Success story of an Investment Banker
Here is an excerpt from an article published on www.rediff.com that talks about the story of Rohan Siddhu, an investment banker.
What I loved about the job was the money.
The salaries and bonuses were obscenely luring. (A fresh MBA, with absolutely no job experience, could earn between Rs 3,00,000-Rs 6,00,000 per annum the latter if you are from a top-notch business school like the IIMs).
The salaries gave purpose to my life and the bonuses (which could go up to three to five times the annual salary) made up for the crap I had to put up with. And, yes, believe me, there was lots of crap.
Let me tell you something about the bonuses.
Like I mentioned earlier, it can be breathtakingly inflated figure. To get it, you have to do two things.
The first: Work like a dog to contribute to the profits.
If you are passionate about teamwork, investment banking is certainly not the place for you. It is more of a dog-eat-dog culture. You are on your own. Since you are paid according to the deals you cut, it works out to be a very individualistic environment with everyone jockeying for a large slice of the bonus cake.
The second: Suck up to your boss.
That's right. Be a sycophant, even if he is insufferable.
Smile at him.
Say the right things.
Nod when he makes a good point.
Don't disagree too much when he does not.
Grovel at his feet.
Your bonus is not going to be calculated according to some predetermined formula. It is solely dependent on your boss' whims and fancies.
I'm sorry, but...
After my first year, I looked forward to the bonus with glee. I was the 'hot new kid' on the block, responsible for getting in 80% of all new business in the past year.
One morning, my boss calls me and tells me he is quitting. A new guy would be taking his place. Come bonus time, the 'new guy' calls me in for a chat.
"I believe you have done really well in the past year," he starts.
I liked that beginning.
"Unfortunately, since I have just joined, it would not be fair for me to judge your performance or those of your colleagues." Warning bells began clanging in my head. "So I am afraid, all bonuses are going to be equal this year."
I headed to the nearest pub to drown my sorrows.
The following year, I was totally demotivated (can you blame me?). Subsequently, I did not get in that much of business.
Come bonus time, he pompously tells me that he cannot give me a huge bonus since I did not work as well as was reported earlier.
Hit the pub again.