– After completing my undergraduate degree, I wasn’t sure where to take my career next. I explored several options including getting a PhD, joining a local NGO or traveling to Africa to evangelize math and data science.
I hadn’t heard much about McKinsey. I knew the firm’s interviews were supposed to be well-structured and tough. I mostly applied because I thought the role as a junior data analyst with McKinsey Analytics in the Polish Knowledge Center in Wroclaw sounded interesting and because I thought the interview process would be good practice for future conversations with other firms. However, the more I learned about the opportunity with McKinsey the more excited I became. I enjoyed the questions, conversations, people, and the way I was treated as a candidate. The real turning point came in the form of a conversation with my future manager. She convinced me this offer was perfect for me. What attracted me most was the diversity of work, likelihood of achieving meaningful impact and multitude of learning opportunities.
Now, I serve clients in all industries using predictive and prescriptive analytics, optimization, data mining and prototyping techniques. Looking back on my first year here, I can say my expectations were fulfilled. I have a lot of freedom to choose the most suitable approach and algorithms to solve the problem at hand. If I get stuck, I can always find someone to help me – regardless of the topic or the person’s location. It’s a great mix of autonomy and support.
I recently finished a transformation for a telecommunications company. My team and I built the big data function within the organization. We developed its strategy and implemented foundations for a few of the most critical use cases.
On this project, my days were always different and my responsibilities were quite broad, ranging from running analyses to develop a customer lifetime model to conducting an SQL training for clients. I spent the majority of my time building machine learning models to improve the efficiency of the organization’s marketing campaigns. For example, one of my models predicted how likely current customers were to purchase additional services based on their current consumption patterns.
Our team was quite big, sometimes including as many as 20 people. Some of my colleagues had not worked with advanced analytics, so I had great fun explaining things like the Hive logo – a bee turning into an elephant – to them.
Outside of work, I love to travel. I’m lucky because now that hobby is sometimes part of my work. I’ve recently been to Brussels, Boston, Vienna, Dusseldorf and Moscow for client work and training sessions. Someday, I will have visited every country in the world. Maybe, twenty years from now, McKinsey will have a project on the moon; that’s one I’d love to join!
Being a visual person, I love to take photos, make videos and paint – often of places I visit (check out my Instagram feed to see some of my latest work). I also read a lot, especially biographies, and often get completely lost in the stories. Once I was reading on a plane and went so deep into the book that, when the plane landed, I thought for a moment we were crashing.
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