BRAINFOOD: How to get ahead in...

Management consultancy. Consultancies are either generalist or niche, and will cover different areas

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

1: Consultancies are either generalist or niche, and will cover different areas (eg, strategy, outsourcing). Choose your target firm carefully.

2: Top recruiters include Accenture, Bain & Co and McKinsey. Apply for summer internships and steel yourself for a tough recruitment process.

3: This is not a nine-to-five job. You'll be expected to work late, spend time at the client's site and travel at short notice.

4: Expect a steep learning curve. Training is on the job and you will need to deal with unknown client situations in a professional way.

5: This is a service industry - always put clients' needs first. Meet every deadline, anticipate new work and cultivate long-term relationships.

6: Expect continual evaluation. Identify your firm's performance measurements and business needs, and match them. Prove your value by spotting new business opportunities and following them up.

7: It's either up or out. Top consultants progress to partner level (earning well over £100k), set up their own business or switch to industry.

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