Networking talk - should I let people know I'm using my current company as a stepping stone?

Anonymous A asked on May 19, 2021

Hi, after I got rejected from one of the MBB firms, I joined a boutique consulting firm in order to develop consulting expertise and also gain promotion track record, in order to better position myself when I apply again.

My question is: when doing networking calls (or meeting casually) with seniors of my target firm, is it suitable to disclose that I'm using my current company as a stepping stone to joint their company? Would mentioning the reason why I joined my current firm sound bad, or would it shape a positive impression that I've been continuously building my skills to reapply my target firm? Thanks for the advice.

on May 21, 2021
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on May 21, 2021
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Hi, I confirm the stepping-stone tactic is not ideal. I would present it like a way to quickly learn the consulting skills and arrive at your best to MBB


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NO! While a seasoned consultant/recruiter will figure that out anyway, you need a credible story ready.

Dont make it sound like you settled for this current company and are using them and had no other options.

Instead, explain what about the current firm attracted you and that there was a good mutual fit at that point in time. So you joined them. Talk about interesting things you have done and consulting skills you have improved. But opportunities remain limited for you to expand your wings. Then join the dots and explain you are super keen on the target firm, that its a better fit with your career aspirations and how you can bring value to them.

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Hi there,

I agree with Adi, don’t give the impression you “used” your current company.

Instead, explain the reasons you joined, and say company XYZ that you applied to would be the natural next step, as would allow to do more ABC compared to your current job.



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I think there are better ways to position it

For instance, you could go with how much you enjoy consulting, because of x, y, z. This is why you took the job in the current company, that is amazing. However, you are also missing x, y and z, that you are sure that in MBB you could get (e.g., higher exposure, higher impact in a deterimned industry, etc., there are tons) and hence you would like to transfer to MBB later.

Same, but smarter!

Hope it helps!



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Please don't do this.

My general rule for any professional conversations are: "What would you think if you were in their shoes?"

You can say that the current company has honed your skills/experiences that support a step up. Do not say you joined primarily to move up!

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Antonello gave the best answer


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