8:00AM to 9:00AM
On a normal day, I wake up around 7:30AM to 8:00AM. I prepare for the day by thinking about what tasks I need to do, what needs to be completed, and check my emails. Then, I usually check my calendar to see if there are any meetings I need to go to and make sure that I will arrive on time. If I have extra time, I start to look at any tasks that I have completed that have been reviewed by another analyst or a principal in case I receive any feedback or comments to address. Afterwards, I begin work at 9:00AM every day!
9:00AM to 12:00PM
Every day, the job is different, but typically, my work falls under four general categories. Sometimes, I work on PowerPoints and create slides to present to my team. When I have a meeting with a client or partner, which tends to range from 30 to 60 minutes, I am responsible for taking meeting minutes. Apart from this, I could also be working on market research. For instance, if I am working on healthcare, my research might consist of looking into relevant regulations and standards. The last general category of my work revolves around exam modelling, where I work on things like evaluation and the elbow model. For instance, I might take charge of a comparable company analysis, where I pull the financial data of a couple of comparable companies from the public market, and work on to reach a fair valuation for the target company.
The work I do in the morning depends on the type of team I am working with for my project. I usually work in one of two teams, where the communication is mainly text/email based or discussion/meeting based. A text/email team follows a pattern where senior management sends emails, summarizing the work that is assigned, highlighting prioritized work, and providing any relevant deadlines, timelines, and next steps. On the other hand, a discussion/meeting team has a pattern where the team catches up each day, with touchpoint meetings or calls every morning or afternoon. In these meetings, there are typically three or four people who will share their work progress and any concerns.
12:00PM to 3:00PM
After my meetings, I continue any tasks that I have been working on. These tasks include items related to the projects I have been placed on. These projects usually last at least a month and typically, a month and a half and have several main components we need to work on for the project which is known as a pipeline. The first part is screening, where we see if the project is doing well and if it is beneficial or profitable to invest in. Then, we move onto a view alert. This is when we notify the team that we are doing more due diligence and research on the project and topic. We look at how the company is doing in the market, how they differentiate themselves, and more. Finally, we prepare an investment memo for the senior management team. This is the final decision point where we have completed our due diligence and are summarizing what we have completed. We present this to the senior management team and discuss how much our company has contributed or how much we want to invest into the project. I would be working on any of the tasks above depending on the stage of the project. This keeps me excited because there’s always something new to learn and do everyday!
3:00PM to 7:00PM
In the afternoon, I mainly focus on my own tasks and try to finish them according to the deadlines I was given. Usually by this time, the principal or analyst assigns work for me to complete within a few hours or by the end of the day. I describe myself as someone who takes more time to complete tasks because I am learning how to do something while I’m working on them. Because of that, the work atmosphere in the afternoon, becomes pretty quiet. To manage any tasks that I have, I create a list of items and see which ones I should prioritize. Then, I communicate with my seniors about my timeline and priorities, and mark my tasks on my calendar or notes.
7:00 PM to 10:00PM
I don’t usually work too late, but sometimes, I may work until 9:00PM or even 1:00AM for two main reasons. The first one is that if I have to hand over my work to my team, I must have the task ready to be reviewed by the director or the principal before that happens. This makes the deadlines earlier than the actual set date. The second one is if I am working on the investment memo mentioned above. This step is the most important because it is being presented to the senior management. This includes finishing the slides, modelling, adding any final information, and reviewing them to make sure they are free from errors.
On the weekends, I try to unwind by getting some good sleep. On Sunday evenings, I also try to check my schedule for the next day and week, planning out my tasks and determining my expectations at work. This really helps me get a good rhythm for the week and reduce any stress on Monday!
To close off...
There are typically less females than males in senior management. When you enter a company, I think there is a lot for you to learn from these females in senior management, such as how they worked their way up into their role. I really recommend taking the time and initiative to talk to these women as they have so much wisdom to share.
In my second and third year of university, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do in the future, but I realized that every person has their own path. I think it’s really important to understand that every person has their own timeline and while you may not know everything right now, you will eventually figure it out.