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Francesco

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7

Obtaining breadth of experience

Hello PrepLoungers,

I've been trying to break into consulting for some time now as an experienced hire, however I am getting rejected time, after time. Sometimes I do receive personalized feedback, and more often that not it talks about the "lack of breadth", as my career is focused on working in production environments (both planning and people-management positions).

I've currently got an offer from a multinational warehousing company (Market Cap > $40B) for a position of IT Project Manager. The project themes would span from software to AI or robotics ones. I would be planning to complete an MBA after some time (or concurrently) in that position.

Would you think that IT Projects position would be a good way to both increase my profile attractiveness to the MBB and MBA recruitment?

Thanks!

Hello PrepLoungers,

I've been trying to break into consulting for some time now as an experienced hire, however I am getting rejected time, after time. Sometimes I do receive personalized feedback, and more often that not it talks about the "lack of breadth", as my career is focused on working in production environments (both planning and people-management positions).

I've currently got an offer from a multinational warehousing company (Market Cap > $40B) for a position of IT Project Manager. The project themes would span from software to AI or robotics ones. I would be planning to complete an MBA after some time (or concurrently) in that position.

Would you think that IT Projects position would be a good way to both increase my profile attractiveness to the MBB and MBA recruitment?

Thanks!

7 answers

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Book a coaching with Francesco

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Hi there,

IT Project Manager is not the standard background to transition to MBB, however if:

  • You will be involved in strategic activities
  • You have to manage a team and interact with C-Level
  • The brand of the company is good

then you can still leverage it for both MBB and an MBA.

If you are planning to apply after the MBA, I would pay attention to two things:

  1. Brand of the MBA. Some like INSEAD have a direct channel to consulting and can increase the chances to be invited in a relevant way
  2. Finding referrals. You can find more on that here: https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/hey-everyonehope-all-is-well-3176

You may also need to review your CV if you are getting rejections during the screening phase.

For additional questions please feel free to PM me.

Hope this helps,

Francesco

Hi there,

IT Project Manager is not the standard background to transition to MBB, however if:

  • You will be involved in strategic activities
  • You have to manage a team and interact with C-Level
  • The brand of the company is good

then you can still leverage it for both MBB and an MBA.

If you are planning to apply after the MBA, I would pay attention to two things:

  1. Brand of the MBA. Some like INSEAD have a direct channel to consulting and can increase the chances to be invited in a relevant way
  2. Finding referrals. You can find more on that here: https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/hey-everyonehope-all-is-well-3176

You may also need to review your CV if you are getting rejections during the screening phase.

For additional questions please feel free to PM me.

Hope this helps,

Francesco

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Hey,

My question back to you is this: Why do you want to be in Consulting & specifically MBB?

If this is your dream, you can get there through other routes. Join BIG4/Accenture, prove yourself and move to MBB. Or join a tech firm/Amazon/FG/Google/Start-up, clock some relevant experience and then move to MBB. And there are other options too..

Also, any consultant who is not Tech/IT Savvy will become irrelevant in a few years, if they already are not. Management consultants who dont understand AI, ML, Agile (scrum, kanban), DevOps,Design Thinking will be useless. So you are in a great position to be very close to this part of the Technology landscape as we live in a tech driven world. Consulting projects are becoming more and more tech driven.

So, I think you need some help to improve your positioning/branding and justifying your transferrable skill set. Nothing wrong in your IT PM role, but some works needs to be done to articulate your story, skills better.

Happy to chat more, so feel free to shoot me a personal message.

Hey,

My question back to you is this: Why do you want to be in Consulting & specifically MBB?

If this is your dream, you can get there through other routes. Join BIG4/Accenture, prove yourself and move to MBB. Or join a tech firm/Amazon/FG/Google/Start-up, clock some relevant experience and then move to MBB. And there are other options too..

Also, any consultant who is not Tech/IT Savvy will become irrelevant in a few years, if they already are not. Management consultants who dont understand AI, ML, Agile (scrum, kanban), DevOps,Design Thinking will be useless. So you are in a great position to be very close to this part of the Technology landscape as we live in a tech driven world. Consulting projects are becoming more and more tech driven.

So, I think you need some help to improve your positioning/branding and justifying your transferrable skill set. Nothing wrong in your IT PM role, but some works needs to be done to articulate your story, skills better.

Happy to chat more, so feel free to shoot me a personal message.

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Hi there,

An IT Project Manager is not likely to get you hired as a generalist at MBB. That said, if you get more work in strategic areas and network extensively you may be able to get in.

Feel free to reach out to me, as I followed your exact same path (IT PM to MBB). What did I do? Quite frankly, I got an MBA. That said, 4 years later, I also referred someone from my old IT company into BCG Platinion, which he joined.

So, MBA is the direct route. Referral is another route, but you'd get funneled into the Digital practice.

Hi there,

An IT Project Manager is not likely to get you hired as a generalist at MBB. That said, if you get more work in strategic areas and network extensively you may be able to get in.

Feel free to reach out to me, as I followed your exact same path (IT PM to MBB). What did I do? Quite frankly, I got an MBA. That said, 4 years later, I also referred someone from my old IT company into BCG Platinion, which he joined.

So, MBA is the direct route. Referral is another route, but you'd get funneled into the Digital practice.

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Hello!

Sorry to hear about the frustrating journey so far. If it is any consolation, there are many many people who tried for years before breaking into consulting, so not all is lost!

To your question yes, I do believe that it would make your profile more attractive. Not so much the IT part, but hte PM one -is one of the most looked-for positions for MBA grads-.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Hello!

Sorry to hear about the frustrating journey so far. If it is any consolation, there are many many people who tried for years before breaking into consulting, so not all is lost!

To your question yes, I do believe that it would make your profile more attractive. Not so much the IT part, but hte PM one -is one of the most looked-for positions for MBA grads-.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

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I would try to take a shortcut, short and painful. Get into the best MBA program you can manage and then go into MBB or non-MBB consulting firms.

My honest opinion is that the HR people interviewers at any consulting firm focus always much more on brand name and reputation than actual content. MBA is in your case a way to do so.

I would try to take a shortcut, short and painful. Get into the best MBA program you can manage and then go into MBB or non-MBB consulting firms.

My honest opinion is that the HR people interviewers at any consulting firm focus always much more on brand name and reputation than actual content. MBA is in your case a way to do so.

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I am not as optimistic as Clara is. I don't think an IT PM position will drastically improve your chances. Unless it's a very senior position and deals with strategic projects driven by a board, it is a quite operational role as well. I'd say an MBA (assuming you'll get into a high-ranking school) would do much more to make your profile attractive.

I am not as optimistic as Clara is. I don't think an IT PM position will drastically improve your chances. Unless it's a very senior position and deals with strategic projects driven by a board, it is a quite operational role as well. I'd say an MBA (assuming you'll get into a high-ranking school) would do much more to make your profile attractive.

Hi Henning, thanks for the answer. Unfortunately the role isn't very senior, although it does deal with things like post-M&A IT integration and whatnot, so I would hope that these projects are high on the company's priority list! And yes, I do plan to aim for MBA in a high-ranking school, although I am a bit concerned whether my profile won't be weaker because of the IT position — Anonymous A on Mar 06, 2021 (edited)

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To second the majority opinion here - an MBA from a top school is your best bet. I would look at people that have had the IT manager role and see if they have gone on to business school or if having that role in general is helpful in getting into a top MBA program before accepting the offer.

Best,

Udayan

To second the majority opinion here - an MBA from a top school is your best bet. I would look at people that have had the IT manager role and see if they have gone on to business school or if having that role in general is helpful in getting into a top MBA program before accepting the offer.

Best,

Udayan

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