Going Concern Community,
I am a Big 4 Tax Manager. I have been at my firm for 3 years & worked at a large national firm for 3 years before that. I love the people I work with, but I think I am ready to move on. The money just isn't what they told us it would be in school ("double your salary in 5 years is a crock"). Manager hours are even worse than senior hours (over 2600 total last year). The idea of putting in 6 or 7 more years of this for an outside shot at partner or director is daunting. Those roles seem to have some semblance of balance, but the high stress lifestyle never goes away. I cannot raise a family in my location with this little free time AND this low of a salary. The problem is, I feel like I only have a couple of career options. I can either change firms again, work in a corporate tax department, or start my own firm. Based on what I hear through my network, none of these option will significantly reduce my workload. Have I doomed myself to a life of long hours forever?