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Charting my course in Calgary

– I’m Alex, a client manager with McKinsey Academy, based in Calgary, Canada. I did some consulting after earning my undergraduate degree, and then worked for a wonderful organization, TransCanada Pipelines, before doing my MBA. While I was at school, I oscillated between whether or not to go back into consulting, given the sometimes unpredictable lifestyle it can bring. When I started speaking to people from McKinsey, the warmth everyone exuded blew me away. The people I met coupled with the chance to work as part of such a globally minded organization, at home in Calgary, was all I needed to get excited about McKinsey.

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Since joining, I’ve had an amazing journey that has allowed me to help many important local clients. I’ve also taken some well-timed travel studies to broaden my experience beyond Canada. I love the flexibility the firm has provided me throughout the last five years. My journey has allowed me to hone in on my passions. I recently joined one of our internal start-ups, McKinsey Academy, which focuses on leadership development and capability building for our clients.

Working and living in Calgary is wonderful. I grew up in eastern Canada and moved to Calgary a decade ago, drawn to the mountain lifestyle. I ski, hike or mountain bike most weekends and have met a wonderful group of friends who share my interests. It’s been amazing to see the city evolve over the past decade; there are so many interesting (and bike-path connected) neighbourhoods each with its own culture, community and amazing food.

I’m expecting my first baby this summer. The firm is an incredibly welcoming and supportive place to start a family. I work with two female partners who recently had children; they are amazing sources of advice and support. I always feel lucky to work at McKinsey, but seeing how much my colleagues care about my development and my family has made that feeling even stronger.