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Starting a career in management consulting with untraditional background?

 
#1 Starting a career in management consulting with untraditional background?
11/03/2012 20:18

marcus2012

Hi all,

I am thinking of breaking into management consulting,but not sure about my education/background fit

I am 28,just got a Fulbright Award for masters study in Management Information Systems (either Carnegie Mellon MISM or Berkeley MIMS),previously I had a professional chess career for around 15 years (won several tournaments and titles etc. on both national and international level),then worked for a year in UN AIDS agency as an IT specialist,then worked for 2 years in my home country as an Organizational Capability specialist in BP(different projects in technical development) -can someone evaluate if I have any chances for top 10 mc companies upon graduation?

Thanks.

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#2 RE: Starting a career in management consulting with untraditional background?
12/03/2012 21:35

lcd2 to marcus2012 (#1)

A CV like that certainly will get you a job. Job market sucks right now though.

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#3 RE: Starting a career in management consulting with untraditional background?
13/03/2012 17:14

marsday to marcus2012 (#1)

well it's certainly interesting and stands out. debateable whether the selection processes of most MCs would be equipped to map you into the business though - you would do far better to identify hiring managers and approach them directly, and you should start doing this during your Masters to build some contacts/relationships ahead of graduation.

Something tells me you are probably just a bit too interesting for big firm MC though, you might thrive more easily in start up or smaller firm where you'll be more intellectually challenged more quickly imho.

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#4 RE: Starting a career in management consulting with untraditional background?
13/03/2012 19:13

marcus2012 to marsday (#3)

ah, thats great to hear,I was initially a bit sceptical about my chances

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#5 RE: Starting a career in management consulting with untraditional background?
20/03/2012 03:41

bingshui to marcus2012 (#4)

Hi,

I'm not particularly qualified to evaluate the credentials of someone coming in at your age/experience bracket, but I thought I might make a suggestion.

Most of the top 10 will have a "technology" subset which suits your background. While you might go into general management consulting just fine, you might find more success in the application/interview process in one of these subsets since you're more uniquely qualified for them. Depending on the firm, this sub-set could deal with things from CIO-level IT strategy for non-tech companies to IT cost improvement to general business strategy for technology companies. You can also edge into the "general" group from the other positions a lot of the time. I have an MIS background as well, and I had much more success applying to these sub-sets than I did to the companies in general.

Examples of these groups include McKinsey's Business Technology Office (BTO) and Booz's IT Strategy practice.

Hope you found this helpful!

David

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#6 RE: Starting a career in management consulting with untraditional background?
28/04/2012 13:12

marcus2012 to bingshui (#5)

David,

Thanks for your response!

Could you advise which other big10 consulting companies have this technology subset worth applying?

I have read a lot about Accenture,Cap Gemini etc - and most people say that they deal with package solutions,SAP etc boring stuff...While if I wont get into management consulting, doing IT strategy/Governance stuff would suit me.

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