Fit a job (career) to my description?

Rollo's picture
Rank: Chimp | 10

Hi there, fellow monkeys!

A bit about my background: double majored in econ and engineering at a non-target, currently an A/C at an MBB firm, will be applying to business schools in 2015. Contemplating doing corporate finance post-MBA.

So, right to the point - it might be a bit unusual, but I really do find corporate finance interesting. So much that I regularly read articles on it in my spare time. However, I'm not talking about being an accountant and doing all sorts of boring number-crunching. More like strategic/transformational stuff, which can be pretty diverse.

To give an example, I've really enjoyed a project where we designed and implemented (yes, MBB does partial implementations too now, in this market you pretty much have to provide the full package to compete) a best-practice financial management system at an F500 company, completely overhauling areas such as working capital management, costing, forecasting et cetera. Making sure line management understands the value and insights that can be derived from high-quality analytics, creating interactive feedback loops between finance and operations (i.e. which how business decisions affect financial ratios and what should be done about it). I also really like financial modelling, really detailed operational models, valuation, capital investment analysis (optimizing projects' NPVs, capital budgeting and the like). You get the idea, hopefully. I believe that there's a lot of value to be created via these instruments for our clients and their shareholders, arguably unlike some of the more "fluffy" classical strategy engagements.

So what I was wondering is if there's a career path post-MBA that allows one to do all these things (sort of a hybrid financial project management / strategic finance I guess?). I'd think this is a great skill set to have for the higher-up finance execs, but whether there's a way to get there without going through all the boring shit like financial reporting or being some other numbers/execution monkey, I've no idea.


Comments (6)

Jun 9, 2014

Your best bet is going to be a corp strat group, most likely. But you aren't going to get everything you want in any one position.

Jun 10, 2014

@"AllDay_028", I do realize that these are relatively diverse interests not likely to be fulfilled by any single lower-level position, but what I thought was that maybe there's some sort of an umbrella org under which they are grouped (which sounds reasonable), so one can get to manage different kinds of projects as you move up the ranks?

Corp Strat sounds intriguing, but I thought they're more like an inhouse strat consulting group? I.e. doing things more like market studies/modelling, competitive analysis, strategic planing etc. And not to so much financial/operational projects. I might be completely wrong though, I've no real factual knowledge.

What is the typical career path in corp strat - do you enter right after b-school or would I be staying in consulting for a couple years post-MBA to lateral later on? Where do people generally go afterwards - not financial execs / gunning for CFO in the future (if lucky), I'd guess?

@"GothamAndMeta", I'm very interested in learning more - but apparently I'm too junior of a monkey to send PMs, could you please PM me? Tech sounds great, esp. with my engineering background (I can code, pretty good with SQL et cetera).

Jun 10, 2014

You could try a post-MBA finance development program. It'll give you the opportunity to try a few different groups

Jun 10, 2014

@"D M", that's interesting, I thought rotational development programs only recruit out of undergrad? How do these post-MBA programs generally operate - i.e. do they require pre-MBA corporate finance experience (I do have financial skills and experience from my consulting projects, but it's probably different from what people do at corp fin pre-MBA)? Are the rotations more or less the same as the undergrad ones, or do you get to do something more advanced? What level do people generally place at after the program?

Jun 10, 2014

It all varies by company, some require pre-MBA exp some don't. Most have roughly the same rotation options because there really aren't that many options to start with. Starting level is usually Manager from hiring point, maybe senior FA. You may get promoted, not sure.

sry cant type more, working w/one arm atm heh

Jun 9, 2014