After spending 5 years working at Deloitte, Al Dea made the move from management consulting to become a Product Marketer at a tech company. In addition to working as a Product Marketing Manager, Al also is a career coach, he runs CareerSchooled, a career advice blog, and advises professionals including many consultants on career changes of their own.
This article is based on the main changes that he found when moving from consulting to an industry role.
In consulting, the work I had to do was dictated by the client, the project scope and more specifically the deliverables that were signed in the Statement of Work. There were clear deadlines and while there was some leeway in the team.
As a Product Marketing Manager in industry while I still have deadlines (ex: a product launch, customer presentation, training for salespeople) there’s also a lot of time when I have some flexibility and autonomy over the work I do. For instance, right now I have a few things that I have to do, but I also have some flexibility to pick certainly projects that I want to do, and I didn’t really have that choice when I worked in consulting.
When you work in client service, if the client says jump, you say “how high?” This often meant racing to finish deliverables to hit deadlines, or working over the weekend to finish off a proposal/pitch to help a partner win new business.
The shift to industry has taken some of the daily pressure of this client service demands – and while I still do have some customer-facing responsibilities, there are fewer pressures to bend over backwards on a daily basis. Sure, there are still fire drills and things that unexpectedly come up, but it’s not necessarily baked into every single day of work.
DIVERSITY IN BACKGROUNDS
When you work at a consulting firm, you work with pretty much everyone who is a consultant. Sure there is difference and diversity but to a great extent, you are all cut from the same cloth. Working in industry I’ve found there to be a lot more diversity in terms of not only the roles but the mindset and skills of the people who have those roles or functions.
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