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What Is With The Money Mad Grads???

 
#1 What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 21:01

Claire

Im sorry! But am I the only graduate on this site who actually wants to work for a company because of the opportunities they offer? Every bloody post on here from graduates is regarding salary.

Ok, everyone wants to earn a good wage.... but is that really all that motivates you??? Are you not excited by the prospect of joining a company because of the experience it can offer you and the learning opportunities??? Surely if you are tied to a graduate scheme for 2 years, you want to join because you feel it's the right company? Am I on my own in feeling this way?

If I was recruiting for these firms I would be mortified to think thats all the applicants care about!

I am currently applying for the graduate scheme at Capgemini for the ATP scheme (Telephone Interview soon...cant wait!) and although I have good grades and excellent work experience, I dont give a damn what they pay me. Not because I am barmy, just because like many honest, decent grads out there, I just want the opportunity to prove myself. The money will come later and it just isn't a priority to me at the moment!

I know you are all going to think I am very sad, but I think basing a very important decision on nothing more than the highest starting salary is pathetic!

Claire :)

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#2 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 21:29

anon to Claire (#1)

If you believe that any of these firms actually offer wonderful learning opporunities then you are very naive. These "graduate" roles are all just about spending a couple of years doing overpriced admin and/or being some senior manager's bitch before you either get hacked off and move into an industry role where you can actually add value, or you eventually move into the role you were promised when you joined.

Unless you actively seek to get the most buck for your bang you will permanently and unnecessarily retard your earnings - there is no "catch up" and no trade-off between your salary and your role in your early years so you may as well start paying off your student loans.

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#3 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 21:47

The Spectator to Claire (#1)

Our clients consult us for advice on improving their returns on resources, to maximise profits and the amount of money they put away in their bank accounts and ultimately their own pockets. They are, by and large, economically rational beasts. They need advice that is aligned to those interests, from organisations and people who share the client's basic objectives.

Whilst interest in intangibles and economic decision-making are not intractable, f*cking around with politics and b/s whilst using "personal development" as an opiate is a big factor in why consultancies' work adds less value, is worth less and translates into lower salaries than other professions.

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#4 What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 21:48

Moo to anon (#2)

I do partially agree with the original poster - what matters most is the money you can earn in the long term rather than the short term. But money is still what matters most.

When you give your evenings and sometimes weekends up to a company - you have to ask a good price for it.

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#5 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 22:20

Claire to Moo (#4)

Haha! I do see the points made above and I will keep them in mind. I have no doubt that after a few years in the business my opinions and view points may well change. Maybe I am a little naive, and I do see the importance of money, like it or not, it makes the world go around. They say it can't make you happy, but trying to be happy without it is no easy task!

I want just trying to express my belief that you have to have a balance between being payed well, and doing something you enjoy and making choices for the right reasons.

I was trying to make the point that to experienced consultants, they can never be paid enough for the sacrifices that they make socially and their dedication to their company. I can totally understand this and I am sure I will feel the same in years to come.

I just think that graduates who are just looking at the figures listed under the rewards and benefits section rather than basing the decision on the opportunities available are rather fool hardy.

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#6 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 22:26

Merlin to Claire (#5)

" the money will come later " is something that grandmothers say.

it is similar to " its on the inside that counts ".

The money is your price. The price is how much youre worth. If you get paid less, your worth less.

Its simple economics. Or.. did you study art?

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#7 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 22:31

anon to Claire (#5)

I have to disagree with the 1st reply in this thread. If you honestly think 'grad roles' consist of donkey work your sadly mistaken. I'm curently 6 months into my first job and i'm working on my 20th individual project which is bringing in just over £90,000 worth of revenue. Money at this stage isn't the biggest motivator for me, experience is. Money will come, but at this stage it's all about working for the right company where your role is making a difference to both your company's balance sheet and your personal development. This often isn't the case with bigger firms and it's for this reason I chose to work for a smaller consultancy.

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#8 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 23:15

The Top Consultant to anon (#7)

Pffft... "challenging work" and "opportunities" are just HR speak for "we don't pay very well".

If I want "challenges" I'll pick up a puzzle book and sit out in the sun doing some crosswords. "Opportunities" are invariably just promises that don't materialise.

My advice: focus on the short term, and the long term will take care of itself. Don't be fooled by the HR reps who promise you "learning opportunities" and "a great place to work". Those things are important, but why do we go to work in the first place? Answer: to earn an income. Anything else, within reasonable limits, is a "nice to have".

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#9 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
21/03/2007 23:20

hardhat to anon (#7)

Perhaps many also understand the worthiness of both?

TS - Not at all convinced about consultants using p/d as an opiate. Never met that breed of consultant and would not be able to make the comparison as I have never dabbled in opiates.

Sounds a bit communist to me.

TS - I reckon your generalities about comparisons between professions are inaccurate here.

Do you really have beasts on your client list?

Is it like the post-it on the forehead game?

Are you a vet?

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#10 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 07:36

dl to Claire (#1)

"If I was recruiting for these firms I would be mortified to think thats all the applicants care about!"

I am. Even more mortified at some of the replies. There are differences in what people look for, but the extreme cynicism of some views is depressing to say the least.

Oh, and post #2 anon - before you make such sweeping generalisations, how many firms have you worked for / shared colleagues with? How many firms do you know only through one disgruntled "friend"?

"I think basing a very important decision on nothing more than the highest starting salary is pathetic!"

Claire: keep up this spirit, and choose carefully. The long term will NOT take care of itself, though the long term may not necessarily be with the same company you start with.

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#11 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 08:43

Mike Control to dl (#10)

I must say, that I disagree with nearly every post on this thread. However I do accept that I am in a minority – especially on a consulting forum.

TC – “why do we go to work in the first place? Answer: to earn an income.”

But why do people earn money? Answer: to have a better life. If I can have a better time during the 40% of my life that I spend at work, then I’m quite happy to have to compensate for that.

Money is not what matters most (to me), so it’s not what I look for first in a job. I’m with Claire on this one, I could have joined a small consultancy in the City when I graduated, but I chose a job with a financial company instead because of the people working here. I love working here, but I had to effectively take a 30% pay cut to come. As I have no dependants, the money I’m on is more than enough for me. I admit that as I progress through life I am going to need more money, but right now I’m very happy with the decision I made.

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#12 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 09:01

Martin to Mike Control (#11)

It's about values.

Some work 9-9 every day as they value their pay cheque over everything else. That's ok.

Others work 9-5 every day as they value their home and social life over their pay cheque. That's ok too.

Some want to work for the most 'prestigious' firm as they see long-term benefits on their cv or a short-term ego-boost.

All these are valid, but if you're firmly in one camp, the others seem depressing.

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#13 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 09:03

The Top Consultant to Mike Control (#11)

It's amazing how many graduates think they'll actually learn something useful during 'training contracts' and 'graduate schemes'. It's invariably just a technique used by employers to pick up over-enthusiastic low-cost labour and run it into the ground doing grunt work.

Most of these big firms are pretty much the same anyway. They all go on about the uniqueness of "our people" but at the end of the day there's not a lot between them.

My advice - forget the drivel that HR trots out to try and make you join their 'unique' firms. Look past the HR speak. Most of it is meaningless cliches and, if I dare use such a strong word, lies. Do your due diligence. Find a firm that pays a decent salary AND can offer you a job with some kind of progression path. Decent hours and not having to work with absolute b@stards should be taken as a given. If the firm cannot offer the latter, then it's a no-go unless it offers a VERY substantial pay premium. Don't be lured into long hours and hard work for little pay on the basis of "really good learning opportunities" and the like, unless they REALLY do exist (and don't take HR's word for that).

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#14 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 09:09

God to Mike Control (#11)

I'm with Mike Control.

When you start out you think that every grand is important and earning 29.5k is superior to earning the 28.8k your mate is earning at smith and co down the road.

As you get older your understanding of what's important gains clarity and you are more willing to sacrifice a couple of grand to maintain some balance in your life, which is something only you and your family can make a judgement on.

You also become aware that some roles offer greater opportunity than others so you choose more carefully to engineer your career, this may involve loosing an opportunity cost every now and then.

Very few people retain the all out hunger that we all had as newbies, they tend to be very successful as greed of that nature translates very well into earning a partnership, but they generally have a lack of balance and are usually pri*ks.

Oh, look at my penthouse and my new Maserati they say. But how do you nourish your sole I ask!

We're only here once, do what's right for you and stop being so bothered about what other people are doing and what they're earning.

If you're good enough, you're good enough.

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#15 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 09:58

Anon to God (#14)

"But how do you nourish your sole I ask!"

:D

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#16 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 10:18

Bang and the dirt is gone to Anon (#15)

With lemon juice.

Just watch as the natural acid gently dissolves the crust of tears from my dismally stalled career and jejune life. Such bliss as I sink into a creamy lather of mediocrity!

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#17 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 10:30

timing to Bang and the dirt is gone (#16)

Ultimately, when you are young you can do well trough your sheer naivety. Generally when in your early '30s rather than '20s, you have developed amore cynical view. It is true that companies sell opportunities very well. The word unique has been so over-used, that it ceases to have meaning. The bottom line is that if you start with a decent brand name, you will be looked after as long as you work hard. You will go through phases when you wish you had chosen a smaller firm, where you could have been a bigger fish in a smaller pond. If you work for a small company, you will ong for the stability you get in a larger firm. Looking back Claire, it is not going to make a lot of difference. The odd thousand here or there is irrelevant when you first graduate and you can always move to a higher paying firm later if money becomes more of a priority due to a change in your circumstances. You must see through the big graduate sell you get, however. That point is fair. I personally think it is quite appalling the way young graduates are sucked into by a load of corporate bullsh!t and told that they are in the top X% of this that and the other. It simply isn't true. On the otherhand, if a company is prepared to pay you a semi decent wage when you have absolutely or virtually no experience, how can you criticise them?!? Go with your gut instinct, Claire. If you like and trust the people, go for it even if the $$ is a bit less.

I am old enough to remember when the Accenture guys were on top of the world and when people I knew were really excited about joining great companies such as Enron, Lucent, Nortel etc. If you join a household/safe brand you should be OK for the early part of your career at least. This will give you the foundation to build on.

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#18 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 10:33

A Mars A Day... to Bang and the dirt is gone (#16)

Claire

To start you off on the right foot in your consulting career, embrace the bitterness. If CapGemini offered you a job for bed and board you wouldn't take it, so lets all be frank and face it - we work for money and no other reason in the final analysis.

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#19 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 10:49

Woody to Anon (#15)

I'm with martin on this one. There is no right answer for everyone. It's the time old debate of money vs. having a life vs. enjoying your work. Claire, I'm sure you will find out what is right for you when you get the job and join the firm. I've gone for a firm that I think I'll enjoy working at, and liked the people. In the end, we new graduates will probably be worked to the bone. Deal with it, the money is worth it

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#20 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 11:10

another female to Claire (#1)

I agree with Claire in many ways. I spent my twenties chasing money, responsibility and having no life outside work. It took potential redundancy for me to realise that there was NOTHING in my life except work. Now I'm in my early thirties, and I am still ambitious and driven - that's my personality after all - but I recognise the importance of other things too. I've also learned that above a certain salary level, money does not motivate me but responsibilty and power do.

At the same time I would caution against underselling yourself. I think there may be a difference between the sexes here - men I think are more likely to demand (and get) more than women. Two things I've learned are 1) always know your market rate 2) always refuse the first salary offer (apart from first graduate jobs) - if they want me enough to hire me then they will be open to negotiation that extra £5k p.a. or so stacks up in the long term.

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#21 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 11:43

Claire to another female (#20)

Wow! I never dreamded when I first wrote my original post that I would end up getting such strong responces! I do thank you all for taking the time to reply thou because it has been really insightful!

I have no intention of under selling myself! In contrast to my first post where i did sould a little wet behind the ears, I am a very strong and determind person. I want great things in life, including good earning potential and a challenging demanding job, but I also have my feet on the ground and appreciate that these things come with time!

I just get the opinion that the grads on here are a bit full of themselves and feel that they wouldn't get out of bed for less than 30k! I think a reality check is needed for some :)

I really hope people keep adding to this thread because its been fascinating for me to read all of the feedback, good and bad!

Thank you all for taking the time to reply!

Claire :)

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#22 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 12:07

priorities to Claire (#21)

interesting thread this.... Ultimately, there is nothing wrong with going with what is important at the time. when I was younger, I was less interested in money and more interested in doing "interesting work". I avoided the obvious career routes, worked abroad and did some really interesting things. These days, I am probably not as far up the food chain as I could have been but with a young baby, all I want is enough money and enough time to get to be a good parent. Priorities change and the mistake people make is to feel stupid by looking back and questioning the priorities they had when they were younger. You have a set of priorities now. You must respond to them....

There have been some wise words from some wise old heads.....

When I was seventeen

It was a very good year

It was a very good year for small town girls

And soft summer nights

We'd hide from the lights

On the village green

When I was seventeen

When I was twenty-one

It was a very good year

It was a very good year for city girls

Who lived up the stair

With all that perfumed hair

And it came undone

When I was twenty-one

When I was thirty-five

It was a very good year

It was a very good year for blue-blooded girls

Of independent means

We'd ride in limousines

Their chauffeurs would drive

When I was thirty-five

But now the days grow short

I'm in the autumn of the year

And now I think of my life as vintage wine

From fine old kegs

From the brim to the dregs

And it poured sweet and clear

It was a very good year

It was a mess of good years

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#23 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 12:29

The Top Consultant to Claire (#21)

Re: I just get the opinion that the grads on here are a bit full of themselves and feel that they wouldn't get out of bed for less than 30k! I think a reality check is needed for some :)

Here's a reality check for <u>you</u>, Claire. Some of us "grads" (the same ones who are cynical of the HR claptrap) are on £250K+. Somehow I don't think the unsubstantiated claims of a "unique culture" and "development opportunities" that the HR departments waffle on about justify the differences in salary they are usually trying to defend, even at entry level.

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#24 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 13:26

Claire to The Top Consultant (#23)

Just a quick reply to Top Consultant.... If your on that sort of money and it makes you happy then great. Im sure your worth every penny of it and I wouldn't question that. You have obviously proved yourself to your employer and I am really happy for you!

My only observation is that you mentioned your salary but not that you are happy or challenged within your role. You didnt mention anything you have achieved that you proud of, just the figures you recieve.

And for someone earning so much money, you sound very wound up and angry, why? My point about grads wasn't supposed to offend anyone, it was just a casual observation.

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#25 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 13:58

The Top Consultant to Claire (#24)

Hi Claire,

"You have obviously proved yourself to your employer and I am really happy for you!"

I <b>am</b> the employer. I got so fed up with the HR drivel in these big companies that I set up my own boutique firm.

"My only observation is that you mentioned your salary but not that you are happy or challenged within your role. You didnt mention anything you have achieved that you proud of, just the figures you recieve."

I don't have time to give a full life history on here. Suffice to say I'm happy. Very happy in fact that I got out of the rat race. It gives me more flexibility and time to spend with my family. I'm as challenged as I need to be and usually very happy. Right now I'm not particularly happy because of some idiot builders who are bodging up an extension I want built, totally unrelated to what I do for a living.

"And for someone earning so much money, you sound very wound up and angry, why?"

I am usually very calm and happy. I'm wound up at the moment because of the reason given above. It's very frustrating.

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#26 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 14:32

Not A Consultant to The Top Consultant (#25)

This thread has swung onto fairly sensible ground at last. The idea that the only reason we go to work is for money would be extremely funny if it weren't so empty-headed. Do people imagine that academics, civil servants, writers are motivated by money? That was the problem with Van Gogh: he didn't know his market rate! Utter drivel. This is not the same as saying being underpaid is good, or that HR spin is a substitute for interesting and substantive work. Wait for the next recession: then we'll discover that the idea of 'market rate' isn't quite the same as that some of the people on this thread have.

My friends earn in a range from £15k to £90k. All went to university, most to Oxford. One is a consultant, who earns about £60k and very happily swapped top pay for different working culture and different work. Moving to London put me on a third of my former earnings and doubled my costs: rationally crazy, but it opened up all sorts of things that wouldn't have come my way otherwise. Long-term earnings matter, so does long-term happiness.

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#27 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 14:32

Anon to The Top Consultant (#25)

Having your own firm must be awesome, but I bet you busted your balls getting there. I guess that part of your life would be more relevant to the new graduates.

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#28 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 16:06

Claire to The Top Consultant (#25)

Top Consultant....My apologies for the oversight, and congratulations on successfully setting up your on firm. I admire your courage as thats something I would never have the guts to do. It must take a huge amount of balls to make such a brave move and I have an enormous amount of respect for you for that!

So, could I possibly be so rude as to ask if you have any advice for newbie grads like myself trying to break into the industry?

My Apologies..... and good luck with your extension!

Claire :)

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#29 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 17:17

The Top Consultant to Claire (#28)

Claire,

My advice to you is as follows.

1. You have a refreshing outlook on life. Whatever you do, don't lose it. It's easy to become cynical and bitter in this profession after you join a firm with high hopes, get promised the world, work your butt off in the hope of gaining some 'recognition', constantly get told how you're in the top x% and then get fired at short notice because of 'performance issues' (years later, you will discover that the dismissal was actually a redundancy and numerous of your colleagues experienced the same).

2. Don't let any company or its HR department get you down. If you get thrown crap, then get out of there. Don't feel guilty about moving elsewhere. This is far easier said than done. It's hard, especially if you have commitments.

3. Understand that consultancy isn't as glamourous as it sounds. Don't be intimidated by the senior guys, at the end of they day they are just people (usually arrogant ones). Never give up the bulk of your summer evenings or the weekends for ANYONE - and I mean that. Focus on your family and friends. Always put them first, they are far more important. In 10 years time, all those personal sacrifices you would have made for 'the team' will count for nothing.

4. Take everything the HR department says with a pinch of salt. The firm isn't 'unique', nor does it offer 'unique challenges'. At the end of the day, within the different 'leagues', they are all pretty much the same.

5. Keep it 'real'. City life is over hyped. Get married, have kids. Go and have a real life in the country.

6. I don't mean to be personal, but you come across as being quite apologetic about yourself. Don't! You sound lovely. Stand your ground if anyone gives you cr@p, you shouldn't put up with it from anyone. But also know when to give in - it's a delicate balance.

7. Remember that spending too long in this job or with aggressive people can change your personality for the worse and make you 'cold'/uncaring about other people. You have a wonderful personality, never let anybody change that.

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#30 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 18:07

Merlin to The Top Consultant (#29)

....

8. And be weary of listening to other peoples 'advice' - just because they have a few years more experience than you.

" Remember the mistake of others but learn only from your own "

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#31 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 18:36

The Top Consultant to Merlin (#30)

Thanks Merlin, smartass. Did you disagree with anything specifically that I said or were you just trying to be clever?

Claire, just think about what I've said and make your own mind up which parts, if any, you want to listen to.

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#32 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
22/03/2007 20:23

Claire to The Top Consultant (#29)

Awh, Top Colsultant! Your message made me blush, hehe! You were bang on the money with the apologising thing, its my worst habit! I drive people mad with it because im always saying sorry for everything! Very bad habit, it is noted and I am working on it, promise!

Thank you so much for the advice you gave me, i appreciate it and the time taken to reply, many thanks indeed! I may be an optimist, and I hope that never changes.....but I am very much a wolf in sheeps clothing and I can be brutal and forceful when neccessary! Dont be fooled, I am still a female and you know what us women are like :)

I think your feedback was extremely honest and insightful, valuable not only to myself, but to any prospective grads hoping to enter the industry! I think you have also proved that people can be extremely successful both professionally and financially, and still keep their priorities and admirable morals. Money can make monsters of good people, but you have obviously took your own advice and not let it affect your good nature!

Thank you very much for your words of wisdom and I shall keep them very much in mind!

Claire :D

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#33 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 08:55

bounty hunter to Claire (#32)

The Top Consultant...I think a door may have just opened!

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#34 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 11:41

Claire to bounty hunter (#33)

Top Consultant, are you married? If not, could I have your phone number?

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#35 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 12:26

Whoever to Claire (#34)

Come on, that is not the real Claire??

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#36 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 12:38

What is going on to Whoever (#35)

I have got a growing feeling that there are 2 prevailing populations on this forum:

- Graduates with genuine interest, questions and expectations

-Frustrated people whose only interest in life seems to be sucking enthusiasm out of the others. ...Certainly not the best image of the consulting world. Common guys !!

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#37 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 13:38

bitter lemon to What is going on (#36)

I think you'll find that you've just summed up the two groups of people in life in general.

Once you've been around the block a couple of times just to be pushed off your bike by your boss you'll understand my son.

And was that 'come on' or 'common'?

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#38 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 14:32

What's going on to bitter lemon (#37)

Fortunately there are also senior consultants who still believe in what they do and are happy to share their knowledge with junior consultants.

I have had this chance.

So, don’t let "bitter lemons" alter your motivation!

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#39 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 15:19

Loadsa to What's going on (#38)

$$$$ All about the WONGA $$$$

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#40 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 20:20

Claire to Loadsa (#39)

Haha!

Would just like to point out that it was NOT me who wrote the message about the phone number! I think that goes without saying by the fact it was so blatently obvious! (But it did make me giggle!) Im so stressed with final year deadlines thats smiling is a novelty, so hey.....thanks to the joker!

Claire :)

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#41 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
23/03/2007 22:34

Ta to Claire (#40)

Thanks Claire,

That's fascinating.....

Are you fit?

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#42 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
27/03/2007 13:55

Claire to Ta (#41)

About 8/10, why?

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#43 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
27/03/2007 13:58

Claire to Claire (#42)

Will people stop pretending to be me please!

:(

Ur being really unfair.....Im at least a 9 and a half lol!

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#44 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
27/03/2007 14:53

Me to Claire (#43)

Just face it:

Claire = Pirlo = Beng = Anon.

in fact, this forum is made by only one person, with multiple schizophrenia. me. and me.

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#45 RE: What Is With The Money Mad Grads???
27/03/2007 15:45

Claire to Me (#44)

I did start of this thread but i have had nothing to do with the crazy way it has turned out!

Some people have to much time on their hands!

Very sad indeed!

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