Reinventing IB in the Long Term

Just want to preface this by saying I'm only a 2nd year analyst. This is mostly based on my thoughts in the past year so might definitely be a bit naive... but if that is the case I wanted to hear people's thoughts. 

We all know why IB sucks - the long hours, demanding seniors, mind numbing work, hours of work that end up in the appendix (or even better, gets killed entirely), countless iterations only to have a deck that kind of looked like the first version, checking and re-checking,... the list goes on. Even if it's not directly related to work (though I get that this is something not unique in IB) - there's definitely an element of politics and optics that make things feel even more meaningless. 

My question is whether that is structurally inherent in IB. If one were to pursue a career in IB so that one can also fix some of these inefficiencies, wouldn't that make this the analyst/associate position, and in extension this industry as a whole, a more attractive place to be in? All the while being part of a profitable practice? 

Some quick examples I thought of:

  • We do so many of these thick decks where ~80% of the pages are useless while taking up countless man-hours to create. And we all know that the client isn't even going to look at these pages. Can't a "good" senior banker just be smarter on the topic and deliver their points in a punchy way using only a few pages? Wouldn't the client appreciate that more? 
  • Can't banks not invest in more technology to develop ways to streamline mind-numbing grunt work? Wouldn't that attract better junior talent in the long run?
  • I get a lot of the inefficiencies are coming from the fact that this is a client service industry. But is the status quo what clients really want? I just feel like there are many instances where doing incrementally less work will not cause much damage to the relationship, or in some cases even strengthen it 
  • I also get that seniors are the core revenue producers of any bank so it's important to appease them, but like all things there should be a limit. Seniors should not be allowed to bother juniors during certain times. Also every senior should take a mandatory test to ensure they have the very basic personal tech skills (PDFing documents, navigating outlook, etc.). Again -- banks that build a reputation for having these "nicer" or "tech savvier" seniors will, in the long run, attract better junior talent. 

I don't know, I'm just riffing here. I guess I just want to understand why everything has to be the way it is or if things can turn for the better if there are some good actors pushing for change.

I'm sure some of you definitely think this sounds like some kumbaya gobledegook. So I do want to hear what others think if that's the case - especially from any seniors on this forum (if any).

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