As a 25 year-old in banking, you may earn good money. Do not assume, however, that this generous income will bring a feeling of warm contentment and general optimism about the future. It may simply leave you feeling confused.
The Financial Times has a letter from an anonymous 25 year-old in banking for whom the archetypal mid-life crisis seems to have struck early. Although the banker concerned likes his colleagues, doesn't have to work too hard (8.30am to 6.30pm) and is paid, "extremely well", he complains that his job has "no meaning and makes me feel extremely bored at best."
"Am I just another entitled idiot for thinking I am wasting my youth?" he asks. "I want to quit, but I am scared I will end up just as bored, and working with more annoying people while earning three times less." Lucy Kellaway, the FT's in-house agony aunt, offers some pragmatic advice. She points out that it's perfectly normal to find a banking job boring and suggests three ways around this: see it as a game and focus on getting promoted faster than your rivals, revel in the money, or give up seeking purpose at work. "Stop asking yourself whether it has any meaning. Stop expecting to be fulfilled and excited every minute. Try to see the processes as an end in themselves," is Kellway's favoured solution.
Separately, the Financial Times also reports that Rothschild is weighing up whether to bring its bonus payments forward from June in case a Labour government gets into power and imposes a windfall tax on banking bonuses. Rothschild was burnt by the bonus tax in 2009, when the then-Labour government deliberately extended the tax deadline to include Rothschild's unusually late payments. This isn't the first time a bank has toyed with changing its bonus calendar for tax purposes: Goldman Sachs did the same in 2013, but backed down following condemnation in the British press.
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The world view of Crispin Odey. (Guardian)
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How unemployment might change your personality. (NYMag)
How to deal with a co-worker who’s a slacker. (HBR)
How it is in the morning for the chairman of the London Stock Exchange. (Twitter)
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