Cookie and Privacy Settings

This website uses cookies to enable essential functions like the user login and sessions. We also use cookies and third-party tools to improve your surfing experience on preplounge.com. You can choose to activate only essential cookies or all cookies. You can always change your preference in the cookie and privacy settings. This link can also be found in the footer of the site. If you need more information, please visit our privacy policy.

Data processing in the USA: By clicking on "I accept", you also consent, in accordance with article 49 paragraph 1 sentence 1 lit. GDPR, to your data being processed in the USA (by Google LLC, Facebook Inc., LinkedIn Inc., Stripe, Paypal).

Manage settings individually I accept
expert
Expert with best answer

Clara

100% Recommendation Rate

50 Meetings

12,431 Q&A Upvotes

USD 229 / Coaching

8

How's life like as a Partner vs an Engagement Manager vs an Associate?

Hi,

I would appreciate receiving some input to the above question.

Best

Hi,

I would appreciate receiving some input to the above question.

Best

8 answers

  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best Answer
Book a coaching with Clara

100% Recommendation Rate

50 Meetings

12,431 Q&A Upvotes

USD 229 / Coaching

Hello!

Here are my toughts:

  • Responsability:
    • Associate: Only about your determined workstreams. There are many of this in an engagement, all coordinated by the EM.
    • EM: Accountable for the success of the project itself, including all the different parts and members.
    • Partner: oversees the whole project, but also responsible for the long-term handling of the clients relationship
  • Support:
    • Associate: none further than visual graphics
    • EM: depends on the office
    • Partner: help of support staff such as EA, etc.
  • Travel:
    • Associate & EM: depends on the engagements, but usually a traveling engagements would make you be out from monday morning to thursday nights. Occasionally more for workshops, etc.
    • Partner: much more travel expected, not only to touch base with the different teams but also to attend meetings, clients events, etc.
  • Reporting/reportees:
    • Associate: none, reports to the EM.
    • EM: complicated role, since you:
      • Manage the associates and the BAs under you
      • Respond to the APs and partners above you
    • Partner: all your different teams report to you.
  • Number of engagements you manage at once:
    • Associate: 1
    • EM: 1
    • Partner: Depends, but up to 4-5.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Hello!

Here are my toughts:

  • Responsability:
    • Associate: Only about your determined workstreams. There are many of this in an engagement, all coordinated by the EM.
    • EM: Accountable for the success of the project itself, including all the different parts and members.
    • Partner: oversees the whole project, but also responsible for the long-term handling of the clients relationship
  • Support:
    • Associate: none further than visual graphics
    • EM: depends on the office
    • Partner: help of support staff such as EA, etc.
  • Travel:
    • Associate & EM: depends on the engagements, but usually a traveling engagements would make you be out from monday morning to thursday nights. Occasionally more for workshops, etc.
    • Partner: much more travel expected, not only to touch base with the different teams but also to attend meetings, clients events, etc.
  • Reporting/reportees:
    • Associate: none, reports to the EM.
    • EM: complicated role, since you:
      • Manage the associates and the BAs under you
      • Respond to the APs and partners above you
    • Partner: all your different teams report to you.
  • Number of engagements you manage at once:
    • Associate: 1
    • EM: 1
    • Partner: Depends, but up to 4-5.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Dear A,

The life isn't getting easier in terms of work-life balance, so while associates do a lot of analytical work, engagement managers are about to do a lot of leadership work, and they are basically one of the most stressed works between associate and partners, being they pressurised from both sides, including the clients. Partners are more focusing on client relationships and selling, but they're working 6 days per week for 12+ hours, and they also need to travel a lot, usually visiting 2-3 destinations within one week to serve their clients. They have interesting and exiting life, while on the downturns family issues might arise.

Hope, it helps. Fell free to reach out, if you need any help to secure your interviews and convert them into offers.
Best,

André

Dear A,

The life isn't getting easier in terms of work-life balance, so while associates do a lot of analytical work, engagement managers are about to do a lot of leadership work, and they are basically one of the most stressed works between associate and partners, being they pressurised from both sides, including the clients. Partners are more focusing on client relationships and selling, but they're working 6 days per week for 12+ hours, and they also need to travel a lot, usually visiting 2-3 destinations within one week to serve their clients. They have interesting and exiting life, while on the downturns family issues might arise.

Hope, it helps. Fell free to reach out, if you need any help to secure your interviews and convert them into offers.
Best,

André

Book a coaching with Emily

100% Recommendation Rate

48 Meetings

2,133 Q&A Upvotes

USD 189 / Coaching

Hi there,

As others have explained, the roles from Associate to Manager to Parnter are quite different in nature, your work gets broader while it gets less deep in a particular task. The skills sets required evolved from analytics focused to project execution to eventually sales and account management.

Life wise, as you progress upwards, you would still be working long hours, but you would have more flexibility in when and how you spend your time, e.g. the team try to fit the Parnters' schedule.

Best,

Emily

Hi there,

As others have explained, the roles from Associate to Manager to Parnter are quite different in nature, your work gets broader while it gets less deep in a particular task. The skills sets required evolved from analytics focused to project execution to eventually sales and account management.

Life wise, as you progress upwards, you would still be working long hours, but you would have more flexibility in when and how you spend your time, e.g. the team try to fit the Parnters' schedule.

Best,

Emily

Book a coaching with Iman

100% Recommendation Rate

16 Meetings

1,501 Q&A Upvotes

USD 159 / Coaching

Hi,

As an Associate you are focus on making the analysis and creating the slides for your solution / recommendation. As a Manager, you are making less slides but responsible to whatever output your team generate so if there are quality issues it is always your responsbility first before anyone elese. At this level, you are expected to start understand what is the best way to solve the client's (often ambigious) problem and give direction to the team. You will mostly focus on success of project execution but you will want to start learning business development also.

Partner has more pressure on business development and sales as they basically need to make money for the firm. Their involvement in a single project will be very minimal (e.g. 8 hours a week or less) but they have full responsbilities to ensure the client are satisfied with the deliverable and build a long term relationship with the client.

Hi,

As an Associate you are focus on making the analysis and creating the slides for your solution / recommendation. As a Manager, you are making less slides but responsible to whatever output your team generate so if there are quality issues it is always your responsbility first before anyone elese. At this level, you are expected to start understand what is the best way to solve the client's (often ambigious) problem and give direction to the team. You will mostly focus on success of project execution but you will want to start learning business development also.

Partner has more pressure on business development and sales as they basically need to make money for the firm. Their involvement in a single project will be very minimal (e.g. 8 hours a week or less) but they have full responsbilities to ensure the client are satisfied with the deliverable and build a long term relationship with the client.

Book a coaching with Tamara

100% Recommendation Rate

2 Meetings

23 Q&A Upvotes

USD 209 / Coaching

Hi,

basically:

Associate: you are on 1 project full-time, reporting to 1 EM who is there with you full-time

EM: you are leading a team with 1-4 Associates (and BAs & Fellows - depending on the region) at 1 client full-time; doing some client and knowledge development on the side,

AP (Associate Partner): you have more than 1 client (the more the better) visiting each EM every or every 2nd week, knowlede development on the side

Partner: you have multiple clients, multiple teams,

Hope that helps

Hi,

basically:

Associate: you are on 1 project full-time, reporting to 1 EM who is there with you full-time

EM: you are leading a team with 1-4 Associates (and BAs & Fellows - depending on the region) at 1 client full-time; doing some client and knowledge development on the side,

AP (Associate Partner): you have more than 1 client (the more the better) visiting each EM every or every 2nd week, knowlede development on the side

Partner: you have multiple clients, multiple teams,

Hope that helps

Book a coaching with Vlad

98% Recommendation Rate

405 Meetings

11,353 Q&A Upvotes

USD 239 / Coaching

Hi,

For the Engagement Manager, it shifts from working on the deliverable to checking the deliverables and spending most of the time with the client / partners. Lifestyle probably better during the week since you can manage your time, but you should be ready to work on the weekends. It also depends on your personality and how well you can set the boundaries / pushback gently

For the partners it totally depends on the office and the clients:

  • You can be doing Finance in New York with your clients in a walking distance, who really know how to work with consultants. However, the working hours can be pretty long
  • You can be doing Tech in the Bay Area trying really hard to surprise the tech companies who are doing pretty well without you. The Lifestyle will be still great since its the local norm
  • You can have clients all across the US, flying 5 times a week with a miserable lifestyle

Best

Hi,

For the Engagement Manager, it shifts from working on the deliverable to checking the deliverables and spending most of the time with the client / partners. Lifestyle probably better during the week since you can manage your time, but you should be ready to work on the weekends. It also depends on your personality and how well you can set the boundaries / pushback gently

For the partners it totally depends on the office and the clients:

  • You can be doing Finance in New York with your clients in a walking distance, who really know how to work with consultants. However, the working hours can be pretty long
  • You can be doing Tech in the Bay Area trying really hard to surprise the tech companies who are doing pretty well without you. The Lifestyle will be still great since its the local norm
  • You can have clients all across the US, flying 5 times a week with a miserable lifestyle

Best

Book a coaching with Ian

100% Recommendation Rate

200 Meetings

16,287 Q&A Upvotes

USD 289 / Coaching

Hi,

Categorizing along a range of topics, here is how things change moving up the ladder:

Travel - More travel to more places more frequently

Exposure - More of your time is spent with the most senior levels of the client

Powerpoint - Much less time (if any) spent in powerpoint. More time commenting on slides/decks

Time - Generally more time poor but more control over your time (i.e. setting expectations/boundaries)

Support - Assistants to maintain your calendar, book your flights, etc.

Compensation - As expected, a whole lot more money to play with

Hi,

Categorizing along a range of topics, here is how things change moving up the ladder:

Travel - More travel to more places more frequently

Exposure - More of your time is spent with the most senior levels of the client

Powerpoint - Much less time (if any) spent in powerpoint. More time commenting on slides/decks

Time - Generally more time poor but more control over your time (i.e. setting expectations/boundaries)

Support - Assistants to maintain your calendar, book your flights, etc.

Compensation - As expected, a whole lot more money to play with

Book a coaching with Thomas

100% Recommendation Rate

22 Meetings

466 Q&A Upvotes

USD 149 / Coaching

Hi there,

The easiest and probably most accurate manner of describing the difference between all the ranks is that the more senior you get, the fewer slides you will make, and the more you will focus on business development and stakeholder management (at the highest level). Second, a big difference is that from a manager or above onwards you would be involved in multiple projects at the same time and would, therefore, have more travel. Similarly, you won't be spending much time at one individual client.

Hi there,

The easiest and probably most accurate manner of describing the difference between all the ranks is that the more senior you get, the fewer slides you will make, and the more you will focus on business development and stakeholder management (at the highest level). Second, a big difference is that from a manager or above onwards you would be involved in multiple projects at the same time and would, therefore, have more travel. Similarly, you won't be spending much time at one individual client.

Related case(s)

MBB Final Round Case - Smart Education

Solved 15.4k times
MBB Final Round Case - Smart Education Our client is SmartBridge, a nonprofit educational institution offering face-to-face tutoring services. The client operates in the US. The mission of SmartBridge is to help as many students as possible to complete studies and prevent that they drop from the school system, in particular in disadvantaged areas. The client is considering starting operations for its services in the Chicago area. They hired us to understand if that makes sense. Due to the nonprofit regulation, SmartBridge should operate on its own in the market, without any partnership. How would you help our client?
4.6 5 530
| Rating: (4.6 / 5.0)

Our client is SmartBridge, a nonprofit educational institution offering face-to-face tutoring services. The client operates in the US. The mission of SmartBridge is to help as many students as possible to complete studies and prevent that they drop from the school system, in particular in disadvant ... Open whole case

Espresso, Whatelse?

Solved 9.0k times
Espresso, Whatelse? Espresso Whatelse is an Italian company that produces coffee and espresso machines since 1908. It is the Italian market leader and has a strong presence overall in Europe. In 2019, Espresso Whatelse has increased its revenues but it has seen declining profit margin. Your client wants to understand the root causes of this 2019 trend and how to increase its profit margin again.  
4.6 5 459
| Rating: (4.6 / 5.0)

Espresso Whatelse is an Italian company that produces coffee and espresso machines since 1908. It is the Italian market leader and has a strong presence overall in Europe. In 2019, Espresso Whatelse has increased its revenues but it has seen declining profit margin. Your client wants to understand ... Open whole case

Chinese Chess - Airline Business During COVID-19

Solved 3.4k times
Chinese Chess - Airline Business During COVID-19 Sky China, a government-backed Chinese airline, has recently seen profits plummet due to COVID-19. Profits are down 80% in the months of February and March, but are showing early signs of a rebound in April.  They've brought you in to first investigate what can be done immediatedly to prevent hemorrhaging cash and surive in the short-term. They are also looking to see how the current situation can be viewed as an opportunity, and what can be done to prepare for the future. 
4.3 5 102
| Rating: (4.3 / 5.0)

Sky China, a government-backed Chinese airline, has recently seen profits plummet due to COVID-19. Profits are down 80% in the months of February and March, but are showing early signs of a rebound in April. They've brought you in to first investigate what can be done immediatedly to prevent hemor ... Open whole case

McKinsey Digital / BCG Platinion: Oil & Gas Upstream Technology

Solved 3.0k times
McKinsey Digital / BCG Platinion: Oil & Gas Upstream Technology [PLEASE NOTE: This is a technically difficult case and should only be completed by those coming in as a Technology specialist, i.e. recruiting for McKinsey Digital, BCG Platinion, etc.] Our client is a multinational oil and gas company. While they are vertically integrated and have upstream, midstream, and downstream divisions, they have recently been experiencing competitivity issues in the upstream gas division, which brings in $1B in profits annually. Our client’s upstream division has offices in Australia and Indonesia. Their work is highly dependent on their IT systems, as they have to constantly monitor wells and pipes (pressure, hydrocarbon count, fluid makeup, etc.) The upstream division has two large legacy IT systems that are primarily used for downstream operations but have been modified for upstream purposes. These systems are managed by a central team in the US which is responsible for all IT issues across the business. They triage issues/enhancements and then manage development teams in India and Finland who complete the work.
4.5 5 60
| Rating: (4.5 / 5.0)

[PLEASE NOTE: This is a technically difficult case and should only be completed by those coming in as a Technology specialist, i.e. recruiting for McKinsey Digital, BCG Platinion, etc.] Our client is a multinational oil and gas company. While they are vertically integrated and have upstream, midstr ... Open whole case

Bain 1st Round Case – BlissOttica

Solved 400+ times
Bain 1st Round Case – BlissOttica Our client is a BlissOttica, an Eyewear Manufacturer that is looking to reach a 10% increase in profits. How would you help our client?
4.4 5 20
| Rating: (4.4 / 5.0)

Our client is a BlissOttica, an Eyewear Manufacturer that is looking to reach a 10% increase in profits. How would you help our client? Open whole case