Since my last update, I have been involved in two very different missions: a Sourcing benchmark for one of the largest European bank and two portfolio strategy cases for a FMCG Company.
With the sourcing benchmark, I’ve strongly developed my interviewing skills and learn how to extract, in a very limited time, all the important piece of information.
I have just been promoted SAC (Senior Associate Consultant). My role/job will not fundamentally change, but I will be fully in charge with the most complex pieces of analysis and will have to start proving that, on top of my data cracking skills, I can also start giving advices/suggestions and generate valuable insights. I have to proof that I master all the pre-requisites to be a consultant, ideally in a one year time. Short and challenging time frame!
November marks the official end of my fifth case at Bain. So far, I have travelled to seven countries, worked with four very different companies and been exposed to several capabilities (growth strategy, supply optimization, due diligence). I cannot believe how much I've learned!
On my last case, I was involved in a six-week project for a dog food company in the United Kingdom. My job was to analyze a consumer database in order to extract and define relevant consumer patterns. Once identified, the "typical consumers" helped redefine the rules of the game for our client's positioning.
Now I'm in charge of larger pieces of analysis and their presentation, and only need help from consultants on a few little modifications/suggestions. I have the opportunity to introduce my own approach and work to my team, which is challenging, but also very motivating.
During this case, I also worked with a young ACI (Associate Consultant Intern) from Solvay Business School. She did excellent work and greatly contributed to the understanding of the current state of the dog food industry. As a result, she will be joining our team in January 2012 as a new AC.
I cannot tell you exactly what my next case will be, as I don't even know yet, but it will be a project in FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods - my favorite industry) and should start next week! Unpredictability is inherent to consulting life, but I've grown to love it.
It may appear paradoxical, but as my consulting role evolves and I get the opportunity to work with other talented people, I not only realize how much I've learned, but how much I still have to learn. I'm probably on the right track, but it's taking longer than expected!
September was also full of fun office events and new faces. First, we had our Summer Event in Chimay. It was a two day trip to a beautifully renovated castle, exclusively booked for our office. It was a great occasion to get to know each other better, hear about the office's plans for the rest of the year, and to have fun in a very original place.
Second, was our traditional Bain World Cup weekend, when all of the Bain offices around the world take part in a friendly soccer tournament. This year the competition took place in Munich, during the famous Oktoberfest. I was very proud of our Brussels team, which went to the knock-out stage before losing (very honorably) to Spain.
Third, we welcomed a couple of new AC's who, after two weeks of pre-training in Brussels, have left for Cape Cod (Boston, USA), where they partake in an extended training session with ACs from all around the world.
Check out my official blog on the Brussels' Stop Wondering website for up to date blog entries highlighting what it's like to work as an AC in the Brussels office! Hope you enjoy!