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Management Consulting Discussion - Page 6

post #76 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by calisanfran View Post
Sure, I agree that your chances to get into VC / PE are higher coming out of MC than from getting an engineering job out of school.

Don't get me wrong, there are many examples of folks who have gotten into VC from MC. I just believe that:

(a) its a very very small % of MCers who get into VC directly from MC

(b) an MC job does not really prepare you very well to be in VC when compared to having been an entrepreneur / operator

(c) a lot of ex-MCers hit the ceiling soon if and when they manage to get into VC directly. Likely start as associates and get tapped out at the Principal level. There are very few (as a %) VC General Partners who did nothing else in their lives but MC

My personal opinion is that if VC is your ultimate goal then spend 3 yrs or 4 yrs max in MC. Get a gig in the industry after that and rise there the hard way. Then join a smaller company and hopefully be a part of a successful exit. Then get into VC.

My views are based on having worked in MC (DEFINITELY not the company you are joining - so you can guess) and now current working in an industry which attracts the largest (or maybe 2nd largest depending on where you get data from!) venture financing and being intimately networked with VCs in the sector.

That's good advice. I was planning on exiting MC in my early 30s (I'll be 28 very soon). I have a solid technical background and I figure MC will give me a lot of business experience, so I should hopefully be in good shape afterwards.

And, I didn't mean to rag on McK. The interview process with both were great, but the one I picked seemed like a better fit for my personality. I won't join until I wind down my Ph.D., so I won't have any stories for a few months.
post #77 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by ramuman View Post
That's good advice. I was planning on exiting MC in my early 30s (I'll be 28 very soon). I have a solid technical background and I figure MC will give me a lot of business experience, so I should hopefully be in good shape afterwards.

And, I didn't mean to rag on McK. The interview process with both were great, but the one I picked seemed like a better fit for my personality. I won't join until I wind down my Ph.D., so I won't have any stories for a few months.


Good luck!! Your first few assignments are going to be tough...always are for those who come to MC with a strong technical background...they are used to getting precise answers and working with precise input data. Typical problems that you will be trying to solve on MC gigs are going to be ones with limited data. You will need to get comfortable "swagging" a lot. We had running joke that associates at our firm needed three data points to form a straight line and notice a trend , managers needed 2 dots to notice a trend, while partner / directors would see one data point and identify a trend based on that!

I know folks where you are going. I think it is a more casual atmosphere so hopefully you will enjoy your stay there.
post #78 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by calisanfran View Post
Good luck!! Your first few assignments are going to be tough...always are for those who come to MC with a strong technical background...they are used to getting precise answers and working with precise input data. Typical problems that you will be trying to solve on MC gigs are going to be ones with limited data. You will need to get comfortable "swagging" a lot. We had running joke that associates at our firm needed three data points to form a straight line and notice a trend , managers needed 2 dots to notice a trend, while partner / directors would see one data point and identify a trend based on that! I know folks where you are going. I think it is a more casual atmosphere so hopefully you will enjoy your stay there.
I'm having brunch with a senior partner/MD in a couple of weeks. I'm tempted to bring it up.
post #79 of 496
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plestor View Post
AF, I'll disagree on the pay. Hedge funds equal those numbers and add in a bigger bonus, obviously at the expense of job security. IB tends to be a touch lower. Prop is generally too tied up in your performance for a comparision. All numbers refer FO roles. Ramuman, that was my impression too -- I lean the otherway, but I actaully do Math Fin. Would you mind expanding on why you went to consulting?
?? I never commented on the hedgies making less than consulting. In fact I think they make more. Okay, I was an investment banker with a primo deal sheet, at least according to recruiters. So why consulting? Four big reasons: 1. Felt I had learned 99% of what there is to know in investment banking. 2. Wanted a better but still fast paced lifestyle. 3. Wanted to learn the other side of business outside of finance - operations, marketing, general management skills. 4. Getting into a top strategy boutique would make up for my lack of an MBA. I had lots of post-graduate study but with all the 80-90 weeks in banking could just not do a night/weekend MBA program. McKinsey gave me the alumni network and skills of a top business school program. Okay maybe five reasons. Wanted to make a decently high wage...you know these bespoke shoes and hand-built audio electronics are not getting any cheaper.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ramuman View Post
I ultimately want to get into one of the big VC/PE firms (Sequoia, KPCB, KKR, etc.). I felt like MC will give me a broader set of skills and experiences than finance. Going through the interview process is resource intensive for everyone involved and I didn't want to waste my time or theirs by half-heartedly interviewing for a financial firm.
In my experience you ideally need a mix of finance and consulting background. One path may be a corporate finance shop within a consulting firm like McKinsey offers. Very selective to get into. Or maybe a top business school in finance like Wharton plus consulting internship/experience. One of my friends at McKinsey left McK for Google but wound up working for In-Q-Tel. Having some startup experience is valuable but this is tough as picking a good startup or starting one are not easy things. I finally figured out things on my second software/analytics firm.
Quote:
Originally Posted by otc View Post
The lifestyle in consulting has the potential to be far better than the low levels of the IB world depending on what kind of person you are. Right now I don't do management/strategy work and I don't have to travel. I certainly applied to things that required travel though and would have been open to doing so for a while. There are so many expenses covered when you travel, including the fact that you don't necessarily have to go back home for the weekend (and not to mention building up airline and hotel status and credit). Vacation policies in consulting tend to be a lot more lax than ibanking at the low level where you only get a little bit and can't really use it (and you can score all your free status upgrades!). If you factor in the reduced hours, the perks, the ability to take vacation when you aren't staffed on a project...the IB pay doesn't seem much different.
Agreed. This is the conclusion I came to. The culture in my experience is totally different. At Lehman and Citi some MDs were assholes and everything was a dick-measuring contest if you know what I mean. At McKinsey assholes did not last long and few got in in the first place. There is an attitude of a "marketplace of ideas" where quality of idea or proposal outweighs seniority (to some degree admittedly), title, or pay. Investment banks actually kind of suck in employee training compared to consulting. Let me rephrase that. They completely suck compared to consulting. if you are young you need to think more in terms of learning experience than pay. This can be hard to do but it is ultimately the winning strategy. I turned down some investment banking offers to join McKinsey at slightly less pay. Best decision I ever made.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrG View Post
Another "thank you" for this thread, AF. Lots of good information here. Can you talk more about experienced hires? Also, I know a number of MC firms do a fair bit of consulting to government. Any advice for getting into that particular specialization?
Government work is growing and likely a good area to be in but I have honestly little experience there. Booz Allen has always excelled there. MrG, your government background might go a long way there. Study up on the case interview method and ideally have consulting friends "test" you on cases. Then build up a track record of problem solving talking points where you describe a situation you were placed in that had a problem, how you mapped out a way to solve it, and what results you achieved by solving it.
post #80 of 496
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by calisanfran View Post
Sure, I agree that your chances to get into VC / PE are higher coming out of MC than from getting an engineering job out of school.

Don't get me wrong, there are many examples of folks who have gotten into VC from MC. I just believe that:

(a) its a very very small % of MCers who get into VC directly from MC

(b) an MC job does not really prepare you very well to be in VC when compared to having been an entrepreneur / operator

(c) a lot of ex-MCers hit the ceiling soon if and when they manage to get into VC directly. Likely start as associates and get tapped out at the Principal level. There are very few (as a %) VC General Partners who did nothing else in their lives but MC

My personal opinion is that if VC is your ultimate goal then spend 3 yrs or 4 yrs max in MC. Get a gig in the industry after that and rise there the hard way. Then join a smaller company and hopefully be a part of a successful exit. Then get into VC.

My views are based on having worked in MC (DEFINITELY not the company you are joining - so you can guess) and now current working in an industry which attracts the largest (or maybe 2nd largest depending on where you get data from!) venture financing and being intimately networked with VCs in the sector.

I agree mostly with this with the exception of (c). That has not proven true at least with my friends at McKinsey and BCG. But then again I have an East Coast perspective being in Atlanta and this may be more true in California.

The bolded text is terrific advice.
post #81 of 496
*scratch that* Had a question about lateral into MBB for federal practice expansion but just realized that Mr.G essentially asked the same a page back.
post #82 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by Artisan Fan View Post
?? I never commented on the hedgies making less than consulting. In fact I think they make more.



AF, I was referring to your comment on "paying more" earlier in regards to quants, much of the (good) quant work is outside investment banks (HF, Prop). This will certainly give me something to think about when my thesis isn't going so well and I'm not sure if I even like math.

Thanks again.
post #83 of 496
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plestor View Post
AF, I was referring to your comment on "paying more" earlier in regards to quants, much of the (good) quant work is outside investment banks (HF, Prop). This will certainly give me something to think about when my thesis isn't going so well and I'm not sure if I even like math. Thanks again.
Oh yeah well that is different. I was referring to mainstream applied math folks more outside of quants in a trading sense-think predictive modeling, optimization and less proprietary trading. Those guys can do really well.
post #84 of 496
General question: How attractive is specific sector and industry experience to consulting firms? I'm currently in a government procurement/Supply chain rotational program (two years) and my short term plan is to transition to industry for about 3-4 years in procurement/SCM, then do my MBA, then perhaps get into MC. Is this type of specific experience valuable to MC firms? ____________________________________________________
post #85 of 496
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord-Barrington View Post
General question:

How attractive is specific sector and industry experience to consulting firms? I'm currently in a government procurement/Supply chain rotational program (two years) and my short term plan is to transition to industry for about 3-4 years in procurement/SCM, then do my MBA, then perhaps get into MC.

Is this type of specific experience valuable to MC firms?

I think it could be. Cap Gemini has a supply chain practice and I believe Accenture does too.
post #86 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord-Barrington View Post
General question: How attractive is specific sector and industry experience to consulting firms? I'm currently in a government procurement/Supply chain rotational program (two years) and my short term plan is to transition to industry for about 3-4 years in procurement/SCM, then do my MBA, then perhaps get into MC. Is this type of specific experience valuable to MC firms? ____________________________________________________
I can't talk to This Type Of Consulting, but having spent my entire career in PR consultancies, I can say that I see a trend in the past few years to hiring people from outside the traditional PR route (comms degree, comms jobs) toward hiring people that come from the vertical industries that the consultancies are trying to service/win as clients. The consultancies can either train up an IT kid to work in - say - media relations, or get someone else on his team to do it, knowing that he can hang when it comes to speaking with the client and understanding their needs. It's a lot easier for a media relations firm to teach media relations skills to (the right) person out of IT than it is to teach a comms kid IT....he'll if he could do that, he probably wouldn't be a comms kid!
post #87 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord-Barrington View Post
General question:

How attractive is specific sector and industry experience to consulting firms? I'm currently in a government procurement/Supply chain rotational program (two years) and my short term plan is to transition to industry for about 3-4 years in procurement/SCM, then do my MBA, then perhaps get into MC.

Is this type of specific experience valuable to MC firms?

____________________________________________________
Manhattan Associates seem like they would be a good fit.
post #88 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord-Barrington View Post
General question:

How attractive is specific sector and industry experience to consulting firms? I'm currently in a government procurement/Supply chain rotational program (two years) and my short term plan is to transition to industry for about 3-4 years in procurement/SCM, then do my MBA, then perhaps get into MC.

Is this type of specific experience valuable to MC firms?

_

I took a logistics/liner programming class during my MS and 2 consulting firms partners spoke in front of the class. Have you looked at smaller firms who specialise in supply chain/logistics consulting? Seems like it would be a good way to leverage your way to a larger MC firm.
post #89 of 496
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bhowie View Post
I took a logistics/liner programming class during my MS and 2 consulting firms partners spoke in front of the class. Have you looked at smaller firms who specialise in supply chain/logistics consulting? Seems like it would be a good way to leverage your way to a larger MC firm.

I know firms like PRTM are heavily procurement/SCM focused an AT Kearney has a highly regarded procurement/SCM practice so the niche is out there. It's so much of a bigger business area than it was 15-20 years ago when it was usually an afterthought in most industries.
That said, I probably want to build up a few years of industry experience before trying to move into consulting. I just feel like it makes more sense for me personally even though the consulting lifestyle is probably better for someone my age than it is for someone in their early thirties.
post #90 of 496
While the idea of gaining expertise and then going to consulting is one that is logical, it wouldn't make sense unless you really only wanted to consult and work in those industries anyway. Going in younger affords you to be not pigeonholed in a specific market (as you're cheaper) and lets you explore more different markets/roles.
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