Any consultants out there?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Apr 28, 2013 4:43 AM GMT
    I've recently been researching about on a career in consulting and it sounds fascinating. Being able to meet different clients, travel every week, and to specialize in an industry sounds awesome. I have been reading "Case in Point" and the case studies are quite fun.

    If you are a consultant, how do you like your job?

    Thanks guys.
  • calibro

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    Apr 28, 2013 7:04 AM GMT
    basically you get paid to tell people why they suck at what they're doing
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    Apr 28, 2013 7:41 AM GMT
    Does engineering consulting count?

    If so, you basically work full time for a firm as an engineer or scientist, and they bid on projects. You then go on those projects and do the work.

    This is kinda what I do, and I really like it. Although travel for me means going to the middle of nowhere. My business trips often involve snowmobiles or ATVs, and remote camps. And I never wear a suit. Ever.

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    Apr 28, 2013 7:50 AM GMT
    Seismic Muscle saidDoes engineering consulting count?


    I've found that most people when they say "consulting" are speaking of management consulting, not the many other varieties of consulting out there, such as engineering.

    It confused me for a long time because I've worked in consulting (planning and engineering) for years but realized that people were getting a very different impression of my career if I said that I was a "consultant" or worked in a "consulting firm". We don't get paid to tell people what they suck at doing, but to do what they don't have the staff time or knowledge to do themselves.

    The really narrow definition still strikes me as a little odd, actually.
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    Apr 28, 2013 7:58 AM GMT
    Fuck. Anyone can call themselves a consultant.. Kind of a joke, really. It just means you have a project driven job, as opposed to a long term job, that may well be very vertical in skill set.

    Some "consultants" work as contractors, and can be in one place for a number of years. Others are cowboys that go from one place to the next, and, while they are very well paid, they often go from city to city, and project to project.

    To work for a "consultancy" often means the life of a road warrior, long hours, heavy politics, and living in a motel room, but, you can make a shit pile of money because of how tax law works. E.g., the per deum for a consultant in San Francisco is $228 a day. That's what you get to live on in addition to your regular hourly fee. Per deum is handled differently on taxes so, if you have a 68/hr job and get 228 a day per deum that works out to something like 88 a hour.

    I applied earlier in the week on a $155/hr job that's local has as a cowboy (take the hard projects that no one else wants). I don't expect to get it, but, you never know.

    I've done lots of consulting work (you can read my Linked In; my name is in my profile here). I've made a lot of money, but, if my skill set was slightly different, I could have made a lot more. I don't like the road warrior gig. Hate it.

    I have a ex roommate who makes 120k a year, consulting, but lives in a hotel room, and gave up his fitness program but is 24 with a GED, and brilliant, making that kind of money. Can't say I blame him.

    I don't generally even talk to folks for less than 100k on the bottom end, and I'm not a heavy weight JAVA guy. A heavy JAVA guy can make upwards of $100/hr in some markets.

    If you work for a big consulting firm in accounting, you can expect to be worked to death (until you push back). They will take as much as they can.
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    Apr 28, 2013 8:03 AM GMT
    CFL_Oakland said
    Seismic Muscle saidDoes engineering consulting count?


    I've found that most people when they say "consulting" are speaking of management consulting, not the many other varieties of consulting out there, such as engineering.

    It confused me for a long time because I've worked in consulting (planning and engineering) for years but realized that people were getting a very different impression of my career if I said that I was a "consultant" or worked in a "consulting firm". We don't get paid to tell people what they suck at doing, but to do what they don't have the staff time or knowledge to do themselves.

    The really narrow definition still strikes me as a little odd, actually.


    Yep. We do the shit, they can't do; won't do; don't understand; de-fuck shit; etc....cowboys.
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    Apr 28, 2013 1:54 PM GMT
    calibro saidbasically you get paid to tell people why they suck at what they're doing


    Sounds about right, but in a cynical way icon_lol.gif
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    Apr 28, 2013 2:48 PM GMT
    I shall consult with my sun God .
  • calibro

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    Apr 28, 2013 3:35 PM GMT
    CFL_Oakland said
    Seismic Muscle saidDoes engineering consulting count?


    e don't get paid to tell people what they suck at doing, but to do what they don't have the staff time or knowledge to do themselves.

    The really narrow definition still strikes me as a little odd, actually.


    oh, that is totally the same as telling them why they suck. basically, you come in and say, hey people, i'm here to fix the problem none of you have the means to fix on your own so you hired outside help to do it. don't get me wrong, i love my contracted work, but being a cleaner or a hole filler is really just a middle finger way of getting my own paycheck
  • Ironman4U

    Posts: 738

    Apr 28, 2013 4:16 PM GMT
    I've done coaching, consulting and training work in the fields of leadership and sales/marketing for about a dozen years. I love what I do and the flexibility it gives me. I work for myself so I can build a local or international client base. So I can control the amount of travel. After working for myself for so long, I couldn't imagine working for anyone else.

    If this is a career field you want to pursue, build your expertise in your chosen field and get experience. People pay for experts and when you become really good at what you do, your reputation will grow and the referral opportunities will be there. One of the best ways to do this is to start speaking on your area of expertise. Becoming a great presenter with a message that resonates has made a huge impact on my success.
  • Whipmagic

    Posts: 1481

    Apr 28, 2013 4:20 PM GMT
    calibro said
    CFL_Oakland said
    Seismic Muscle saidDoes engineering consulting count?


    e don't get paid to tell people what they suck at doing, but to do what they don't have the staff time or knowledge to do themselves.

    The really narrow definition still strikes me as a little odd, actually.


    oh, that is totally the same as telling them why they suck. basically, you come in and say, hey people, i'm here to fix the problem none of you have the means to fix on your own so you hired outside help to do it. don't get me wrong, i love my contracted work, but being a cleaner or a hole filler is really just a middle finger way of getting my own paycheck


    What? You don't like to fill holes? Now I'm disappointed.
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Apr 28, 2013 4:28 PM GMT
    Whipmagic said
    calibro said
    CFL_Oakland said
    Seismic Muscle saidDoes engineering consulting count?


    e don't get paid to tell people what they suck at doing, but to do what they don't have the staff time or knowledge to do themselves.

    The really narrow definition still strikes me as a little odd, actually.


    oh, that is totally the same as telling them why they suck. basically, you come in and say, hey people, i'm here to fix the problem none of you have the means to fix on your own so you hired outside help to do it. don't get me wrong, i love my contracted work, but being a cleaner or a hole filler is really just a middle finger way of getting my own paycheck


    What? You don't like to fill holes? Now I'm disappointed.


    not with my finger
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    Apr 28, 2013 4:39 PM GMT
    I own a real estate brokerage that I set up as a consulting firm more than twenty years ago. One of my close friends owns a firm that consults with automakers on steel quality. My cousin owns a career and resume consulting firm. So, although dozens of my friends from business school are management consultants, as others have said, the field encompasses a great deal more than management consulting.
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    Apr 28, 2013 4:40 PM GMT
    Shawnathan saidWe'll all be consultants working on projects and short contracts soon.


    This.

    That certainly seems to be the direction the world is going.
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    Apr 28, 2013 5:00 PM GMT
    Yeah... but first you have to have some expertise in a field so that people will pay you to do projects for them. Consulting is more a method of delivery than an actual career. Oh, and these days I hardly ever travel. Teleconferences and Skype are a much more efficient use of customer's time and mine. Still sitting on a mountain of FF miles from the 90's though.
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    Apr 28, 2013 5:04 PM GMT
    I do engineering consulting for the electric utility here in BC. Being a consultant kind of sucks compared to being an actual engineer at the utility (pay isn't as good, hours are worse, benefits are worse) but because of the nature of their engineering department, specialized or difficult projects often get contracted out to us. Because their engineering is regionalized and we work all over the province, I get to travel a fair bit and see parts of BC I normally wouldn't visit, which is pretty cool.

    Be prepared to work long hours for less pay with fewer benefits as a consultant if you work for a consultancy company instead if independently.
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    Apr 28, 2013 6:36 PM GMT
    ZeroSequence saidI do engineering consulting for the electric utility here in BC. Being a consultant kind of sucks compared to being an actual engineer at the utility (pay isn't as good, hours are worse, benefits are worse) but because of the nature of their engineering department, specialized or difficult projects often get contracted out to us. Because their engineering is regionalized and we work all over the province, I get to travel a fair bit and see parts of BC I normally wouldn't visit, which is pretty cool.

    Be prepared to work long hours for less pay with fewer benefits as a consultant if you work for a consultancy company instead if independently.


    That may be true, but most people don't have the balls skills to launch their own company.
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    Apr 28, 2013 7:24 PM GMT
    calibro said
    CFL_Oakland said
    Seismic Muscle saidDoes engineering consulting count?


    e don't get paid to tell people what they suck at doing, but to do what they don't have the staff time or knowledge to do themselves.

    The really narrow definition still strikes me as a little odd, actually.


    oh, that is totally the same as telling them why they suck. basically, you come in and say, hey people, i'm here to fix the problem none of you have the means to fix on your own so you hired outside help to do it. don't get me wrong, i love my contracted work, but being a cleaner or a hole filler is really just a middle finger way of getting my own paycheck


    Not really...oftentimes, the "problem" is a $100,000 design grant that the city won, but for which it wouldn't make sense to hire an additional person. I just don't see how that could be characterized as "telling them why they suck" or even "being a cleaner." Hole filler, maybe, but it's a pretty intentional and useful hole...

    But I work for a planning and engineering consulting firm, and not a "consultancy"...
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    Apr 28, 2013 8:03 PM GMT
    I am an engineer and I work in management consulting. I worked with a multi national and now working with a boutique.

    Here are some facts I saw / encountered / believe to be true.

    1- If you are a "salaried" employee, being a management consultant hands out the best salary across any industry and in any field bar Investment Banking

    2- Working hours are long, as in real long. Competition is fierce. But on the upside, you work with top talent, top-of-the-class people, and you hone your skills faster than in any other industry

    3- It is one of the few jobs where even as a junior analyst, you get to sit and participate in meetings with CEOs / Top Management of top companies, and that by itself gives you a great push on the client relationship management competency, which is crucial later on if you wanna go corporate or entrepreneurial.

    4- Bonuses are really good in big consultancies, especially if the "big fish" clients have a good year with you

    5- Powerpoint
    6- Powerpoint
    7- Powerpoint
    8- More Powerpoint

    9- Travel begins as nice, may turn to hell when you are going back and forth every couple weeks (Europe / Middle East. Dunno about continental America)

    10- You get exposure to a multitude of industries, and this is one of the top pros of this job. Which job will let you work strategy for a construction company, org design for a pharmaceutical, M&A/ Buy-Sell for a Law firm, and Governance for public orgs? None. Just Management Consulting

    11- Now for your exit options. You may stay and get mad raises and salaries and bonuses post-associate, you may go investment banking / hedge funds / private equity, you may go corporate (as internal, full-time consultant) or you may go entrepreneurial. But be sure that a couple years with the top 3 (Booz, McKenzie, Bain) or even second-tier ones will be a huge huge boost on your CV. So no loss there

    If you have any additional / specific questions, please ask icon_smile.gif
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    Apr 28, 2013 9:34 PM GMT
    Hey Leviticii (or anyone).... How is management consulting different from product management?
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    Apr 28, 2013 11:48 PM GMT
    Everyone is a consultant when they're in between jobs. icon_wink.gif
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    Apr 29, 2013 7:32 AM GMT
    aidenMaximus saidHey Leviticii (or anyone).... How is management consulting different from product management?


    The processes are similar but the outcome is different. Product Management analyzes and optimizes the organizational lifecycle in order to enhance the profit margins / marketability, etc... of a tangible product.

    Management consulting deals more with the organizational processes, and aims at helping the company deliver better results through optimized business plans, strategies and processes.

    So Product Placement --------> Product
    Management Consulting ---------> Process, Strategy, HR...
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    Apr 29, 2013 7:08 PM GMT
    leviticii said
    aidenMaximus saidHey Leviticii (or anyone).... How is management consulting different from product management?


    The processes are similar but the outcome is different. Product Management analyzes and optimizes the organizational lifecycle in order to enhance the profit margins / marketability, etc... of a tangible product.

    Management consulting deals more with the organizational processes, and aims at helping the company deliver better results through optimized business plans, strategies and processes.

    So Product Placement --------> Product
    Management Consulting ---------> Process, Strategy, HR...


    In addition to what leviticii said, Product Managers usually work directly for the companies that make the products.