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Boutique Consultancy vs Banking

 
#1 Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
18/03/2013 16:34

a07

Hi All

Just recieved an offer from a boutique consulting firm, i'll be going in at a senior level for a firm of this size managing a team of 10 technical consultants.

At the same time I've got an application in with a large bank that is at early stages. The wages on offer would dwarf the boutique consulting firm but would mean I'd be working for a large corporate with all the niggles of trying to push business change.

Question I'd like to open up to everyone is working for a small consulting firm (in the tech space), as a business and project management lead against working for a big bank within continuos improvement and change - which would look more impressive on the cv? Bearing in mind I have worked on the consultancy and client side already.

I'm currently between senior consultant and manager level, so would expect my next role in 5 years to be pushing sm at the least.

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#2 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
18/03/2013 17:52

marsday to a07 (#1)

Bank. All the reasons you have already confirmed in your own mind. Brand. Money. Kudos. Niggles. 'Niggles'?

The consulting role...managing a team of 10 when you are only between SC-M grade yourself? Really? What kind of outfit takes an SC and gets them doing that? Very odd.

But.

You have the offer for the consulting role. The bank is at early stages and in the current environment will either take a long time to sign off an offer, or - more likely - will trip that offer into being a contract offer as that's the only way they'll get the approval.

Bank will look more impressive on CV. For a while.

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#3 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
18/03/2013 23:06

a07 to marsday (#2)

Thanks mars, niggles I really meant challenges!

Re: the consultancy - it's a senior role for a firm of its size. Most of its consultants are technical and they have no business lead apart from the director, which is what I would be doing whilst also keeping an eye on deliverables whilst the director is away.

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#4 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
19/03/2013 16:41

marsday to a07 (#3)

sounds like you will be the commercial link for a bunch of techies (and how many of those, 6 months, 12 months in will still be perm staff vrs a shifting pool of contractors..?)

best bet take the consultancy offer while the bank processes goes through (it wont be quick as getting sign off on hiring approvals is tortuous for banks currently...so watch for them interviewing you perm, then offering you contract to circumvent the internal approvals processes...). Dont lose the offer waiting for the bank. If you find the consulting role hits your buttons, then do much the better, as small consulting outfits really are the future of the industry and can be extremely compelling places to work. But it just sounds a little like a spare **** at a wedding.

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#5 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
29/04/2013 15:00

Mary to a07 (#1)

You might find this article interesting - and it may give you some insight into why boutique consulting could be a better choice.

http://www.consultingcafe.com/articles/power-shift-independent-consultants-stepping-ahead

Basically, it details a power shift putting contingent workers ahead of employers.

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#6 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 15:18

a07 to Mary (#5)

Thanks Mars I went with the Boutique Consultancy in the end, as the bank process was fairly long winded and with an offer in hand my interest started to dwindle in the latter.

Can always go back into FS industry perhaps when the market is a bit more stable!

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#7 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 15:36

marsday to a07 (#6)

I anticipate the banking market will continue to be contract driven for some time - it's simply easier to get hiring sign off, and this will spill out into an uptick in consulting projects too, because it means major programmes can get underway without banks having to carry fixed overheads. Consulting - to the FS sector - is a good place to be right now.

And congratulations on the new role of course :)

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#8 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 15:41

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to marsday (#7)

The banks are the ones with all the dosh... they're banks, after all.

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#9 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 16:04

marsday to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#8)

And little liquidity until capital reserve requirements are finalised. They have the cash, dare not spend it yet.

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#10 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 16:07

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to marsday (#9)

When it comes to spending it on their own salaries, they'll always find a way

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#11 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 16:54

Anon MCs to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#10)

Come on Bushy,

Stop being a typical civil servant. I thought you were an MC not a full time Senior Manager in the civil service.

Banks have been motoring MC's growth for years, stop trying to bite the hand that feeds you.

Example below Bushy:

Anecdote from Max King, global asset allocation strategist at Investec.

Sets out to explain the macroeconomics of tax and spend in terms we can all understand.

Suppose that once a month, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all of them comes to £100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes and claim UK State benefits, it would go something like this;

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.

The fifth would pay £1.


The sixth would pay £3.


The seventh would pay £7.


The eighth would pay £12.


The ninth would pay £18.


And the tenth man (the richest) would pay £59.

So, that's what they decided to do. The ten men drank in the bar every month and seemed quite happy with the arrangement until, one day, the owner caused them a little problem.

"Since you are all such good customers," he said, "I'm going to reduce the cost of your weekly beer by £20." Drinks for the ten men would now cost just £80.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes. So the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free but what about the other six men; the paying customers? How could they divide the £20 windfall so that everyone would get his fair share?

They realised that £20 divided by six is £3.33 but if they subtracted that from everybody's share then not only would the first four men still be drinking for free but the fifth and sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer.

So the bar owner suggested a different system.

The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing.


The sixth man paid £2 instead of £3 .


The seventh paid £5 instead of £7.


The eighth paid £9 instead of £12.


The ninth paid £14 instead of £18.


And the tenth man now paid £49 instead of £59. 


Each of the last six was better off than before with the first four continuing to drink for free.

But, once outside the bar, the men began to compare their savings. "I only got £1 out of the £20 saving," declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man, "but he got £10!"

"Yes, that's right," exclaimed the fifth man. "I only saved £1 too. It's unfair that he got ten times more benefit than me!"

"That's true!" shouted the seventh man. "Why should he get £10 back, when I only got £2? The rich get all the breaks!"

"Wait a minute," yelled the first four men in unison, "we didn't get anything at all. This new tax system exploits the poor!"

So, the nine men surrounded the tenth man and beat him up.

Funnily enough, the next month the tenth man didn't show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had their beers without him.

But when it came to pay for their drinks, they discovered something important – they didn't have enough money between all of them to pay for even half the bill...

...and that's how our tax system works.

The people who already pay the highest taxes do tend to get the most benefit from tax reliefs and reductions. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy and they just might not show up anymore.

For those who understand, no explanation is needed.
For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible.

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#12 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 16:58

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to Anon MCs (#11)

I'm definitely no banker basher... and my comment about them finding a way to pay themselves wasn't a criticism of bankers... far from it, actually...

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#13 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 17:08

Anon MCs to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#12)

In that case my apologies.

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#14 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 17:31

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to Anon MCs (#13)

It's refreshing to know that there are at least 2 capitalists left in this world

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#15 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 17:58

Mr Cool to Anon MCs (#11)

That's a very good story

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#16 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
30/04/2013 18:21

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to Mr Cool (#15)

It reminds me of New Labour lols

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#17 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
01/05/2013 17:56

marsday to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#10)

When it comes to spending it on their own salaries, they'll always find a way

True, and this seems to be pushing base salaries and cash elements of bonuses UP - banks dont want untidy Balance Sheets I guess.

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#18 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
02/05/2013 11:59

Charliefleabag to a07 (#6)

I work for a small (tech) consultancy in the investment banking space. Quite a few of our consultants come to us from banks and we lose a fair few people to banks every year. So, don't worry too much about your career path for now.

In terms of consultancy work, it is still a mixed bag at the moment with some banks cutting consultants and contractors (and permies) but we are seeing increasing demand from some of our other clients. Overall, I am more confident about the next 12 months than the last 12 months.

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#19 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
02/05/2013 13:27

marsday to Charliefleabag (#18)

charlie this is what I've been telling people - confidence is returning, slowly but it is coming back. Or optimism is anyway.

I was optimistic once. Then I realised that it was a just a bout of returning confidence.

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#20 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
02/05/2013 14:06

Charliefleabag to marsday (#19)

OK, I know this is the wrong thread but...

Q: What’s the definition of optimism?

A: An Investment Banker ironing five shirts on a Sunday evening.

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#21 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
02/05/2013 14:17

tom1 to Charliefleabag (#20)

My desk is on the side of my office, does that mean I can't work in a bank?

I will say that to get there I have to walk from the front of the office, through the middle and take a left to get to my desk at the 'side-office'

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#22 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
02/05/2013 14:54

Mr Cool to tom1 (#21)

That will matter less than the fact that you'll have mailed you CV to Santa Claus.

just as you've posted your response to the wrong place too...

:-)

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#23 RE: Boutique Consultancy vs Banking
02/05/2013 15:03

tom1 to Mr Cool (#22)

Oops

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