Career Path of a Consultant

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Career Path of a Consultant

Consultants often want to reach the top of a consultancy firm’s hierarchy throughout their careers. A growth path can look different at each firm, but on average, advisors progress through five to seven ranks at an advising firm before reaching the top tier. From the minute they start at the lowest part of their career ladder, provides an overview of the major features held by consultancy experts. It is common for a newly graduated, recent graduate to begin as an Analyst, Business Analyst, or Junior Consultant at most (larger) advisory firms. Your responsibilities in these types of support positions will range from investigation to data collection to sector, market, and company analysis. In most firms, you’ll spend the majority of your time working with clients, assisting with analysis and project management. Declarability is typically 80 percent or higher for young advisors.

Consultants spend the remainder of their time participating in a variety of learning & growth programs aimed at improving their own consulting abilities. Consultant or advisor, sometimes known as Fellows at some firms, is the next level of consultation. Apart from analysts who have advanced to this level (typically after two to five years), advisors with some expertise in a related branch or who have completed an MBA can also advance to this level. Consultants are in charge of defining the problem, writing hypotheses, explaining their findings, and offering recommendations to clients, whether for clients or research. Experts also provide assistance and guidance in the execution of the final change to be implemented. They then take care of the substantial analysis that comes with implementation. Consultants devote a significant amount of time and effort to improving their professional and sector knowledge as well as their skill set.

After so many years as a consultant, the majority of experts advance to the position of Senior Consultant (or Senior Advisor, Senior Associate). Many duties in this position are centered on project management of relatively modest projects or controlling a specific region for a larger project. Apart from these roles, senior advisors supervise client groups and provide input into the company’s sales, marketing, and management plans. The (Senior) Manager is frequently the next step up the professional consulting growth. You oversee all aspects and phases of a project in this capacity, and you are responsible for completing project deadlines. Furthermore, you serve as a client’s first point of contact and are responsible for offering solutions to their business difficulties. Managers are also involved in internal activities such as service proposition development, business development, and thought leadership development.

After ten to fifteen years working for a consultancy business, consultants can advance to the status of Partner, where you will be expected to serve as a sector specialist and strategic advisor to the organization’s most important and ‘high level’ clients. A partner is also in charge of generating sales, advancing the firm’s growth and direction, developing innovative initiatives, and achieving strategic goals. Partners may be equity partners in a consulting firm or may share the same obligations without a financial interest (Non-Equity Partners).

1. What Does a Consultant Do?

Let’s look beyond the official business consultant job description to see what consultants actually perform in practice:

Management consultants assist clients in finding answers to their evolving business needs. The extent of the engagement might range from core strategic planning through large-scale execution, process improvement, change management, and the introduction of new technologies. Each engagement’s research is unique, although it frequently includes extensive data and financial analysis in Microsoft Excel.

White papers and domestically produced research on significant changes in the business realm and general economy are prioritized by most consulting firms. The pieces must include contributions from consulting firms.

Management consultants are frequently obliged to identify themselves with a certain industry of their choice as they advance in their careers and eventually become “experts” in that subject. They must stay up to date on any industry changes and how they may affect current and new clients.

2. Management Consultant Credentials

A Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in a business-related subject is commonly required of consulting firms. All majors are acceptable. However, business and mathematically-focused majors like Finance, Economics, and Accounting are preferred.

Because data and financial analysis are such an important part of a management consultant’s job, earning a practical distinction like CFI’s Financial Modeling& Valuation Analyst (FMVA)TM accreditation is becoming a more desirable professional upgrade. CFI’s financial modeling course teaches analysts how to create an advanced financial analysis using Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, and other analyst-specific software.

3. How Do You Go about Securing a Position as a Management Consultant?

The majority of consultants are graduate students with a good academic background. Every year, top companies hire hundreds of the smartest and smartest graduates for their graduate programs. Students will be known as “analysts” and will assist senior advisors. Many schemes use a rotating structure, which allows you to gain exposure to a variety of Consultancy practices and sectors. MBA graduates will be able to enroll at a better level than those who have worked in another profession. This type of entry-level position is known as “experience hire.” Although having an MBA or a master’s degree in management would increase your chances of being employed as a consultant, the employment market is still quite competitive. Consultancy firms are recognized to be among the most active recruiters at universities, and they are an excellent place to start your consulting career.

Many large corporations provide summer internships and “taster” postings to assist you in getting your foot in the door. Networking is an important aspect of landing a job as a management consultant, as it is in most competitive careers. This is especially true in consulting, where networking is a necessary component of the job. Most large consulting firms will host a number of networking events for prospective students. Office hours and company presentations, as well as general networking events, are examples. Office hours provide one-on-one time with recruiters, making it easier to stand out. Information calls with members of the recruiting team, which take place at the end of October/beginning of November, are another option to demonstrate your abilities. They’re a chance to show off your skills while also learning more about the company.

Career Path of a Consultant

Once you’ve networked your way into a big firm’s interview stage, there are a few things to keep in mind to assist you in landing a job. Even if you have no past consulting experience, it’s crucial to emphasize talents that are relevant to the position, such as analytical abilities and communication.

You’ll probably be asked more about your ‘fit’ for the field, such as your willingness to travel and work long hours, than about your experience. Recruiters will want to know how well you will get along with colleagues at the firm, so exhibit some personality in your interviews. It should come naturally if you are yourself.

4. Why do you Want to Work as a Management Consultant?

From the perspective of both employee satisfaction and income, management consulting may be a very rewarding career. According to, the median compensation for a consultant in the United States is US$83,408 per year. Salaries for consulting employment, on the other hand, can be significantly higher, with MBA graduates from Wharton’s MBA class of 2018 claiming a median compensation of US$150,000.

While large pay is attractive to aspiring consultants, they are simply one factor to consider while deciding on this career path. Individuals who thrive on diversity will enjoy consulting because days may be exciting and unpredictable – for example, you may be called to client sites at the last minute, there is a lot of travel, and you will meet a diverse range of intriguing people. While the tight deadlines and high-pressure setting may be off-putting to some, for individuals with a consultant’s mindset, it may enhance the experience.

Career Path of a Consultant

As a junior consultant, you’ll be working with senior clients and given a lot of responsibility early on in your career because of the steep learning curve. Training and learning are ingrained in the culture, and opportunities for advancement abound. If you work for a non-specialized company, you’ll learn a lot about industries you’ve never heard of before. If you decide to change careers in the future, the abilities you learn in consulting, such as strategy, research, and communication, will be transferrable. Because it’s such a competitive field to break into, you’ll almost certainly be surrounded by top-notch coworkers who share your intelligence and way of thinking.

While the hours can be notoriously long and anti-social, the upside is that you’ll form strong friendships with your coworkers, and most consulting firms provide excellent benefits like corporate cars, free meals, sabbatical chances, and gym memberships.

According to, the consulting industry’s growth is tightly tied to global economic changes. When the economy is growing, companies have larger budgets and spend more on consultants; yet, when the economy is struggling, the converse is true.

Despite a slowdown during the global financial crisis of 2007-2008, the business has been gradually growing since 2011, reaching a global value of US$251 billion in 2016. While North America and EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa) account for the lion’s share of the market (40 and 41 percent, respectively), Asia-Pacific is the fastest-growing area.

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