You may still do Excel work if the model is complex, but mostly you are checking the analyst’s work and making sure he doesn’t screw up.

You spend most of your time managing the analysts and making sure the VP’s orders get executed.

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Much of your time is spent talking to clients and seeing what they need when you’re working on deals; analysts are too busy cranking away to have much client interaction, at least at large banks.

You get to attend more meetings and pitches than the analyst, but you will always have a non-speaking role unless the MD needs a number from you.

Pay: This varies by region and the state of the economy, but most 1st year analysts make at least $100K USD all-in (base salary bonus) and that may go up to $150K or more if the economy is good.

2nd and 3rd year analysts see increased pay, usually closer to $200K in a good year for a 3rd year analyst, and maybe $150K or a bit less on the lower end in a bad year.

Age Range: This one varies more than the analyst age range because associates come from more diverse backgrounds; 25-35 is the safest estimate because some associates are promoted directly from the analyst pool while others get recruited out of business school.

Getting in when you’re under 25 would be virtually impossible unless you graduated college early, and having 10 years of experience pre-MBA makes you overqualified.

Analysts have the most exit opportunities out of all bankers because they’re young and haven’t had “too much” experience in a certain field yet.

What You Do: If the analyst is the monkey, you’re a bigger and better-groomed monkey who’s much smoother in social situations.

If your group is just OK and the economy is neither great nor terrible, your pay will be in the middle of that range.

Time to Get Promoted: Usually it takes 3-4 years to reach Vice President, and it’s harder to get that promotion than it is to go from analyst to associate – you need to show more leadership and client management skills.

You do most of the Excel and Power Point work, take notes, send emails and call people, and even take care of random tasks like fixing printers and picking up dry cleaning.