“You will work for senior execs and have a strong impact, you will learn a lot and progress quickly, you will make friends with bright people, you will travel to multiple places” – sounds like a dream right?
Well, this is how the consulting world was presented to me during the career fairs at Uni. And the more I read about it, the more I saw consulting as the perfect start for a bright career.
I have to confess that when I was done with my studies, I still had no idea what I wanted to do, and there is a chance that those reading this may feel the same. Fortunately enough, I was well aware of my clueless status, hence why I decided to write my Bachelor’s thesis on the Consulting Industry. This pushed me to discover whether those presentations during the career fairs were really the truth or rather opportunities to get plenty of candidates sending over their CVs. What I found is that consulting can provide you with a picture of what’s happening in the business world and will give the curious minds the chance to have a little taste of everything, without the immediate need to specialise. After two years in the consulting world, I can say that my expectations have been exceeded.
As per my personal story, after a Master in Management (again I didn’t want to specialise on a specific area) in London, I had opted to work for a medium-sized consultancy instead of joining the long queue of candidates applying for the top companies. After one year of experience, one can already develop a keen understanding of what is demanded in the industry. And if you are motivated enough to match that with what you enjoy doing, then I’m sure it’s going to be much easier to entry at a well-known firm. Or at least, this is how I got into Deloitte.
After having had an exposure to diverse aspects of the data world (namely Data Governance, Data Protection and Data Management), I’m currently specialising in Data Analytics. This means that on a daily basis I have to gather requirements from the key stakeholders, collect raw information, transform it to discover useful insights, and present it in a way that will generate an impact on the client’s organisation. There are many different steps and obstacles along the way. To name a few, often data is collected in the wrong format, some essential information is missing, or automation is needed to make the data ready for analysis. The whole journey can run smoothly, or you might have to keep going back and forth to complete it. But when you have the final result in front of you, this is when you understand the value that you are creating, by shedding light into the current challenges of the business.
There is no routine. I interact daily with 25-year-old analysts and clients with 25 years of experience. I can have one month with 4 meetings per week or 4 months with one meeting per hour. But that’s the best part, at least until you understand in which basket you want to put all of your eggs in. I guess my point is: be humble enough to acknowledge your unawareness, get to know what’s going on out there, and then choose which part you enjoyed the most. And I can tell you that the consulting career is definitely the right place to start this personal journey.