There is a new trend in human resources developing in corporate America. More and more companies are allowing employees to sell their unused vacation time, but some are even allowing employees to buy more vacation time - in some cases from the employees selling theirs.
This got me thinking: how much would you pay for more time off in banking? We all know the hours are brutal, and it would be great to get an extended break once in awhile that didn't require your hospitalization or the faked death of a relative. On one hand, it would be pretty easy to take your all-in comp and divide that by the number of days you worked in the previous year and set the rate that way. But it really comes down to the value you provide to your company, which is really much more subjective.
Let's say for the sake of simplicity that you worked 300 days last year and that your all-in comp was $120,000. Based on that, you made $400 a day. Would a day off be worth $800 to you? I'm making the assumption that the minimum you'd have to pay for a day off was $400 and that said day off would be unpaid leave, hence the $400 you wouldn't earn that day.
But then you have to stop and think: if the bank is paying you $400 a day, it's because they're making at least $500 a day from your efforts. Let's face it: we don't work for non-profit organizations. So maybe your bank would charge you $500 or more for a day off. What if your best friend's bachelor party is coming up and it's a 4-day Vegas bro-out over a weekend your group has an active deal working. Is it worth another couple grand to be poolside at the Tropicana to you?
It's an interesting thought exercise for a couple of reasons. First, it makes you consider what you're actually worth to your employer. Second, it gives you a solid idea of how much you value your off time. It's one thing to bitch about never having any time off; it's another thing entirely to put your money where your mouth is and stroke a check for some precious "me" time.
Not that a bank would ever make something like this available to employees. There's too much opportunity for, when you think about it. Guys on the floor would start selling time off futures, thus enabling savvy investors to duck out of the shittiest work weekends. Plus there's the obvious talent gaps something like this could leave.
But I know that I had days I would've paid $500 to get out of. Or double that. Easy. I've had days I was so hungover I'd have paid a couple grand just to go sleep it off.
What about you guys? What's a day off worth to you? Assume there were no repercussions for taking the time off; that once you paid for it you got it no strings attached. How much would you pay for a single day off? What about a long weekend when your group is buried in work?