"Management analysts, often called management consultants, propose ways to improve an organization's efficiency. They advise managers on how to make organizations more profitable through reduced costs and increased revenues."1
Career Path:Analyst → Associate → Consultant → Senior Consultant → Manager → Vice President or Partner (Career path may vary with firm)
Employers:Bain & CompanyThe Boston Consulting GroupMcKinsey & Company
Qualifications/Preferred Skills:Management consulting firms hire employees with bachelor's degrees for entry-level positions, but after two or three years, employees are encouraged to pursue an MBA or secure another industry job. Communication skills and the ability to work well with others are a must. You must be a good problem-solver and have great reasoning skills as well.
National Average Salary-Analyst:Starting: $68,000-$74,000
How will your economics degree help in this field?The logical reasoning skills and data analysis skills you have acquired as an economics student will help you be able to recognize changes that need to be made within a company to optimize returns. As a management consultant, you need to be able to synthesize large amounts of data and pinpoint problems.
Management Associate Bio:BYU Economics graduate Angela Graves started in management consulting after completing not one, but four different internships during her time at BYU. Graves says that she would be remiss if she were not to acknowledge the Economics Department in helping her find out what she wanted to do.
For her current position, she works for Bain & Company, after being offered a full-time position following her last internship (with Bain) while at BYU. She says that her favorite thing about her position is that her clients vary, and therefore, every role or responsibility differs.
"At a high level, my responsibilities involve using data to help clients solve challenging business problems. It's a lot of running numbers in Excel and then building slides to communicate whatever those numbers are saying to the client. There may be lots of client meetings, interviews, data crunching or slide building just depending on the day."
To start in management consulting, like Graves, you begin at the bottom of the professional pyramid. This position is designed to last for two to three years, after which many are expected to go back to school for a graduate degree or secure experience with another employer. After receiving an MBA, some will return for an associate job, while others will leave for entrepreneurial careers or other industry positions. After working as an associate, some again will leave for other opportunities, but most will stay, as it is typically a "tenure-track position."
Graves really emphasizes that her co-workers and the company she works for matter more than the position or pay. "I used to think that my first job out of college had to be prestigious, challenging, motivating and then I would be happy. Now that I'm here, I realize that what actually drives my day-to-day happiness more than anything is how much I get along with my coworkers."