The COVID Effect - Positive or Negative Banking Experience?

For those of you who have just started banking or planned to just do 2-3 years and exit, how do you feel about COVID and its effect on your banking experience? Obviously it's terrible for many reasons related to health, but putting that aside, I feel that being able to work from home for what will be most likely be a minimum of 50-60% of my (planned) banking career has made the experience much more tolerable. Below I put just a few of the pros/cons and in my opinion, the pros outweighs the cons by a fair margin if you were just planning on putting your couple years and bouncing. On the other hand, if you were trying to build a career off of banking, i can see how WFH may be more detrimental long-term.

Pros:

  • Working from home in comfort
  • More sleep
  • Less facetime 
  • Less pressure
  • No longer needing to appear busy when you're not (compared to office)
  • Easier to make personal calls / keep in touch with friends 
  • Health can be prioritized (flexibility for working out, walks, etc)
  • Ability to run errands mid-day when there is downtime 
  • Interviewing / networking is much easier

Cons:

  • Not as much time to build bonds with fellow juniors (no spontaneous coffee runs / lunches & dinners / drinks) 
  • Less exposure to seniors (less long-term career development) 
  • For first years, most likely less exposure to modeling due to trust not being built 
  • No separation from work and home, often causing the feeling of "living at work"
  • Seniors "living to work", causing much more ad-hoc, late night requests 

What are your thoughts? Is banking ever going to back to what it was pre-COVID?

Comments (5)

 
  • Analyst 2 in IB - Ind
Nov 20, 2020 - 5:42pm

I'd generally agree with the comment above. I think many 2nd years I know across the street had pretty bad summers though, like brutally bad. Combination of a crazy market, lack of proper intern support due to shorter internships and wfh conditions, and depending on the firm a delayed start for new analysts. 

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