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Mistake joining BT Global Services

#1 Mistake joining BT Global Services
30/10/2007 14:47


I'm a grad that has recently joined BT Global Services (Professional Services). I've found that what I was promised during recruitment and the reality are very different. Although the work is dull (I'm prepared for garbage work in the first 12-18months or so), I've found the pace at BT slow. I'm willing and able to work hard and I'd like to be recognised for that; and I don't think I will at BT.

I'd like to continue in consulting, but I'm more interested in strategy consulting for telecoms companies (hence the initial move to BT).

I know I've been with BT a very short time, however, I've spoken to many senior people (Directors, VP's, Heads of divisions etc) and expressed my desires, their responses have been less than comforting.

I still have (just) enough time to re-apply for next years grad intake. However, I'm concerned about my realistic chances in making the move. My academics are not stellar (2.1 from Redbrick uni, not top 10. Masters with merit from the same institution) and I'm worried that my age might be a factor when being considered (between 22 and 25) for positions.

Does anybody know any firms I could/should consider or am I destined to languish at BT for at least another 18 months?

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#2 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
30/10/2007 16:19

Mars A Day to Bored (#1)

Languish at BT for 12 - 18 Months and congratulate yourself on

a) getting some blue chip experience which will raise your CV above the many grads coming out of Uni with same academics and just milling around

b) stamina in putting up with it

c) an introduction to the grunt life you will get in consulting anyway just with longer hours, more demanding managers and less recognition

d) finding out right at the start of your career that no one, and I mean NO ONE, in any organisation, ever, will care less about your aspirations, career, etc other than YOU.

e)finding all this out before it's too late.

The grass is always greener.

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#3 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
30/10/2007 17:39

JRF to Bored (#1)

It is a tricky one this. As on the one hand nothing sucks more than sticking out a job you don't enjoy. However the experience you get can be valuable.

I decided I wanted to leave after a year and applied to for a number of new graduate positions, I didn't get offers from some and rejected others. You have nothing to lose from applying, though I was always conscious of 'not making the same mistake again'.

In end I stayed in consulting for a further year. This enabled me to secure a very good role in industry .

If you are certain you are going to leave then try to get every last bit of experience, exposure and CV add on's you can (e.g. new clients, project mangement experience, indepth industry insight) out of your current role.

This will help enormously if you are looking for a role either within industry or a different area of consulting.

As an aside I know work in corporate strategy for a telecoms company and it is far more enjoyable with greater exposure than my time in consulting, so the grass sometimes can be greener.

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#4 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
30/10/2007 21:14

ex BTer to JRF (#3)

I left after 14 months for largely the same reasons as you, walking into a much better job that I think is great. Mars is right, blue chip on your cv is great when it comes to moving on, and you're only 5 weeks into your first placement. Maybe give it a little longer than a few weeks and work on choosing your next assignment manager carefully. I'd stick it out, it worked for me!

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#5 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
30/10/2007 23:03

Corporate Whore to ex BTer (#4)

Are you getting much consulting experience?

The advice you've been given is pretty sound. If you're set on leaving, use the company for your own benefit and gain as much experience as possible. Also attempt to raise your profile with as many senior people as possible. Ensuring they are aware of your capability and quality of work you deliver. Those things are remembered, should they/you ever require assistance in the future (i.e. recommendations for you).

Most importantly, don't burn any bridges!

Corporate Whore

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#6 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
31/10/2007 22:28

Bored to Corporate Whore (#5)

Proper consulting work?! I wish. I spend my mornings cursing my youth at my laziness and relatively poor A'Level grades. My afternoons cursing my decision to remain at my uni as opposed to studying at a higher ranked institutions and the period between 4pm and 5.30pm working on my assignment.

ex BTer, what are you doing now? Did you apply for another grad role or experienced hire?

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#7 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
01/11/2007 08:40

yaw to Bored (#6)

Obviously you need not worry that your age is going to be a problem (as it’s now illegal to discriminate by that) so as long as you fulfil their recent grad criteria (usually “did you graduate in the last 2 years?”) then you’ll be fine.

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#8 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
01/11/2007 08:52

anon to yaw (#7)

Nice one. I'll have to remember that when I next write a job advert.

Criteria: "Must have left school within the past 25 years".

How do these companies get away with biased criteria like that?

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#9 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
01/11/2007 14:37

In the Know to Bored (#1)

I know of a Insead Grad who was in a similar position in BT. He kept his head down - worked around the mess to gain some valuable experience - and on the side kept looking for ojbs. He was wise enough not to take up the first one that came his way, and after a year of hunting, landed up with a great offer from a Hedge Fund. Good luck with job hunitng. Do not get that into the way of fighting it out BT. You will realise later on in life, that it is great experience.

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#10 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
02/11/2007 17:47

ME2 to Bored (#1)

I know exactly how you feel. You are not the only person who has left BT thinking "why did I join them".

Your instincts serve you well here, the power to promote or recognise people in BT lies not within your community but in BT's HR. You will not get more than

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#11 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
02/11/2007 17:51

ME2 to ME2 (#10)

and that's what happens when you get BT broadband....

As I was saying, you may well languish a while but in truth it probably isn't going to hurt that much. There always worse places to be and BT is pretty tame for the most part and not paricularly demanding. I would stick at it for 12 months and see if you can push your way onto a more demanding project to broaden your experience and then go somewhere which better fits your expectations.

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#12 RE: Mistake joining BT Global Services
03/11/2007 10:54

ex BTer to ME2 (#11)

It seems to me you need a reality check. You are where you are, and like it or not need to stay at least a year for the sake of your cv. Wasting an entire day when you can do your job in a couple of hours is pointless - you've mentioned all of these senior people, so use your initiative and use them. Ask where you can get involved, look for opportunities to pick up new projects that are more involved. They don't pay you just to do your job but to use your brain a little too.

I made the most of average opportunities and left for an experienced hire job in an area i love. BT has ample opportunity to work in any area you wish - use it!

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