Work/Life Balance in Development

Just started FT analyst stint at large office developer. The older analysts made it seem like I'm working weekends and long weekdays. Is that the norm? I assumed it was on busy weeks but not every week. Its not IB hours but its closer than I'd thought.

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Comments (25)

Jun 24, 2021 - 10:45am

Depends on the firm. If you go to a developer that has a lot of ex bankers or a smaller office filled with guys who are all about the long hours, then you'll have to work the long hours. But to be clear, by no means is development an industry where those hours are REQUIRED if your team isn't understaffed. If you have sufficient manpower, weekend hours are few and far between at most companies.

I'd say more typical is 50-60 hours a week. At my current job I vary from 40-45 hours at slow times to probably 70'ish when it's crunch time (new deals happening, multiple projects have big changes going on, etc.). Probably 50-55 average.

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Jun 24, 2021 - 12:05pm

Development manager here, I work 35-45 hours pretty consistently. Obviously longer when I have a closing or a big event of the like, or if I have to put together a complicated model that my analysts can't do on their own. I certainly check my email on weekends but pretty much never open my laptop. Work is across all asset classes but mostly multifamily, big entitlement deals, and value-add acquisitions.

  • Analyst 1 in RE - Comm
Jun 25, 2021 - 12:13pm

Property tours and travelling, sure, but I wouldn't classify drinks, dinners and networking as working

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Jun 25, 2021 - 12:44pm

I guess I can maybe see why it seems like that at the analyst level, as it is not likely to be part of more formal duties nor as necessary to carry out the job. 

Trust me, it is very much working, and something you HAVE to do at more senior levels. By all universal terms, if you are doing drinks, dinners, and networking with people in the industry, prospective/current clients/investors/suppliers/tenants/whatever, or just business events in general.... it is work. This is a well understood definition. 

  • Analyst 1 in RE - Comm
Jun 25, 2021 - 3:27pm

idk man, that seems like a pretty low bar to what classifies as work. are we going to start counting commuting time as work too? 

Jun 24, 2021 - 12:50pm

I'm a Development analyst at a mid-sized firm. Never worked on the weekends. Work 8-5 everyday (45 hours/week). Rarely go over that. At my company, the senior guys work longer hours, 55 hours on average I would say. Construction not happening on weekends is a huge reason why I don't work weekends. 

Jun 24, 2021 - 8:32pm

hyper firm specific, some devcos look/act like "finance shops" as they are founded by people from i-banking/private equity type backgrounds. You will see a lot of amongst some of the big NYC centric real estate firms. Reports of 80+ hr weeks are not uncommon. 

Overall, I think most major developers nationwide are more traditional structures with 40-50 hrs the norm and the occasional 60-70 hrs during closings (which should only happen a few times a year per team). This is true for my firm and we do major projects in tier 1 cities. 

  • Analyst 1 in RE - Comm
Jun 25, 2021 - 1:03am

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