Have you missed the undergraduate recruitment window? Didn’t make the break you expected this year for careers?
The consulting industry is one of the most competitive on the planet, and there’s no shame in falling a little short this time. But this is no time to go sulk in the corner or rest on your laurels! You’ve got that much more work to do to put yourself in position to land your dream job next cycle. So without further ado, we offer some tips on how to prepare for consulting right now.
Here are 6 ways to prepare for consulting as you wait for the next chance to drop that resume:
1) Go work for a brand name company, but do something that is sales, operations, or strategy related.
2) Work for a fast-growing industry, like tech or healthcare. Switching to consulting is easier because tech industry experts are in high demand right now.
3) Network into a boutique consulting firm. Often, they are more willing to hire off-cycle. We’ve profiled many you may never have even heard of.
4) Get a job in finance, but not personal finance (financial advisory consulting or in an internal finance department of a company). You want a job that utilizes more analytical tools, spreadsheets, and data – one that shows how you’re growing the company.
6) Skill up! Become an Excel and financial modeling wizard, take consulting-specific courses, and improve your business acumen. Become a lifelong learner!
Here would be 3 bad ideas:
1) Go into a field that seems related (financial services) and do something that doesn’t use the same skill set – like personal finance, working in a mortgage brokerage, or retail bank.
2) Working for a brand name company (like AT&T) but doing something unrelated (like a compliance project or in one of their stores).
3) Working for a non-brand name company in a non-brand name industry.
It would be better to volunteer in a fast-paced industry than to take a job that fits one of these criteria. The first job you take post-rejection will really determine your next opportunity. Be sure to set yourself up for success!