May the (Sales)Force be with you and other pop culture comparisons of McKinsey

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In keeping with firm tradition, Saagar penned his goodbye email when leaving McKinsey. We found his thoughts fun to read and particularly inspirational. Below an excerpt of his email.

Warning: the text below contains too many paragraphs, pop culture references, rambling language, personal anecdotes, and random punctuation. Reader discretion is advised.

Disclaimer: all characters in this mail are real. Resemblance to yourself/people you know is completely intended.

This mail had to be written, at least partly, on a flight. One that has just impressed itself in my memory by the very candid, very human admission of the passenger sitting next to me: “Sir, this is the first time I’m traveling by air. Would you mind if I take the window seat.” 600,000+ miles, and it’s taken a fully grown man taking excited selfies in an airborne 737 to make me yet again appreciate the shapes and colours that clouds take as the sun prepares its descent. Someday, I’ll write a book about my air travel stories and this will be a chapter. Today is not that day.

It was some six summers ago that a younger, thinner and fully haired version of myself received the Offer I Could Not Refuse by two men I immediately mentally placed on the Saat khoon maaf list. Glee, delight and congratulations followed from my near and dear ones and many colleagues at McKinsey.

Since then, I’ve worked with incredible people. We forged bonds 4.2 meters below sea level in scuba–gear and during countless hands of poker from Colaba to Cebu. We’ve endured stressful situations, retirements of dear friends, and many celebrations from wedding to births of children to promotions. We’ve grown up together.

I’ll be forever grateful for the opportunities to be part of truly visible impact ranging from helping a banking CEO who declared: “This is the best project I’ve seen, by McKinsey or any other consultancy” to breaking sales records and building institutional capabilities for a Telangana. And for the opportunity to be an engagement manager–the most rewarding, fulfilling, and absolutely best job in the world. I’ve gotten to watch immensely talented people grow, teach them the tricks of the trade – even help them find their sweethearts on team outings. I’ve worked with colleagues from Gurgaon to Helsinki who made me laugh with spontaneous speeches and feel like I belonged.

Saagar inline
Saagar inline

Some say the firm is like Hogwarts. My own Sorting was probably like this: “ Financial services,” proposed the Hat; “Mining,” chanted the nearest house; “Chem & Ag,” whispered the heart. A phone call made the decision and the rest is history. And like the professors of Hogwarts, it was my mentors at McKinsey who defined my time here. You made my move from India to London happen. I never needed a password to enter your office; knowing that our chats will be less frequent will take some getting used to.

“All of this is fine,” you say, “but how will season 7 end?” I’ll stay in London: a city I’ve admired from afar, started to like quite a bit and now enjoy calling Home. I will join the Business Value Services team at Salesforce: a company I’ve admired from afar, started to like quite a bit and will soon call my Office.

McKinsey & Company: It has been an honour.

May the (Sales)Force be with you.

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