Monday, October 19, 2009

Consulting Academy Week Experiences

As my profile indicates, I am a part of the consulting academy at Kelley. Academies are one of the crown jewels of the Kelley MBA experience and are a blessing to those of us who are career switchers (in my case from information technology to management consulting). They are also what make Kelley, in my opinion, one of the best business grad schools in the country.

The academies are an integral part of the MBA course curriculum and fit seamlessly into the whole academic framework over two years. Typically consisting of 20-30 students, academies require us to go through three rigorous weeks of training. In this post, I wanted to share my Academy week 3 experiences which was with Deloitte BTM in Chicago.

We worked as a team of four and were at Deloitte's Chicago office for the whole week. Our project concerned recommending a new organizational structure necessitated as a result of internal restructuring within Deloitte. Not only was it exciting to be working onsite but also a great education with regards to how we should conduct ourselves and communicate with the client - key tenets of any consulting engagement. It was hard work and we were working more than 18 hours a day but as business school MBA students at a top business grad school shirking from hard work is not in our ethos.

Our final presentation (pulled off solely due to the rejuvenating powers of large amounts of coffee) was hugely appreciated by the client. Doing good work helps you put down a marker and makes the companies you work at sit up and take notice of you. That is precisely the reason why I think of academy weeks as not academic exercises but as mini-internships. Kelley ensures that we get this unique opportunity to interface with the industry and it is incumbent on us as top MBA students to fully grasp that opportunity and make use of it!

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