I've lost all my self-confidence, I can´t get anything right

Let me use this forum to open myself, explain my situation, and see if someone has ever felt this way. 

After being a top bucket all my life, doing a fancy master's degree in a target school, and dreaming for years about landing a job in M&A, I finally joined a Boutique as an analyst 1 10 weeks ago. 

I was excited and ready to eat the world, but my experience is so far from my expectations. Since I joined my firm I have not got anything right. I make countless mistakes in all my assignments (wrong formatting, not seeing hidden rows or columns, missing an attachment in one email, doing mistakes in my analysis, using the wrong numbers for comps analysis...) I was even rebuked on Microsoft teams by a Managing Director for yawning on camera during one meeting. I feel like a total disaster, and I have lost all my self-confidence. Although my mistakes have not done any big harm to the company or to my team, I feel like I am wasting a lot of my seniors time (as they spent a lot of time reviewing and fixing my work). 

My senior colleagues have been extremely nice since I joined, and exactly because they have been so nice and helpful since the beginning, I hate myself for being so shit, and I feel like I am letting them down. Even a junior director approach me in private the other day to give me feedback for my shitty work and check with me to see how I am finding the job. 

I promise myself every single day that I will work hard to turn things around and finish all my assignments perfectly, but somehow I always mess it up. When I learn from one mistake, I immediately make a new one I had never done before... I really want a career in IB, and I really like the nature of the job, but I just feel like am useless, and a heavy burden to my team. I am going to keep trying, but sometimes I am scared that one day I may receive an email or a call inviting me to go... 

Has anyone ever felt this way when starting a new job? How did you guys manage to turn things around? 

Comments (5)

Jan 13, 2022 - 4:50pm

It takes time. Don't give up

Money can purchase freedom, if you have the guts to buy it

Jan 13, 2022 - 5:15pm

First things first, stop the negative self-talk. You're struggling and that's great. You might just end up being a top notch banker after these growing pains. 

Secondly, start incorporating some meditation into your schedule if you're open to it. Even if it's just 10 minutes.

Lastly, it doesn't seem like they want to fire you. That's a good sign. You're only 10 weeks in, I'm sure they understand even if it may upset some of them.

  • 1
  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Jan 13, 2022 - 7:54pm

It's fine to make mistakes - it's not fine to keep making the same mistakes. The first 6 months (really closer to 10 months) is a constant and painful learning experience. The learning curve is steep because it's something unfamiliar and difficult but it does get better with more reps. Eventually, you start to learn and recognize ahead of time when / where you are most likely to make mistakes. This helps you catch and fix them before others do. Just keep grinding - you'll be fine.

Most Helpful
Jan 13, 2022 - 10:39pm

I don't work in IB but I'm in middle office. If it makes you feel any better, a few weeks ago I accidentally mixed up two numbers of my boss's extension and transferred a client to some random dude in the company. I was horrified immediately afterwards and called them back to tell them that I accidentally transferred them to the wrong person and I will now be transferring them to the correct person. 

What helped me out is to slow down and start doing sanity checks on everything you send out. Is the title of my email correct? Did I cc the correct client? Did I attach the right report? Does the format of the last report I sent out match the one I'm sending out today? Once you get in the habit of this your anxiety will ease. Also don't be afraid to keep asking questions, even if you think it's a dumb one. I'd much rather annoy my boss with questions than make a noticeable mistake that all the execs and client notice. I've had more than few moments where I thought what I did was right but asked my boss for clarification before I sent it out and I was wrong. 

Jan 15, 2022 - 9:41am

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Jan 15, 2022 - 10:27am

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