It was almost 9 PM. As I packed my stuff and got ready to leave the office, I still saw a few people, both managers and analysts, conscientiously working on their projects. I have heard that at least five people can be found in the office at 11 PM every night. This is not uncommon in the finance industry, as some of you might have heard about the notorious hours of an investment bankers, who would typically not leave the office before midnight.

It was not until this internship that I got to experience the long hours of a typical office job. My work usually starts at 8:30 AM and lasts until 7-9 PM. I remembered that my first week at VinaCapital was pretty tiresome and exhausting as I was not used to the working hours and my tasks mainly involved putting numbers in financial models. It was funny how sitting at one place for an entire day could make me feel so tired that I would rather skip dinner and go straight to bed after I get off work.

As the weeks went by, I started getting used to the long hours. My work becomes more difficult as I got involved in bigger investment projects. I was assigned with new and challenging tasks, which makes me feel very excited and absorbed in my work. Every other day, I would get exposed to a different company or a different industry. I learned different financial models and tried building some on my own. Last week was my first time using Bloomberg Terminal and I am very curious and surprised at all the functions I could perform with it. I also got to practice tools like Excel when dealing with a huge number of data. One time, I spend four days working on a data set of revenues from more than a thousand retailing stores, just using Pivot table function in Excel.

The long hours were pretty discouraging but I believe that as long as I still find excitement in my work, I would not mind staying late.