The job of a consultant is often a challenge. You'll be working on some of the most difficult business problems faced by senior executives, and clients of major consulting firms pay a large sum to have consultants work for them. Consulting is not a 9 to 5 job, and you may feel like you are “always on” due to the long hours and extensive travel. To succeed in this field, you need to be highly committed and create your own work structures.
Analytical skills are essential, as well as social skills for customer interaction. The long hours can be exhausting, and you may find yourself with co-workers as your only friends. Management consultants work with company executives and business leaders to identify organizational challenges, collect and analyze data, and develop and implement solutions. The length of the work week depends on office culture, project type, industry, and company management.
Learning to live with Type A personalities around you and managing your time are crucial for survival. You can gain the skills and experience you need through virtual consulting work experience programs or by attending school. The most prestigious type of consulting is strategic consulting, which is provided by both the MBB (McKinsey, Boston Consulting Group, Bain) and the Big 4 (Deloitte Consulting). Companies are looking for ways to reduce costs and improve efficiency, so management consultants are in high demand.
However, the job is not glamorous - it involves long hours and hard work. You may be part of a team that advises companies that are already doing well or help them reduce costs when they have grown too fast. The job prospects for a management consulting career are promising, with a projected growth of 11% through 2031. Working for a few years as a consultant can open many professional doors for you. If you manage to survive all the challenges that come with this career, then it may be worth it.