POP QUIZ! Which Consulting Company Might be Your Jam?

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These 13 questions will help you determine whether you should consider working for a prestigious management consulting firm (MBB), one of the Big Four consulting firms, or a boutique consulting company. Don’t worry, I cover each of these in the pages ahead. But, since I don’t want to skew your results by giving you the deets ahead of time, answer these questions as honestly as you can first. 

  1. What size firm appeals to you most?
    1. Large, prestigious firm with a global presence from 30k + employees to 300k + employees 
    2. Smaller, more tight-knit team 50-100 employees
  2. Are you looking for a well-established brand name on your resume?
    1. Yes, it's important for my career trajectory 
    2. Not necessarily, I value unique experiences 
  3. Do you prefer a structured, well-defined career path and advancement opportunities?
    1. Yes, I want clear career progression 
    2. No, I'm open to a more flexible career trajectory 
  4. How important is work-life balance to you?
    1. I'm willing to work hard and long hours for career growth 
    2. Important, and I'm willing to prioritize it 
  5. Do you thrive in a competitive environment where you'll be surrounded by top talent?
    1. Yes, I want to work with the best in the industry 
    2. I'm more focused on the quality of the work and team dynamics 
  6. Are you looking for extensive training and development programs?
    1. Yes, I want structured training opportunities 
    2. I'm open to learning on the job and taking ownership of my development 
  7. Are you interested in working with Fortune 500 companies and multinational clients?
    1. Yes, I'm drawn to high-profile clients 
    2. I'm more interested in working with a variety of clients, regardless of size 
  8. How important is the potential for international assignments and travel to you?
    1. Very important, I want to work on a global scale 
    2. I'm open to travel but not as a primary focus 
  9. Do you value a more entrepreneurial work environment where you can have a direct impact on the company's direction?
    1. I'm more interested in executing established strategies 
    2. Yes, I want to shape the company's future
  10. How do you feel about the potential for bureaucratic processes in a larger firm?
    1. I'm comfortable with some level of bureaucracy 
    2. I prefer a more agile and streamlined approach 
  11. Are you looking for a company with a vast network and resources?
    1. Yes, I want access to extensive resources 
    2. I'm more interested in a close-knit professional network 
  12. Are you open to taking on a wide range of responsibilities, including client management and business development?
    1. I prefer a more specialized role with a focus on project delivery
    2. Yes, I'm interested in a diverse role
  13. Are you motivated by the potential for rapid career progression and promotions?
    1. Yes, I'm highly motivated by career growth
    2. I'm more focused on job satisfaction and meaningful work

Tally your answers:

  • If you have more 'a' responses, you might lean towards pursuing a career with an MBB or one of the Big Four consulting firms. If you have more 'b' responses, you might find a better fit in a boutique consulting company.
  • Disclaimer: I have generalized here, to help build attributes to every category. However companies may also differ from these typical clusters. In some Big Four, especially when you get overtime paid, whereas in a boutique working time can exceed 80h per week; in large MBB they have office all over the place, so they might not allow juniors to travel that much as they can easily take locals, where in boutique consultancies they don't have that many resources, so staffing globally is crucial.
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