My associates dont do shit

All post-MBA. They:

  • Never shell out the deck
  • Will refuse to respond to any questions from the MDs and will wait for the analysts to reply
  • Refuse to touch any excel backup / models / charts (prob bc they cant calc ebitda)
  • Unwilling to turn any comments, even text ones
  • Will always make the analysts send every doc and take credit for the work done
  • Rarely communicate to ECM/DCM/lev fin what slides we need from them
  • Make the analyst stay up late and call them every 15 min asking for updates
  • Will take 1 slide of the 10 slides worth of work
  • Make zero value add comments and refuse to turn the basic ones they make themselves

Anyone else have the same experience?


It’s insane how they can get away with making 2x an analyst and not do anything. The senior analysts are sick of their shit — they’re lazy as fuck.

 

As someone who also works at Citi, it's ridiculous that the norm across the firm is for Analysts to do all the work at Aso's just review. A2A, MBA associates, it's all the same.  None of my friends at other banks have this setup and at least have a few associates that pull their weight. 

Not sure how or why this is acceptable or what value add Aso's provide. 

 

As someone who also works at Citi, it's ridiculous that the norm across the firm is for Analysts to do all the work at Aso's just review. A2A, MBA associates, it's all the same.  None of my friends at other banks have this setup and at least have a few associates that pull their weight. 

Not sure how or why this is acceptable or what value add Aso's provide. 

Can confirm, Citi sucks if you're 22-24. What's worse, there's this German dude in Industrials who did nothing as an associate and now he's a director/MD. Garbage firm for analysts, would definitely choose Barcap/BAML/DB until they fix this.

 
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I was an associate hire with no prior IB experience (non-MBA fwiw), so in some ways I can empathize with the position.  It's unsettling joining (what appears to be) a well oiled machine and having literally no idea how to contribute.  You aren't able to produce the work, you have almost no say in the direction of the work, and there are 3-4 people that will have input over you before the work product is finished.  You also struggle with the ego-death of having younger, more experienced, and far more capable people working "below" you.  People compensate for that "crisis" in different ways and at that point the empathy goes away and you can judge them for what they're worth. 

For me, it meant that I was going to commit to being in the foxhole with the analysts.  It was important to me to earn their respect and equally as important in getting up to speed quickly.  There are so many ways to do that, even at the start, but the very least of which is running interference for the analysts who are actually grinding on the work.  Asking clarifying questions, coordinating with the VP to make sure you're working on what they're expecting, setting expectations on deadlines, staying late with them, or, ya know, actually doing some of the work yourself, etc.  If they aren't doing that, then fuck em, they'll be found out soon enough.   

 

Absolute fkn facts, I’m living this right now. I take heat from my MD, and never let the analysts get hit, I stay up, turn comments, model, all of it. It’s the only way, otherwise wtf are you doing reviewing sht you can’t produce yourself?

 

A side effect of IBs caring more about status & hierarchy than efficiency. IMO the concept of being "too senior" to do something should be killed entirely. If some shit needs to get done just do it for god's sake, instead of spending your day trying to engineer workstreams to flow around you instead of through you. 

I used to work under an Associate like that and it made me promise myself I wouldn't be the same way. The dude would literally work on one super light project a day and leave at 6:00PM. Anything beyond that asked of him, he would shove onto me or one of the other Analysts, no matter how busy we were. Doesn't matter if he had absolutely nothing on his plate the entire day and I was already on pace to work past midnight. He would leave at 6PM and I would leave past midnight plus 2 additional hours so I could find emails for a buyers list and arrange logos at 1AM, because he would literally rather do nothing from 9-5PM than have to help out on something he saw as beneath him. This piece of shit wouldn't even listen to the MDs full question before he would say "Yeah, talk to X about that, he typically handles that." 

 

I have worked with such associates in the past. They generally end up getting fired or leave the bank soon. The post-grad/MBA associates or A2As who actually try to work and learn and contribute (even if they know seemingly nothing and I even had one MBA associate ask me why they pay him more than me lol), are the ones that end up staying, getting promoted or moving on to more lucrative jobs/companies/funds in the industry. sometimes you just need to work on your patience and hang in there; my experience has shown that they eventually go away and you stop needing to deal with them. I hope it goes well for you soon. Good luck and best wishes

 

Unfortunately too many shitty associates with zero value add. Worst are the ones straight from industry who never did a banking internship

 

I have zero respect for MBA associates like this. Most of them come from shitty F500 jobs and don’t understand how banking works and think that just because they are “senior” to analysts they essentially are above analyst work. In reality though, they should be the ones willing to learn this shit because they are the one staying in banking for the long haul lol. Also, these MFers are so condescending sometimes, harping on about “life experience” and “ back at xyz firm I did…” like bro no one gives a shit about your job at PWC stop telling the analysts how to do their job which they are 10x better at than you. Anyone else notice these guys have the tendency to sign off mega early each night and disappear for hours throughout the day when wfh? I mean I hate this job as much as the next guy but as an MBA associate you better learn to love it lmao

 

Not smart for associates to never step down and learn the analyst tasks.  You become a much better project manager when you know how each page gets made, where the data pitfalls are, etc.   

That said, associates are largely paid on option value.  In other words, bank pays them a lot because some % of them will be rainmakers one day and its worth paying what's necessary to get them in the door and see who works out.  So they are systematically overpaid to a degree.

But it's a long road to MD and I slept a lot easier as an associate when I knew I was helpful to all levels.

 

I started as a year 1.5 associate (ie, no stub and 6 months into AS1) with no prior banking experience, although I had finance experience.  My first day I introduced myself to my team's analysts and told them that I'll have to learn a lot from them over the next 6 months as I ramp up and to bear with me.  I then took pen on everything I could.  Since then, I've never gotten anything other than a top bucket bonus and my MD has specifically called out the fact that analysts prefer working with me vs other VPs / Ds.  All it took was 6 months of humility and open-mindedness (and some patience from the analysts) and everything went swimmingly.

 

You just have a really bad batch of Associates. All the associates on my team (me included) do a lot of the leg work. From my perspective, why not split it up, we finish the work product faster and both get better WLB… Honestly it’s in my own self-interest to pull up my sleeves and do my part…

 

Asking for a friend which banks are these where Associates don’t do any work? I think I probably average 90-100 hour weeks and have to take over majority of the excel work because the analyst is not capable enough.

 
breezy443

Facts. Please tell me which bank I can join where I don't have to work as an associate. Analysts are either checked out or not capable

Is this a MM issue more than BB? Feels like all the mediocre paying MM lost anybody with a pulse to BB / EB 

anecdotal but heard the RBC analysts are noticeably worse than prior classes

 

Bump. Honestly as long as the analysts know I know what I’m doing and they can come to me for help. Not doing shit from associate to MD sounds pretty nice and focusing on building relationships is more of a concern to me than making sure logos look right.

 

Exactly bro. It's like how I pass on the chores my mom told me to do to my little brother. That's how corporations work

 

This is just a small subset of associates who are behaving this way. You can’t paint all MBA associates everyone with the same brush. There are as many bad analysts as there are associates. Trust me it gets worse in mega PE funds if that is what u are targeting.

 

That really sucks. Had something similar when I was in IB. Currently in PE and my VPs are amazing. If there's minor mistakes in my decks they just fix it. When it comes to modelling, they also do a lot of the heavy lifting. Even the partner who is regional head in the firm does a lot of the heavy lifting. Not kidding when I say that the partners fix slides themselves... From a standpoint of efficiency, it makes a lot of sense. Instead of leaving a comment that I should update the headline to reflect XYZ, why not take 30 secs to do it yourself and get it the way you want it?

 

I get that most mba associates come from less prestigious backgrounds - ie non-prestigious undergrad, non-prestigious prior work experience, but are the majority of them really as bad as the memes/wso forums make it sound? I'm at an EB Lazard/PJT/Evercore and I can't think of any associates that fit this combination of incompetence and arrogance. Might run into a doucher associate every now and then, but they're not the norm and they are typically at least competent. What percentage of retarded douchebag mba associates are at your firm? Honestly just curious to hear more perspectives here..

 

I get that most mba associates come from less prestigious backgrounds - ie non-prestigious undergrad, non-prestigious prior work experience, but are the majority of them really as bad as the memes/wso forums make it sound? I'm at an EB Lazard/PJT/Evercore and I can't think of any associates that fit this combination of incompetence and arrogance. Might run into a doucher associate every now and then, but they're not the norm and they are typically at least competent. What percentage of retarded douchebag mba associates are at your firm? Honestly just curious to hear more perspectives here..

I wouldn't completely agree with this.  I went to an M7 and would say people went to a range of banks for a range of reason.  For instance, I was less interested in places that kept you a generalist for longer.  Also, over the long term, fit with a group will be the most important rather than going to a "top group" that feels like a knife fight daily.  I knew some very sharp people that went to "lower-tier" places as well as others that got into a "top-tier bank/group" that i'm not convinced will ever be technically competent. 

Similarly, some people grow into the job at different rates and become stellar in the long run.  I've heard stories of MDs over the years who took a while for it to click when they were a junio, but once they got there, they were very valuable.  

 
Controversial

I shouldn’t even be responding because this post screams freshman at Cornell, but here’s my two cents. Brehv, get over yourself. I work with a guy from the Midwest who went to a state school and whose family is comprised of factory workers. He’s brilliant, but he had no clue what IB was until he was 25 years old. Went and got his MBA from a top school and now he’s one of the best associates I know (many examples like this). Also know plenty of elite undergrad people who chose another field, got their MBAs and went into banking who are also very good. Know plenty others on both sides who suck. Comes down to the person, not the background. Get a grip.

 

Two Wharton grads washed out of my firm, one couldn’t pass his fkn FINRA exams

Smartest associate at our firm went to a state school, it’s an honor to work with him

 

From my MBA program about half the kids going into banking were completely useless, another quarter were competent and the last quarter were sharp people who worked hard. Based of what I’ve seen in recruiting, there’s a significant gulf between those that go to the top EBs/ GS and Citi/BoFA/ Barc etc. I.e the distribution i mentioned above skews such that almost all of the top quarter of the class goes to the first first bucket of firms and all the folks going to the latter bucket are complete morons (at the MBA level). This would naturally lead to heightened animosity given the Analysts are still incredibly talented at BoFA, C etc. but there’s a huge disparity compared to the Post MBAs

 

Yea working at one of the EBs and it seems like when I work on a deal with other banks there is a big difference in work quality and responsiveness between EB/Top BB groups vs. lower tier banks. I'm sure they have good people there, it is just that majority of sharp people or hardworking people naturally converge to the better groups.

 

I want to work at Citi. At this place the analysts are so bad they cannot be relied upon to do the most basic stuff. I have one associate 0 (A2A) who cannot spot the most basic errors from CIQ when spreading comps and doesn't question when the AV/EBITDA is like 1000x while all other comps are at 20x (he forgot to convert reporting currency to usd for that company).

Literally the only thing more than a third of the analysts I have worked with know how to do is to convert company investor presentations into firm format. None of them would bother to check whether presentation team has transferred all the right numbers.

 

100% …if you don’t tell your staffer it’s going to take longer for this to be noticed