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What is Consulting?

Consulting is an industry that touches most every sector of the work world. A business or organization will hire a consultant/consulting firm to help them improve their performance by identifying needs, gaps and inefficiencies and to solve problems, introduce change and new technologies. Consulting firms hire and train individuals who provide expertise on distinct issues, trends and problems facing specific industries. Areas of practice within firms may include things such as energy, healthcare, financial, engineering, political campaigns, public sector, operations, strategy, economics and public sector.

The major types of consulting firms are Management/Strategy Consulting, Financial, Information Technology (IT), Human Resources/Staffing. In general, larger firms typically have several specialties or advisory service divisions that serve a variety of fields, while boutique/niche firms tend to be smaller in size and specialize in one specific industry. Traditionally many firms hire for their entry-level and internship positions in the fall semester. This year, given the economic impact of the pandemic, hiring may be paused for some until later in the year.

Individuals who are interested in pursuing a career in consulting should develop and hone critical thinking, analysis, creativity, problem solving, leadership, active listening and written/verbal communication skills. You should also become an avid reader in following news and industry sources to keep current on recent news, issues and trends.

Additional recommended resources and readings include:

Join this week’s Consulting Meet & Greet: Thursday, Oct 8 from 4-7pm

Talking with Bucknell alumni and parent contacts, as well as employer representatives is an excellent way to dig deeper into the industry and learn more. This Thursday, the CCA will host a Consulting Meet & Greet on Handshake, where representatives from Allison+ Partners, Bain & Co, Deloitte, KPMG and the Chartis Group will be available to speak with students about their firms, career paths and work environments.

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