You can learn about the world of private equity by checking out Web sites such as Private Equity International (https://www.privateequityinternational.com) or by reading books such as The Investor Relations Manual (Private Equity International, 2011), Private Equity 4.0: Reinventing Value Creation (John Wiley & Sons, 2015), and What It Takes: Lessons in the Pursuit of Excellence by Blackstone Chairman, CEO, and Co-founder Stephen A. Schwarzman (Avid Reader Press/Simon & Schuster, 2019).
Talk with investment relations specialists at private equity firms and those at Fortune 500 companies to learn more about the field. Participate in financial competitions and private equity clubs in college to develop your skills and build your professional network.
Job duties for investor relations specialists vary by the size of their firm, type of fund, and other factors. At a smaller firm, one IR specialist may be responsible for everything from writing weekly and monthly reports for review by senior management, to responding to informational queries from current limited partners, and heading out on road shows with managing partners to meet prospective investors. At a large firm, there is usually an entire IR team, which has specific duties and experience levels—from the entry-level business analyst who reviews financial statements and prepares presentations, to IR managers who meet with institutional investors to try to convince them to invest in their firm’s latest fund. At some firms, IR professionals are also responsible for fund raising (actually soliciting the money that is invested), while at others, a fund raising department handles this important task. Major duties of IR specialists include: