As for the basic skills - Excel and Power Point. You need to learn the following:
- Fast excel - throw away your mouse and put some tape on your touchpad. Do everything with your keyboard!
- The main formulas (especially vlookup, column, etc)
- Pivot tables
- Nice formating
- Modeling - you need at least to know how to structure your sheets (Inputs, outputs, sources, versions, etc)
Advanced skills include:
- Financial modeling (making proforma statement)
- Valuation of projects / companies
The best offline courses are Training the street.
The most important thing you need to understand is that consulting is a client business and client is always first. Here is my subjective view of what's needed to succeed on different levels of hierarchy. Pls take into account that it's the ideal state and getting these skills is a journey.
Analyst / associate level
- Having a good DGL / career counselor, etc. (Each company has different names). This is a person who guides your development in the company, collects the feedbacks on you, and presents your case to a promotion committee. Make sure to have a person who is organized enough to collect the feedbacks in time, who is a nice person in general and who has enough authority in the company (i.e. Senior partner - the more power he has - the better)
- Finding the first project. Choosing the project you work on smartly is critical. You should collect the feedbacks from your colleagues on each and everyone prior to accepting the project. People will be pretty opened to provide you that information
- Choosing the project you work on smartly (i.e. collect the feedbacks on each and everyone prior to accepting the project)
- Perfect technical skills (Excel, PPT, Problem Solving)
- Good feedbacks on you from the client. Thus try to make friends with your clients (Both senior and non-senior role. Even a bad feedback from a blue collar can ruin your career)
- Ability to manage your own standalone workstream with minimum supervision. TOP performers bring the end products that impress others
- Being proactive - helping the team with daily routine, scheduling, etc. Participating in the office initiatives
- Establishing relationships with your managers and partners. Ideally, you should have multiple senior partners to be excited about you and to support you)
- Being lucky!
A lot of the above, plus:
- Having your client happy - this is the most important! If the client is happy - everything else will work
- Managing multiple partners who have different opinions. Since partners have a busy schedule it becomes very tricky to synchronize them and to align the viewpoints
- Good feedbacks from your team - having a happy team is important. Unfortunately, sometimes it's a trade-off between having your client and partner happy
- Telling about your success on projects to others - I'm personally not a fan of this kind of selling, but I know many people who made a career using this skill
A lot from the above, plus:
- Having multiple clients happy
- Having a long list of partners supporting you (More than 10)
- Contributions to the development of the company (Knowledge, office ops, etc)
- Selling the projects. If you manage to sell to existing clients or even bring the new clients - you are the champion.
A lot of the above, plus: