Finished FLDP, now what?

I finished a 2 year FLDP with one of the largest in Big Pharma that you've all heard of. I'm about 6 months in to my roll-off position and looking to jump ship Q1 2018.

I'm eyeing top of Tier 2 consulting and have started case prep. However, I wanted to take a step back for a moment to consider other opportunities before going all in on prep for this route.

I honestly am at a loss as to what a next step for me would be. What is typical for someone looking to take a next step after FLDP? I do not want to continue in FP&A which is where I'm at now. Honestly, nothing is very lucrative to me at my company (or in corporate fin at the analyst/ senior analyst level) unless I get some kind of consulting experience, an MBA, and then re-enter in an actual strategy-focused role...

I'd like to steer my career in a way that would allow me to get into more entrepreneurial territories where I'd have more of an impact day-to-day. I'm thinking of going to consulting so I have more exposure to business cases across many different industries to build out my toolkit.

Are investment-oriented roles out of the question or extremely difficult to land pre-MBA at this point for me? I do have a few connections in my network to a PE fund here in the city (I'm in NYC) but fear I'm just not in that "world" enough to be competitive.

Anyone have any thoughts or have been in my shoes in the past?

Financial Modeling Course

  • Get An Edge For Your Interviews & Finance Career
  • The Best (and Most Affordable) Financial Modeling Self-study Courses.
  • WSO Members receive a 15% discount

Comments (21)

Dec 1, 2017

Hi beginswithavowel, just trying to help:

  • 1st year FLDP- thinking about quitting the program. Help please. finish my work, but will never go over and beyond. And right now, i don't really know what I can do ... a friend of mine had told me about the FLDP. He mentioned all the great perks about the program like ... couple of corporate experiences, and i missed out on IB, so the next best thing is FLDP... why ...
  • Is a Career in Professional Gaming now Worth It? provide health insurance and retirement plans if they plan on participating in the league; players are ...
  • Career shot to hell before i even finish highschool? bad, I got 3 b's this year so I wont be getting into an ivy... If i make all A's from now on ... a top 10 you had no shot at a career on wallstreet... Did I ruin everything? UGHHHH IVE RUINED MY ... LIFE!!!!!!!!!! I feel like slapping myself! Now I have to live with this stupid screw up for the rest of my life! ...
  • Finished 1st Year at HBS- Ask Me Anything (AMA) I finished my last final exam of my RC year (1st year) at Harvard Business School. I have had some time to ... (e.g. academics, career resources, social scene, etc.) No question (within reason...) is off-limits. ...
  • Career Advice: F100 FLDP vs Senior Financial Analyst First post! Need the advice of my ambitious and anonymous peers. I am currently in an FLDP program ... years of experience (I have half a year right now). The location would be better and my salary would ... build would probably be cut. FLDP. The other cost also be losing out on easy networking opportunities ...
  • Critique my Career Plan ER? Hedge fund or IB Equity research career plan ... but never knew what I wanted to do while I was in school. I did a FLDP internship for a Fortune 500 ... Knowing my background isn't the most relevant I've come up with a plan to get myself where ...
  • Ask Natalie from Accepted about Business School Admissions a former Assistant Director of Admissions at Cornell who also worked in career services at Duke Fuqua. For ...
  • More suggestions...

If we're lucky, the following pros may have something to say: @MarcusLotzman" @Rispolit @jr9427

Hope that helps.

Dec 3, 2017

Thanks WSO Monkey Bot!

Dec 3, 2017

I "graduated" from a Pharma FLDP based in NJ and applied to various Corporate Strategy jobs and landed a CS gig with large company in the ~same location/different industry and now I'm looking to go to B School to switch over to MBB consulting. Honestly, I hated the FLDP experience - it was mind numbingly boring and there wasn't a lot of talent there/insanely difficult to move up/absurd levels of politics. We might have even worked for the same company.

I guess you could try to switch over to a Tier 2 consulting firm - MBB would be very difficult.

Anyways, my advice to you is to do something "new" for the next 2 years and get into a M7 MBA program.

Dec 3, 2017

Maybe we've walked the same halls! Low probability though as the program I was in was fairly new to the company as a result of an acquisition that ignited it, but the depiction of your FLDP experience is very similar to mine.

Yeah, no desire to kill myself to get into MBB pre-MBA. I am planning to try for M7 but that's going to be 2-4 years down the road. Like you've said, I'm trying to find that "something new" to bridge the gap. Thought T2 consulting would be a logical choice for me as some graduates of my program have moved over to that.

Do you enjoy the CS gig? Did you feel that your FLDP experience prepared you well for the interview process for CS? Did you look for opportunities mainly in NJ or did you include NYC in your search as well?


Dec 4, 2017

Interested in your path. PMed.

Learn More

Side-by-side comparison of top modeling training courses + exclusive discount through WSO here.

Learn More

Side-by-side comparison of top modeling training courses + exclusive discount through WSO here.

Dec 3, 2017

CS is much better than FLDP, the work is much more interesting, and I get to work on projects with MBB consultants. My FLDP experience certainly did not prepare me for this job - I "self prepared." Spent countless hours reading forums, practising case interviews, reading 10Ks (Being prepared!) and applied to a LOT of jobs (in NJ/NYC/Philly) until I got lucky and got an interview. I killed the interview - was very well prepared for cases, and read up extensively about the industry.

The "Big Pharma" brand definitely helped though. I guess you know which company I worked in, but their products are very well known by patients and consumers alike.

Jan 25, 2018


Dec 3, 2017

I can neither confirm or deny that. Lol.

@CFLateral What has your Corp Fin career path been like?

Jan 25, 2018


    • 1
Dec 3, 2017

Can you confirm whether or not Gena Pemberton or Suzanne Viele are names you recognize? Haha

I did 2.5 years at my Big Pharm FLDP ;), I started early so my first rotation was extended and then I left a month before graduation to take a job with FB/G. It's not focused on their advertising business and a lot of it has to do with modeling out R&D efforts (cost, NPV, IRR) and doing due diligence on potential acquisition or JV partners. My rotations absolutely DID NOT prepare me for the role.

I feel the same way. I would almost call it a waste of 2 years. Did you move out west or stay in the east?

Jan 25, 2018

I'm on the West coast now.

Dec 3, 2017

I can argue that for me it was great as I got to work outside of the county for a rotation and also assisted move to NYC from the Midwest so definitely a better experience vs some other fldps that my friends back in the Midwest had. But yeah, rotations were pretty dumb and accounting heavy which I absolutely despise.

I was thinking about a move over to the Goog here in the city but only saw availability for FP&A which I don't want to get stuck in. Are there good opportunities outside of this function for a business undergrad pre-MBA. I'm thinking not.

Best Response
Dec 6, 2017

When you say function, are you referring to corporate finance or just FP&A?

Coming out of FLDP, I've normally seens pre-MBA moves to other parts of a finance department or a department that looks, smells, and feels like finance (analytics, forecasting, etc.).

FP&A is not the only finance function you can be in pre-MBA, but it is the most common. I'd encourage you to keep looking. A lot of roles where you are close to product lines and product managers will give you good exposure to strategy and decision making that can be spoken to well in applications. Even in FP&A, there are schools that really respect time taken in that function to know how the financial sausage is made...can always be spun as "FP&A was where I chose to work because it gave me foundational knowledge of how XYZ company and XYZ industry funds itself and makes money....and with an MBA from your M7 school, I will combine both into being an entrepreneurial pro that will close my funding rounds before they even open!"

Remember, it's a marathon, not a sprint.

p.s. - we send a LOT of FP&A folks to Fuqua / Keenan-Flagler / Stern / Darden.

Dec 5, 2017

I would suggest first speaking with connections in both what you consider your "world" and outside of your world. This might help you get a feel for how your experiences stack up with others your age and help you identify particular projects to focus on in your CV and interviews. I am currently on the back end of an FLDP and know examples of work I will never share with anyone and work I am willing to brag a little about. These roles are incredibly varied so you'll have some leeway in selling yourself and selling particular aspects of your experience!

Dec 3, 2017

That's good advice and I will start doing this in other industries. But I just don't think I have the pedigree for this connection I have to PE or they would expect me to come in with working knowledge on things I never deal with day to day. You know?

Dec 1, 2017

Hi supamoney, just because I'm a bot doesn't mean I don't have feelings...I'm hoping these links are helpful. If not, feel free to throw monkey shit at me...

  • 1st year FLDP- thinking about quitting the program. Help please. other industries. FLDP? This is not a Finance leadership Development Program, in fact it should be ... re-named to a controller or accounting leadership development program. There is zero Finance here. Treasury ... couple of corporate experiences, and i missed out on IB, so the next best thing is FLDP
  • Best Financial Leadership Development Programs Out There? The world of corporate finance certainly has its appeal. What do you guys think are the best fldps ... out there for undergrads? How are exit opps for the best and/or pay? We all know about GE FMP. Any ...
  • Too old for Finance Leadership Development Program? Long story short, I spent 6 years in the Navy and now am finishing up my undergrad in finance at ... a development program? I am networking my butt off looking primarily for investment banking but corporate ... finance is also very attractive to me. ...
  • List of FT Financial Leadership Development Programs, and other such things FLDP-type programs that I applied to (or seriously thought about applying to) during my senior year. I know ... several people in the past, myself included, have wanted to know about programs other than the usual GE, ... these programs was by going to the careers site of every company in the Fortune 300 and looking for ...
  • Starting at FLDP of a non-finance related industry. Chances to enter IB? interviews for those "financial leadership program" that goes for 2 or 3 years. The companies are ... as soon as the program ends? 3) If not, will I HAVE to get the MBA degree? 4) Any other general ... not necessarily in the financial/investment industry. But if this program would eventually build ...
  • Finished FLDP, now what? I finished a 2 year FLDP with one of the largest in Big Pharma that you've all heard of. ... a next step for me would be. What is typical for someone looking to take a next step after FLDP? I do not ... planning <p class="h4 m-t-none">Corporate Finance, Development and Strategy Forum ...
  • F500 General Management Leadership Development Programs?, namely rotational / leadership development programs for General Management? If so, what are the most ... Hi guys, fldps have been discussed extensively here, which is hardly surprising given finance ... focus of this forum. I am curious though, do many F500 have similar programs to nurture and groom future ...
  • More suggestions...

Maybe one of our professional members will share their wisdom: @andyhkt @liewwanpang @formerproptrader

I hope those threads give you a bit more insight.

Dec 6, 2017


Dec 3, 2017

Bumping for some more input.