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Knowledge Expert, Denver

Creating impact for a client is not what we strive for—it’s having impact with a client.

What made you decide to choose McKinsey?

I discovered McKinsey while a student at Notre Dame and applied. I received an offer, and at the same time, I was awarded a Fulbright grant in Strasbourg. I had a difficult decision to make. I chose to go to France, excited for the opportunity, but nervous about what I was potentially giving up. When McKinsey agreed to defer my offer, I started in Chicago a year later. This turn of events—before I even joined—quickly set the tone for the encouragement, flexibility, and support that the Firm has provided me in pursuing my professional and personal passions over the past decade.

What difference does it make to work at a global firm?

When I was the global program leader for one of our professional-development programs, I led a group of 20 senior colleagues from 10 countries with a single, common goal: helping our colleagues grow professionally to drive greater impact with our clients. We redesigned the curriculum and enhanced our delivery methods, benefitting over 150 participants across 7 programs annually. The suggestions we received from faculty, participants, and numerous other supporters from around the world contributed to the success of the program redesign.  It was inspiring to see people with different backgrounds, cultures, and experiences come together, and it was an enjoyable time that has provided me with many lasting memories—like the time 30 of us were caught in the ash cloud from the eruption of Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull. Getting back to the United States took almost two days and a lot of help from my terrific European colleagues!

What's been your most memorable project so far?

On the first day of one of my projects, the client pulled me aside and said, “You know, I really don’t like consultants, but my EVP is sponsoring this, so I guess I’m stuck with you.” I, and the rest of the team, spent 3 days a week with him over the next 12 weeks. By the end of the project, after wrangling our way through complex strategic issues with a number of heated debates, he pulled me aside again—only this time it was to thank us for supporting and helping them. Creating impact for a client is not what we strive for—it's having impact with a client, and along the way, we grow, develop, and can accomplish great things together.