Anyone and everyone who left consulting before they made partner, how do you cope up with the feeling that “only if” or at times “you failed”

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Considering it’s the Partner One bowl, not sure you have the right audience for this question.


Thanks smart ass

I came to slalom not so long ago, and I was quite close to managing director at my old firm - not a partnership so it was the “top” role. I probably had another two years but honestly I was very much at the top of my peer group every year and was being clearly groomed. I don’t have doubts I could have made it.

I’m not sure if I will do well at slalom, and for me it is sort of a stepping stone to industry. I’ve certainly taken a step back in my span of control, network, near term trajectory.

But for me being a rockstar had completely ruined my mental health and personal life. I had been at my firm since college and ultimately felt 1) I realized I didn’t really like the work we did and didn’t believe in it, and I had been so focused on just doing a great job I hadn’t stopped to think about what I wanted out of work and my life 2) I hadn’t set the right boundaries and I was too known and relied upon to shed the baggage of all the things I had done in the past. I know I COULD have figured that out but I just didn’t have it in me to push back on so many different people to chart a new course

So, I left. I miss being important and the security of my reputation, but I am so much happier. I’m trying to get in touch with what I want from my career and letting this slow down be ok. I do not regret not staying. But also, I know the door is open if I want to go back.


The free time suddenly provides a lot of time for introspection and shaping a balanced life. Unfortunately it’s easy to throw yourself into another addiction (food, exercise, competitive hobby, etc.) and miss the opportunity unless you’re very intentional about building better habits.


I left because I didn’t want to make partner, so that helps.

I think it’s okay to both think you wanted something and you failed, and to realize the effort/sacrifices you’d have had to make to get there weren’t worth trying as hard as you could have.
I’m sure there’s people out there who made it ‘easy’, but for everyone else it’s a tradeoff and it’s okay realizing it’s not worth it midway through.


Where did you exit to instead / are you happy / satisfied with your exit?

I actually recently left for industry. Was up for partner next year but just didn’t feel happy about it. It was a tough decision because of all the feelings you mentioned and all the work you put in to get so close. I think you have to really like the work you do and the people you work with (I did not), otherwise it’s just not something you can do day in and day out. Too soon to know if I regret it yet but compensation wise you can make just as much in industry so not worried about that.


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