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I'm slower than average at ramping up on client content. Once I get it however, I'm good to go and perform well. In my experience, the first impression seems to last even though I perform well

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I was (and am) the same. As are many, many others. Don’t worry, it’s completely manageable. Just buy time at the beginning. Be pleasant/enthusiastic, say a few smart things, etc. to maintain that first impression. Fake it until you make it basically. Most of those people who seem “up to speed” quickly are doing the exact same thing. Then knock it out of the park once you’re ramped up.

likehelpful

Excellent advice, thanks!

Fake it until you make it is key. Remember we are rock star consultants and have “seen it all”. A few analogies from previous clients/cases always keep clients happy until you have time to work their specific problem. Sadly people rarely question confidence....

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Yup, even just some friendly small talk will keep a lot of clients happy while things get going. As for internal appearances, just show that you’re enthusiastic. That’s what I relied on when I was an associate/consultant, and that’s all that I really care about from my teams in week 1/2.

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Know the SOW in and out.

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Study hard in the beginning, hopefully you'll be able to ask better questions

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Excellent advice ^. When I first started, I always used to wonder how everyone else got it so quickly - then I realized it’s exactly how P1 described and now it’s like second nature

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What's the solution? How do I circumvent this?

Yep - also, as you get more senior / involved with the sales process, you won’t have to go in cold Day 1

Yeah this was a huge problem of mine and it was explained to me that I should be able to ramp up quickly and jump into a case. Aside from faking it which doesn’t always work and can backfire aggressively, ive found picking cases that are starting up as opposed to in progress works best. You should also burn a weekend or two to ramp up before a case if you’re really struggling

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