take a Look at the Stock Market?
This is a chance to convince the interviewer that you watch the stock market and stay at par with recent developments. Remember, the interviewer does not expect a fixed answer given that the stock market changes from time to time. You can also choose to turn this question around by saying that every situation in the stock market comes with its benefits.
Well, I am an investor with over 15 years of experience. I do not, therefore, have a reason to worry since every situation in the stock market comes with good investment opportunities. (You can also weigh in on the stock market and identify a potential future challenge. All in all, convince the interviewer that you are well versed with the market)
6. Could You Mention a Time When You Got Out of Your Comfort Zone?
Working at Goldman Sachs requires lots of effort. Remember, this is the leading investment banking institution globally. You cannot, therefore, afford to stay in your comfort zone. Mention an experience where you went above and beyond to ensure that you achieved a particular result. Convince the hiring manager that you are willing to do whatever it takes to succeed at Goldman Sachs. Show that you can thrive in situations that require you to leave your comfort zone.
My bank once instructed me to lead a negotiation with a difficult client. He was a potential investor who we had been eyeing for quite some time. He turned down all our offers and instead presented his own crazy offers. I went out of my way, meeting with him every day of the week and coming up with new proposals approved by other bank officials until I convinced him.
7. Where Would You Invest if I Gave You $10000 Right Now?
You cannot work in a leading banking institution without adequate investment knowledge. You should identify a viable opportunity that will guarantee you good returns on investment. Make sure that you buy an appreciating asset if you decide to take that route.
I would spend a few days identifying promising investment opportunities or viable ideas. However, if I have to decide in a few hours or a day, I will buy shares and stocks from well-performing companies.
8. Mention any Strength that Your Team Will Benefit From
This is a chance to sell yourself by highlighting some of your positive attributes and matching them to the job description. Make sure that whatever you mention will benefit your team. Also, be brief and straight to the point.
I believe that my team will greatly benefit from my conflict handling skills. I know how to bring peace and repair broken relationships in work settings since productivity is always enhanced when people are in good terms and are willing to work together. I will therefore be on the lookout for any potential conflicts and try as much as possible to prevent them from happening.
9. How Do You Normally Handle Pressure?
Goldman Sachs will want to know if you can deliver results in stressful circumstances. It would be best to convince the hiring manager that you can handle the pressure that comes with this job, which may also differ from task to task. If you are an investment analyst, prepare to be on the phone with clients who need immediate answers on different stocks. Tell the interviewer how you will cope in such circumstances.
I understand the pressure that comes with investment banking. Having been in this industry for quite some time, I can confidently say that it brings out the best in me. I have the right skills to deal with demanding clients and can also handle heavy workloads.
10. What Skills Do You Need for this Role at Goldman Sachs?
This is a skillset interview question whose answer is dependent on the particular role you are interviewing for. Goldman Sachs needs an array of skills, competencies, and attributes from their new hires, which you should have. Some of the common ones include the ability to solve problems, motivation, and excellent customer service. Make sure that you research extensively on the particular role. If you are applying for an engineering job with Goldman Sachs, here is a possible answer:
This job requires me to have excellent technical and analytical skills, be self-motivated, and be a technology lover.
OROne should value customer service and risk management as well as be passionate about business process design for a management position.
11. What Do You Understand by Great Teamwork?
Keep in mind that Goldman Sachs values teamwork, collaboration, and integrity since it believes that these three factors play an essential role in customer service and satisfaction. You will rarely work independently as most of the roles and pretty interdependent. Give an excellent definition of teamwork by mentioning some of the mandatory aspects.
Great teamwork to me means understanding my team members and working together as a unit to deliver results. It also encompasses being there for one another, stepping in for my fellow employees, and ensuring no one is left behind.
12. What Do You Know About Us?
You should not apply for a job if you haven’t found out more about your intended workplace. You can mention proven facts about Goldman Sachs, their year of incorporation, employee base, or any information worthy to the interviewer. This is where you convince the hiring manager that you did your research well and know several things about their organization.
Goldman Sachs is a multinational investment bank and financial service company founded in 1869 by Marcus Goldman and Samuel Sachs. It has its headquarters in New York and offers a range of services such as securities, asset management, investment management, underwriting, and prime brokerage while managing assets of over 2 trillion dollars.
13. Share With Us Your Greatest Achievement
This is a question that applies to all job positions you may be targeting. It is pretty straightforward. The interviewer wants you to mention a time or experience that defined your life. You can take two approaches given that this question is not specific and either mention an achievement in your career or your life. Ensure that you talk proudly and show a great deal of admiration.
My most outstanding achievement in life is taking myself through college. I worked three jobs to ensure that I had enough for my college education. My efforts we not in vain since I graduated with first-class honors in economics. It is a story I will live to tell my children.
14. How Do You Stay Motivated In Your Work?
It would be best to tell the interviewer where you get your motivation from. Working at Goldman Sachs comes with a lot of pressure. You will be dealing with huge sums and several clients who may also be very demanding. Having a good source of motivation will help you manage these challenges and soldier on even when everything seems bleak.
I am passionate about investment banking, a decision that I made at a pretty young age. My work, therefore, gives me lots of pleasure, and constantly motivates me to give my best. I also have a strong support system consisting of several friends and family members, who push me to be better at what I do, carry on and give my all at all times.
15. Mention the Main Challenge that You Foresee in this Workplace
You will encounter several challenges when working for Goldman Sachs, especially if you are moving from a lower institution. However, that does not mean that it is a bad workplace. Just find out about the different aspects of the organization and identify where you may run into problems once you get the job.
Goldman Sachs is a leading global investment institution. I have only worked for national corporations and banks. I may therefore need some time to adjust. I believe that you have programs that will help me out. I am also able to adapt to change quickly and will therefore be set in no time. (Or you can mention the pressure that is likely to come with this job given that most of their customers are fortune 500 companies. However, assure the hiring manager that you can manage)
16. What are Your Expectations?
What do you expect from Goldman Sachs, your fellow employees, the managers, and the job as a whole? What comes to mind when you think about Goldman Sachs? You can mention your expectations of their services, operations, customer base, or general work environment. You can also choose to tell the interviewer that you only expect a lot from yourself.
Given that this is a global institution, I expect fast and efficient operations. As for my colleagues, I hope for a supportive and collaborative workforce. I am a great believer in teamwork, which you also believe in. I expect to have a good time working here and learn many things to help me advance in my career.
17. When Did You First Hear About Us?
When did you first come across the name Goldman Sachs? This is also a pretty straightforward question that needs a concise answer. It would help if you also assured the interviewer that you have been keeping up with the institution ever since you first heard about it as this shows interest.
I first heard about Goldman Sachs in the events leading to the 2008 economic crisis. I was in high school by then but with a burning passion for world economics. I was intrigued by a piece I read in the New York Times and have since kept up with you.
18. Mention a Strength that Qualifies You For this Role
What are some of your attributes that will make you an excellent addition to Goldman Sachs? Your answer should be dependent on the job you are eyeing. We advise that you look at the job description one more time and identify strengths that will help you handle the listed roles then match the strength to the job.
I know how to work well with others. I have a range of people skills that helps me thrive in teams. I can also bring people together and rally them towards a common goal in team settings. I believe that this is necessary here, seeing how much you value teamwork.
19. Can You Mention Some of Our Core Values
Every organization has its values. These usually guide operations, ensuring that both the objectives and missions are met. You will be required to uphold them as you go about your duties in the workplace. You must research more about the organization and correctly identify its values.
Goldman Sachs has four core values that help it achieve its purpose. These are client service, integrity, partnership, and excellence.
20. Can You Describe Our Culture?
You should fond out about the culture of your prospective employer to know whether you will fit in well. Goldman Sachs will continually assess if you know certain critical information about it. When describing their culture, you can mention some of the things this institution prides itself in. What does Goldman Sachs value?
Goldman Sachs culture is highly dependent on teamwork, client service, and giving back to the society it serves. This culture is responsible for this institution’s success.
You will only get one chance at Goldman Sachs. Therefore, ensure that you ace your interview and secure your target position. Find out as much information as you can about this financial giant.