Alright, seriously now: Stop going to JP Morgan Houston
Another year, another set of interns and juniors fucked over. It is legitimately staggering how many people I know personally who have been fucked over in the Jonathan Cox era. More than any other bank or group by a very wide But.... I get why people go there - deal flow is the best in the industry. Take a list of the biggest, most prominent, front page WSJ type energy deals in a given will probably be on one side or the other.
- They routinely no-offer people who easily would have gotten offers at other banks. Not just one offs - think 50%+ of the class. And who wins and who loses is far more erratic than at other banks (where seniors are heavily deferential to the analysts/associates/VPs who are best positioned to give a good assesment of the interns). The entire future path of your career can come down to a handful of interactions with il Duce. Which leads to the next point...
- It's a totalitarian dictatorship led by a tyrant and his band of sycophants. People often compared to Trauber's mini-fiefdom, which wasn't necessarily wrong. But Trauber was a fair monarch and ran his kingdom well. This is much differrent - if Game of Thrones were still culturally relevant i'd probably make a reference to it here. You can lead and get people to follow by being likable and fair, or you can get them to fear you. This is an example of the latter. And while favoritism is part of the industry and part of corporate life generally, it's over the top extreme in this group.
- Compensation is often randomly garbage. Almost immediately after Cox arrived compensation for juniors was terrible and a large number of people left for greener pastures. If you dig back you can find these threads on WSO. The thought was that he was trying to clean house and push people out. True or not, that wasn't the last time it happened as you can see from recent threads.
- Layoffs are quick and aggressive at any sniff of a downturn. Often ahead of any other group in Houston, in spite of the excellent dealflow AND in spite of the already soul-crushing workload. Hard to say why exactly, but group heads generally have some power to push back. If they want to they can use their power to push and fight for their team and spare people. I'll leave it at that.
- The hours required are insane. Not much to elaborate on here - banking hours are all bad, some are horrific. Here they are horrific.
- Culture broadly is toxic. Previous themes play into this and it ultimately starts from the top. You aren't treated with respect or dignity. Again, this is commonplace in banking - some places treat you poorly, others treat you terribly. Here they treat you terribly.
- Add all of the above up and you get a group with extreme levels of turnover.
The above applies to both analysts and associates, but it's probably twice or three times as important for associates. Seriously, protect your career and future and sanity and don't take a summerHouston. Go to literally any other bank in Houston. This is now Houston was back when everyone shit on Jefferies Houston. At least they gave you a return offer and paid you well after butt fucking you. The single most important part of your a return offer. As dumb as it is, this stupid industry is like a club. Get an offer, get your hand stamped, and you're in the club and can stay in the club. You can bounce around forever if you want to. Get fucked over in your summer and you're facing a very steep hill to find your way back in.