How to excel in a role you absolutely hate?

Being a consultant means that sometimes we get staffed in a role which we absolutely dread. It could be a role with boring work, uninterested project or at some location which you hate going. It makes getting up everyday and going to work

How do you overcome these mental obstacles and succeed in what you are doing?

Comments (6)

Sep 3, 2013

Out of curiosity, which consulting firm are you in?

Sep 3, 2013

Focus on the fact that the project will end at some point. That got me through rough projects all the time when I was a consultant. Including all nighters, etc. Think of each project like a semester at school and find the one thing you want to learn on that project that adds to your career or interests. Also use the boring project to showcase your skills to a partner or MD that does interesting stuff and use it to build rapport and a brand.

I'm in a role now that I do not enjoy and is not a consulting role which means no end unless I change it myself. I'm stuck doing the same stuff until my next job.

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Sep 3, 2013

Remind yourself why you chose to make a decision that ultimately led to you being there. The rest follows naturally.

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Sep 4, 2013

And you got into consulting because ... ?

Sep 7, 2013

I hate to say it, but this question is pretty hard to answer if you can't find the solution yourself. Here's some ideas to get you thinking though:

1. What does the firm YOU are working for do best? What does it do worst? focus on the worst-- bring up the average.

2. Are there any processes that you can add value to? Can you reduce the amount of time required to do a task via automation? Do you have the skills necessary or can you learn them? If not, will the cost of paying for someone to automate the task save more money than it costs? That analysis is valuable.

3. Are the the processes you're working on subjective? Is there a way to reduce/remove subjectivity? If so, how-- this can help management give a more predictable results, making planning more predictable. Ultimately, predictability in conjunction with proper decision-making leads to greater profits (all other things equal; the idea is: don't be the weak link).

4. If the processes are subjective, are there any tools you can use to improve your accuracy or efficiency? If yes, bring it to the attention of managers, if no then maybe it's something you could build

5. At the end of the day we get paid based on one metric: how much value do we add? If we add enough value that another firm will try to poach us then we will be paid more to keep us where we are. If we add enough value that we are worth keeping but not enough that we are sought after then we will receive pay commensurate with our performance (ie mediocre).

In the end you have to realize: there are some parts of every job that people don't like. That's called "life". If, as a whole, you can't stand your job, then you may be better suited for another area of finance. If it's something tolerable and there are simply some parts that bother you then just realize than in 3-4 years some analyst will get dumped with those crappy parts of the job. That's what us analysts are here for: to do the crap that no one wants to do in hopes that one day we won't have to do the crap. There's a dude on this site whose sig is from layer cake and it says it best-- look for it.

--Patrick

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Sep 8, 2013
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