Lateral regrets

I lateraled to a better bank earlier this year. After 3 months I've realized that I've made a terrible mistake. I don't clique well with the people in my office and I'm pretty miserable. I don't want to look like a job hopper but also want to be happy at work (especially working the hours we do). Has anyone else been through this? What would you do?

Comments (30)

reformed, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Give it time... 3 months is nothing

Takes a long time to develop real relationships with people, particularly if you lateral and you're one of the few new people that just joined a group where everyone has been close for years. 

From a work life standpoint, any time you switch banks, particularly at a junior level, there's obviously a steep learning curve. If you go from being a top performer to horribly underperforming (as most laterals do for the first ~6monhts or so), people are obviously going to treat you different. Consider yourself lucky if you didn't have to take a year back when upgrading banks and work to prove yourself. Once you're up to speed, then you can judge how you're treated relative to your old bank. 

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen

I lateraled ~8 months ago and am still struggling. I was a top performer at my previous bank and played the politics game well. Left when most of the juniors quit because I wanted more mentorship and to get more deal exposure. Chose the offer where I thought I meshed best with the juniors and thought I'd get the best experience based after talking to my various mentors who were helping me navigate the process. The first couple of months were hard having to start over but it never got any better. It's just a toxic group because I'm up to speed and can now compare the experience with my previous group.

At this point I'm just hoping to cruise along and cut my losses. The only thing that's better is WLB (fewer urgent emails at 3am on Saturday night) and the name on my resume. I'm on fewer deals, get paid less all in, the group is toxic, the office isn't as nice, learning significantly less, only reason we win deals is based on the brand name, now in the office 5 days, etc.

I've just established a dgaf attitude since I'm stuck here and it's made it so much better. I leave at 8pm to go WFH. I go on so many random coffee chats / lunches and when anyone tries to give me a hard time I say it's through xyz and no one can say anything because the group is so optics oriented. I tell people no. If I get cut, I'll sublease my apartment, go travel the world until next fall and figure it out from there. Money isn't an issue and my network is great.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen

I'm a second year analyst. Not sure how long I'll stay but I probably need to stay at least another year (regardless of if I get early promo to associate). Not sure what I want to do next, but know I don't want to do PE. My problem is the money is too good to walk away from. I've been able to save a ton and I think it's too early to take a massive pay cut.

  • Prospect in PE - LBOs

How to adjust and have a dgaf attitude when your boss continues to bash your work deliverables for stupid reasons? I always feel easier said than done. I guess most of us here have some sort of a high standard for ourselves. 

  • Prospect in Consulting

How do you cruise without looking too bad? 

  • Prospect in PE - Growth

Don't give a shit attitude takes away so much stress. How is your interaction with your boss right now? How do you dismiss his/her bullshit while being calm?

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen

Right now, my life is good. When I wrote this, I was at peak frustration with my team, work load, and career trajectory and felt very trapped, but currently I'm doing fine.  I'm the type of person who likes optionality and a plan. When you lateral, it's frowned upon to make another move within 1-2 years and I was burning out. Every 3-4 months there's a straw that breaks the camels back situation and I spiral for 1-2 weeks until I get back on my feet. Just sucks because at my old firm, I could send out some job apps and have the option to see if a new gig was a better fit or not. I just wish I had an associate / vp within my team that I really trusted that could protect me / help me push back when I start drowning in work instead of dumping more on me. I had that at my old firm and it helped a ton, but when those people left, it became unbearable and I quickly got a new job.

  • Associate 3 in IB - Cov

FWIW, I lateraled late last year and it took until probably mid-this year to "break in" and now I'm super close with a lot of the folks I work with. 

Unless you're changing industries, it's usually frowned upon to make another move before the year mark. I'd also say if you do go that route, you have to make sure your next spot is near perfect and you stay there for a while...

Smoke Frog, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Why not crawl back to your old firm and ask to be taken back?

That strategy always worked with my old girlfriends.

  • Prospect in PE - Growth

The worst and scariest part of working under a toxic MD or group is you may become one of them whom you hate. 

  • Prospect in PE - Growth

Is it fair to say most of time in IB, it is more about chemistry with MD rather than aptitude?

  • Prospect in PE - Growth


  • Intern in IB - Gen

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techiebanker, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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