Decision Point: MBA -> MBB -> F500 or Stay as a Back Office VP at a Bulge Bracket vs Other


Posting this in Consulting rather in B-School because I am more concerned about Consulting Exit ops rather than MBA process.

About Me:
2012 Kelley - Finance and Econ ( 3.25 GPA)
Recently promoted to Vice President of Data Science at a Buldge Bracket making similar to first year MBA pay.
Accepted to Cornell Johnson MBA , waitlisted at Ross (Dinged: Columbia, Wharton, Yale, Haas, Tuck, Booth, Northwestern, MIT)

The Options:
0. Stay in current role, reasonably hit SVP in 2 years
1. Senior Manager, Business Analyst Track F500 (on the table)
2. Manager, Accenture Tech (on the Table)
3. Consultant, Deloitte S&O (on the table)
4. Continue trying for a post MMB post MBA consultant role
5. pursue Cornell MBA, then MBB, then F500 exit
6. Defer Cornell, Try Columbia (was offered interview) and MIT again
7. Exec MBA later

The questions:
1. Does leaving VP at a BB make sense? Title wise and so forth?
2. Are exit ops for Consulting ops worth it? is the mbb "stamp" worth the time away/cost?
3. Where would I likely end up after consulting?
4. If exited to strategy at f500, don't most give shoved down to ops anyway?

What would you do or try?

Comments (9)

Apr 21, 2016 - 7:03pm

on your options:
0. I don't put much stock in non-IB banking titles. Generally, very inflated. One of my clients was a big bank.
1-2 seem to push you down a tech/IT path. doesn't sound like that's what you want
3. A good option, especially if you want to potentially improve your changes at the b-schools that dinged you.
4. not clear what that is
5. Also a good option. I don't know how many we (McK) took from Johnson though
6. Why didn't you go for Columbia?
7. NO

Also, if you get into Ross, I say you take that in a heartbeat. Great school.

Lastly, I do think the MBB experience is worth it. You have a higher and faster trajectory, both in pay as well as experience.

Apr 21, 2016 - 8:11pm

Deductive Reasoning:

  1. You don't seem to want to stay at your job - why would you stay longer and further pigeonhole yourself? money? Let's eliminate this one.

  2. I'd have to know more details about this, but this seems like a role you would want.

  3. See 0 (eliminate this one)

  4. This one is related to 5 and 6, Idk how the title progression is, but is a consultant a post MBA role or no? This affects my opinions on 5 and 6. Because if that is a post MBA role, you can probably spend a few years there and lateral to MBB later.

  5. Don't think this is happening without business school - we can probably eliminate this option as well.

  6. This is very plausible, although getting MBB is a big maybe even though Cornell is a top 15. Although if your current Deloitte offer is post-MBA then what's the point of getting an MBA besides a shot at MBB?

  7. What will really change from this year to next year? Some of the same reasoning as 5 - if you can walk into a post MBA role right now what's the MBA for?

  8. This isn't a good option if you want to career switch. Eliminated.

Further opinion is contingent on more info about the role at Deloitte.

To answer your questions:
1. WE matters going forward, not title. Although it is impressive that you got promoted, if it doesn't have a skillset you can leverage for a career you want whats the point?
2. Not sure what exit opps are for "consulting ops" I've never heard of that area. Only you can decide what you're willing to do to go MBB
3. So many paths, most depend on your network, level you leave, and your "area of expertise"
4. I would imagine if you exit to strategy in an F500, you'll get the experience it sounds like you want as long as your experience is important to the firms core business. i.e. if you specialize in Oil and Gas, you'll likely get a premier strategy role at ExxonMobil

Hope this helps

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there" - Will Rogers
Apr 22, 2016 - 9:29am

The exit ops from consulting will be very different than from your current role. You're going to make good money no matter which path you take. In my humble 2 cents, then, I think your decision should boil down to pointing yourself in a direction that will lead to you doing work that is satisfying, enjoyable, and meaningful to you.

I have a role that is not dissimilar to your current one, but I will be pursuing a full time MBA this fall as a career switcher because I am not passionate about the work that I am doing now, despite having a talent for it and the promise of pretty good remuneration in the long term if I decided to stick to my current path. But perhaps other things are more important to you, and if they are, then follow those things. Just make sure that you are working towards your own goals and your own interests.

Apr 22, 2016 - 11:09am

To give you some idea of the odds on MBB out of Johnson (I'm an alum): my year (2015) we had 8 to Bain, 4 to McK, 3 to BCG. 15 MBB from class of 275, ~5% of the class. This year (2016) it's 8 to BCG, 6 to McK, 4 to Bain. 18 out of class of 275, ~6% of the class.

Apr 23, 2016 - 5:34pm

You made VP in under 4 years, and can make SVP in 2 years? I'd just stay in your current role, you seem to be on MD track. Consultant is the pre-mba role at Deloitte (Senior consultant is post-MBA). MBB recruiting is REALLY hard out of Cornell, as others have mentioned it's only 5%...but its actually worse than that since it's mostly international offices which are easier.

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