From people you know in fields of BB IBD and MBB Management Consulting, which group anecdotally seems the most satisfied (or the least stressed out) over their lifestyle? I don't want to go into a discussion on pay, prestige or whatever. I just want to know which camp overall seems to have more of a life.
I am in a long-term relationship and both career options are open to me. I want to know which will take the least load on my social life and relationships. I know both are demanding careers but I want to know of any marginal differences, if any.
I am talking specifically about the first 3 years on the job - at the Analyst/BA/AC level. Hopefully after that I can find something easily more palatable to my downtime needs.
Generally speaking, you can expect to have a greater work-life balance at a consulting firm. The hours are not as intense as banking but they are not too far separate either. You can expect to work anywhere from sixty to seventy hours per week. Some firms make their employees work up to seventy-five hours per week.
MBB hands down. You will likely travel M-TH 50-75% of your tenure, but Fridays are chill and weekend work is uncommon. Also if you are hard in an office with local work, no reason you can't be around for dinners during week. ~60 hour / weeks in MBB vs ~75/weeks in IBD (from what I hear..)
Travelling will be very demanding during the week but usually, you can feel safe about your weekends. User @Dingdong08, a private equity managing director, shared a quick note on relationships.
Completely anecdotally (and I'm older than a lot of people on WSO so these people are all closer to 40 or greater), for some reason I have a bunch of friends who are ex-McKinsey guys and obviously know and work with a ton of ex-bankers. A fair % of the consulting guys are actually married (still, 20 years later) to their college girlfriends whereas I can't think of one IB guy who kept or even had a relationship in their early banking years.
- Expect to work up 75 hours a week
- A great deal of traveling
- Safe weekends
Investment Banking Life Style
Hours in banking in banking are going to slightly worse especially during the first few years. However, the "hundred hour work week "is overused most analysts do not work that much but there are some exceptions of course. Generally speaking, you can expect to work 75 to 90 hours a week.
People in Investment Banking tend to inflate their hours a bit, and no one is working 100+ hours a week consistently. A good portion of my analyst class (including me) would keep track of their hours in a spreadsheet, and we would often compare. And over the first two years, average was about 75 hours a week for people in coverage groups and Lev Fin and about 85 for people in M&A.
- Expect to work up 75 to 90 hours a week
- Weekends are unprotected
As you can see the hundred hour work week us a fallacy but the hours are still not easy. However, the consultant will still work fewer hours regardless. Consequently, the consultant has a better lifestyle.
Want to Learn More About Consulting?
Interested in which consulting firm has the best work-life balance? Take a look at the 2017 Wall Street Oasis Consulting Industry Report. This report includes hours worked, compensation, employee satisfaction and much more. Click the link below to get started.
Take a look at the 2017 Wall Street Oasis Consulting Industry Report. This report includes hours worked, compensation, employee satisfaction and much more. Click the link below to get started.