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Over 40 in Consulting

I’m 43 and joined consulting from industry 1-year ago as a director. I work in healthcare. I am really struggling with the endless EOD emails, taking direction from people I don’t respect, and not seeing the actual value we deliver to the client. I’m applying left and right to leave. Any suggestions on how to “learn to love my job” so it’s not so painful? I don’t want to spend every hour of my life filled with anxiety and dread until my next opportunity develops.

likehelpful
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I’m 42 and feel the same. Waiting for the right opportunity to GTFO. It’s going to be tough to change if you’ve already made up your mind based upon your post.

likesmart
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Consulting isn’t for everyone and it sounds like it’s definitely not for you. I can’t comment on the competency of your supervisors but if you aren’t seeing value delivered to your clients then that’s on you. You’re a director. If you want to be doing valuable and fulfilling work then go make it happen. Develop the proposition and sell the work. I’ve never met a client who didn’t want to hear about high value and high impact services. If you’re sat there taking direction from above and you can see a disconnect with what is truly impactful for your clients then stand up and improve the situation. I look for self starters in my teams and people willing to make things happen.

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I think it’s tempting to assume I’m broken in some way, but just because I’m unhappy doesn’t mean I’m not good at my job. It doesn’t mean I haven’t accomplished the list you consider a “self starter”. It doesn’t mean the client hasn’t “realized” millions in benefit (actual value requires a separate thread). What it does mean is that what I want to be doing that is “valuable and fulfilling” is not consulting. Not a character flaw. Just a life lesson.

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Develop your own method to cope with the pressures as every situation is different. Prioritize your email responses to now, later or never buckets and keep your responses short. Offer to setup a meeting if urgent. Outlook calendar is a powerful tool that makes your busy -ness transparent. Don’t quit sweetheart. It is the same no matter where you go. Coping with pressure is also a learning opportunity. If you can deal with it here, you can do it anywhere.

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I do the same but I’ve been in consulting for 9 years. Just focus on finding a few aspects of the job you like and refusing to do most other things you don’t. I’m trying to find a way back to industry but it’s tough given my comp and that I’m pretty much locked in for another 2 years with claw backs. I’m kind of hoping to get laid off at this point.

likesmart
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Same. I was opposite, wanting out of industry and into consulting. now there is no travel/lack of interesting projects, consulting has lost its appeal. That’s on top of the things you mentioned.

likehelpful
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🤞

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The only thing I can think of off hand is that “love”/“like” is an action, so actively look for things you love about your job. “I love that this job is more flexible than an industry job,” etc etc

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Same story. Looking forward to being laid off and eventually transitioning into a low-key industry job.

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None of that is ever likely to change. Make peace or look for a firm with a different culture.

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Side hustle to give back, do something you do value, and/or just something you love and keep applying. Good luck!

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OP—do you mean you don’t respect your clients?

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I understand now, OP. I have definitely had the maddening experience of having to work for clients that wouldn’t make it past a Turing test, so that is why I asked. And yes—very lucky!!

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Is there any aspect of consulting that you do enjoy? Focus on those. Also, learn to manage up. Dealing with difficult situations and people is a skill.

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