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What do you find to be the hardest thing about consulting?

likeuplifting
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1. WLB. Like so many others said, everything being urgent. Having heard from a partner “what do you mean we have to prioritize? When I was your tenure, I worked at least until 2am and would get it done. Haha, I kid...”
2. The need to network to find projects. It’s the most imperfect market system and generates so much stress.
3. Related to 2, having to fake interest in work so that partners that do that work will staff me
4. The amount of extra work that is required to be seen as an active member of the office, on top of the crazy study hours

like

I actually think 2 is good. You need to learn how to build a brand and relationships. Even outside of consulting these are great skills.

like

The passive aggressiveness way to communicate. You can't talk down to clients and manager as a subordinate and employee so that's the only way to communicate sometimes, which I get. Otherwise their title and ego is triggered and you will have shitstorm for calling out their bs. Likewise, your teammates never say what they want to say and instead just make suggestions... Anybody who says consulting is flat needs to have a good look in the mirror, this industry is so hierarchical and ego driven.

like

Agreed. Land mines everywhere because of people’s egos.

like
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Abrasive type A personalities

likefunnyhelpfulupliftingsmart

PWC8 - I agree. The sociopaths are the worse. They are insidious in their ways - master manipulators. Let you to believe they are on your side until you feel a dagger on your side.

However, I've met highly confident egotistical type A people who still maintain their integrity and values although they give initial bad impressions.

It's hard to tease out the sociopaths from the overly confident/egomaniacs. They are not one in the same.

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Everything is urgent, and staying up until 2am to finish it is expected. But also may be OBE by morning.

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OBE is a DoD term I picked up...think it’s handy! I even say it to my spouse now sometimes.

funnylike

Listening to all the entitled millenials complain

likefunnyhelpful

Those darn... Adults... And their entitled whining for.. *checks notes*... A reasonable chance to succeed at life.

like

The over inflated egos of very average people would be a good place to start.

likefunnyhelpful

This.

Fake it till you make it mentality

likesmart

I think most of our value comes from the ability to do exactly what was described above. Honestly, it was a huge challenge to learn how to deal with it, so my first few engagements I focused on learning how to get up to speed on these things quickly, and the other aspect is learning to deal with the anxiety that goes along with it.

I put in a lot of extra hours at the start to get up to speed. And if your managers are dinging you for that kind of stuff you should work with the other seniors instead (also, that manager sucks). You should also find a mentor that will help you learn (mentors are extremely important, I can’t emphasize this enough).

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Involuntarily normalizing putting work before yourself

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I so agree with this! Recently I had to go to the hospital and when I had spent a few hours there, I kept thinking about how I had to get some work done. 🤦🏻‍♀️

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Constantly having to worry about YE even if you’re 90% utilized because nothing is ever enough

likehelpful

This is just so true

The hours period. Everything else I can deal with. Even feeling dumb most of the time.

like

WLB and brownosers

like

Difference between an ass kisser and brownnoser? Depth perception

likefunny

The anxiety that accompanies it. The pace of work and amount of things to be accountable for gives me a feeling of some impending crisis coming down the road. It’s tiring fighting that feeling.

like

Knowing that I could make twice as much as a SWE in tech is painful

likefunny

Although SWE generally pays more, if your in tech consulting around cloud, the boutique cloud firms pay similar to SWE. I'm joining a smaller firm, better WLB, and i start at 150k with 3yoe.

I'd highly suggest to pivot into a smaller firm if your looking for high comp.

like

Some days i feel like I crushed it, other days I’m sure I’m going to get fired. It’s a rollercoaster of crippling self doubt

likeupliftingfunny

I think consulting is a quick shot way to finding out who you REALLY are, and that can be brutal for most people.

For example, I found out that I’m a type A perfectionist and I probably should be in law rather than consulting. I scare people but I want to be liked...but I’d rather be hammering a gavel and yelling from a bench. It’s brutal. 😂🥴🥴🥴

likefunny

Went from IP law to consulting and this makes me chuckle. Just because you’re Type A and you want to work in an environment dominated by Type A personalities doesn’t mean that you’ll enjoy working with other Type A people. Law is notorious for having some of the least job satisfaction of the professions.

likehelpful

Working with ppl who have no clue what theyre doing OR shady ppl who just lie to the client

likefunnyhelpful

Theyve made it tho lol theyre directors and up out here winging it at myself and my team’s expense .. im mf tired lol

I spent 21 years in the military before coming to consulting. Most of my peers and managers are younger than me. I know I am a bit abrasive at times (I’m always going to be) but I don’t like that my peers and managers are afraid to confront me and correct me. I expect to be treated with dignity and respect (and I will treat everybody else like that as well). I need my peers and managers to respect me enough to not be afraid to be direct with me and tell me when and where I need to improve.

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Yes!! I love this comment. So true. I can never get direct answers from my consulting managers and partners. I always get positive feedback until time comes for year end and bonuses. Everyone is always super nice and polite but fake. I wish people were direct and if they saw something wrong just said it. I alway do but them labeled as “not nice” or “to demanding”.

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Partners alternating between wanting a “high level summary in size 24 font” to “at least 2 additional layers of detail” on the same slide.

likefunny

You can only see so much of certain behaviors from certain roles before the patterns become impossible to ignore.

like

Business Requirements clearly out of scope but Partner gives in and client requires to be completed in an unreasonable timeframe

like

And expect to pay much less than the budget they agreed to.

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Clients who used to be in consulting and make insane requests for your team Bc they’re still spiteful from their consulting days. Like what is this? Hazing?

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This is a good one!

like

I'd agree. Probably the fact that you're expected to do the work and jobs of 3 people. And mentally juggling multiple clients/projects/initiatives

likefunny

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I recently got laid off and my previous firm just reached out to me to inform me about a client whose rate was too late on a commercial level but they might be interested in me to work as a contractor

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Has anyone used a classroom economy in their resource room? In the past we’ve just done jobs as they are needed, but this year my kids really want specific jobs and I like the idea of an economy.

I recently got laid off and my previous firm just reached out to me to inform me about a client whose rate was too late on a commercial level but they might be interested in me to work as a contractor

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Really feel like I’m getting aged out (and as we know HR is not helpful). I don’t feel great about starting somewhere new. Is there a career for after 40? I mean are we all just f*d now? Life is over?

like

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