How to stop bragging about being an "Investment Banker?"



I have a big problem. I like bragging to people how awesome and cool I am. I like saying that I'm an Investment Banker without anyone really asking, even though I'm just an A1 analyst at a MM firm. It's super douchey and I hate myself but I can't help it. How do I stop this impulsive behavior? The work I do is not rocket science, nor is it glamorizing to actual Finance professionals who do the same shit I do. I build slides and plug-in inputs into a model but for some reason, I think I'm soooo much cooler than everyone else. Oh, look at me, I can stay up till 4am, turning over some comments my VP made like, "Delete the extra space here." I'm soooo cool, please show me affection. It's even cost me some ass because females turn away and go, "Ugh..this douche bag again," every damn time. At first, I didn't realize that to be the case but now, I'm very much aware of it. That is the reason. What else could it be?



Me: "Hey what's up?"

Somebody: "Going great. HBU"

Me: "Yea, so you know that I'm an Investment Banker right?"

Somebody: "...yea?"

Me: "...that's it"

Somebody: "......"


I'm obviously exaggerating here with a bit of humor but I really do hate this habit. I talk to some people and you wouldn't even tell he/she graduated from HYP, makes $400-$500k as a PE Associate/VP, and serves on a non-profit board at age 26 meanwhile, I can't stop telling the world I'm an "Investment Banker." I want to be like those guys/girls. I want to be lowkey. I want to stop my addiction of trying to be the "coolest" in the room by mentioning "Investment Banker." When people not familiar with Finance speak with me, they think I'm balling like that scumbag from "The Wolf of Wall Street" but in reality, I'm living in a cramped space in Manhattan, with 4 other "cool Investment Banking A1s." They say self-awareness is key to success, and I'm as I mentioned earlier, very much aware of this.


Maybe it's the Non-Target pride at breaking into the industry after rigorous networking and relationship building. How do I level up to a "Target" mentality of just being "KEWL" and shutting my mouth when no one asked? Do I need to get my MBA at HYPW after my Analyst stint to be educated on the "Target" mentality and finally humble myself for once? Would that make it even worse knowing my personality?



Comments (61)

  • Intern in IB - Ind
Sep 14, 2020 - 7:24pm

Just keep doing it until everyone avoids you, then you'll have nobody to tell. Problem solved.

Sep 14, 2020 - 7:45pm

If this is real, I seriously wonder how you can ever have interactions with people beyond meeting them for the first time. 

Most Helpful
  • Intern in IB - Gen
Sep 14, 2020 - 7:54pm

When I got my IB internship all I wanted to do was brag and tell everyone how hard I worked and how successful I was going to be (especially as a non-target, I know how hard that makes it).

At the end of the day you’re probably like 22. You should be proud of where you’re at but you literally just started your work career, don’t get too ahead of yourself. Don’t get caught up in salary either, think about how long it takes a top med student to even make money and people who do amazing things but aren’t in a career that pays this much this early.

Also remember what you’re sacrificing: relationships, friendships, weekend trips, some sleep. You don’t literally live at the office but you’re spending a ton of time there and that leaves little time for other stuff.

Be proud of yourself, but don’t let it get to your head. It’s not like you’re some crazy successful genius who’s so much better than others, you just your priorities organized in a way that got you into a great career path at the expense of other things.

Sep 15, 2020 - 12:18pm

Your perspective of banking might change as you age and mature. I felt like hot shit in 2015 when I got my SA gig. Immediately put "Incoming Investment Banking Summer Analyst" on LinkedIn. Six months into the FT job, countless hours at the office, missed weekend/evening activities, etc. and my atitude changed. I went from thinking I was hot shit to feeling like a sucker. Felt that way into I left IB after four years. 

Sep 16, 2020 - 4:09pm

I didn't lose interest, I just felt differently about how I preceived myself and my job. I lost interest at about the 3.5 year mark. I always knew that I wanted to exit eventually, but was still congizent of the skills/abilities I was learning at such a fast rate. I also set a goal to get A2A promotion, and eventually achieved that after three years. Stuck around another <1 year because the salary and bonus figures were good but eventually found the right LMM PE gig and jumped at the opportunity. I wasn't sold on PE at first (always intrigued me, but also considered strategy/ops roles at startups and large tech companies). 

Sep 15, 2020 - 3:30pm

Don't bring it up till they ask; I haven't even updated my LinkedIn. 

I admit I was a bit surprised how most people don't give a shit and how many give me a look of enviousness.  Occasionally you'll get a "Wow that's awesome!"

But mostly the only people care are people in the know or prospects like the teens on this forum.  

Sep 16, 2020 - 8:04am

It's an age thing. Enjoy it while it lasts. As you get older your self actualization needs shift from being fullfilled by bragging to feeling respected/part of a larger group.

“Self-control is strength. Right thought is mastery. Calmness is power. ” - James Allen
  • Business School in IB-M&A
Sep 16, 2020 - 9:44am

Hmm that is so weird because when I meet guys and they say they are investment bankers I almost immediately suck their dicks. 

CEO of Butters' Kissing Company
  • Analyst 3+ in HF - Event
Sep 16, 2020 - 9:59am

The way to stop bragging about being an investment banker is to stop bragging about being an investment banker.

Not rocket science, buddy.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Sep 16, 2020 - 12:19pm

Can someone please explain what there is to brag about being an investment banker? They’re all short as fuck, got no puss in college whatsoever. They Live in a shit box apt in nyc and spend all their time alone on a computer.

  • VP in IB-M&A
Sep 16, 2020 - 2:01pm

I simply try to avoid benchmarking myself against others on career choice and net worth / income. Someone will always have a more interesting job or high-powered job and there is always someone with more money. In my opinion (and take this for what it's worth), the people that want to hang out with someone because of those things aren't worth the time anyway. Maybe it's a bit of an age thing like someone else said.

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Sep 16, 2020 - 2:30pm

apart from the obvious troll... wanted to ask, is it flexing if someone asks what i do and i say investment banking? or should i just say finance or banking or something else

Sep 16, 2020 - 3:00pm

If you want to stop, the best way is to have your wingman kick you in the nuts everytime you let it rip.  If no wingman then you must punch yourself in the jimmies each time.  My guess is that after 3 or 4 times you will say you are in "finance".


Frankly, I think you should be yourself - let that flag fly.  Why change for a bunch of people you don't spend Thanksgiving with anyway?

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Sep 16, 2020 - 3:11pm

Well, to be honest, only a very small percentage of the overall population actually think positively about investment bankers. And the girls who show interest in bankers are usually after your wallet, not you. 

  • Intern in 
Sep 16, 2020 - 3:38pm

Dude the last time I went home, I told my family proudly and happily that I am starting out in investment banking at a bulge bracket bank after graduation. One of my uncles was like oh wow so you deal with deposits and withdrawals. Can you help me get a credit card from your bank?" 

Like I don't even see the point of telling anyone anymore. 

Sep 18, 2020 - 3:39pm

First of all, if you're being serious then you sound like a complete asshole.  If you're aware of being an asshole and still compulsively do this, then it's you just wanting to be this way.

Anyway, here' a dose of reality.  You are NOT an investment banker.  You are a junior analyst that works in the banking division.  You really don't know anything about the business, the reasons why you're doing what you do, and couldn't talk to a client even if you wanted to... let alone persuade them to do any business with you.  So for that reason alone you can stop saying it.

Sep 19, 2020 - 2:30am

Funny post.

I am sure it's written tongue in cheek with some level of truth - I used to give my business cards as an analyst to girls in clubs more than 12 years ago (that shows my age). In retrospective pretty dumb and useless move, but when you are both drunk and you are pumped up on arrogance and self assurance you have a higher than average chance of getting somewhere with that person regardless of environment or profession.

You are 20, I was in trading so got to go out a lot and have the stamina for it - you are earning for the first time in your life some real money - ENJOY! Priorities shift down the road, your friends of today are not your friends of tomorrow. The analysts in your grad class who are now your best friends, in 10 years time you might call one of them for a job but you don't see them anymore. etc...

Nothing wrong with being a bit of a douche bag early on in your life. Embrace it.

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