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Really confused about taking up a job?

 
#1 Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 01:54

Baldip Singh Kohli

Hi All,

I really need your advice about making a career decision, about which I am really confused. Want to hear from your experience. Let me start by introducing myself.

Professional Semiconductor Engineer by background with around 2 years of industry experience. Wanted to make a shift into management consulting and recently completed my Master of Business specialising in Intl. Consulting and Business Analysis. Really want to get a job in MC and have applied to all the big firms with no luck so far.

I have got a job with an Engineering firm, though, for their Global graduate programme - basically a 2 year program where they would rotate around different companies, different divisions and different countries on 4 different assingments. Not that bad considering my Masters in Global Business Analysis.

Now the confusion is that I also have an offer from IBM India for their Strategy & Change consulting. I am not very keen on going back to India because feel that my international degree would be better of with relevant international work experience and would I really be able to leverage my Intl. experience that much by immediately going back.

On the other hand, the global general management job is attractive in that sense. And in a way it is really like intl. consulting assignments. If I stick with this job and maybe after 3/4 years do a MBA, will I be able to make a shift into consulting. And I am not fully confident that I want to develop my specialisation in these industry lines. So would be able to project myself as a generalist candidate after my MBA showing that I have worked on international assignments in completely different indusrtries (different sub companies of the firm). Or is starting with IBM a better option.

Sorry for asking such a long question but I am really desperate.

Regards,

Baldip

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#2 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 06:43

gunslinger to Baldip Singh Kohli (#1)

take the engineering firm job. Sounds like you are fairly young in your career. The engineering job will develop many skills ( and you'll probably find it not that dis-similar to MC).

Dont go for the IBM job in india; dont be fooled by their strategy and change practice- its pretty much back office operations work ( with a bit more of a stragic focus) for clients in US/UK etc...I think the engineering form will put you in a better place for MC in the future.

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#3 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 14:22

anon to Baldip Singh Kohli (#1)

I agree with gunslinger. Take the engineering job and then do a good MBA.

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#4 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 17:40

Candid 8 to anon (#3)

Well done lads. That's one less competitor we have to worry about during interviews now. Keep up the good work.

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#5 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 17:50

weirdo to Candid 8 (#4)

Why? There's no question of interviewing - the guy already has offers.

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#6 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 18:33

Candid 8 to weirdo (#5)

I figure it means 1 more place free for the rest of us!

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#7 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 20:13

Baldip Singh Kohli to gunslinger (#2)

@Gunslinger and Anon

Thanks so much for your advice. I just have a query though. I am bit worried that with my experience in Engineering manufacturing firm for about 3-4 years before I do my MBA, will making a shift into MC mean that the consultancies would want me to leverage my engineering experience to offer a specialist consultant's roles. And on the contrary, if I am able to project that the assignments that I have done really are like consulting projects on different sub-industry lines of the firm, they would look more at my functional skills rather than industry experience. Because in the long term I want to see myself developing my consulting specialisation in either Telecoms/Financial services. Thanks in anticipation.

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#8 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
14/12/2008 20:13

weirdo to Candid 8 (#6)

One more free place for IBM S&C in India? Wowee. I can see why you want to back-stab your way to the top for that one. Good luck!

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#9 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
15/12/2008 03:27

Gunslinger to Baldip Singh Kohli (#7)

Your engineering background has many skills that are transferrable: skills such as analytical skills, methodologies ( development/application), etc are useful in other industries such as finance.

The engineering firm will perhaps place you more in the corner of engineering ( when you want to get into MC), but you need to make sure that the position utilises the skills that are useful in MC as well: such as communication skills, presentation skills, customer/stakeholder mgt etc.

In the future, if you do get into MC, they will likely place you in the engineering mgt service lines (because of your industry experience and knowledge). That should be ok, because the work across service lines is somewhat the same; which also makes it easier to transfer between service lines in the future.

So, you might not be able to straight away get into MC, but rather will likely take 2-4 steps.

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#10 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
15/12/2008 13:08

Baldip Singh Kohli to Gunslinger (#9)

@Gunslinger

Thanks a lot for your inputs. One another query if I don't bother you much.

If after my 2-3 years stint with the Engineering firm, I do a MBA in Finance, will I be able to apply to a MC directly for their financial service line. Or would start with working in the financial consulting function catered towards Engineering Services and then maybe down the line with more functional experience make an industry line shift. Thanks in anticipation.

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#11 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
16/12/2008 00:14

Gunslinger to Baldip Singh Kohli (#10)

An MBA in finance will certainly help you get MC job in finance directly. In fact many MBA students do their MBA for this reason alone: to change careers from one industry to another.

To successfully do this, you need to goto a top MBA school, and get really good grades. It also depends on the economy at that time- if its good, companies will be willing to take a bit of a risk in hiring candidates from different industries into finance. If its poor, then companies wont take risks- they will prefer candidates who have proven experience in finance.

Whats more likely is that after you do an MBA, you will be hired by the MC firm in their engineering/ops service line, and then apply for an internal transfer to the finance service line. Much easier this way to get into finance MC rather than go straight into finance MC after MBA. Plus, this way also gives you exposure as to the actual work they do in finance MC ( which may be different than what they advertise).

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#12 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
16/12/2008 06:44

FSer to Gunslinger (#11)

I agree with Gunslinger's last point. The actual FS consulting work for most MC firms is generally more operationally (or IT and the rest of ZB's favourites) focussed (this may be different in pure strategy firms). My expectation of an MBA would be more strategic and include more aspects of financial engineering.

The MBA will certainly help, but many firms may put you in at a relatively low grade (albeit with a view to quick promotion) based on limited operational and consulting experience in this area. Going in via engineering may enable you to start at a better level.

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#13 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
16/12/2008 09:17

Misc to FSer (#12)

It will def help. I am a chartered engineer with a PhD in Chem Eng and now work as a consultant for the big four. It def helped me get in

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#14 RE: Really confused about taking up a job?
17/12/2008 12:10

Baldip Singh Kohli to Misc (#13)

Thanks a lot everybody. You guys really helped a lot.

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