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Questions on Corporate Hierarchy/Career Progression

Discussion in 'Business, Careers & Education' started by kxk, Apr 18, 2011.

  1. kxk

    kxk Well-Known Member

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    So, I'm 28 years old, and I was recently offered a position as "manager" at a large international (Global 100) corporation. Compensation package should be a little over 100k with stock options (details a little unclear).

    Now, I know that all companies have their own different structures, but generally, how old are most people who hold this type of a position? Is this considered middle management? upper management?

    My division itself is small and insulated from rest of the company, but I know that there are at least "analysts" and "associates" who are below the manager level. There's not a lot of basis for comparison as this insulated division is in its own separate little office--I would be the most junior of anyone there, but the two other managers are in their late 30s, and work directly under a VP, often speaks with/presents to the NA and global CEOs, although I'm sure that's not the next progression up. I was also promised that they'll put me on the inside track--no promises on promotion, etc, but they'll try to make me a key figure in their North America operations.


    Will probably end up not taking the job, but I just wanted to know for reference.

    Any insights or anecdotes would be greatly appreciated... thanks!
     
  2. Star

    Star Senior member

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    At 28 I would take the role and not look back. I dont think you are too young and obviously the powers to be dont think so either. If it makes you feel better Alexander the Great conquered all of what was the known world (and partly the uknown) at a much younger age. I dont think you should ever allow yourself to believe in a pecking order or a defined timeframe. If you are being promoted you must be doing something right.
     
  3. kxk

    kxk Well-Known Member

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    At 28 I would take the role and not look back. I dont think you are too young and obviously the powers to be dont think so either. If it makes you feel better Alexander the Great conquered all of what was the known world (and partly the uknown) at a much younger age. I dont think you should ever allow yourself to believe in a pecking order or a defined timeframe. If you are being promoted you must be doing something right.
    Thanks for the opinion. Yeah, it's definitely a pretty sweet opportunity, and I'm not really worried about the age thing. Just that my other option is in management consulting, which is also considered to be a fast track for corporate management/executive roles--so I guess I was trying to feel out how "ahead" of the curve the job in OP was to better weigh the two options. Yeah, I definitely want to be like Alexander the Great in my own way. Just trying to figure out what the best way to go about world domination would be.
     
  4. otc

    otc Senior member

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    Now, I know that all companies have their own different structures, but generally, how old are most people who hold this type of a position? Is this considered middle management? upper management?

    Welcome to middle management, live the dream bro!

    Kidding aside, I don't see why you wouldn't take it? What are you doing now?
     
  5. kxk

    kxk Well-Known Member

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    Welcome to middle management, live the dream bro! Kidding aside, I don't see why you wouldn't take it? What are you doing now?
    how old are pepople in "middle management" expected to be? both my parents were in education, and growing up in Boston, most of my parents' friends were, too... so I know nothing about how corporations work, etc. as for what i'm doing now, i'm currently a grad student in my last term. the other option is in management consulting (see my second post) which is also considered a fast-track in corporate management/exec roles, so I just wanted to see what would put me in a better position 3-5 years down the line. and if all else equal, i would opt for the broader industry options and higher salary (lots of loans to pay off) of management consulting. what usually comes after manager? and if anyone has experience in mgmt consulting: if i can't make it to the next level (engagement manager/project leader/etc) and am forced out in 2 years, what kind of a role would I be looking at? (the wealth of resources on consulting online mostly seem to focus on college grads)
     
  6. suited

    suited Senior member

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    Let's not over-complicate things. You are in your 20s and making 6 figures. You are doing very well, by any reasonable person's standards. Don't listen to people that tell you otherwise. Good luck with the new job.
     
  7. otc

    otc Senior member

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    What sort of management consulting? And are you in for sure (as in do you have an offer or at least some interviews)?

    If so...I would probably say consulting is a better option (and will always let you fall back to middle management if you want)
     
  8. Dashaansafin

    Dashaansafin Senior member

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    You arent a key figure of any sort earning 100k. Just putting that out there. Id take Management consulting. What company?
     
  9. SirGrotius

    SirGrotius Senior member

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    That's classic middle management, but since you're young and they're talking inside track it's better than it sounds. Why aren't you taking it?? Upper management is usually a good ways off and you'll go through the 200Ks first, but once the stock options start getting in the picture you know you're upper and you'll be raking in the dough.
     
  10. kxk

    kxk Well-Known Member

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    offer at one of the M/B/B, which will pay about 1.5 times more, but entail about 2x more hours. money's not a HUGE deal, although all things equal, it'd be nice to pay off loans sooner.
    I just don't know what exit options really will be in 2 years, as i really don't know anyone in this industry--if i'll be starting off at the same level in 2 yrs, might as well take this job now, esp at a company invested in my development, you know? but of course if this is a typical job that one expects to have as 28-32 year old, then I won't be passing up anything super interesting, i guess.
     
  11. Dashaansafin

    Dashaansafin Senior member

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    You are passing up M/B/B to be middle management? How did you get an offer? Is it front office?
     
  12. Lord-Barrington

    Lord-Barrington Senior member

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    You are passing up M/B/B to be middle management? How did you get an offer? Is it front office?

    That's a sweet springboard but consulting isn't for everyone due to the brutal hours. I think people tend to be awed by the names but even if you're using MBB as a springboard you still have to put in 3 or so years of pretty intense hours. It's not for everyone.
     
  13. kxk

    kxk Well-Known Member

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    You are passing up M/B/B to be middle management? How did you get an offer? Is it front office?
    It's under consideration--that's why I asked. I guess you could call it FO--I don't think I've heard anyone make that distinction in consulting. I got it through internet resume drop and subsequent rounds of interviews.
    That's a sweet springboard but consulting isn't for everyone due to the brutal hours. I think people tend to be awed by the names but even if you're using MBB as a springboard you still have to put in 3 or so years of pretty intense hours. It's not for everyone.
    Springboard to what, is what I'm asking I guess. If I'm pushed out in 3 years to end up where I would have ended up anyways, I might as well take the other route, you know? I like the company, the industry, the people, the hours, and the location (even if I'm not pushed out, per se, I'd like to be out of it sooner than later). At the same time, if even 2-3 years at MBB would catapult me beyond that, i'd definitely be willing to sacrifice a couple years.
     
  14. Lord-Barrington

    Lord-Barrington Senior member

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    It's under consideration--that's why I asked. I guess you could call it FO--I don't think I've heard anyone make that distinction in consulting. I got it through internet resume drop and subsequent rounds of interviews.



    Springboard to what, is what I'm asking I guess. If I'm pushed out in 3 years to end up where I would have ended up anyways, I might as well take the other route, you know? I like the company, the industry, the people, the hours, and the location (even if I'm not pushed out, per se, I'd like to be out of it sooner than later). At the same time, if even 2-3 years at MBB would catapult me beyond that, i'd definitely be willing to sacrifice a couple years.


    Would you join as an associate or an analyst? I think many associates do a bit (3-4 years) and then can lateral to an industry gig at a VP or director level. If that's where you want to end up and you can get there on your own steam without going the MC route, I don't know why you would have to.

    I think big names like MBB or GS in banking can be a big boost to certain people but if you're ultimate goal is to work in industry, why not just work in industry?

    Serious question, too. I'd like to see what others think.
     
  15. kxk

    kxk Well-Known Member

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    Would you join as an associate or an analyst? I think many associates do a bit (3-4 years) and then can lateral to an industry gig at a VP or director level. If that's where you want to end up and you can get there on your own steam without going the MC route, I don't know why you would have to. I think big names like MBB or GS in banking can be a big boost to certain people but if you're ultimate goal is to work in industry, why not just work in industry? Serious question, too. I'd like to see what others think.
    I would join as an associate. Really, 3-4 years at MBB would be good enough for VP/Director? So I'd be like 31, 32? Sounds pretty sweet. Like I said before, I couldn't find much resources that got into the specifics for post-MBA consulting--all I could find were for college grads. I don't know how long it would take if I took the industry job--hence the concern about what level this "manager" job is at. As for your question: I suppose some people might find the salary difference appealing, at least for a couple years. Or not really know what industry is the one they want (one of my reasons). Could be allured by the brand name. And of course, the whole thing about accelerated career progression.
     
  16. Lord-Barrington

    Lord-Barrington Senior member

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    I would join as an associate.
    Really, 3-4 years at MBB would be good enough for VP/Director? So I'd be like 31, 32? Sounds pretty sweet. Like I said before, I couldn't find much resources that got into the specifics for post-MBA consulting--all I could find were for college grads.

    I don't know how long it would take if I took the industry job--hence the concern about what level this "manager" job is at.


    I think that's a best case scenario right there, not necessarily the norm. And the career progression I'm talking about is mostly for MBA students. I don't know if it's different for experienced hires.
     
  17. JoelF

    JoelF Senior member

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    A corporate role can be a pretty sweet gig or it can be a boring dead end. Should be pretty obvious up front which this is. And amazingly, working for a business in the right situation is really a great way to learn about that business.
     
  18. cchen

    cchen Senior member

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    Depends on the corporation. Can you give more details? I mean, at one of my previous employers, I was a manager at 23 and making about 100k, so the title doesn't mean much
     
  19. yjeezle

    yjeezle Senior member

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    I would join as an associate. Really, 3-4 years at MBB would be good enough for VP/Director? So I'd be like 31, 32? Sounds pretty sweet. Like I said before, I couldn't find much resources that got into the specifics for post-MBA consulting--all I could find were for college grads. I don't know how long it would take if I took the industry job--hence the concern about what level this "manager" job is at. As for your question: I suppose some people might find the salary difference appealing, at least for a couple years. Or not really know what industry is the one they want (one of my reasons). Could be allured by the brand name. And of course, the whole thing about accelerated career progression.
    Depends on the company, but I think ~28 is when some people will be brought on as managers (assuming you get a promotion every 3 years and start @ 22 and don't go in for an MBA)
     
  20. kxk

    kxk Well-Known Member

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    Depends on the company, but I think ~28 is when some people will be brought on as managers (assuming you get a promotion every 3 years and start @ 22 and don't go in for an MBA)
    Sweet, sweet, thanks for the insight. So I'm just on track and not really missing out on much by letting this go. BTW, then do people really just stay on as "managers" without significant career progression for like 10-15 years, remaining managers into their early 40s?
     

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