I have always wanted a career as a strategy consultant after finishing my degree in Business Administration. I want to work in a company, therefore, I chose the best players in the market for an entry position. McKinsey and BCG have the best options in my career choice.
McKinsey offers a good option especially for an entrant in the corporate world. Consulting associates are expected to have a degree and excellent academic qualifications making masters and a Ph.D. an added advantage (McKinsey, 2019).
The job also requires a person with good people skills because associate consultants are required to work in groups of 3-5 people per team at McKinsey. Good problem-solving skills combined with good analytical skills are a must-have. The job requires good communication skills and a strong leadership sense in academia, extracurricular and corporate settings. The position also comes with a requirement to work effectively with people from other positions within the company as well as a lot of traveling (McKinsey, 2019).
I would like to have a challenging first job and working at McKinsey promises a lot of traveling and working with different industries which will help me in building my professional experience. Working as an associate will require that I work gathering information and analyzing it, making a hypothesis and testing them for clarity as well as forwarding findings and recommendations (McKinsey, 2019). The job requires that I work with a team which is an advantage because I can learn from my peers. McKinsey understands that being a new consultant is hard and that is why their coaching and training will come in handy in my early days.
Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is also a consulting company where a new graduate with a degree in Business Administration would look for work. BCG associate consultants’ work structure is the same as that of McKinsey. The job description involves working on various projects that may also require a lot of traveling. An associate consultant is also required to analyze problems and offer recommendations as well as suggestions for clients at BCG (BCG, 2019). In both companies, the salary ranges from $85,009 to $90,000 (Tuttle, 2019).
In order to reach my end goal of working as a strategist consultant, I first need to concentrate on getting the best grades as early as in my first year. A company like McKinsey is very specific that its employees have to have top-notch academic qualifications so a mere pass will not cut it. Luckily, I am still in my first year and I can find ways to keep my grades up. Secondly, I also have to graduate with my degree first, before looking for meaningful employment in any of the two companies. A degree is enough for me to land an entry position but because companies like McKinsey allow their employees to pursue higher learning, I can take my masters while still working to improve my chances of promotion in the future. Thirdly, I can sign up for summer jobs at my companies of interest so that I can learn more about the companies. If I successfully manage to find a job in the company every summer until I graduate, I will improve my chances of getting my dream job and also develop important skill sets.
It is clear that as a consultant I will need to sharpen my communication skills because the job requires a lot of interactions. Joel Garfinkle recommends that it is important to read books as well as magazines to learn from the best communicators. A good communicator also learns to listen to others, maintains eye contact and good body posture, conveys simple messages and engages listeners (Garfinkle, 2019). I have to do a lot of practice to ensure that my communication skills not only improve but are also perfect. Good leadership skills are also essential in consulting. I have not been much of a leader in the past but then there are leaders who are made. I will try to volunteer for more leadership positions within the campus and in extracurricular activities to improve my leadership skills. The job also calls for good problem solving and analysis skills which I hope to learn in my course especially while reviewing real-life incidents in companies and industries. I can also improve analysis and problem solving by taking an active role in solving all the problems I am bound to encounter during my study period. In summary, I need to work on getting good grades and improving my skills as I work towards my goal.
In conclusion, steps towards achieving my goal in consulting include working hard at getting good grades and graduating with a degree in Business Administration. My odds include a lack of good leadership and communication skills which I am willing to work on through practice and research to gain more experience. Industry standards are the same in the top consulting companies as the job descriptions do not vary at all. The salary is good for an entrance position as I can always make more money later, when I am more experienced, by working as an expert in the field of consulting. The job requires a lot of traveling but I do not mind because as a young person with few responsibilities, I do not mind touring the world and meeting different people. I believe the experience will be an added advantage in my portfolio and working experience. The job demands a lot of training and coaching in the early years but I am focused on facing the challenges and beating my odds.