{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Serious question: what do you think is the biggest thing stopping any of the big 4 from being on the same level as mbb? I just had a realization that it might actually be better for them to be below mbb so they don’t have to shell out for employees.", "post_id": "605c85b1f57f83002aa75119", "reply_count": 13, "vote_count": 1, "bowl_id": "552d1d24dc1c586b09d2d051", "bowl_name": "Consulting" }

Serious question: what do you think is the biggest thing stopping any of the big 4 from being on the same level as mbb? I just had a realization that it might actually be better for them to be below mbb so they don’t have to shell out for employees.

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They're known for different types of work, that's the main difference.

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On the same level in what? B4 run higher volume, lower price point business models compared to mbb. There's room in the market for both ends of the spectrum and most everything in between, and it would be silly for all competitors to try and do the same thing. Both models have their pros and cons for management and owners. If you think one is clearly superior, you may be thinking about it from an employee or consumers point of view

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Being an employee at MBB is better by a lot. But being a partner at MBB isn’t that much better than being a B4 partner though. Only the partners can reap the rewards of implementation work.

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Well also the same thing: employees. Consultancies are all about the human capital and if you believe pay drives results, then the average at MBB will always be higher than big 4. Not to say at the distribution of talent doesn't overlap, but that the mean is higher at mbb

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We would go bankrupt first cause our margins aren’t as high.

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The biggest thing is brand name. MBB uses their brand to charge a premium. They can therefore afford to pay more and attract top talent. Top talent brings better results and more prestige, which enhances brand name. Cycle repeats. The only way to disrupt it is to pay more and take losses until your brand name gets better (takes a really long time and is too costly) or to get better results with worse talent (not possible because most consulting firms just do the same thing). So B4 has given up on that and just decides to go the implementation route because they can compete more effectively there.

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I think it’s complicated (have worked at both and currently work at the former ^duh) human capital and capability awareness/“brand” certainly both matter but I think it breaks into the same kind of nature v. nurture argument, part of it is their human cap market share (where they hunt for talent) which is decided by pay and by relationships with schools and part of it is the kind of work they naturally do (strat v. Whatever else) It is definitely up to b4 to make their strategy arms more robust and that takes time, just trial and error and going up to bat against mbb and learning from mistakes, but from the HC side, merits increased relationship building with better schools which will require a “put your money where your mouth is” investment by increasing salary...so if this is a direction they want to go they’d have to do a cost benefit analysis of the above.

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Wasn’t a consulting role at mbb but close enough where I could see the big picture, maybe will boomerang back at some point in a consulting role 🤷

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