F500 Analyst => Top Tier MBA => MBB => F500 Exec?

I was wondering, if I don't get into a good consulting firm early on, how realistic is it to go from being a financial analyst at a F500 company => top tier MBA => McKinsey/Bain/BCG => exit back to a F500 company at a higher position? I believe that doing consulting (or even banking) is valuable and that it can accelerate one's career, but I know my heart is in corporate finance at a firm. Thus, I'm wondering how plausible this is and how industry is viewed by consulting firms so that I can maybe pursue this track one day. Otherwise, would even FA at F500 => Top MBA => MBB => MBB partner also be possible, or does McKinsey only tend to hire bankers/consultants from undergrad as opposed to F500 people?

Thanks

Comments (21)

Oct 12, 2010

Honestly man, if you are an outstanding worker wherever you land, if you are good at controlling your destiny within your company... you will be noticed and you will have the opportunity to transition to an MBB when they see your legit accomplishments on your resume. People act like a certain career path is the kiss of death. If you think you are hot shit and you can make your F500 boss see it, you will have a lot more opportunities within the company to get some experience and additional responsibility which will translate to an unusually good resume blurb and or cover letter story.

If you are an average employee, it won't matter where you work.

Still not sure if I want to spend the next 30+ years grinding away in corporate finance and the WSO dream chase or look to have enough passive income to live simply and work minimally.

    • 1
Oct 12, 2010

You seem to have a lot of what if 25 years down the road type post. I'd concentrate on next 2 years first instead and focus the effort there. e.g. If your heart is set on Corp Fin (and if you don't get IB/Cons job), whatever you think through for next 25 years or we tell you won't make you decline your Corp Fin option and take an IB/Cons job (cause you won't have one).

Oct 12, 2010

Yeah you're right, I do have a lot of what if questions, but its because I'm just so damn stressed out all the time and trying to come up with plans A,B,C,D,E,F because I keep fucking failing at life. Seriously, I spend so much god damn time worrying about the future, trying to get the best grades, the best test scores, etc. so that I can be successful that its amazing. Actually, what's really amazing is how unsuccessful I've been despite trying so hard and wanting it so badly. Although my GPA is decent, its not as amazing as kids who are in harder and more classes at harder schools who also manage to have an awesome social life and will get jobs to top companies. Then, when I come on this forum for advice, I keep reading about how I have to do A-Y and if I'm not absolutely perfect at all of those, then I won't get Z (a good job). But the real kicker is that my parents expect me to be some crazy wealthy businessman and just can't see by now that maybe I'm just not cut out for it/don't have the ability to do it. I do believe that I will be moderately successful (think upper middle class, and honestly, if I can earn an upper middle class income, do something worthwhile in my spare time or be doing work that's meaningful/will allow me to grow a company, I'd be damn happy with my life), but I won't be anywhere near as crazy rich as some of my Wharton/Ivy league friends will and I feel like no one can respect me unless I do. I don't even need that much money to be happy and I care more about doing a job I love that will allow me to spend time with my extended family (hence why I want to go back to Asia where most of my relatives are despite taking a HUGE drop in terms of QOL and salary), but everyone expects me to be something I just can't become and it seriously drives me fucking insane. I just don't know what to do. Sorry for the rant, but I seriously hate how EVERYBODY in life judges me more by my future salary and not as much by what kind of person I am. I'm not a dumb fuck and I know that I will be successful one day by my terms because I fucking love business and work my ass off, but I seriously feel like one because everyone else judges me by the size of my house instead of how much I developed as a person.

So if you're wondering why I have so many posts, this is the main reason (and I know I digressed): its because I need to somehow measure up to what everyone else wants me to be and I have to formulate an infinite number of backup plans all while making myself miserable in hopes of one day trying to meet them.

Pretty women make us BUY beer. Ugly women make us DRINK beer.

    • 1
Oct 12, 2010

Not to come out as very blunt ... but first, you just need to accept that may be you are just not good enough and be open with it about your parents. To give you an example, think of it his way:
1. Number of kids start off in elementary school
2. Number of group 1 who goes to Gift or IB program in middle/high school
3. Number of group 2 who actually survive the program
4. Number of group 3 get into good colleges
5. Number of group 4 who survive the college and keep a 3.8
6. Number of group 5 who actually get a IB/Cons job
7. Number of group 6 who actually get rated in top 25% bucket in those firms year after year
8. Number of group 7 who after many years of hard work actually become Blankenfein or something

Bottom line: Being able to be the guy who is in Page 1 of WSJ pulling $10M+ is near impossible statistically. If you are already at a disadvantage pure genius wise (which is perfectly ok to admit), wasting time creating 1000 different scenarios will get you nowhere. Time better spent making sure you get an A instead of B in your classes so you can at least get your upper middle class goal. Don't want to be the guy who planned big, but ended up with a 3.0 and nowhere to go.

Same applies for top athletes, artists, etc. Pure natural talent, perfect timing, perfect coaching, lots of things have to happen in the same time.

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May 2, 2011
abacab:

Not to come out as very blunt ... but first, you just need to accept that may be you are just not good enough and be open with it about your parents. To give you an example, think of it his way:
1. Number of kids start off in elementary school
2. Number of group 1 who goes to Gift or IB program in middle/high school
3. Number of group 2 who actually survive the program
4. Number of group 3 get into good colleges
5. Number of group 4 who survive the college and keep a 3.8
6. Number of group 5 who actually get a IB/Cons job
7. Number of group 6 who actually get rated in top 25% bucket in those firms year after year
8. Number of group 7 who after many years of hard work actually become Blankenfein or something

Bottom line: Being able to be the guy who is in Page 1 of WSJ pulling $10M+ is near impossible statistically. If you are already at a disadvantage pure genius wise (which is perfectly ok to admit), wasting time creating 1000 different scenarios will get you nowhere. Time better spent making sure you get an A instead of B in your classes so you can at least get your upper middle class goal. Don't want to be the guy who planned big, but ended up with a 3.0 and nowhere to go.

Same applies for top athletes, artists, etc. Pure natural talent, perfect timing, perfect coaching, lots of things have to happen in the same time.

Sorry, but this is a crock of shit.

You can't narrow down careers to sheer intelligence. If you didn't know, there are many in the ruling class who make ridiculous amounts of money who are not necessarily the smartest individuals.

Yes, you must be smart, it's not like there is a 1% chance of YOU getting there. If you want to have power and really move up in the ranks, you can. The myth is that if you didn't make great grades early in life or were considered 'smartest' of the bunch, then you can't do it. And that is a pure crock of shit.

Watch 'The Ruling Class'. It's a great documentary on how getting to the top is really not a statistical game, but a game of how much you want it. It's not a game of how smart you were in college, but what you desired to do thereafter.

Don't go into the world thinking that you are at a disadvantage because that is a CROCK OF SHIT! Honestly if you have any ounce of intelligence you can move up very high in companies with great amounts of work.

May 3, 2011

Not being good enough doesn't only mean lacking brains, but also work ethic and just pure intangibles. Very few lazy people will make a 180 when they are 30 and change the world.

May 3, 2011

Wow, who bumped this thread? And man, I can't believe what a depressing fuck I was just a few months ago lol. Hopefully my efforts to consciously change my attitude will eventually pay off, because looking back, some of the shit I've posted is just pathetic.

Pretty women make us BUY beer. Ugly women make us DRINK beer.

May 3, 2011

Half cost in the thinking that I'm not out of the workforce so no lost salary while getting degree.

May 3, 2011

If you're a divisional director, you're probably in your 30's (mid to late, I'm assuming), correct?
Why did you not choose to go to MBA earlier?

May 3, 2011

You won't get MBB from part-time, how old are you? Why wouldn't you try lateral recruitment for MBB or other top tier consulting firms?

May 3, 2011

I'm only 31, hence the steep trajectory to this point. Did not get MBA earlier because I was focused on climbing within the ranks. Secondly, got married and had kids early (25). Still married, done having kids, now can focus on MBA. I just feel that the thing held against me in regards to keep climbing is my age. Pay your dues mentality is very prevalent in CPG. My counterparts are normally 10 years senior in age. I get the wait your turn patronizing. Never overt but I feel it. Usually don't like to tell my age, slips in pop culture references sometimes.

May 3, 2011

@futurectdoc, I know a couple colleagues that have done it. My short and long list of schools is only one, Booth if that helps. They have a very developed pipeline from part time to MBB, I know this for a fact. Also hoping my resume speaks volumes in addition to the MBA.

May 3, 2011

Why wouldn't you simply try and go as a lateral hire?

May 3, 2011

I don't know what exactly your job entails, but if you made director at 31, I don't think your experience will bar you from getting in Booth.
Good luck man, keep up the ladder-climbing.

May 3, 2011

You seem like the ideal candidate for an EMBA. The program was created for candidates in your situation, senior to mid career executives looking to take the next step in their career path. The program is designed so you still work while you study. This might be a better alternative to a traditional MBA.

May 3, 2011

bearing hit the nail on the head - i'd gun for EMBA.

May 3, 2011

@futurectdoc
My major concern about going as a lateral hire is that I would come in more junior than if I got the MBA first, plus to reenter the F500 will feel I'm in a better position having gotten the MBA anyway, so why not do it now, when I'm somewhat on cruise control and know what I'm doing in my current Director role. More credentialing and pedigree, but also more of a story of going from a functional expert to a general business leader.

May 3, 2011
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May 3, 2011