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McKinsey Q&A: Marti

– Meet Marti, an associate in our Washington, D.C. office. After completing her Ph.D. in industrial engineering, she spent her early career in the public sector, then started her own pet spa. Now, she’s working mostly in strategy and organizational design with clients across industries.

Interviewer: What led you to McKinsey?

Marti

Marti: After nine years in the public sector, I paused to tick off some items on my bucket list, including starting my own business, a pet spa. As I thought about what I wanted to do next, I realized I felt professionally energized when I was solving complex problems with high-performing teams. I wanted these moments to be the norm, not the exception. A great friend suggested McKinsey, and the rest is history.

Interviewer: Has your prior experience helped you at the firm?

Marti: Working in security for the U.S. government was a great way to experience a variety of challenges. I led organizational and process change for the Department of Homeland Security, implemented analysis reform for the Army, and assessed manufacturing costs for a top-priority Defense Department program. These experiences accelerated my ability to empathize with my clients and influence them.

Interviewer: What is one of your most memorable client moments?

Marti: Hosting a workshop to align a group of leaders on their strategy and build trust among them. We ran a collage exercise to help our clients describe their organization’s present state and visualize its future. The results were incredible: this activity really melted the ice between the clients and opened doors for tough conversations.

Interviewer: What advice would you give to others considering a career in consulting with McKinsey?

Marti: Bring your love of learning and flexibility. McKinsey is a fast-paced, impact-driven place filled with wonderful, caring people who will push you to help you grow.

Interviewer: What are you passionate about outside of work?

Marti: I love gardening, and am particularly interested in urban gardening. Don’t get me started unless you’re ready for a way-too-long conversation. I also love working with local animal organizations, and am always up for watching an exciting sporting event.