Chicago Booth | Ms. Start-Up Entrepreneur
GRE 318 current; 324 intended, GPA 3.4
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Wake Up & Grind
GMAT 700, GPA 3.5
Harvard | Mr. Nonprofit Social Entrepreneur
GMAT 740, GPA 3.7
Stanford GSB | Ms. East Africa Specialist
GMAT 690, GPA 3.34
Darden | Mr. Fintech Nerd
GMAT 740, GPA 7.7/10
Harvard | Mr. Improve Healthcare
GMAT 730, GPA 2.8
MIT Sloan | Mr. Low GPA Over Achiever
GMAT 700, GPA 2.5
Stanford GSB | Mr. Minority Champ
GMAT 740, GPA 3.7
Duke Fuqua | Ms. Health Care Executive
GMAT 690, GPA 3.3
NYU Stern | Mr. Low Gmat
GMAT 690, GPA 73.45 % (No GPA in undergrad)
N U Singapore | Ms. Biomanager
GMAT 520, GPA 2.8
Stanford GSB | Mr. Indian Telecom ENG
GRE 340, GPA 3.56
Harvard | Mr. 1st Gen Brazilian LGBT
GMAT 720, GPA 3.2
USC Marshall | Mr. Ambitious
GRE 323, GPA 3.01
Harvard | Mr. Merchant Of Debt
GMAT 760, GPA 3.5 / 4.0 in Master 1 / 4.0 in Master 2
Tuck | Ms. Nigerian Footwear
GRE None, GPA 4.5
Stanford GSB | Mr. Low GPA To Stanford
GMAT 770, GPA 2.7
Berkeley Haas | Mr. 360 Consultant
GMAT 720, GPA 3.4
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Low GPA High GRE
GRE 325, GPA 3.2
Darden | Mr. Senior Energy Engineer
GMAT 710, GPA 2.5
Chicago Booth | Mr. Finance Musician
GRE 330, GPA 3.6
NYU Stern | Mr. Hail Mary 740
GMAT 740, GPA 2.94
Harvard | Mr. London Artist
GMAT 730, GPA First Class Honours (4.0 equivalent)
Harvard | Mr. Professional Boy Scout
GMAT 660, GPA 3.83
SDA Bocconi | Mr. Pharma Manager
GMAT 650, GPA 3,2
Kellogg | Mr. Young PM
GMAT 710, GPA 9.64/10
Wharton | Mr. Indian VC
GRE 333, GPA 3.61

Consulting: Why So Many MBAs Do It

CONSULTING ATTRACTS LARGE NUMBERS OF MBAS FROM TOP SCHOOLS EVERY YEAR

Source: MBA Career Coaches Consulting Career Primer

Source: MBA Career Coaches Consulting Career Primer

Angela Guido 3“Never mind the advantage the firm’s network will later confer,” says Guido. “Many of the most sought after jobs in industry state a preference for a background in management consulting. The one thing people consistently underestimate about this job is the network component of it. All firms have staffing coordinators and assigned mentors that support you in getting the developmental opportunities you want, but they only have so much authority. In the end, the project options you will have depend on who wants to work with you.”

What’s more, consulting offers a well-defined career path that eliminates much of the ambiguity in many professions (see below). You start as a business analyst, move up to a consultant, then a job as a $250,000-a-year manager, a $350,000-to $500,000 principal, and ultimately a partner, where the annual compensation is between $500,000 and $1 million or more. So it’s little wonder that consulting firms routinely take the largest single chunk of MBA grads from the highly selective schools year after year.

THE DOWNSIDES: HEAVY TRAVEL, LONG HOURS, UNPREDICTABLE & EXHAUSTING WORK SCHEDULES

The negatives are obvious, too. The travel can be relentless and exhausting. The hours are long, and the typical work schedule unpredictable. There’s a steep learning curve at the top firms where there is an “up or out” culture. Translation: You either advance in the firm or are “invited” to leave it. You also have the distinct possibility of having a new boss on every project.

As Guido’s primer points out, “The downside is that you you almost never have a chance to sit still. As soon as you have established yourself as an Excel whiz, for example, you will then be encouraged to tackle client relationships and human dynamics on your next project. Relying on the same skills that make you a great entry-level consultant will make you a poor project manager; at each level, new skills are required.

“The job constantly challenges and stretches you, and some consultants complain that the unceasing focus on weaknesses can get tiring after a while. Add to that the necessity to impress each new ‘boss’ or project manager you encounter, and a consulting job could definitely take a few years off your life, especially if you do not approach it with the right mind-set and maintain a sense of humility and humor.”

ONE BIG ADVANTAGE TO MBA RECRUITS: A WELL-DEFINED CAREER PATH

Source: MBA Career Coaches Consulting Career Primer

Source: MBA Career Coaches Consulting Career Primer

About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.