Hey guys, I had a quick question for you. I received an email from a managing partner of a boutique asking me what my expected compensation would be as an analyst (I received this after interviewing with another partner). The firm is based in Chicago and was recently started. I would imagine - in this economy - that compensation for employees is a concern of theirs, at least for the time being. I was wondering how I should approach/respond to the email. I really do not want to give an exact figure in the email but I also want to stress cost of living, market rate, etc. I really would appreciate any feedback. I have to email him back today. Thanks!

Comments (10)


If I were asked this question, id just tell him from my research on the analyst salaries at small to mid size firms, the range is about xx-xx. I think he understands that u have cost of living expenses..

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I defer until they basically demand it. Usually, a nicer version of "my expectations are to be paid what the job pays".


Thanks guys, I appreciate it. I was just thrown off guard by the question in the email. My only experience has been face-to-face when discussing this matter.


You want to phrase it that "I am excited to come work for you, and in all my experience and research, $xx,xxx seems to be market compensation for analysts at firms like ours".

You don't want to sound like "I demand $xx,xxx or you can go fuck yourself"...

- Capt K -
"Prestige is like a powerful magnet that warps even your beliefs about what you enjoy. If you want to make ambitious people waste their time on errands, bait the hook with prestige." - Paul Graham


Largely agree with the above.

If you want to leave yourself a little wiggle room on the off chance he can't afford your price, you can mention that the salary or total compensation would be a function of the requirements of the job.


I think a good way to respond would be as follows:

"In terms of compensation, I'd be willing to entertain a competitive offer."


No, no, he's requesting an ask from you. You've got to be a man and give him a number. I would cite the market rate for my services.

If he's equity rich and cash poor- and he has a good track record, you may want to think about offering to take a lower cash base and/or bonus and take some of the pay in the form of options or equity. However, don't do him a favor and expect him to repay it. Enumerate things in writing, make sure he some kind of corporate or partnership structure set up, and expect to make junior partner next year in lieu of a bonus.


OP, I know what firm you're talking about. You should be able to request 60-70 base. Give them that range, and tell them it's based on your research of other firms. I don't know why they're asking, they should have just offered you something in that range.

How many years of experience do you have? Congrats on your offer.


I would agree with most of the previous posters. Simply give a modest range - for example, BB first years earn $70k starting, so it would be fine to suggest $60 to $70k and then support that with something like based on your research, starting salaries for 1st year analysts are between $60 and $70 or even $55 to $70 if you want to be even more conservative.


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