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Barclays Leveraged Finance Interview
Questions

28 Questions and Answers by Ryan Brunner

Published April 13th, 2020 | Ryan has over 10 years of experience interviewing
candidates in the healthcare, public service, and private manufacturing/distribution industries.
Question 1 of 28
How many boxes of macaroni n' cheese were eaten in the United States last year?
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How to Answer
er Questions like this during your interview are meant to test your ability to deduce an answer from a very limited set of information and assumptions. You and your interviewer both know that it would be impossible for you to know or even calculate the correct answer, so your interviewer is solely looking for the factors that you use in extrapolating the answer that you give. In your answer, be as detailed as possible in why you are making the assumptions that you are when coming to a final answer.
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1.
How many boxes of macaroni n' cheese were eaten in the United States last year?
er Questions like this during your interview are meant to test your ability to deduce an answer from a very limited set of information and assumptions. You and your interviewer both know that it would be impossible for you to know or even calculate the correct answer, so your interviewer is solely looking for the factors that you use in extrapolating the answer that you give. In your answer, be as detailed as possible in why you are making the assumptions that you are when coming to a final answer.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In knowing that the population in the United States is around 325 million people, my biggest factors in determining my answer will be that children between the ages of two and ten consume 75% of the mac n' cheese each year and that the other 25% is consumed by ages ten and above. The other factor is that the kids eat one box per week and the ages over ten eat two per month. So, I'll determine that there are 80 millions children between two and ten and figure that they'll eat 4.2 billion boxes. Then I'll determine that there ere 240 million people over ten that eat two per month to get 5.7 billion boxes of mac n' cheese. When added together, I'd say the final answer is right around 10 billion boxes of man n' cheese are eaten in the US each year."
Ryan's Answer #2
"My estimate of this number would factor in the total US population over three years old, the people that eat macaroni n' cheese to be around 280 million people. Then, I'd factor that in the summer, each person eats one box per week and in other seasons they eat one per month. During the summer, the population would consume 3.4 billion boxes and during the other three seasons, they would consume 2.5 billion between all people. This would add up to right around 6 billion boxes eaten in the United States last year."
2.
What statistical analysis tools do you have experience working with?
As a successful and resourceful Data Analyst, your interviewer at Barclays Leveraged Finance is expecting you to be knowledgeable and well-versed in the many tools available to you. In your answer, be sure to show diversity within particular programs like SAS and SPSS while also explaining that you are very proficient in Microsoft Excel. On top of the programs, talk about any experience you have with programming and database language like SQL and Python.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my current role, most of my analysis is handled in SAS and I've really grown to appreciate the program's ability to to manage large data sets and create predictive modeling in the financial field. From a past job, I have experience on SPSS and also with the SQL programming language to build robust databases. Of course, I have received expert level training in Microsoft Excel and consider myself a master of the program."
Ryan's Answer #2
"Having been in the field for over 15 years, looking back at the technological advancements in the tools that we use is very amazing. I consider myself very fluent in both the Sisense and KISSmetrics programs. I also have a good amount of experience in Crystal Reports."
3.
Talk to me about a challenging situation you had to handle on the job that involved another colleague. How did you handle that situation?
At the heart of this question, your interviewer is looking to hear how you use solid interpersonal and relationship building skills to diffuse a difficult situation with a coworker when on the job. No matter what situation that you talk about, make sure to focus your answer on a positive mindset and the steps that you walked through to turn a potentially hazardous situation into a good one. As well, talk about lessons learned from that situation that you keep with you to this day on the job.

Ryan's Answer #1
"A couple of years ago, we had hired a new Junior Advisor on to our team and I was tasked with being his mentor. Having mentored several other thriving Junior Advisors prior to him starting, I was excited for the opportunity. Within the first week of him being on the job, I overheard a colleague of mine talking very openly about his disdain for the hire of this new Advisor and witnessing him personally criticizing him in a face-to-face encounter. Immediately, I spoke to my colleague in a private office about my concern over his actions and words towards the new Advisor. Having been a part of the interview process and his early mentorship, I knew that he had the skills to succeed and I reiterated that to my colleague. After agreeing to back off on any private criticizing of the new Advisor and a promise to help mentor him, I learned that direct conversations are the best way to handle workplace conflicts."
Ryan's Answer #2
"f"A couple of years ago, I approached a colleague that had missed a deadline or a big audit we were conducting and she completely blew up at my during our conversation. At first, I was very taken aback by her response because I had never witnessed that from her in many years of working together. While remaining calm, I allowed her the opportunity to vent to me and it turns out that she was going through a lot of things in her personal life that were impacting her work. While keeping our project deadlines in mind, I also took a personal approach in letting her know that she could bring these issues to me as both a colleague and a friend and we could work through them together in the future. This approach is vital to any conflicts that can arise with colleagues and one I don't hesitate to take when needed."
4.
What is the most attractive thing in your eyes about this role with Barclays Leveraged Finance?
For this question, your interviewer is looking to gain insight into what you know and like about Barclays Leveraged Finance and how they will be able to help you meet your career goals. In your answer, try and stay focused on the alignment of your values with the organization's values and demonstrate that you've done your research on Barclays Leveraged Finance and the job you are interviewing for. To try and maintain positivity in your answer, try not to talk bad about a previous employer as that can make you sound like a difficult employee and raise a red flag for your interviewer.

Ryan's Answer #1
"Over the past couple of years, I've had an eye on pursuing a career with Barclays Leveraged Finance because of your reputation as a forward moving financial institution and your commitment to the communities that you do business in. As a person that believes in togetherness and helping others out where possible, these are values that I hold very high and would bring to the team here."
Ryan's Answer #2
"As I enter the midway point of my career, my job search has been focused on finding an employer that I can spend the rest of my career with and someday retire from. Looking at the history, culture and growth of Barclays Leveraged Finance, this is definitely a place that I'd love to be a part of as you continue to grow and prosper into the future."
5.
In this role with Barclays Leveraged Finance, we will rely on your organized and methodical approach to provide financial analysis reporting. What does your current reporting process consist of?
Providing the clients of Barclays Leveraged Finance with detailed reports will be a key part of this position and your interviewer will be looking to gauge your ability to be organized and detailed while also utilizing your critical thinking skills to provide the best reports possible. In your answer, keep a focus on the techniques and tools that you use to do your job in ensuring that clients are receiving the most accurate and detailed reports possible. As well, let your interviewer know that you are willing to learn new ways and new technologies to help onboard yourself to their team quicker.

Ryan's Answer #1
"In my current role, I utilize the Tableau program to provide live, up to date information to my clients. After using a simply built Excel program for many years, Tableau provides beautiful and easy to understand reporting that my clients can take and run with to make important decision. The connections and automations within the program have save me time and effort, allowing me to take on a much more robust client base. If hired for this role here at Barclays Leveraged Finance, I also have familiarity with SAS and Spotfire and consider myself a very quick learner if I need to learn a new program."
Ryan's Answer #2
"When I need to provide reporting to clients or my firm, I ensure that the reporting includes all key risks and valuation. Today, we as Financial Analysts have so many great tools available to us and my current preference is a statistical program like Crystal Ball. When paired with the advance Excel sheets that I have created, and have been commended, my clients are always happy with the insight that I am able to provide."
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