Pencils Down

Sometimes, when you have been working around the clock on a corporate transaction, your client will, without warning, decide to abandon the deal and will tell you to go “pencils down”, meaning immediately stop working so that fees do not continue to pile up. The utter joy you will experience when this happens is hard to describe. But resist the urge to grin, laugh, pump your fists in celebration and/or congratulate the colleagues that had been suffering alongside you. Most likely, a “pencils up” email will appear in your inbox in the morning anyway so no sense in getting carried away trying to enjoy yourself.