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Consulting company — the leaders of the rankings of best employers, but good bonuses and rapid career growth will not be full
The largest Russian and international companies often practice the search for employees among students, to take to himself the best of the best are still students. Consulting companies are leaders in the international rankings of the best employers and have enormous budgets for such campaigns to attract talent. They make a loud presentations in schools, organise sponsored scholarships and international events at the Chateau for students of technical faculties. Of course, all this can not attract young people.
After this any begins to try on the success of a professional consultant, you feel just a little bit- and you’ll be the hero of the series Suits and in suit from Dior going to the SEO major oil company or Bank, in front of which brilliantly will protect a presentation on the strategy of his company. And, of course, a young and ambitious person you will probably want to send your resume to this employer.
One in a million
The consulting company have taken 1-2% of all candidates. Usually those are four or five case interviews and a written exercise. In addition, the candidate must show your “right fit”, that is, the ability to achieve your goals. During the interview, a lot of attention is paid to the achievements of the candidate, creative thinking and the right values. The result is a team where all are approximately equal not only in IQ but also in spirit.
In addition to strong teams, there are tangible benefits of working in consulting. They should be divided into two types: remuneration and “buns”. Starting with the lowest rung of the career ladder, graduate receives a salary in euros and a good annual bonus. Fairly quickly, within 2.5-3 years salary reaches the level of head of Department with a large staff of people working under me. Further — more.
Good remuneration are included are also very nice benefits: insurance for all non-members of the family, payment for dinners, taxis, best hotels around the world during business trips and trainings around the world, always great food and yoga in the office class A. Each consultant can take a vacation between projects, explaining the reason (usually just for a break), and to travel to different countries or ask about part-time employment — only work several days a week, remotely and/or to switch from consulting roles to back-office.
After some time, all this creates a comfort zone, the value of which you understand only when you think about quitting. After all, there is another side to the coin: in many projects the work lasts from morning to night, long and far trip to the edge of the world, which can be reached without exaggeration just for the dogs, helicopter, boat. As a result, such work often reflects on personal life. Often couples are created within the company.
Career in consulting is developing rapidly, and sometimes very stressful for many is the system UP or OUT. That is, if it became worse to work, you can quickly dismiss under the condition of fierce competition, because you’re in the best of the best. Sometimes your score depends on how well you got on the project, how developed is your relationship with your partner.
There are several typical problem scenarios faced by many consultants. Sometimes these scenarios can be combined with each other at different stages of career. If you do not find in this list their own, then most likely you have worked in consulting and was not successful.
“Golden cage”. Top performers (the most productive candidates) very quickly grow to high positions and salaries. At 24, they can receive salaries commensurate with the salaries of managers of high level industry leading companies, the market is not ready to pay that kind of money so young people. So they are forced to focus on lowering their appetites for the sake of interesting challenges or wait for a “dream proposal”, in Russia only in a few cases, the company can afford such a “gold” employee.
“Generalist”. To the Director level consultants work on projects for different industries, which can be a serious disadvantage when searching for a new job in the future. In addition, consultants often do not know where to go next, and this gives us great self-doubt, and companies don’t want to spend time on content immersion.
“A Manager with no experience of managing people”. In consulting all work on project teams under you, the consultants, they have fire in their eyes, they are afraid of losing your place, and you’re not really manage a team. Moving into industry in a management position a high level, many are faced with 50+ subordinates, and how to work with them — is unclear. It all enters into the stress, and not all can handle such a challenge.
“From trainee to partner”. Consulting is very addictive, and a transparent career ladder motivates to achieve the next step, so in this sphere is very common career path from the bottom to the top. Besides the obvious advantages, this scenario has a downside — a very narrow minded and the inability to do something by your own hands. In the end strategic consulting — development initiatives, but not tracking their implementation.
Life after consulting
I am often approached by advisors who are not already graduates, with the same question: “I don’t know what I want.” The top queries from candidates today — work in startups of different kinds or “dynamic industry” (digital and innovation). Treat those tired from travel and just want a steady salary. The best option for an ex-consultant — go to the client company for which he has already set a strategy and knows the people and pitfalls. Of industries often choose the resource, Telecom projects, banks, at least — FMCG or IT (in the past consulting experience is less relevant).
The second way is to open an own business option for the creative who are willing to do everything from scratch, not afraid to take risks and give up the stability and “buns” for ideas and possible glory. The third option is oligarchic structures or funds. There is a perception that there’s more money and have the opportunity to move from one asset to another, but, unfortunately, for many such positions are quite rare and for the Golden offer lies many nights without sleep and not really comfortable cultural characteristics of such structures. The fourth option is quite popular — the transition from one consulting company to another with a higher salary and position. However, many candidates call it “the flea”, although for a candidate who loves his job, it’s not a problem.
There are a few recommendations for ex-consultants who will help to convert the accumulated experience to further career growth.
Not to sit. Consulting is a great school, but pass it all the way from trainee to partner is still not worth it. It is best to confine two or three years, or, conversely, to go in consulting with industrial experience are much more likely to become a partner.
Not to be a consultant on any topic, and as early as possible to bind to a specific industry, to become more deep content and understand where to go next.
To maximize your network among clients and current colleagues at the right moment was where to go.
If you have the desire to leave Russia, consulting is a good opportunity to move to one of European and/or American offices.