How to earn respect from your analysts?

Hey guys I'm an associate at IB, got promoted to Associate around 9 months ago or something.

I feel like some of my analysts aren't respecting me enough. For example when I ask one of the analysts to do sth he just never acknowledges it or replies very late. I sometimes have to @ him in a group chat with seniors in so he will feel the pressure to reply to me and he finally will do it.

Also sometimes some analysts just don't like to take comments (may think my comments are value add or sth) but then the end product is so bad that my bosses may scream at me if it's send out. When I send over my comments they are never appreciative, I feel

So my question is, how do you earn respect / manage / work with analysts better so they do what you tell them to do / respect you more as a "senior"?

Generally do you have to keep certain distance from your juniors to let them respect you (avoid being too friendly to them)?

I used to be super soft and friendly to one of my analysts and now he's not listening to me anymore .

Obviously I'm a junior associate so not an MD but I still want to gradually learn how to properly "manage" and work with employees who are more juniors then you.

Any thoughts welcome

Comments (52)

Funniest
  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jun 17, 2022 - 9:52pm

Beat his fucking ass. 
 

edit: whoever MSed, my associate's gonna beat your fucking ass. 

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jun 18, 2022 - 5:44pm

And make him call you daddy 😳

would hate if my associate did that to me 

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Jun 18, 2022 - 12:30am

Bring it up to your VP/MD on the deal, and put some pressure on them. I always try to respond asap or at least keep my associates up to date with a timeframe on a task. Sounds like either your comments aren't that value add or that you just got a poor class of analysts. I'm guessing the latter if they can't even communicate with you. Best of luck with that.

Jun 18, 2022 - 9:41pm
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Nope, sorry, but this is terrible advice. While it may sound like good advice on the surface, it ultimately makes you look like a weak manager to your chain of command above you. They may hear you out and they may even tell you, "I'll see what I can do". But what they really mean is, "Are you not empowered as a manager to do something about it? They're your team, you should be handling it". Do not escalate to anyone until you have done everything (and I mean everything) possible to handle the situation yourself. 

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Jun 22, 2022 - 2:27pm
SafariJoe, what's your opinion? Comment below:

GoingToBeAnMD

Nope, sorry, but this is terrible advice. While it may sound like good advice on the surface, it ultimately makes you look like a weak manager to your chain of command above you. They may hear you out and they may even tell you, "I'll see what I can do". But what they really mean is, "Are you not empowered as a manager to do something about it? They're your team, you should be handling it". Do not escalate to anyone until you have done everything (and I mean everything) possible to handle the situation yourself. 

This is how see it too. Crying to daddy means you cannot problem solve. You like any team, you need to build one based on values and competition and merit. If someone is not pulling their weight you have to understand what is the primary issue. Sometimes it as simple as communication, sometimes is not a good fit for the group.

SafariJoe, wins again!
Most Helpful
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Jun 18, 2022 - 4:00am

I'm an Associate on the buyside (ignore the username) so still very much at the bottom of the totem pole and don't have experience managing a group of analysts. But given I've had my share of difficulties with certain associates when I started my prior job as an analyst, perhaps I'll speak to what I thought worked well and really what I'd like to emulate when I start managing folks: 

- Tough when it comes to business / friendly otherwise. I think a mixed approach is always effective. I always appreciated associates or VPs that you could shoot the shit when it was a chill work day or at a post work outing. But that doesn't mean they became pushovers when it came to actual work. Establish boundaries. We're buds outside business, but when it comes to getting shit done, it needs to get done.  Your analysts should realize that. I respected the associate who I could chat with for an hour about the nba playoffs or champions league, but was also the one that warned me that we got a sprint coming and it's time to lace up and get cranking (I.e. we divide and conquer, you send me your slides, I check your slides and send comments which I expect to be turned) 

2 - Minimize multiple turns / acknowledge stupid comments. Part of being a good associate is anticipating potential comments from your VP and tackling them in advance. If you're able to predict those, let your Analyst know in advance so he doesn't feel like he's turning the same shit over 5x. He respects you and the VP respects you. Win-win. Some comments are also just straight retarded (I.e. you're not going to sell a company or secure a raise for a shitty company just cuz your slides shades of blue are perfectly synchronized and/or you use the Oxford comma). But it's just like that sometimes. And when you email your analyst, just say something along the lines "this is the stupidest thing but can you go through the deck and check for …" Realized that when associates said that to me, we were really in the trenches together. Your comments don't necessarily need to be as "value-add" as you think - they just need to minimize repetitions. Willing to bet you that most of the analysts you work with can't tell / also don't care how much value you're adding to the slide as long as they don't have to receive a barrage of comments from the higher levels that keeps them in the office till 5am versus the disappearing act they were trying to pull at midnight.  
 

3. Set expectations. If you want your analyst to reply within 15 mins of you emailing him, tell him. There's no point getting frustrated internally. You guys are a team. Work together. 
 

4. Back your team. If you can, push back on tough timelines and stupid requests. Read above, you're a team. Treat them as such, they'll treat you the same. 
 

5. Stop being a hardo dick who relishes all nighters. Literally have worked with associates who wear hours worked as a badge of honor, probably did as analysts, and salivate at the prospect of a sprint. Don't be that person. I have hated those associates with a vengeance. Not only cuz they're big on Facetime and keep piling on unnecessary  work but cuz they have a smile on their face all the time - fuck that smile and fuck them. 
 

6. When all else fails, forget the carrot, use the stick. Remind them that your opinion is important cuz you could probably speak the most to their work product. So get their shit together or you will have no problem fucking their annual review and bonus. I've personally seen other prima Donna analysts and nothing pleases me more than an associate telling them that they ain't shit and to get the work done

  • Analyst 3+ in CorpFin
Jun 19, 2022 - 9:16am

Agreed on all accounts. Use "I can't brag about you unless you produce quality work products." Make it clear that you want to be able to support their career.

Jun 18, 2022 - 4:39am
TommyPickles13, what's your opinion? Comment below:

To be an effective leader, you need to be aware that your approach needs to be tailored specifically to each individual. The fact that this guy has done it multiple times and you haven't gotten on him about it means you need to fix yourself. You can be hard and direct with people without being a jerk, but it's clear being friendly isn't going to work with him.

The sooner you overcome allowing people beneath you to walk all over you, the better you'll be for any type of work in life where you want to be in charge. Strong leaders are masters at motivating and manipulating people into doing what they want. Fear might be what it'll take for this guy to respect you.

Jun 18, 2022 - 7:22am
MidMarketMcLovin, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Don't lead by fear, that's for assholes. Nobody wants to work for assholes, how many VPs / MDs who lead this way do you like working for? None is my guess. The job can be shitty enough as it is without having to deal with that. Leading by fear is for people who don't know how to manage subordinates. Your a new associate, you really aren't that much more senior to them so don't operate with the air that you. This is a common issue with new associates. You have to grow into that over your associate years.

  • Lead by example - take on some of the shitty work too, don't just downstream everything you don't want to do. If you're creating a deck, take on a handful of slides where you're best placed to do them.
  • No more than 2 turns - you can't provide comments more than 2 times, important word here being you rather than someone above you. If you're providing comments more than 2 times either you didn't think it through enough first time round, which is on you, or the analysts didn't process them, which is on them. If they didn't process them speak with them directly on changes they didn't capture.
  • Don't CC them into email chains with seniors - this is a passive aggressive move. Deal with them head on, I.e. "MD X is chasing on the deck where are you on your turn of it? I need to provide a timeline on when we'll send it through." Now it's on them to get it to you so you can review.
  • Apply the 80/20 rule - how many of your changes are really that impactful? Reality is most aren't. Only include changes which are going to improve the deck materially or are going to be asked for by the VP, not some obscure bullshit analysis / slide that the client won't read but will take an analyst 1 hour to pull together. Let the VP/MD ask for this shit so it's not on you.
  • Be consistent - you can be a good person to grab a beer with while also setting clear boundaries on what is and isn't acceptable professionally. Be consistent on what is and isn't acceptable and your analysts will know what they can do. If you're all over the place it'll create uncertainty and resentment.
  • Finish all emails with a confirmation of understanding and a timeline set by the analysts - make them confirm in writing they understand the request and put a timeline against when they'll get it to you. If they set the timeline they can work it into their schedule, and if they have to confirm they understand it they have to think through the deliverable.
Jun 18, 2022 - 10:09am
IncomingIBDreject, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Escalate to VP+. Assert dominance and don't let them walk over you. They can smell the weakness and are taking advantage of you. 

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Jun 18, 2022 - 9:41pm
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Nope, sorry, but this is terrible advice. While it may sound like good advice on the surface, it ultimately makes you look like a weak manager to your chain of command above you. They may hear you out and they may even tell you, "I'll see what I can do". But what they really mean is, "Are you not empowered as a manager to do something about it? They're your team, you should be handling it". Do not escalate to anyone until you have done everything (and I mean everything) possible to handle the situation yourself. 

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Jun 18, 2022 - 10:11pm
IncomingIBDreject, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Associates do not have the power to fire employees or do things that regular managers could from a disciplinary POV. The associate isn't a weak manager, his analyst is lazy and entitled. There are no excuses for not being responsive to emails and not turning your superiors comments (no matter how repetitive they seem) when that is exactly what analysts are getting paid six figures to do
I know you said somewhere else you work in IT risk or something so I could see how you have to be more flexible with an employee that has the technical skill set you want but is a bit lazier than expected. That's much different than IB where there's no real technical skillset and analysts are paid to respond and work a lot.

Array

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Jun 19, 2022 - 4:33am
MidMarketMcLovin, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Escalating it isn't asserting dominance, it's the opposite. It's like a child running to their parents because their younger sibling won't listen to them. If an associate comes to me to complain about an analyst my first question will be have you sat down with the analyst and explained the issues to them. If they haven't, why the fuck do they expect me to do it?

Once you've sat down with the analysts and explained the issues, if they continue to perform in the same way then escalate it. Be smart about it, don't go running to the VP and saying the analyst isn't doing what I ask them to do can you please reprimand them. Sit down with the VP and say I'm having issues with some of the analysts turning deliverables, can you provide any advice on managing down? Let the VP ask which analysts specifically if they want to (they might be having the same issues with said analysts), otherwise just get their view and implement it. This way you look like you're trying to grow in your management skills rather than just offloading your issues to the VP.

Jun 19, 2022 - 8:57am
IncomingIBDreject, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I think we have different interpretations of the OP. I agree with you that the associate should confront the analyst first but given the fact he has repeatedly tried to get responses / looped in others I assume he had already put in effort.

Again, I'm not saying the associate should go to the VP simply to complain like a child. I'm saying to escalate because clearly the analyst doesn't care any more and deserves to be disciplined / fired. This isn't kindergarten where the analyst needs to have their hand held. They're expected to work hard and be responsive in exchange for well above market salaries. If they can't 100 more people who aren't as arrogant and entitled wait in line for the job.

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Jun 26, 2022 - 2:38am
jeanneleez, what's your opinion? Comment below:

OMG. I was just going to say that. You need to earn respect, not be a whiny bitch about not getting it. There's plenty of leadership programs and even sh*t on YouTube you can watch to learn how to be an effective leader… I am actually surprised at how supportive this group is being. Unexpected but really good to see. 

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  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jun 18, 2022 - 12:18pm

Heyyy, I noticed your post was mainly about how analysts were reacting without specifying how you ask, how you behave etc. Just asking for some context and not assuming anything but I think it would be helpful to understand what is the source of their behaviour (does it come from them or you?)

I am wondering this because I noticed that the only associates that get this kind of behaviour form their analysts (ghosting for hours, not turning comments, not being involved etc) were ALWAYS the result from an associate delegating everything and chilling, or making unnecessary and inefficient request that seniors never ask for and will never need, or associate that speak like shit to the analyst (e.g. never says hi, never ask how are you, never say please) just say do this do that, always take credit for everything, make mistakes and ask analyst to redo again and again to correct the associate mistakes (more than 3x iterations)

But if you are not doing any of these things & you are a normal nice team worker associate, then analyst might be at fault

Do you know if the analyst behaves like this with other associates?

I don't think anyone in the work place will not respect someone from the get go, someone must do something to lose respect in the first place….

Hope this help and looking forward to having some more context on your situation

  • Associate 1 in PE - LBOs
Jun 18, 2022 - 4:31pm

Going A2A is strange because the analyst cohorts that came after you still see you as an equal given they worked beside you and shared analyst pains with you up until your promotion. That dynamic is always a little awkward regardless of how it should be. As time passes and they either rise in rank with you or leave, I think you'll find new cohorts to be more respectful of the professional etiquette around roles.

With that said, that doesn't mean you can be a shitty person and expect to command respect off of your title alone. Plenty of analysts use IB to springboard into PE or other roles and once they secure those roles, they're less inclined to bend over backward to meet your or anyone else's expectations of a great analyst. You have to nurture mutual trust and support them beyond the boundaries of the job to earn respect that transcends the job itself. That's where relationships are formed and a real sense of duty is born.

To be frank, the fact you even mentioned @ing analysts with seniors in a chat demonstrates that you're passive-aggressive. It's likely that the guys below you recognize and talk about this, and it's costing you support. Think about when you were an analyst and someone senior to you did stuff like that. You surely gossiped around who was cool and who was acting like a dork. This is no different, except now you're the subject. My guess is you're nervous about confrontation but you need to get good at it if you ever expect to manage anyone, whether it be analysts today, associates tomorrow or third parties in deal processes as you climb up. No one respects passive-aggressiveness.

Full disclosure: I'm making assumptions about you as an individual based on a tiny slice of your broader post, so take what I'm saying with a grain of salt. I don't mean to attack you but rather provide my perspective as an outsider to your circumstance based on what you wrote. Best of luck.

  • Associate 1 in IB - Gen
Jun 18, 2022 - 11:03pm

Thanks. Appreciate it. The only reason I @ them in group is because he never replies my private messages / skype quickly. I usually would like to ask for an eta to manage VP but usually I will get an eta after 5 hours I sent the message, or even worse, no reply.

Totally agree with you @ him in a group with vps in is passive aggressive, but seems this is one way that works that let him respond.

Maybe I should find out another way that work too.

Again thanks for the advice. I like non sugarcoated advice so I can learn and improve and know the reality / perspective of an analyst

Jun 22, 2022 - 6:32pm
Frost Alpha, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I would try calling the analyst's cell phone and if the situation stays the same just set up an in-person meeting and tell him why it's important for him to respond quickly.

Jun 18, 2022 - 9:47pm
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I agree with most of McLovin's post above, primarily:

  • There is no better leadership advice that I have received than, "The tone starts from the top". It's on you to set the example and lead accordingly. Believe it or not, your team will mimic your behaviors - its on you to show them by example. 
  • No passive aggressive behaviors. Calling them out in front of other people will only make the situation worse, not better, guaranteed
  • DO NOT escalate to your managers until you have done everything under the sun to handle it. When you escalate the only message you are conveying is that you are a weak manager that does not have the skills to drive a team. 

When I moved into management, I found the books by Amy Su to be very helpful, she also writes for HBR. I would recommend that you start reading some of her stuff and implement it when you can. It's up to you - and you alone - to improve your own management skills and handle your team. 

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Jun 18, 2022 - 11:24pm
breezy443, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Ask around amongst the associate class if other people are having problems with this analyst. As many posters have said, the problem could be you, or it could be them.

I've had success speaking up to VPs/staffers when I'm absolutely sure the analyst has a reputation of being lazy/unmotivated, and multiple associates brought it up. More often than not, the culprits tend to be the checked out 2nd year analysts.

If they have a good reputation in the group and are ignoring you for whatever reason, you are out of luck and the problem may be you.

  • Analyst 3+ in IB - Cov
Jun 19, 2022 - 5:22pm

It could be just that he is a bad analyst who does not care and will be leaving. If you are close to any of the associates (especially those working with this analyst on other projects) try to feel them up. If others analysts are good to you then it is this analyst's issue. Also are there any team dynamics? Is the analyst trying to impress specific people but not your deal team that's why they're ignoring you? I think even if my associate is an asshole I would never stop doing the work unless there is a really strong reason, if comments are stupid I delay them because I have better things to do or maybe push back every here and there but this agressive behavior might just mean he has another offer lined up. I am sure it is not a you problem but having said that, dont be passive agressive. I try to be direct with everyone and people appreciate it if you say hey could you please do x because of y? And hold this boundary.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
Jun 20, 2022 - 10:26am

yea yea pls fix to "how to earn respect from human beings" smh

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Jun 20, 2022 - 4:32am

1. Don't be a "Review" Associate. Refer to that "Review" vs. "Do" thread.

2. Don't be an asshole. We are all stressed out from time to time, but that doesn't give you the right to be a huge d*ck (although if you have one, kudos...)

3. Be patient and spend some time listening to the Analyst's side before you interrupt and say "just turn my comments". Your comments might not make much sense. 

4. Be flexible. If an Analyst has a family and asks for a WFH, and you have the clearance to give that option, do it. Don't be that creepy facetime Associate who sits in the office 120 hours a week because you love this job. We all love this job, so fuck off. 

Jun 20, 2022 - 8:43am
mxp804, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Think that respect is earned and not asked/forced - don't agree with people stating that you should bring it up to senior, to extent that can be avoided. Sometimes that may be required if its someone who is completely checked out because they just care anymore due to perhaps having an exit offer. But my take is that you should explore other options before "filing complaints". 

Perhaps start with what makes you respect your seniors? Or what made you respect Associates/VPs when you were an Analyst? Hopefully should be a helpful starting point, my sense is that the answers would be relatively similar if one were to take a survey of Analysts/Interns.

From my own experiences, juniors/people care about two things: 1) how much can I learn from my senior (i.e. is this someone I respect enough to emulate) and 2) how efficient is that person in terms of minimizing work given the crap work/life balance. 

Some analysts prioritize 2) over 1). 

Either way, no one likes to work for someone who "doesn't get it" and creates a lot of work/comments that gets tossed away in the end. I think everyone has had the pleasure of working with an Associate/VP who just isn't on the same frequency as the seniors, doesn't fully understand what the ask is and just starts throwing mud at the wall whilst being too afraid to double-check and clarify with the MD - it's just not a good look.

There are some Associates/VPs/Dir who know exactly how a slide/presentation needs to look like and can get there with minimal work which means he probably understood the message/intention of the deck (although I guess that is subjective) whilst achieving that without needless turning of comments and recreating work (more objective).  

  • VP in PE - Other
Jun 20, 2022 - 12:21pm

It's a generational thing too - more entitled young kids in a hot job market. No way these shenanigans would fly in the 2008-2010 era. You do that and you know you will get shit on in your review. Not saying it's good or bad - times are changing > shortage of talent + entitlement + resentment create this attitude. Sometime being nice and friendly can be mistaken for weakness. You need to tell them that they are paid for the job they are doing - they may not like it, but the buck stops with you and they have to do it. Ideally, you do it as a team but may not always be possible. Wasn't always this way - some of it is nice because people used to be too scared to push back, feel like the pendulum has swung in the other direction these days. Good luck!

Jun 20, 2022 - 1:29pm
kirklandsignature, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Would it be a good idea to ask your MD for advice? Then he gets tuned into the situation and you get advice from someone who's cracked the code at least a little. 

  • VP in IB - Cov
Jun 20, 2022 - 2:51pm

As someone who is more of a senior director and used to be the do vs check guy, and our best associates are still the same - I'll just caution against few

- I was the guy who stayed in office until 2-3am to help out the analysts. Turned out more often than not they were spending earlier part of the day finishing the work for the associate who walked away, became the check guy (if he ever did) and put strict timeline on analysts. His career turned out fine too

- Analysts will take advantage of you when you help them out

- see it more now. They don't know how to do anything cause 2nd/3rd year associates are doing model. It's a mess

- Bad analysts exist. Some are lazy second years, rest are nepotism hires. Their goal is to chill and they aren't accountable so you'll be the one stuck doing the work. Nowadays when I see the issue I just roll them off from my teams or refuse to staff them


the ideal mix is tough but keep an eye on above 

Jun 20, 2022 - 7:05pm
breezy443, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Agree with this 100%. Being a "doer" is the right move in some situations, but you can also be punished for it at the associate level.

Not saying the analyst is at fault, but they will often start to subconsciously take you for granted and will spend more time doing the the lazy associates' work out of necessity.

A tough balancing act but something to keep in mind so you don't get burned out.

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jun 22, 2022 - 12:22pm

Host a happy hour with your team and just become friends with them man. Theres time to be a dick and tell them to get their job done and then theres time to be a friend. 

Jun 24, 2022 - 12:36pm
dashriprock, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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Jun 24, 2022 - 2:07pm
MeltedIceCube, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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Jun 24, 2022 - 6:05pm
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