Working for McKinsey & Company is not for the faint of heart. The Firm assigns a great deal of responsibility to each consultant, regardless of their level. You must be ready to be pushed to the limit and be prepared to perform. Every new commitment provides an opportunity to take a step forward in new ways, and you'll always be challenged to grow and develop your skills.
You must focus on your work and commit to it consistently; otherwise, you will be dismissed. That said, the intensity of the job depends on the project, the customer, and the deadlines. If you're a management consultant, your hours can be much more relaxed, going from 9 to 5 for the program director, and if you work at Google Strategy, much more stressful. The skills and relationships developed at McKinsey are invaluable and are highly sought after by many companies. But why does everyone want to work at McKinsey? Why is it the gold standard for consulting firms? McKinsey consultants follow a particular way of thinking and communication style, and you are expected to assimilate to that culture.
If you don't like networking and internal politics, McKinsey and consulting in general may not be for you. If you choose McKinsey, make sure your resume is designed to stand out from a firm that only accepts a fraction of applicants each year. For independent thinkers, McKinsey may still be a good place to develop your suite of consulting tools for a few years, although you may not want to be “for life”. Working at McKinsey can offer you the opportunity to explore diverse sectors, functional areas, and types of problems in a way that few companies can. McKinsey & Company is one of the most sought after management consulting firms, although it also has its drawbacks. McKinsey consultants are known to be among the hardest working in the consulting industry, which already says a lot.
McKinsey does an excellent job of maintaining strong relationships with these former students, providing a permanent network of outstanding people united by the shared experience of working for the Firm. A former McKinsey employee who created a startup company said he had to stop learning consulting to succeed in his new position. McKinsey recognizes that it is a great benefit for the Firm to have alumni in leadership positions, and they help create the space (and provide job search resources) to help you succeed in your job search. A career in management consulting at a company like McKinsey & Company can be incredibly rewarding in several ways. Along with Bain and Co and Boston Consulting Group, McKinsey is one of the three most prestigious consulting firms in the world, generally considered the most prestigious. So if you're considering working at McKinsey & Company, it's important to understand what you're getting into.
It's an intense job that requires hard work and dedication. You'll need to be prepared for long hours and high expectations from yourself and your colleagues. But if you're up for the challenge, it can be an incredibly rewarding experience.