To enter a management consulting career is a challenging task, but the rewards are even higher. If you get into this world, your professional career path will shift dramatically. You will enter a large network where you can meet many interesting people who can create many opportunities for you in the future.
The job is also highly paid, and will develop you a lot professionally and personally. However, landing a consulting job is easier said than done. The large and popular firms as McKinsey, Bain, Boston Consulting Group or Booz are especially hard. You will need to prepare a lot, write great cover letters and resumes, and be ready for case interviews.
Read below the five steps that will increase your chances of landing a management consulting job:
1. Network with consultants: there is a myth that consulting firms do not use networking that much when recruiting. That is really a myth! Leverage your existing network, participate in career events, and go to consulting company presentations. Meet some management consultants, learn about their company, their work and most important: leave a good impression and get contact details.
2. Identify your strengths: academic record is important for consulting firms. So if you are graduating from a top school, or if your grades are ranking in top 10% then this is a large strength. Professional experience is equally important, and much more important if you are not applying for a graduate position. Consulting firms look for problem solvers that are outgoing, have a high drive, and are great team workers. 3.Write tailored application: start your cover letter by mentioning who you know in the company, and what your long-term career goal is. Be honest. If you want to start your own company, then write so and explain that consulting will give you the necessary problem solving skills and network. Explain in your cover letter what is special about that particular firm that you like. Generic cover letters are a no go!
4. Practice math: do not waste the time while you are waiting for an answer from the firm. Prepare for the interviews, as they are typically held with a short notice. Mental math is very important and you will get case interview questions where you need mental math. Learn to multiply, divide, add, and subtract two digit numbers without paper, and all numbers on paper.
5. Practice case interviews: case interviews are used a lot management consulting firms. Find a partner that will do mock interviews with you, and practice many business cases. You should also learn the most common business case frameworks to be ready for the interview.
All those points should help you in the right direction to land a management consulting job. You should do some research, especially about how to write cover letters and resumes. Also, find some guides on how to solve case interviews. One of those providing guides and preparation services for consulting careers is a firm called . They offer a free guide which in larger detail will help you get started with your preparations. Good luck!