Getting hired for a senior sales role at an investment bank is all about how many clients you can bring with you. If you can't bring the clients, you won't get hired.
"People will always be interested in the accounts you cover and how portable they are," says Ibrahim Zaheer at Kennedy Associates.
"People will always ask which clients you think you can bring with you," says Ted Tracey at Kinsey Allen. "As the interview process progresses, it's not unknown for interviewers to ask sales candidates to call their clients to demonstrate the strength of the relationship."
If you pass this hurdle, you may even be asked to provide five client references before the job offer is made totally final. The hiring bank will then call those clients and enquire whether they would be willing to do business with you under their platform.
And if your clients say no?
The job offer may be rescinded. "If salesperson's clients are really the firm's clients and not his/her clients, a bank won't want to hire them," says one headhunter. "I get loads of calls from people who want to leave Morgan Stanley and Goldman, but I'm not interested. They're selling on the back of the franchise and need to stay where they are."