I believe that Bain's involvement is truly redefining how corporations can be involved and lend expertise to non-profit institutions.
- PROJECT EXPERIENCE
- WEEK IN THE LIFE
- MY BLOG
In stereotypical consultant fashion, the top three reasons are: challenging and interesting work, variety of client experiences - Fortune 50, pro-bono, PE portfolio companies, and sustainable lifestyle - a travel model that works for me and people I truly enjoy working with day-in and day-out.
Before I started at Bain, I would have cited these exact same three reasons but now I have to say that they truly resonate with me and are big contributors of why I have been very happy with my experience at Bain so far. Bain is who they say the are.
Trying new things: physical challenges (half-marathon, triathlon, climbing Kilimanjaro, skydiving), eating (I've tried tripe but just don't get it), and reading (always looking for good recommendations - recent favorites have been anything by Jhumpha Lahiri and The Kitchen God's Wife by Amy Tan).
My favorite case
During my internship, I worked on a retail case doing competitor benchmarking. I cannot explain how much I enjoyed the experience. I became an 'expert' in the competitive landscape through both interviews with industry leaders as well as poring over 10-K filings. My research was key to our final deliverable. During my second year of business school, I continued to follow the retail industry due to the interest I developed over the summer and hope to be able to continue working in retail over the next couple of years.
My personal results story
My most recent case was working to open up a new charter school in the Chicago area. As a side note, the school is actually a partnership between Bain and a local community organization.
One of my many responsibilities was student recruiting - when we began, we had less than 40 registered students for over 150 spots. This was a critical issue as funding would be received on a per-student basis - every unfilled seat would have a significant impact on the school's bottom line.
I had to get creative to get families to register their child for a school that did not yet exist - advertising, word-of-mouth, community canvassing, etc. My favorite moment was when I was talking to a salesperson for a local newspaper to buy advertising space - and ended up registering her 5-year old son!
By the time I left the project, the school had 130 students registered and, more importantly, a tangible plan of how they were going to get the remaining 20.
A final thought
During the process, take time to really think about what you want out of your first post-MBA job. There are a lot of factors to take into account: teamwork vs independence, initiative vs directed, long hours vs free time, staff vs line vs consultant. The answers are different for everyone, so be sure that you have YOUR answers and not the answers of the crowd.