8/27/17

30 weeks later: Associate Edition

Idea shamelessly stolen from @Sizzling_Biscuit (30 weeks Later (Re-imagined))

Week 1: Training
You arrive through the glass doors in your suit and tie - the same one you leveraged for all of those Business School visits, days on the job and interviews. When will that relocation bonus arrive? You and 30 other incoming Associates sit in this large hall. One guy came in with a tie with dolphins or some shit. Everybody noticed but nobody cares. This is nobody's first job or first suit. Nobody is Snapchatting - well, one woman sitting in the front is but she looks like 24. What is she - HR? 2+2 program? Fucking millenials.

Week 12: First Week On The Job
Training is over. You passed the Series exams. You and your newfound friends refresh your own pages on the FINRA site to make sure your scores went through. Will be useful for lateraling in case this whole thing goes to shit. You go to your cubicle and catch the eye of some analysts. One of them that looks 130 lbs soaking wet is also wearing that dolphin tie. You can't stop yourself from audibly guffawing.

Week 14:
Two weeks have passed, but you haven't noticed since you have put over 400 weeks of work prior. Your single friends huddle in a small group and are making plans to go out. Married Associates don't even bother asking what other people are doing this weekend, and other people don't bother to ask them anymore.

Week 15:
Friday afternoon. It's 5:00 PM on a Friday, which means nothing more to you than T-1 hours until you are allowed by the T&E policy to order dinner. It's all you look forward to anymore. How your day is going is determined by what time you start to make dinner ordering plans. If it's 4:00 or later, you've had a busy or otherwise pleasant day. Your friend from training's homepage is Eater - he's not going to make it until his signing bonus vests.

Week 18:
It's been 4 weeks on this deal and the pace has been pretty chill. Your MD doesn't bother you during the day, which gives you time to check your 401(k) performance and brag about it to your friends who chose the target date fund. Your analyst Kyle, however, is such a nervous ball of energy. Maybe it's because it's been 10 weeks since he started and while PE recruiters are already calling, he hasn't closed a deal. Nights have been late but that's just par for the course - you have settled into the rhythm and expect to get blown up by your MD late since she's in London on business. Your VP asks you to check in on Kyle's progress. You do so and his face turns beet red and his fingers pound harder at the keys afterward. These kids are so weird.

Week 26:
Buyside transaction dies. You celebrate internally - by this point in your career, you know that "pencils down" is the sweetest sound on God's green earth. Kyle is chilling out a bit but you worry when you stop by at 10 AM and see Seamless on his left screen with WSO on his right.

Week 32:
How long has it been? Doesn't matter. People gossip like hell. Your VP gave you check-in feedback to manage Kyle a little more tightly since he has made some notable spelling errors on his decks when rushing through them late at night. For some reason this has reflected badly on you. Doesn't Kyle realize he can work ahead on most of this stuff? How will he be able to handle a real workload when in PE? Kyle probably hates me by now, which is too bad, he's not such a bad dude but needs to dial it down a bit.

Week 38:
You walk through the glass doors in your suit and tie - the same one you leveraged for all of those Business School visits. Your relo check came through ages ago, but you used it to pay down your loans from B-School. Besides, there's nothing sexier than a man without debt - you tell yourself. Your analysts are already looking markedly different than when they started - their clothes have gotten much nicer, but they are coming in with baggy eyes and look physically like hell. "Why are they blowing so much money on clothes when they never see clients?" you think, but keep to yourself. You refresh Facebook since the number of notifications has exceeded 100 on the app, and notice you missed 15 birthdays. You scroll through the Wall - or is it called Newsfeed? Newsreel? Whatever - and notice a B-School friend is posting pictures at Venice beach time-stamped 3 PM on Wednesday. Fucking product managers. Fucking millenials. Where the fuck is this turn? You fire up Good and rattle off a check-in email to Kyle.

Disclaimer: [TBU - LevFin]

Comments (26)

8/20/17

Awesome, +1 SB. Great read

Investment Banking Interview Course

8/20/17

Scarily accurate.

8/21/17

VP Edition Please!!!

8/21/17

Haha bump.

8/21/17

Be the change you wish to see in the world!

8/22/17

If no one does then, sure. Based in Asia so might not be relevant to a US focused audience.

8/22/17

Please :)

Best Response
8/23/17

30 Weeks Later: VP Edition

Week 1: Orientation
I arrive through the glass doors in my dark navy Armani suit, maroon Hermes tie and black John Lobb oxford shoe. The last time I were in investment banking was a few years ago as an Associate. Since then, I had already moved on working as a Private Equity Associate. Then my fund bought out a financial group which set up this new JV entity in China, now I am here to head their brand new investment banking franchise with their foreign partners. My Chairman promised me that I only need to do two years to babysit this new operation. The CEO comes in with a Patek Philippe 5170G, very much in your face indeed. The MD have an AP Royal Oak Rose Gold. The (fat lady) Director rolls in with all brand names from head to toe. Insecure much? On a first day. The pissing contest begins.

Week 12: First Week On the Job
People have been sharing gossips throughout the office. The Game of Throne has begun; everyone seems to plot to climb that ladder so to speak. Rumors are everywhere. For example, "Did you hear that - that client brought in a bag full of cash to lobby for this project?" And we have our share of Pete Campbell hires at the office, "So Chen here went to an elite private school. He is related to Wen Jiabao (ex-Premier of China) and his dad plays golf with all the family conglomerates here; and that's how he brings in all the clients. Lucky Bastard!!!" The fat Director would join in the conversation, "I went to Dartmouth; people here are so uneducated. They only know Harvard!!!"

Week 14:
I start to forget where I am. Been busying flying to Hong Kong, Bangkok and Singapore to work on transactions. Even though the news say that China has restricted capital outflow, we have been acquiring companies all over the place. I think my big boob Chinese mistress has been cheating on me; even when I am forking out US$10,000 per month in allowance. I guess it is time to head to "Seeking Arrangement" website to get a new mistress. Everyone in the office has multiple mistresses; don't know whether this is an Asian thing or a Chinese thing. Every holiday, my parent would tell me to get married but then why?

Week 15:
The routines have begun to set in. I would come to work pissed drunk. Start work at 9am. Meetings after meetings. Then head out at 9pm. Then more KTV and drinking sessions - to entertain clients (as they say). My buddy at JPMorgan in Korea recounted the same tales; so is my friend in Daiwa Securities in Japan. For god sake, I wish the Chinese clients would drink Scott Whisky rather than that nasty Maotai (Chinese version of Vodka). That is absolutely disgusting. Drink Alcohol. Sing KTV. Grab Boobies. Puke Out. Drink Again. Repeat until 2am. Head home. Pass out. Get up at 6am and head back to office.

Week 18:
Been telling this associate to do work. Came up with shitty work. And I noticed that it is only my work that she has been doing poorly. I guess it is that fat Director trying to sabotage my deal. I have been bringing in more deals than everyone else in the shop; and that is not a good news for her. I had confronted the Director to fuck off from my deals. The MD came in for rescue; but then give me a wink that I am doing the dirty work on his behalf. Buddies from other firms have started their own fund and asked me whether I would like to join. Some has gone FinTech. Others have joined AIIB, the Chinese version of World Bank. Fucking OBOR is all I can hear on the CCTV (Chinese version of CNN).

Week 26:
One of the major conglomerates decided to engage us for a sell-side M&A deal. Both the fat Director and MD join in to take the credit in front of the CEO, even when I was the one working over the weekends for the last 10 weeks to get that client. That associate is still bitching and not doing her work. But now her lame excuse about boyfriend breaking up, having insomnia, and family matters have worn out on the team. Finally the fat Director and MD got her in the room and fired her. I guess her blood is not on my hand and she is gone for good.

Week 32:
The fat Director has been trying to oust both CEO and MD out of the office to bring in her Goldman Sachs buddies to run our operation. What she doesn't know that the CEO is pretty tight with our Chairman and eventually the CEO found out that the fat Director was running her own advisory firm while working at the company. The CEO throws the fat Director under the bus and she was quickly fired and shown the door. Of course, someone else was feeding information to the CEO about the fat Director.

Week 38:
The MD found out that one of his clients recently got bought out at crazy valuation and the client asked him to manage this money (sort of like Steve Cohen's Point72). He jumped ship and the CEO was left hanging. One of the associates quit and left for one year MBA program at INSEAD. Remember that sell-side M&A client? They got eventually bought out by our Chairman. The fat Director last heard starting her small VC fund. I guess I survived the craziness but I am sure this is not the end of this. If you were ever wondering whether there will be a good ending to this, you haven't been really paying attention.

8/22/17

Interesting perspective

1) Are you asian?

2) Does everyone actually have mistresses?

8/22/17

I am Asian.
Everyone in the office does.

8/22/17

Nice, and by mistress, can you elaborate in case there is some sort of cultural differences with regard to the meaning? Like the one that you fuck when you get tired of your wife?

We're not lawyers. We're investment bankers. We didn't go to Harvard. We Went to Wharton!

8/22/17

More like sugar daddy/ sugar baby relationship just like in the US, where your mistress would expect a monthly allowance. Not a fuck buddy, or an escort. But more like a long term (at least 6 months) engagement.

8/23/17

What type of exit opportunities can these type of roles lead to? Is it possible to lateral into an executive assistant type role?

We're not lawyers. We're investment bankers. We didn't go to Harvard. We Went to Wharton!

8/23/17

If you had watched the latest movie "The Great Wall (2016)" by Matt Damon, the lead actress is a mistress of a Chinese billionaire who financially invested in this movie production. So I guess exit opportunity - movie star, modeling career, CEO of a e-commerce startup?

8/24/17

Since you said everyone pretty much have mistresses and it's a cultural thing, then I'm also presuming that the wives would also know that their husbands have these said mistresses and spends lots of $ on giving them allowances -- that being said, do wives of these husbands w/mistresses just casually accept this norm or is it a constant battle of arguments? Very curious about this cultural aspect, because if this were the US, and the wife finds out, you're OUT THE DOOR.

8/24/17

This is based on my personal experience:
- Most Asian cultures avoid divorce at all cost; thus, women put up with this.
- In most Asian countries, women still make less than men; thus women put up with this due to financial dependency on men (exception would be more developed economies like Japan, S Korea, HK, Singapore). Even when the women make decent income, if the men make a lot more than women, women tend to put up with this to ensure that her children get all the inheritance from the men; this doesn't work when the mistress have kids.
- Even when women make as equal as men, cultural norms consider it is okay to have mistresses. In this case, most women follow "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

8/24/17

This helps! Thanks for clarifying.

Now, tell me the truth... have you slept with your mistress? :)

8/24/17

of course. :)

8/24/17

+1 just for that answer. :)

8/27/17

John Lobb shoes? Damn man, I thought I was splurging on my Ferragamos...

8/27/17

Got my Gucci, Ferragamo and Hugo Boss shoes as well. :)

Investment Banking Interview Course

8/21/17

I want to see the MD version chock full of complaints about clients

8/21/17

Read: "I want to see the MD version chock full of complaints about analysts"

8/24/17

MD: "we still have analysts? I thought that shit was automated."

8/21/17

We're not lawyers. We're investment bankers. We didn't go to Harvard. We Went to Wharton!

9/1/17

I'm talking about liquid. Rich enough to have your own jet. Rich enough not to waste time. Fifty, a hundred million dollars, buddy. A player. Or nothing.

See my Blog & AMA

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