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What do you think?

#1 What do you think?
19/11/2010 18:03


I was recently offered a place at one of the big 4 and one of the MBB.

Ive got Bsc in Economics from top school in Europe and MA from Oxbridge. By the way, one of the MBB isn't McKinsey which, together, with OW refused to even interview me. I guess all this talk about Oxbridge being an entry ticket is really just a myth.

Anyhow, I am more inclined to accept offer from big4 then one of the other two of MBB. The more they both interviewed me, the more I got to know them and their consultants, the more I was falling in love with big 4 and couldn't really figure out the MBB one. There was a time few years ago when I was hung up on the elitism and wouldn't give it a second thought. But that was when I was younger and immature and less confident.

Oh, the pay is relatively the same. Decision time...


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#2 RE: What do you think?
19/11/2010 19:00

anon to Adrian (#1)

I think you've made your decision and justified it within the same post. It shouldn't matter what anonymous commenters on this forum think. Best of luck to you.

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#3 RE: What do you think?
19/11/2010 19:39

Big Consultant to Adrian (#1)


I guess you should go for where you are happiest with a consideration for as well for your long-term plans. Where do you want to see yourself in another 5, 10 and 20 years? And would your choice get you there? Even if not as easily, is it realistic?

Furthermore, can you help demystify the salary structure a bit? A lot of people would be interested in knowing from reliable sources the premium one gets apart from brand from the MBBBs. What grade are you going for in both firms and what is the offer for each?

Feel free to give a +/- up to 1K variance if you wish.

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#4 RE: What do you think?
19/11/2010 22:13

anon to Big Consultant (#3)

Be aware that the Big4 will probably be giving you a big sell, presuming that they're aware of your other offer. i.e., what you're seeing now may not be as close to everday reality as you think.

Take the MBB offer. You can always downshift to a Big4, but won't necessarily be able to do the reverse if you wanted to at a later date. MBB is MBB after all. Think about your CV.

Just an alternative point of view...

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#5 RE: What do you think?
19/11/2010 23:03

Patricia to anon (#4)

You sound like you already made your decision so take the big 4 offer.

I don't agree with the above poster who said "think about your CV". We all spend so much time thinking about our CVs that we stop thinking about ourselves. Stop thinking about your CV and think about yourself and what your instincts are telling you. Is it really worth having MBB on your CV if you are going to spend your time there being miserable? I'd rather go where I think I will enjoy myself more then go somewhere for the sake of the CV.

If your heart is set on your big 4 company, just go for it.

Good luck.

Oh, by the way, how old are you? :)

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#6 RE: What do you think?
20/11/2010 11:16

anon to Patricia (#5)

I agree with Patricia. I know people who have made decisions based on what looks good on their CVs, and to a (wo)man they have been miserable and regretted that portion of their lives. Remember that to a large extent happiness and success are self-enforcing.

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#7 RE: What do you think?
22/11/2010 14:57

Mars A Day to Adrian (#1)

Adrian I recommend the Big 4 offer, and here's a controversial view - you will have more, and better, exit options. MBB are pushing down (primarily into operational consulting but some other stuff too) in Europe where 'pure strat' is being dislodged as a consultancy offering by the prevalence of clients with their own MBAs, and out - into developing markets in the Middle East, Africa, LatAm etc, where what they are peddalling is still relatively new and strategy as a product makes sense. The post recessionary Europe will be more pragmatic - there are no new ships floating on rising tides now,nor will there be for many years to come. Growth will be inorganic as companies reduce expansionary risk through acquisition rather than market entry. Big 4 will remain just as they are - but probably facing getting broken up, as the regulators see too much monopolisation in them especially in audit but also now in consulting. This will create a lot of movement in Big 4 and real opportunities for the bright and the focused to break through into senior roles, but the watchword will be pragmatism - something Big 4 do well, and MBB cannot even spell. Well they can, they just dont like the word.

The point being that Big 4 experience is increasingly taking precedence - it is seen as directly applicable and 'real world' - whereas the MBB route shapes you into a 'strategist' which the European market may not be interested in for the next 5 years at least. Unless of course you leave MBB too soon and spend the next 5 years explaining to people that you chose to leave (and if you last less than 3 years we will all be thinking you were culled on performance even if you werent).

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