Why Strategy Consulting?
I was particularly attracted to the variety of interesting projects that strategy consultants tackle. I tend to get bored quite quickly and so doing a job that would provide variety was very important to me. In strategy consulting the projects are typically quite short (4-6 weeks) and so there is very little opportunity to get bored.
I met some OC&C employees at a recruitment fair. They seemed very friendly and the work sounded interesting so I decided to investigate. Throughout the recruitment process I met a number of other employees who were also extremely friendly. Noticeably they all got on very well with each other which told me a lot about the company culture. Indeed, they often referred to the social side of OC&C when I asked what life was like at the company. It was important for me to join a company where the staff didn’t take themselves too seriously and knew how to enjoy themselves as well as work hard. OC&C seemed to fit this bill.
What do you do on a day-to-day basis?
There is no ‘typical’ day in our job. I know that is not particularly helpful but it is true – it entirely depends on the project you are on. At a broad level my job usually involves researching a particular company and its industry, performing analyses to answer key questions, structuring logical answers to these questions and building decks or presentations that translate these answers to our clients. However, each project brings with it a new client and a new set of key questions that need answering and so the way we tackle them varies from week to week and project to project.
What sort of training have you received?
Since joining OC&C I have received lots of training. Our first two weeks was dedicated to new joiner training which covered a variety of basic consulting skills. Since then we have had training on everything from advanced analytics to soft skills. We also have a week long training course in the summer called International Training Week where all of our offices get together in one location and complete training courses together. It is a great opportunity to meet and network with our international colleagues.
What do you enjoy about your job?
The variety. In my short time with the company I have worked on projects for a software company, a cinema chain, an insurance company, a classic car retailer, a professional body and a media group. This sort of variety means that my job is always interesting. I am always learning something new and face new challenges every day.
How do you achieve work life balance?
I don’t think it’s a secret that consulting is tough. We often work long hours. However, OC&C do what they can to make sure this is manageable. We have a ‘traffic light’ system whereby your manager will predict the nights of the week that will be late and those that will be early. This allows us to plan our week accordingly. Managers are usually pretty good at adapting the week to fit your schedule if you already had plans (unless there is a big deadline!).
What has been you highlight of the job so far?
On one of my first projects at the company we developed a full corporate strategy for a listed company. We suggested which business units they should focus on going forward and which they should divest. We also suggested strategies for each of the focus business units. On the day the strategy was announced to the City the company’s share price jumped up by 20%.
Why do you like working for OC&C?
OC&C is a pure strategy house. That means, we only work on strategy projects for corporate clients or private equity deals and answer the most important questions for the CEO and their executive team. Questions like “How do we enter a particular country?” or “How can we defend market share against new entrants?” As we focus solely on strategy work, we answer questions like these all the time. This means that we always work on interesting projects and deliver our solutions directly to the CEO and the executive team.