I’m Australian-born of Croatian descent. I grew up in Sydney and studied arts and law at the University of Sydney. I did some internships with law firms, but it soon become clear to me that I was more interested in the business issues of my clients than in the legal ones. So after looking at some options, I decided McKinsey was the place for me. I spent two years at McKinsey as a BA from 2001 to 2003, before going to Harvard Business School and returning as an associate in 2005.
Deciding on McKinsey
When I was deciding on my first “real” job following university, McKinsey had many strong points compared to other firms. I met some really high-caliber people during the interview process—lots of really smart, accomplished people who had great interests outside of work, and who were just very humble and friendly. I was also really impressed with the breadth of McKinsey's network. There are more than 80 offices around the world, and a commitment to operate as a global firm without borders. I realized that this would create great opportunities for travel and professional growth, but also bring the best of McKinsey to clients.
The commitment to professional development also really attracted me. For example, the global training programs, the transparent and frequent feedback and evaluation processes, the formal and informal mentoring and coaching, and, of course, the Fellowship program where BAs get McKinsey's support to study overseas, or get external experience in the commercial or social sectors.
Developing and specializing
When I joined, I was expecting a big intellectual challenge and definitely got one, especially because I was moving from a non-business background. However, the coaching and feedback I received—both on the job and through the formal training provided—quickly helped me come to grips with things. I also experienced a wide variety of work in different industries and functions, which helped me to develop quickly in terms of knowledge and confidence. In my first year alone, I worked on projects in consumer goods, logistics, banking, government and the performing arts.
Before I left for my M.B.A., I did some work in the areas of mining and operations, and really enjoyed it—so much so that I started to do more work when I returned. Now my main focus is in these areas, though I still work on other things from time to time. I like the fact that I have managed to find my niche here, and that I still have the freedom to pursue other projects that interest me when they come along.
Forging lasting friendships
I have met amazing people and formed great friendships through my work at McKinsey. The Sydney office is a great place to work, and I have made many lasting friendships—not only through shared work experiences, but also through common interests and our frequent trips to the beach and the pub. Through the various global training programs I have attended, and through my time overseas, I have developed a wide array of friendships around the world, as well. There’s something to be said about the power of McKinsey’s huge global network.
How I spend my free time
I love cooking and eating food, and there’s no end to the choices you have in Sydney. I live and breathe sports, in particular rugby, cricket, soccer, swimming, and running. I also love books and travel. I recently finished my quest to read every Booker Prize-winning novel, and have managed to visit 30 countries to date.
|Harvard Business School
|University of Sydney
||BA/LLB, French and Law