Career advice for salaried worker

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by WorkingSlave, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. Hello,

    I am looking forward to some replies. Thanks for the opportunity to pick your brains.

    A short background. I graduted college in 2008 and have been employed since by a bulge bracket firm. This will be my 21st month at the firm. Bottom line is waking up at 5am and leaving at 10 has taken a toll. I see it in the eyes of some of my collegues and I can tell they will be ok doing this for the rest of their lives. I cannot. That's not to say I don't believe in hard work, but there are other ways to make a comparable living whilst not sacrificing your health and youth.
    During these 21 months I have saved nearly every paycheck after living expenses. I have a solid buffer between poverty and living on the streets thankfully. With that said I'm due to receive my bonus this month and discuss raises and such. I've reached the point where I don't care about the number so much as it would not significantly alter my life in anyway. There's nothing I can't buy now or would buy if my raise and bonus were decent. Ironically the more I save the less I desire material possession. I sold my Audi a year ago since it was an impractical purchase and a money sinkhole. I ride the train and subway to work everyday as it is. I digress. The point is it's time for me to leave soon

    is it possible that someone could give me a little insight into how their life changed for the better or worse since leaving a salaried position? Examples could be health benefits lost, financial freedom gained.

    Thank you
  2. This is not ironic at all. This means you are disciplined and on the right track towards freedom from the corporate cubical and the J-O-B.
  3. Thats a very honest statement- I used to save a ton of money when I was working in a factory, though saving money while being self-employed is harder I find.

    Keep up the good work, I'm sure some opportunity will present itself for you.

    Me - I left factory work and became a self-employed structural detailer while trying to pursue the trading dream.

    I found it took way longer (it is still ongoing) to get to the point where I felt like it would ever be realistic to trade full -time or even work for a firm. All the systems I am developing hit a wall with regards to implementing them, and Markets change (especially since 2007). Additionally, becoming self-employed and training myself to adapt to the technology I am now using in the drafting business ( a 3d modeling environment specific for structural steel) took about 2 years. During that time, I had little time, energy or motivation to get my trading systems working the way I expect them to be. This as I mentioned, is still ongoing.

    But I think, if someone said to me whats the best improvement that they made in their trading, it was and still is, the fact that I'm am working for myself. Its an education. So if there is ever an opportunity to become self-employed, or a contract worker in an area with upside and diversity, I'd say take it, you will become more prepared for your trading career.
  4. lindq


    No matter how much your job sucks, you are fortunate at present to have a regular income, because so many don't.

    Keep your job until the economy turns around. Then take your shot at freedom so if it doesn't work out you can get back on the train.

    I've owned a company, worked within a major corporation, worked freelance, and traded. All have their rewards and their challenges, ups and downs. There are times to go for it, and times to focus on security. This is one of those times.
  5. When you become self employed, you need more discipline than before, especially when you start making money consistantly.
  6. The day I quit my first and only salaried job after university will forever remain in memory. I can perfectly relate to your feelings. I felt burned out after a short 18 months. I thought it was the long hours, later I realized I just wasn't cut out for a corporate career lifestyle. The hours, the schmoozing, the networking, the career-management, the pressure, the stress.

    Remember the day when you quit. Remember how you feel, it may be a very unique moment in your life. I was both scared and excited, it was a sunny day, walking out to my car on the final day I had goosebumps. "Is this the right thing to do?" "My god, I burn down all bridges behind me, do I know what the hell I am doing at all?" "So I toiled away at university for 5 years to throw away my first job after 18 months?".

    Funny thing is: Once I created my own company I probably worked double the hours at times (all nighters, red eye-weekends with 3 hour sleep etc.) but heck, what a difference it makes when you do something you truly love and are passionate for. It doesn't feel like work. It feels like breathing. And that's the biggest piece of advice I can give anybody. If you want to become self-employed and start a business, then do not look around what area of the economy is now "hot", or where a lot of your friends make a lot of money (selling homes, yachts etc. in 2006). Figure out a field where you are or can become passionate. Where you either are or can become somewhat of an auto-didactic expert. A lot of love for what you're doing (amongst other things) can create the right foundation for a business. A lot of everything else (capital, business plan, nice office etc.) without any passion is (IMO) a recipe for mediocre results.

    Marc Veyrat never finished culinary college, he never learned to be a chef, he was fired/quit twice. Yet through a mad-man like passion for food and cooking he created one of the world's most praised restaurants, winning 3 Michelin Stars and 20 out of 20 points in the Gault Millau Guide. Compare this guy with legions of uninspired wanna-be restaurant owners who think dining out is easy money so they start one or two restaurants and quickly go out of business within 24 months, without ever creating a single unique dish.

    Good luck.
  7. Truer words have rarely been spoken. When you find something you love, it almost never feels like work.

    Personally, I rarely feel like I'm "working". I'm just doing what I would normally do, except at a different place than my living room.
  8. copa8


    brings back memories. resigned back in 2002. traded unsuccessfully for ~3 years. went back to corp world to recharge bank account. now am ready to quit again. mental/physical well-being taking a hit. dept downsized from 11 to 3...workload more than tripled.
  9. It depends. As a trader, you still follow the 9-5 type schedule of the markets, so it does feel like a job. The obvious benefits are there, but they all come at a risk.
    Starting your own company or venture depends on the type, as it could be more meeting & phone oriented with flexible schedules or a lot of work. The freedom is something you feel but often you may find yourself enslaved to your business. It becomes like an addiction.

    You need to look within yourself and figure out what you want. You may simply need a change of environment. You may not have the characteristics to work for yourself, this is something you need to explore.

    BTW, are you an investment banker?
  10. Your chance of finding financial freedom are tiny

    You will soon find that being employed longterm is better than being unemployed longterm

    Can you try to go "part time" for less money? You got vacation you could take? Can you request a short term leave, to refresh?

    Look for another job.

    What would happen if you did NOT come in from 5am to 10 (assuming pm). When people work that many hours, they tend to become very inefficient - long lunches, or talking/chatting a lot to others, etc.

    #10     Jan 6, 2010