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Consultants with successful marriages

 
#1 Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 11:59

Looking for faith to deleted (#0)

Dear all

I am about to make the jump into consulting but am a little worried about one thing: There seems to be a disproportionate number of divorces/separations within the industry, due to the fact that a consultant spends so much time away from home.

To give me some peace of mind, could anyone PLEASE tell me that they've been in consulting for more than a couple of years and that their marriage/relationship is going fine? If so, have you found a good mechanism for dealing with the constant away time (or is that the key to the success? :))

Many thanks

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#2 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 12:38

martin to Looking for faith (#1)

Depends what you want from a "good" marriage.

An executive I worked for married someone else within the industry. They have worked in different countries for years but meet up for a long weekend every month. For them this is perfect as the careers come first.

There are success stories (absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that), but regrettably not as many as the failures. This is due to the blood, sweat and tears expected by the employers and the fact that lots of consultants are arrogant playboys who can't keep their knobs in their pants.

As for those who work out of town whilst their other halves bring up the kids, I pity the kids. How many 60-year-olds look back on their careers and say "I wich I'd spent more time at work"?

Sorry it's a downer. I genuinely hope it works for you, but be aware that it will not be easy.

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#3 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 13:18

A to martin (#2)

i agree with martin, it's hard.........

there are exceptions, that made it somehow work.........for example the general director of my firm, 15 years in consulting, has a very good marriage, and a strong family..........but he is out of his house (and base) in average 2 days a week...........no more in average........

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#4 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 13:23

John P to A (#3)

So, martin, the male consultants are 'arrogant playboys'?

What about female consultants? .............Innocent princesses?

I am assuming you are male and I think you are one of the metrosexual wannabes that has been brainwashed by the advertising industry that men should always be attacked.

Joker.

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#5 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 13:52

Village Idiot to Looking for faith (#1)

I'm probably not the most qualified to answer this, as I'm a divorced consultant, but I would echo the other sentiments here -- it's tough, but possible, to maintain a relationship as a consultant.

The industry is beginning to shift -- shorter hours and more of a focus on work/life balance. Working from home a day a week gives you four nights a week with your family -- still not ideal, but better than a kick in the teeth (and definitely better than in years past).

Still, it's not for nothing that they pay you the big £££. The consulting lifestyle can be tough and can lead to burn-out. No doubt about it.

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#6 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 14:04

Looking for Faith to Village Idiot (#5)

Uh oh! Everyone seems to be confirming my suspicions! Thank you very much for your frank responses though. Can anyone balance the thread with some more success stories, or should I just wake up (next to someone while I still can) and smell the coffee?

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#7 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 14:21

Big Blue to Looking for Faith (#6)

When I worked for the Big Blue, many of the married men (but few married women) on the big public sector jobs had a string of very public affairs. Their doting wives stood by them though – not really my idea of the basis of a successful marriage.

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#8 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 14:51

martin to John P (#4)

Yes, I'm male. No, I'm not a wannabe anything.

If you read it, I said "lots of..."

Not stating because men should be attacked, but from past experience in premiertravelinn-land.

The women aren't innocent princesses, but how many female executives have you seen using their power to cop off with relatively impressionable analysts while the wife minds the kids back in surrey? Not many I'd wager.

Guily secret?

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#9 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 16:13

Looking for Faith to Village Idiot (#5)

Uh oh! Everyone seems to be confirming my suspicions! Thank you very much for your frank responses though. Can anyone balance the thread with some more success stories, or should I just wake up (next to someone while I still can) and smell the coffee?

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#10 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 17:12

A to Looking for Faith (#9)

Looking for faith, it's hard but "when there is a will, there is a way":-)...........surely, when u get married to someone, u should know what baggagies he carries, and what his life is look, u will have discussed such sort of things ("operational":-)), u don;'t wake up one morning and expect him to change.........

i know quite many success stories, and i refered u the previous one, cause i consider success stories those one who have proven truck through time.........this md i refered to u is one of the greatest supporters of the "family" and tries to keep it as healthy as he can..........for example, he tries his time with family to be as qualitative as it can be, takes them to trips when he has 2-3 days of, etc etc.............another senior manager who is over 10 years married to a woman with an also very demanding job as well......they arrange their business trips alternative so someone to be in house next to kids always....etc etc.........when there is a will there is a way (a difficult one though and demands some sacrifices:-)

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#11 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 17:17

A to Looking for Faith (#9)

Looking for faith, it's hard but "when there is a will, there is a way":-)...........surely, when u get married to someone, u should know what baggagies he carries, and what his life is look, u will have discussed such sort of things ("operational":-)), u don;'t wake up one morning and expect him to change.........

i know quite many success stories, and i refered u the previous one, cause i consider success stories those one who have proven truck through time.........this md i refered to u is one of the greatest supporters of the "family" and tries to keep it as healthy as he can..........for example, he tries his time with family to be as qualitative as it can be, takes them to trips when he has 2-3 days of, etc etc.............another senior manager who is over 10 years married to a woman with an also very demanding job as well......they arrange their business trips alternative so someone to be in house next to kids always....etc etc.........when there is a will there is a way (a difficult one though and demands some sacrifices:-)

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#12 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 18:04

worker bee to Looking for faith (#1)

I think marriage success depends who you are and where you're working. The biggest factor is the amount of free time you have, followed by the environment you work in.

For example, if you join consulting from university this reduces your chances to even get married let alone have a successful marriage. This is because you are more likely to spend all your time at work and have no time or energy left for socialising.

If you only come into consulting as a partner, you can mostly dictate your own hours and it will impact on an already successful marriage less than average.

On another axis, if you work in strategy consulting you are more likely to be working long hours, whereas if you are in actuarial consulting you might have more regular hours to suit your clients.

If you are in a culture where everyone works intensely and affairs are common, you are more likely to move into that path yourself. If you are in a practice where a lot of people work part-time you are more likely to be able to prioritise your marriage without looking and feeling bad in the office.

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#13 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
25/08/2006 20:15

Looking for Faith to worker bee (#12)

Thank you worker bee and everyone else for your comments. I am already married and will be entering consulting having completed an MBA. From research I have done, I imagine that I will be away from home 3 nights per week for at least 3-4 years before perhaps moving to a position where I might be able to reduce the away time. Is that correct/feasible? Also, is it true that a consultant can take unpaid leave between assignments fairly regularly (ie to catch up with family)? That's not the kind of thing I'd feel comfortable asking at interview. I've heard it's possible, but is it common/acceptable?

Many thanks again

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#14 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
26/08/2006 10:41

jools to Looking for Faith (#13)

Quite apart from considerations of infidelity supposedly arising from proximity at work, you should be very realistic about consulting, and share this real view with your partner.

My view of the realities of consulting are (9 years as product development specialist):

- you are likely to be away 4-5 days per week (if you are really lucky you will find a consultancy that says they do 3-4-5, and really does)

- if you do any overseas work there is a good chance you will be staying weekends as well (especially as you are a new hire to consulting)

- when you are home at weekends you will still probably have av. 6 hours work to do in addition to trying to spend time with your family

- if you achieve partner you will still be travelling a lot

Unpaid sabbaticals between assignments - only if you are self-employed! Consultancy is a time-related revenue stream, hence maximisation of utilisation is a key operational focus. If you were an experienced hire with deep sector experience and on retainer to a number of Fortune 500 clients then maybe you could call the tune on utilisation...

I advise that you set these expectations with your family - if they are unhappy with this you should think very carefully about the likely outcomes of this move.

That said, the experience I gained over the last 9 years I could not have had any other way - and it has been fascinating. I am fortunate to have a partner who has been (until now) very understanding. I am on the point of moving to an internal consulting role to cut my travel in half as I recognise I am not able to spend any time with our 2 young daughters.

I hope this may help with your decision-making.

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#15 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
26/08/2006 10:41

jools to Looking for Faith (#13)

Quite apart from considerations of infidelity supposedly arising from proximity at work, you should be very realistic about consulting, and share this real view with your partner.

My view of the realities of consulting are (9 years as product development specialist):

- you are likely to be away 4-5 days per week (if you are really lucky you will find a consultancy that says they do 3-4-5, and really does)

- if you do any overseas work there is a good chance you will be staying weekends as well (especially as you are a new hire to consulting)

- when you are home at weekends you will still probably have av. 6 hours work to do in addition to trying to spend time with your family

- if you achieve partner you will still be travelling a lot

Unpaid sabbaticals between assignments - only if you are self-employed! Consultancy is a time-related revenue stream, hence maximisation of utilisation is a key operational focus. If you were an experienced hire with deep sector experience and on retainer to a number of Fortune 500 clients then maybe you could call the tune on utilisation...

I advise that you set these expectations with your family - if they are unhappy with this you should think very carefully about the likely outcomes of this move.

That said, the experience I gained over the last 9 years I could not have had any other way - and it has been fascinating. I am fortunate to have a partner who has been (until now) very understanding. I am on the point of moving to an internal consulting role to cut my travel in half as I recognise I am not able to spend any time with our 2 young daughters.

I hope this may help with your decision-making.

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#16 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
26/08/2006 11:23

Looking fir Faith to jools (#15)

Many thanks Jools

May I ask: How long would one have to work in consulting before having a decent shot at an internal consulting role? I think my family and I could reconcile ourselves to my working in consulting for 2-3 years if we could see a light at the end of the tunnel from the travel point of view.

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#17 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
26/08/2006 11:48

Looking fir Faith to jools (#15)

Many thanks Jools

May I ask: How long would one have to work in consulting before having a decent shot at an internal consulting role? I think my family and I could reconcile ourselves to my working in consulting for 2-3 years if we could see a light at the end of the tunnel from the travel point of view.

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#18 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
26/08/2006 20:45

jools to Looking fir Faith (#17)

If you wished to shorten the time spent as an external, you should find a consultancy house aligned with the industry that you are looking to move from (maybe they work with your current employer) and get taken on by them, with your current experience as part of the offer you bring to them. You will likely get broad experience as a new hire ;¬) and should be able to parlay this into an early return to your original industry, but from the different perspective of internal consulting.

I think it fair also to mention that internal consulting can be a mixed blessing - to really make it work you should spend much time with your client colleagues understanding their requirements, designing process and piloting. All too often internal consulting = ivory tower...

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#19 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
27/08/2006 19:41

John P to jools (#18)

martin,

Do I really need to tell you that it is much easier for a woman to have extra-marital affair because the man she is cheating with is more likely to be willing to accept a no-strings attached relationship on the long term?

While after a long period of extra-marital affair by a man, it is highly likely his lover might start looking for more "emotional" attachment.

So cut the crap about what you see (that you are allowed to see)!

There is a lot you don't see (that is tightly kept from your view)!

We still live in a society where a man having an affair can boast about it and a women that is having an affair should hide it to avoid being labelled.

Cut the crap!

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#20 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
27/08/2006 21:50

Losing Faith to John P (#19)

John P

Could you please start your own thread to argue with Martin? This is mine.

Thank you

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#21 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
21/09/2006 14:23

Axel to Losing Faith (#20)

Hi guys, for this kind of question ask Fingercrossed. He knows everything about marriages and consulting.

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#22 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
21/09/2006 14:38

FC to Axel (#21)

Well hello again "anon"

I KNEW you were German!! How strange that you should still be harbouring angst after all this time! Next you'll be invading Poland!!

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#23 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
21/09/2006 15:43

Anon to FC (#22)

Hi FC, you're still around too... Just impossible to forget your post. My sole purpose was to network all of you so to facilitate strategies and development plans on "How to earn thousand £ as a management consultant without travelling and make your wife happy". PS: I'm not German, try again... :)

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#24 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
21/09/2006 15:48

FC to Anon (#23)

...Swiss?.......Austrian?......some enclave in Latin America full of the descendants of people who "left Germany in a hurry"??

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#25 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
21/09/2006 16:17

Anon to FC (#24)

There are a lot of jokes around about my country but, guess what, everybody would love to live our way... Now FC, please excuse me but I have a wife to make happy (and she is not mine)... :D PS: Called home today?

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#26 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
21/09/2006 21:34

Tanja to Anon (#25)

First of all look at my thread under desperate wife.....and you will understnd better what a real wife is.I

have a toddler and a baby but never even thought about cheating on my husband not even once although he is 13 years older.Two main reasons ,even if I would want to I get so tired during a day that is imposible to think about making love with someone(the more ballet,tenis and other activities the beter).Secondly I love and respect my husband and appriciate his hard working for us.It is not only money but willingness to do something for our kids and us.

The most important two things are that you talk and that she has to be prepared for lonely life.Easy to say but?If she wants you to do that kind of a job she needs to be aware of the fact that has to manage more things while you are away.She needs to be strong and well organised with lots of friends around.I have learnt now after 5 years NOT to call in the middle of a very important meeting asking if he loves me or NOT to call him if I am unhappy and start shouting so that everebody can hear.You both need to have your space and have trust in each other.EG.Look at my thread.I encourage my husband to go out with friends to a pub for a drink as he is streesed out,tell him to have a nice time and never call once.Same for her.If she wants to go out TRUST her and never call her.You know when something is forbiden than it is attractive.

Golden rule,never talk in a bed after 22.00 as I bet you are not going to MAKE LOVE BUT QUAREL.Always ask you wife how she feels,what she wants?Show that you care but do not pretend.As well be honest.If you are tired and you do not fell like making love tell her that you are realy tired.Do not fell giulty,she will understand and you will make it up next time.Even if she likes making love very much better tell her the truth,otherwise she will know you are apsent and start thinking you have somebody else.Do not go with flowers or presents if you normaly do not do so,it is silly and you should not fell guilty for working hard.

Yes there are some sick ladies with huge imagination but my point of view is.If he wants to cheat me he will no matter what do so.and I would probably would not want man like that.On the other hand if he thiks there is a better match go ahead.I know who I am.

As I said the most important is comunication about everything ,even about making love.If you would just know how many ladies are pretending in that aspect you would be very surprised.I am a very very good looking and flearthy lady(not nice to praise myself),my husband knows that ,but knows as well that I would never even THINK about doing silly things.Trust,respect and love are what makes ladies happy,not money.

As you can see my spelling is bad because I was not born in this country ,but I do counselling work for relationships with person centered approach so I know what I am talking about.You have saved yourself 60£ that is how much I charge for 50 minutes seassions.Any confidential questions find my e-mail and feel free to ask.

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#27 RE: Consultants with successful marriages
30/11/2006 18:35

Jimbob to Tanja (#26)

What?

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