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new to consulting field - myths vs facts

 
#1 new to consulting field - myths vs facts
02/02/2011 16:43

first-timer

hi, I came across this site in my search for a career change and have had some great reading and knowledge from the threads, but wanted to find out more about some of the myths vs facts about the consulting industry things such as;

-are the hours as long as people say or is some of it based on competition to be noticed?

-do you have the options to decline projects based on geography of where you live or is it you have to go where the work is full stop

-are the perks of a high flying career as good as they sound or is it all hard work airports and hotels?

-do all the firms have a similar lifestyle or are some better/worse than others?

any advice much appreciated

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#2 RE: new to consulting field - myths vs facts
02/02/2011 17:21

Mark to first-timer (#1)

To answer each question in turn:

Hours - does depend on the project/bid work you might be on. Some projects will require necessary very long hours in certain periods and this might be unpredictable. Other projects will be 9-6 though you'd expect to be available on phone/email later. Continuously long hours is often down to impressing others and not being known as the one to leave early. If you want to advance quickly then expect to give up your evenings and some weekends.

Geography- depends on culture at organisation but the rule is you go where they need you. Some flexibility for women returning after maternity leave perhaps but certainly for junior people, you rarely get a choice.

Perks-often airports and hotels but if you're somewhere interesting and with a good bunch of people then the expenses might be a good perk. Don't be reliant on getting that though.

Lifestyle-varies between firms, between the strategy houses, big 4 and boutiques.

It basically will vary throughout your career-one year you might be 15 mins from home, the next year you might be on your own in a dull hotel in Blackpool. Be prepared to accept any possibility!

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