Private Equity to Consulting??

td2013's picture
Rank: Monkey | 39

Same post from the Private Equity section but hoping to get more advice. Does it make sense for me to go from PE to Consulting now?

A bit of background on myself: I got a computer science degree in Canada, did a few years of M&A and have been in PE for almost two years now. My PE exposure is very limited on the portfolio management side, but heavily focused on transactions (entry/exit). I'm burnt out with deals and don't see myself having a very focused career in finance, would like to explore operations, strategy, and more leadership roles. What complicates this matter is I'm also planning a move to the U.S., (west cost) at the end of the year, while my bonus cycle is June of this year.

I've spoken with a ton of people in the industry and I think my most optimal move right now is to go to MBB after bonus? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think it'll allow me to relocate easier and take a step closer to operations and more broad exit ops outside of finance.

Has anyone seen a precedent from IB to PE to MBB, then ideally to an industry role? Does it make sense? What other options do I have?

Comments (36)

Mar 6, 2018

Hey td2013, I'm here because nobody responded to this thread after a few days...maybe one of these resources will help you:

No promises, but thought I'd mention a few relevant users that work in the industry: @qwertyz @dmm001 @Rheinl

I hope those threads give you a bit more insight.

Mar 15, 2018

bump

Mar 15, 2018

Most people typically go the other way around tbh, but since your aim is to broaden what you can do in terms of exit ops (what exactly is your end goal?) I think MBB is a good way to start that, since you're right it will allow you to do the things you listed. Just my 2 cents!

Mar 16, 2018

Did not like programming @td2013 ?

Interesting background with the CS. Why leave PE? Usually that is an end goal.

No pain no game.

Apr 2, 2018

I did a dual-degree in computer science & finance. Did a few internships in software development and didn't like it as much as finance. I'm leaving PE because I realized I don't want to be a great investor, I'd rather be a great leader.

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Apr 4, 2018

Yeah, I will agree with you that SD is a little dry and boring, no question about that. What you do mean you don't see yourself as a great investor? I thought you needed some attribute to that for work in finance...forgive my ignorance on that end.

No pain no game.

Best Response
Mar 27, 2018

A top b-school direct to a corporate leadership position would give you similar resume cachet with the same result - potentially getting you into an ops management role even sooner than MBB, which would probably better set you up for corp strategy or corp dev roles. Plus it sounds like you need a break. But either option would work.

If you're feeling burnt out though, bear in mind that MBB isn't going to help much on that front.

    • 20
Apr 2, 2018

Thanks for pointing that out. I had considered that before but I can't justify the money, opportunity cost, and the amount of time put into applying and going to b-school. And totally understand that MBB isn't a walk in the park, but at least I'll get weekends free and it's most likely not a long-term decision when I decide to move south by the end of the year.

Apr 17, 2018

I don't recall seeing anyone at McK in that type of situation. The only way you could be a senior associate and potentially go to b-school is if you were a BA who went straight to associate after 2-3 years in that role.

Apr 17, 2018

Don't think you'd get hired in at a post-MBA level position without an MBA. If you came in as an industry hire, you'd have to come in at the BA/AC level and do that for 2 years before getting sponsorship. At that point, you'd be taking such a paycut for the first two years that there's no way you're not better off just going straight to B-school.

Might seem a bit unfair given your experience, but the MBB stance, fair or not, is that the skills you've developed in banking/PE aren't so transferable to consulting that they should be willing to pay a premium to hire you instead of the next whipsmart guy out of undergrad with no experience.

If you're deadset on getting your MBA paid for, I believe Deloitte will reimburse you for your tuition if you go work for them.

Apr 17, 2018

Hmm, thanks for the thoughts guys!

Do any of MBB reimburse tuition if you work for them post-MBA?

Apr 17, 2018

No. Not unless you were sponsored to begin with.

Apr 17, 2018

I don't think that you need to start from scratch. Depending on your years of experience you could get varying levels of initial tenure within MBB. Best thing is to talk to someone you know in the Firm(s) and region(s) you are interested in.

Apr 17, 2018

You would almost certainly need to start as a 1st year BA/AC/A, and stay for the full pre-MBA stint to get sponsorship. I think it would be better for you to go pay for your MBA and try to get to MBB out of B school.

Apr 17, 2018

Hi td2013, any of these topics helpful:

Who will rescue this thread? @Darren-Miao @Carzo @theateam

I hope those threads give you a bit more insight.

Apr 17, 2018

bump

Apr 17, 2018

I'm in the exact same boat as you in terms of wanting to leave finance for more of an ops role but haven't seen very many people go PE to consulting (have seen quite a few do IB to consulting). I'm thinking of going straight to industry post b-school, or failing to get into school, do an industry role. Why are you thinking of doing consulting? Just broad exposure before you select what you want to focus in? Figure you can move directly into an industry role with your background

Also you might have more luck posting in the consulting section of the site? Figure most of the people in this forum are PE hardos who don't want to leave

    • 1
Apr 17, 2018

I think if you went MBB before doing some strategy or ops role at a corporate that would definitely increase your chances. For some strange reason corporates in Silicon Valley and other hot markets don't really understand private equity and gravitate towards consultants. The other route is trying to work for a PE portfolio company where the PE firms know the quality of PE professionals and won't undervalue them

    • 2
Apr 17, 2018

Thanks for your responses. I'll also post this in the management consulting section.

I'm considering consulting first rather than straight into an industry role due to a few reasons. Lateral at MBB have more frequent openings, I'm at least one step closer than staying at my PE firm. It's more global so it'll allow me to travel and get exposure to the industry before I make a bigger leap into it. Also, if I realize it's not what I want to do I think still have an angle for MBA. Finally, it'll help me bridge the gap between when I get my PE bonus (May) until when I want to relocate (December).

Apr 17, 2018

Have you considered lateraling to a MM PE that places heavy emphasis on operations of their portfolio companies?

Apr 17, 2018

I have and also considered PE-owned portfolio companies. The problem is that those openings are very limited in Canada and mostly in less-ideal industries.

Apr 17, 2018

have you worked in an ops role before? as in - have you had the chance to step in as interm CFO or something of that nature for a portco?

i may have been spoiled in PE - ops is tough man, its another kind of day in and day out grind... i can't ever go back to client facing role either and live my life by their terms. lol i adore private equity and i love the view from 35k ft high.

but then again, i would definitely be open to the ops grind if it was my business i'm working on

edit: should have read more closely, sorry. what about directly asking your fund for a portfolio co position to see if you really like ops or not? or is this entirely not possible? if not, MBB probably best bet

    • 1
Apr 17, 2018

I have not worked in ops. As for my fund, ops and strategy related work for portfolio companies are mostly outsourced, so we can focus on capital deployment and realizations.

Apr 17, 2018

I work at as a consultant in Calgary (think Big4/Accenture/IBM), pm me if interested

    • 3
Apr 17, 2018
  1. MBB is extremely difficult to break into from industry. If one is in industry it is generally much easier to apply to grad school and apply from a target masters program. Based on your profile it sounds like you would be a competitive applicant to top MBA programs.
  2. Having a CFA will not be a deciding factor in whether you are hired/chosen to be interviewed by MBB
    • 2
Apr 17, 2018
Matthias:

1. MBB is extremely difficult to break into from industry. If one is in industry it is generally much easier to apply to grad school and apply from a target masters program. Based on your profile it sounds like you would be a competitive applicant to top MBA programs.

  1. Having a CFA will not be a deciding factor in whether you are hired/chosen to be interviewed by MBB

I've heard that it's very common for MBB to hire manager/director level and above from corporations in order to have industry expertise. Then on the flip side, it's very common for MBB managers and above to jump into their given industry of practice. I somewhat doubt that MBB would scoff at a person with 5-10 years of solid industry experience, especially if they have a solid MBA under their belt.

Same thing with I-Bankers, I work in high-level FP&A and I've met multiple former I-Bankers working in FP&A, Corp Dev, and strat.

Apr 17, 2018

Curious as to why you want to go for consulting over corp. dev... I mean, it's probably very common, I feel like corp. dev. would be pretty badass overall compared to consulting though, except for maybe the $$$ part

If your dreams don't scare you, then they are not big enough.

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Apr 17, 2018

I just like how strategy consulting exposes you to many different industries and areas and is so broad in nature.

Apr 17, 2018

My two cents is that you should really try to make friends with some of those consultants you work with so you can get an in. I also don't think you NEED an MBA (in fact I have a good friend who moved from a corporation as an engineer into Bain w/o MBA and only 1 year of experience), but a top MBA certainly would put you in a good position to get a foot in the door.

Finally, I doubt the CFA will do anything at all to help you get a MBB strategy/financial position. In fact, I honestly believe the CPA would be a much better choice (if you want to work in U.S. for MBB); it shows you have a deep knowledge of the way a business runs and it's much more specific to corporate strategy/finance than is the CFA which is almost exclusively focused on asset management. That being said, I don't think getting a CPA is critical either.

    • 1
Apr 17, 2018
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