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Comments (24)

Most Helpful
  • Associate 1 in PE - LBOs
Oct 6, 2021 - 5:32am

Keep your chin up. Put down the job apps man. You're in a frenzy and you're not thinking. Do you really think you'll be composed and poised to actually take advantage of a good oppritunity that comes up? You're not ready. Take a day or two to mope, binge drink and binge eat - fun, debaucherous, full degen shit. And then when 48-72 hours is over it's time to brush off the Cheeto dust, turn off Squid Game and stop fucking around.

Mindset - get right. Presumably you have some money saved up. Realize youre not forced to expose yourself in an essential line of work that many people have to still do during COVID. So for one - remember to be grateful. Recognize you're still in a blessed position and that you don't HAVE to go door to door to find a new job just to make ends meet and provide for yourself. 

First - use this time to decompress, meditate and exercise. At least 1 of the 3 please. No doubt you probably have some mental and physical wear and tear on you. Pretend like you just got out of a bad, toxic break up. You're not going to be ready to start dating again, but you want to start putting yourself back in game shape.

Second - no doubt you have regrets. Figure out what went wrong - visualize key poor moments - write down the things YOU can do better, and then write down actionable things YOU can do to alleviate / improve those mistakes or weaknesses you made. If it's not being diligent enough with the numbers / sending work up, write a post it and stick it on your monitor for steps to run through.

Or maybe you just had no motivation to perform - in that case use this time to figure out what does interest you.

It's a cyclical industry, you're bound to get fired at some point. You just hit that point maybe a bit earlier but a career is about longevity. Marathon, not a sprint.

If you do all this and you realize you're still committed to a job in finance the hunger will return, but you'll be 100x more polished than when you were a meek undergrad. The jobs will come flowing through, I promise. If not I'll forward you the 30 emails I get a day from Mercury Partners

This is what I did. I didn't get a return offer in my SA stint. So my failure came extremely early but I used it as a big learning block. Still too early to tell if I'm doing well as I'm only a few years into my career but I think I'm on the right track. What I think clearly separates me from my peers is not only my intelligence, work ethic and charisma… it's grit. And I found that through gaining inner peace. 

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Oct 6, 2021 - 4:08pm

Controversial take, but maybe also do some soul searching and honest retrospective review of your experience to see if you're well-suited to the job?

Drastic generalization, but I've hired many lateral associates (who typically were pushed our or not actively retained by their prior firms) and not a single one ultimately worked out at my firm either. Said differently, if you're recruiting as an experienced associate, the bar is still high, so unless there were a few really unlucky situations or one-off mistakes, the same challenges are likely to re-arise, with higher expectations vs. your early associate years.

Oct 6, 2021 - 7:18pm

Thanks, completely see your point and agree. Ultimately I'm not 100% sure but do think I'm reasonably ok at this job, and not sure what other options I have tbh. There were also lots of circumstances which I think was a little unfair not that it matters so aiming to try again somewhere else and see what happens 

Oct 8, 2021 - 8:38pm

I'd say combination of things. Again, wide generalizations:

  • Weaker horsepower and/or more easily overwhelmed by multiple tasks/deals
  • Less quantitative (struggled with modeling, lots of mistakes despite 1-2 years of PE experience)
  • Generally poorly trained and often lateraled with minimal re-training which perpetuated bad habits (poor quality notes, more stubborn to change workflows from prior job, etc.)
  • Generally lacked interest in the job (didn't seem to enjoy the work, lacked initiative to take the 'next step' without prompting)
  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 6, 2021 - 7:15pm

Also, did you start in IB? And if so, do you regret leaving IB for PE? Just wondering if your lack of enthusiasm was firm-specific, or you think it has to do with PE in general (could be instructive to others in IB contemplating move to PE). 

Oct 6, 2021 - 7:20pm

I think it was a bit of both - PE I would say is more accountability / pressure to do things perfectly and people are less forgiving, hours just as bad if not worse with pay being similar (maybe even less with recent pay rises in IB). Not sure if I just had a bad team / experience or if it is like this across the board - hope my experience was just a one -off. 

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 6, 2021 - 7:23pm

Got it, thanks. Hope new gig works out better. But yeah, that's my fear -- that PE will be a lot less collegial and "fun," in the sense that there's less "goofing around" with the guys and it's almost always down-to-business. Fewer people around, and when they are around, as an associate you're just kind of silo'd doing your own work.  

But good luck, man, hope it works out for you. 

  • Analyst 2 in Research - Other
Oct 7, 2021 - 8:24pm

OP - this just happened to me today. VP also threw me under the bus for a failed project that I was barely involved in.

Let's keep our chin up and bounce back hard together! 

  • Analyst 2 in Research - Other
Oct 8, 2021 - 6:34pm


Also had some low points today.

But Iet us CHOOSE not be stuck in a rut. 

Part of that is fixing our mindset - having someone that cares about you to talk to daily, working out, meditation, yoga, cleaning the apartment, spend time with friends. All of these help.

But the other side is being aggressive even when we are feeling low. Our former team's loss, they lost some talented employees. We are worth more, and deserve better.

Let's go out and get it.

Even if we feel like crap, pound the pavement even more. And prepare even harder. 

It is the only way out. 

Happy to speak sometime. You are not alone here.

Oct 8, 2021 - 2:54am

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Oct 8, 2021 - 12:46pm

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