The on-the-job training is unmatched at McKinsey. You receive constructive feedback all the time from experts in the field or industry, so you learn quickly. You are also given a great deal of responsibility early on.
My path to McKinsey
I studied economics in school and went to work for a multinational consumer goods company after graduation, where I served in a finance role in their beauty and personal care department. It was a great experience that gave me a taste of what it was like to work with executives at the highest level of a global organization.
However, I noticed consultancies were doing some of our most exciting projects, and they were taking on the more strategic work I was keen to do. I also wanted to branch out from the consumer side and dabble in tech and sales, and I was interested in exploring other industries.
I had mentors who had worked with McKinsey, and the general feedback from them was the firm would offer me the high-level strategic work I wanted to do, and the chance to work with senior people who were making the big decisions.
Mostly I wanted to challenge myself, and I knew if I came to McKinsey, I would expand my knowledge and skills in a short time. I therefore decided to join McKinsey as a business analyst in March 2020.
My role at McKinsey
Every day is different. The work is heavily contingent on the client, and I need to remain flexible. I lead discovery meetings with clients and conduct expert interviews to get the details we need to build the analytics models that will enable us to draw useful insights from the data. I also present new ideas to clients based on the analytics.
In my short time here, I have worked on projects that will change lives for the better.
For example, I helped a big healthcare provider contribute to solving the COVID-19 crisis and define the strategy. I have also worked on projects that helped expand the availability of medical devices and pharmaceuticals to people who need them.
Quick responsibility and rapid growth
The on-the-job training is unmatched at McKinsey. You receive constructive feedback all the time from experts in the field or industry, so you learn quickly. You are also given a great deal of responsibility early on. I consult CEOs and CFOs of global corporations and provide long-term advice on business decisions. It would have taken me ten years with another organization to get to that level, and even then, I don’t know if I would have the influence I do here. That is incredibly cool at the start of your career.
You can do it because you have access to incredible mentorship and amazing people who are willing to guide you. You feel supported, and you can always find someone who has the experience to help you answer a tricky question.
Choosing my path in the firm
My first project was in pharmaceuticals, and although you can choose what direction you want to go in after your first project, I decided to stick with pharmaceuticals and healthcare.
I have a consumer background, and I think the pharmaceutical and consumer industries have many things in common. They are a very real part of life. A pill or shower gel is something you have in your house and may use every day. I like that those items can influence the quality of peoples’ lives at scale.
More about Katie
In her free time, Katie likes exploring new restaurants with friends and spending time with her family. She is a big surfer, and has already organized a surf trip to Portugal for the London office. Shelikes to travel, snorkel and swim is looking forward to planning more trips this year.
University of Birmingham