How do bankers stay responsive overnight?

I've seen tons of stories of bankers getting the 2 AM text and bolting into the office to work on some fire drill. I'm able to stay up until whenever but usually once I'm asleep I can't wake up until the morning - how are you able to wake up to the late night text? Is there some set up or is everyone just a light sleeper?


Of course you can.

Just set up a phone alarm every hour of the night so that you can check your emails regularly.

Same as having a kid.

From VP onwards you should be able to coordinate the two for maximum efficiency


Personally, I find that every hour is a bit too spaced out. An analyst should respond within 15 minutes at most. The guidelines at my bank are for analysts to set up alarms every 15 minutes, which can then be increased to 30 minutes once you make associate. Rumour has it MDs only need to set an alarm for every 2 hours. 


I always sleep with my phone in airplane mode. No way some fucking email is gonna disturb my 4 hours of sleep. Just ask your team before you go home if there is anything else that needs to be done and if they say no then just go home and sleep. If you go home early, then just stay responsive until midnight or so. 


Tf? I'll go to sleep at midnight unless I'm in a very big deal or working on an important meeting for tomorrow/in a few days where I know I'm expecting comments from someone. Who tf puts alarms throughout the night? I normally try to wake up early and catch any emails that came in late but never had an issue with emails coming in while I was sleeping that were urgent. Most of my class did the same and we were in a "sweatshop" group that people fantasize over in this forum.


Congrats on staying up till 3am when you have no urgent deadlines on the horizon. No better way to get top bucket than by staring at your phone till 3am in case a random emails comes through. If you can't figure out when to sleep or not based on your deadlines then idk what to tell you. You should know when you need to stay up or when it is okay to sleep at a reasonable hour. If you aren’t sure then maybe learn to communicate with your teams? Don't spread misinformation on the forum.


The best practice seems to be to set your outlook, teams notification to a full blast volume of Aqua-Barbie Girl song

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When I was staffer, I used the set my new analysts with an electric shock collar. Any email starting with “urgent” in the title would buzz the collar automatically.

The thing was set to detach automatically at associate promotion.

More seriously, I can’t ever remember a situation where someone was called back to the office at 2am.

Surprises happen at 7-8am (public announcements) or 5-7pm (seniors get out of meetings).

I remember a live deal where we called the MD and the CFO at 5am because we had a last minute issue raised by the auditors at the printers when we were supposed to announce at 7am. That’s pretty much it.


I did sleep with my ringer on, not because I would wake up to an email or a slack but if someone really needed me at 2am, they can could call me.


Bolting to the office at night? What are these, the Middle Ages? I’ve gone back to the office once past 7pm in the past year and that was after an event.

I typically stay up until I know my tasks for the night are done. Otherwise the team can call me twice to get past DND in an emergency.

Some analysts I know set their alarm every hour to check for client emails but this is only on a live deal when we know client might send stuff late.


Yeah you just set alarms for every 30-45 minutes. It helps for those long nights when you need to be 100% responsive. 


i thought you guys were joking about the alarms until like a dozen people mentioned it. There’s no way anyone actually does that right? My logic is that if it’s really that important your seniors can call you. Can’t imagine anything super important being sent over email at 4am…


Idk if anyone else can relate, but I would do the alarms for real when I had a window of nothing to do during WFH, which is why it was easy to think of


To be clear people are joking about the alarms

This isn't how banking workflow works - you aren't getting put on a new project at 2am or anything like that. If you go to bed and then people are looking for you at 2am, you fucked up by not managing your teams or not knowing when deliverables are due. You should have some idea of when projects are due and whether you're okay to do them the next day, and there will absolutely be 2am nights but you should see these coming a bit. i.e. if you get an 8pm turn and the MD asks for it back tonight, or if you get staffed mid-day and they want to see a deck in the morning. But typically you are staying awake until all of your tasks for the night are done.

For a realistic solution - I keep my work phone in the kitchen (otherwise I'll wake up and check it...) and my personal phone is set so if anyone in my contacts list calls during the "do not disturb" hours, it comes through on high volume. But I've been called one single time in 5 years, and it was totally non-urgent - some asshole VP wanting to walk through comps live at 3am. 


I'm at ubs in a coverage group and it's explicitly stated by our staffers we need to set alarms to wake up and check emails at least every 2 hours at night. (I.e. bed at midnight check at 2am 4am 6am).

This is 100% a thing


damn bro, tbh I'd rather jump off a bridge than doing this for years 


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