Is It Normal To Have Days At Work Where You Don't Have a Single Task to Work On?

Hey guys. I'm a recent graduate and started at a pretty well-known REIT about two months ago. Since I've gotten here my work load has really ebbed and flowed. We brought in five analysts total across our AM and Acquisitions groups, which is sort of a lot of new heads for a firm of our size (not huge). I've had one or two weeks where I'm working from 9:00AM to 9:00PM daily and really getting after it, but I also have weeks where I have literally zero work to do for over half the week. I'm starting to get worried that one of the new analysts (possibly myself) is going to get laid off or something if the work doesn't pick up. It's getting to the point where I don't even like asking my Senior Analysts/Associates for work because I'm bored so often that I don't want to bring attention to how frequently there isn't enough work to keep all of the new analysts occupied, for fear of them trimming headcount. Like, there's at least two days of the week where I come into work and do not have a single thing on my agenda. Not one.

Has anyone ever had an experience like this? I'm only 60 days into the job but I'm already considering jumping ship. Is it normal for the first 60 days to start slow? How much longer should I give it before doing a full court press on the recruiting front?

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Comments (5)

Nov 16, 2018 - 9:03pm

While this isn't a good sign, it also isn't unheard of. I strongly recommend you make the best use out of the time that you can. This generally means learning - reading old memos, industry news, financial models, you name it. You're probably too new to self-direct yourself in terms of finding ways to add value... but finding things to learn should be easy. Hopefully that will alleviate your boredom a bit and enable you to be more productive when the work load starts to flow in.


  • 1
Nov 17, 2018 - 11:04pm

This is not exactly abnormal. A second-year analyst actually told me to enjoy those dead times and use it to advance yourself by reading up on industries, practicing models, networking, etc. I view those periods as a sort of "calm before the storm" because once the staffing email comes in or your "on pause" project picks up, best believe things ramp up fairly quickly and that 9pm can turn into 2 - 3am faster than you think.

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