Extremely Robust Growth Projected - 132 hour work week

bankerella's picture
Rank: Neanderthal | 2,186

All right, fellow monkeys. I'm on the tail end of a 132-hour workweek, so just a brief post today.

So there I was, middle of the night, massaging an industry growth chart into an artificially-rosy picture that makes our pitch more attractive (a procedure that many of you will be familiar with). The associate comes over and tells me to add an approximate CAGR arrow. No problem. I calculate the CAGR. Noticing that thin red lines are used for means/medians throughout the rest of the book, I decide to use the PowerPoint draw tool to create a thin red line with an arrowhead at the end.

The associate comes back frowning. "It's not obvious enough," he says. Make it thicker." Sure thing. A three-point line thickness should be thick enough.

No dice. He comes back: "It still doesn't look right. I need it to be really striking. Make it bigger." Ooookay. Six-point line, then.

He comes back, frowning hard this time. "You're not getting me," he says. "I need this arrow to be very robust. I want it to be the most obvious thing on this page. This is the whole point of this section and I just want the arrow to jump off the page. You need to figure out how to make that happen."

Jeez. Fine. I'm a little pissed by now, because the associate knows how to operate the arrow tools in PowerPoint just as well as I do, and I'm clearly not very good at reading his mind. One of my survival mechanisms as an analyst is, after expressing my opinion gently, to give the banker EXACTLY what he's asking for and then let him figure out how stupid it looks for himself. So I grab the "Block Arrows" tool and plop a gigantic, thick-shafted upward-thrusting arrow right in the middle of the graph. I make the head nice and fat. I tweak the shaft so it curves ever-so-slightly upwards. I shadow it so that it stands out from the page. Then, just to GILD the lily, I use the "fill effects" tool to give it an eye-catching lifelike roundness. I send it, stifling my laughter.

The associate's response: "Perfect. Print and let's give to Sheila [female MD]." Unbelievable. Clearly, the associate needed to get laid.

When the page landed on the MD's desk, I watched as she picked it up. Her mouth twitched three times, but her thought was clear: "What is a giant cock doing on my pitchbook?" She stared at it for a good fifteen seconds. Then she raised an eyebrow at us. "What is this, the CAGR line? Make it like all the other lines in the book, please. Thank you."

As we trudged back to our desks, I said to the associate, "I guess that was a little -too- robust."

He sighed. "... Yeah. Story of my life."

(Find more posts like these in the Forum of Fame.)

Mod Note (Andy): Throwback Thursday - this is an old one, dating back to 2008!

Comments (16)

Mar 27, 2007

You don't happen to work at CSFB do you?

Mar 27, 2007

It's not CSFB anymore !

May 4, 2007

This associate is a really smart guy.
You received only 1 major comment for this row, but all your other fuck ups were just missed.

It's a good strategy to focus MD attention on bullshit and get it done asap.

    • 1
May 4, 2007

Actually, I've learned that with some people I need to put in something for them to fix -- something I can easily do -- so they won't ask me to change something that will be difficult.

I agree that it's much better to have MD attention focused on the visual style of a few charts than whether we want to sell the company as Sector A or Sector B (which would change nearly every page in the book).

Jan 7, 2008

This thread is maddd old

Sep 29, 2016

Oldies but goodies.

Jan 8, 2008

that is used in the military for getting mortar or artillery rounds onto target. It's called bracketing. If shot A has missed to the left by 200 feet, you dial in shot B 400 feet to the right. The subsequent shot C would then be adjusted off shot B, and on and on.

This way instead of making scared halfhearted adjustments that creep annoyingly slowly toward your intended target, you "bracket" the two sides.

Next time go for the big phallic arrow right off the bat and save everyone some time. Fortune favors the bold. =)

    • 1
Jan 8, 2008

Seems like a joke, but I think Miss Ind's comment is right on: sometimes it's better to have the MD focused on charts or whether an arrow is too big rather than the actual content of a presentation. At 3 AM after you've already been awake for 48 hours it's a lot easier to change colors of tables in PowerPoint vs. actually having to think a little bit and re-do a model.

Apr 13, 2008

LMAO..legendary. You just made me laugh like a dork in the business school library..

Sep 15, 2016

This post is money.

Sep 15, 2016
saw23:

This post is money.

Finally a bump worth reading.

    • 1
Sep 15, 2016

Is it ok to hit on/ask the bankers for a quick trip to poundtown whenever those hours add up, and you just haven't had enough time to get a nice rub out in a while? I'm talking to poundtown and back... Asking as an aspiring BSD?

Sep 15, 2016

Solid post just because it fucking hits home so hard. So hard to tell the superiors that what they want will look/function like a joke.

    • 1
Sep 15, 2016

Man bankerella was great

Sep 16, 2016

This was basically the highlight of my summer, with a stock price chart instead.

Sep 19, 2016
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