Well, I haven’t updated this blog in a long long time. I sort of forgot about it. I just got caught up in everything going on in life and never got around to updating it. My goal is to update it weekly-ish from here on out.
Anyway, life is good. I ended up never getting a job with a consulting firm. Things just didn’t work out the way I had anticipated. I can’t complain though. I ended up getting involved in real estate through a family friend. Things are going well and I’m excited to go to work every morning. At the end of the day that’s what is most important to me.
I’ve always been one of those guys that tries to see everything through until the end. I never wanted to give up on something until I got what I wanted. I still think this is a great attitude to have. However, I know believe that it’s just as important to take what comes your way. I’m not implying that anyone settles for something because it’s easy to obtain. I’m simply saying that an open mind will take you to places you haven’t dreamt of.
I never thought I would wind up doing real estate for a career. But here I am. I’m a long ways from making the living I want. Yet, I know I’ll get their eventually. Buying houses, financing, rehabbing, selling the house or adding it to my investment real estate portfolio all excite me and I think they will for many years to come.
Hopefully my continued updates will inspire some others out there. Best of luck to everyone!
It has been a week now and I still haven’t received a call from human resources. So, it looks like I won’t be getting a job offer at this consulting firm either. There will be more opportunities though, that I am sure about. I’ve decided I am going to focus my efforts a little bit more on boutique consulting firms. I think I will have a better shot at landing a job there. They are usually less corporate and more lenient on their job qualifications. A small firm will be more willing to look past a non ivy league degree. I am certain I can be a valuable asset, I just need a chance.
I’m going to spend tonight and tomorrow searching for boutique consulting firms to apply for. I have done some preemptive research and was presently surprised. There are more smaller firms than I imagined. The market for smaller, specialized firms is quite large. The industry should continue moving towards more and more specialized firms. After all, consultants are paid for their expertise on a subject, and it’s difficult to be an expert on many subjects. Maybe it will be a good thing that landing a job with a large consulting firm didn’t quite work out.
For the initial round of applications I am going to focus primarily on business consulting firms and the related branches of the field. I think small business consulting would be a really good fit for me. I would love to help smaller businesses with their finances and company structure. Another area that interests me is strategy consulting. It is a fascinating field. The attention to detail is what really intrigues me. Every little thing has to be scrutinized to develop an optimal strategy. I think I would be a great candidate for strategy consulting jobs.
I meant to update the blog on Thursday after to interview, but didn’t get around to it. The interview went pretty well. Now I just have to wait to hear back from human resources. Practicing the interview questions I mentioned in my other post definitely paid off. Thanks to the review questions, I had two situations come up during the interview that I was extremely prepared for. I’m confident that I would not have been able to respond to the questions as effectively if it wasn’t for all of the preparation I did. That being said, the interview still wasn’t perfect.
I’m going to briefly go over a few of the things I struggles with:
Clearly Conveying Myself
I’m not sure what it is about interviews, but they bring out the worst in me. I usually have a coherent thought process and can clearly explain myself. In interviews, I find myself struggling. When I think back on my response to several questions, I know I could have done a much better job of expressing myself.
Being More Assertive
This is something that I still need to work on. Obviously, you don’t want to overdo the assertiveness, but I feel like I’m being too passive. A consulting firm is looking for someone who is capable of making decisive decisions. I need to portray myself as being someone who is capable of being a leader.
Ask Good Questions
I do my best to prepare for all aspects of the interview. For some reason though, asking thoughtful questions has always been a weak point. During preparation I always jot down several good questions. When it’s actually time for me to ask questions I always come up short. Don’t get me wrong, I always ask decent questions, but overall, I can definitely improve.
That’s all for today. I will update later this week when I hear back from the firm’s human resource department. Hopefully it’s good news and I can finally get my consulting career started.
The time spent applying for jobs seems to have paid off. I received a call earlier this week from one of the firms I applied for. I’m going to be interviewing next Thursday. I’m pretty excited for the interview but I know I have a lot of work to do between now and then. I’ve been doing some of the exercises on consultingcase101.com to prepare for interview questions. The math related questions have been really eye opening. I consider myself to be pretty solid in math, but some of the questions took a little while longer than they should have. The time limit on the questions made me want to rush through it. I caught myself almost making a few silly mistakes.
Besides going over the review questions I’ve also been doing some mock interviews with another aspiring consultant. It’s nice to be able to bounce questions off someone else who is knowledgeable about the industry. They’ve been on several interviews themselves so they are aware of what types of questions commonly come up. The whole experience has been very helpful and it should help me make a good first impression.
How to make a really good first impression is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. A good first impression is critical to an interview, without one, your not likely to get a call back. In past interviews, I think I’ve been too conservative with the impression I give off. My goal in the past was to fit the cookie cutter mold of every other recent college graduate. This would ensure that I didn’t leave a bad first impression, but it also likely prohibited me from making a good one.
For this interview I am going to just be myself. I’m now convinced that in order to land a job you need to be natural and personable. Sure, this is going to lead to some consulting firms rejecting you. However, the firms that do like you are far more likely to hire you. You’ll stand out to them when they review all of the applicants. Basically, you better off having only 5% of firms really like you than having 95% of firms not dislike you.
That’s all for today. I’m going to get back to work on preparing for the interview. I’ll be sure to give an update next week after the interview. Hopefully by this time next week I will be preparing for round two!
I spend the weekend submitting my resume to various firms. It was really time consuming but hopefully it pays off in the end. Submitting as many resumes as possible is the only hope that I have to interest from a firm. Initially I was set on getting a job at a top firm, at this point I’m willing to take whatever comes my way.
Reality is setting in, I may have to spend a few years at the bottom working my way up. The economy is finally rebounding a little bit but the job market is lagging behind. The job market for recent college graduates is even worse. Almost every posting I see for a half way decent job wants at least two years experience. Well, it’s pretty difficult to get experience when you can’t get a job to get the experience.
The process is extremely frustrating but I know the only way it will get better is to keep at it. Nobody is going to hand me anything. It’s funny though, when going through college, you think that everything will work out; once you graduate there’s no way someone won’t hire you. In reality though, my situation is similar to so many other people. We spent a lot of money and time getting a degree that isn’t helping us land a job.
Well that’s all for today. I’m going to continue submitting resumes this week and see what happens. I guess the one good thing about having to submit a ton of resumes is that it keeps me busy. It’s a full time job by itself, unfortunately, it’s not going to make me any money.
Thanks for visiting the raineyblog. This blog is going to cover my journey on my career path. I am a recent graduate who is pursuing a job in consulting. The job market is currently very competitive and I haven’t had much luck getting a job. I plan on making regular updates with my progress on finding a job. I will be sure to include everything I am doing on my path to becoming a consultant.
Currently I am having my resume reviewed by an expert in the field. I was recommended to use him through a friend. I’m optimistic that a well structured resume will help me get my foot in the door somewhere. I know if I keep working at it that eventually I will get the job I want.
My goal for this blog is to keep track of my progress. I think writing everything down will also help me from getting discouraged. This way I will be accountable for my actions and can’t make excuses. I’m also hoping that someone with experience in the industry will be able to give me some constructive criticism.
Hopefully I can learn some tips a long the way and share it with anyone who happens to be reading this blog. Getting hired by a consulting firm is not easy. I know first hand. If I can share some of the knowledge I gain through this experience then hopefully I can make the process easier for someone else.
Well I think that’s all I have for today. I’m off to spend a few hours applying for some consulting jobs that I recently got alerted about. If you have any advice feel free to contact me or leave a comment. Also, if anyone else out there is in the same position as me and you want to practice some interview questions, please let me know.
photo credit: Arya Ziai