Wednesday, September 13, 2006

I've just finished my second day of Bain training, and I'm definitely feeling a tad bit overwhelmed. Most of the people in our training class have been consultants before, whether at Bain or other firms. So they all speak consulting. I feel like I'm taking calculus in a foreign language. I'm still at the point where I have to translate what people are talking about.

The thing about consulting is that consultants are trained to approach a problem in a very systematic way. When you add this systems challenge with the lingo challenge, it makes it hard for people like me to contribute during the training sessions. The good thing is people seem really understanding about slowing it down and understanding that I don't speak powerpoint-slide fluently yet. I try not to worry about it, but nobody wants to be the slow one in the group.

I still absolutely LOVE my job. Last week during lunch a group of us started talking about some of the challenges of measuring success in education (is success graduation rates? is it the ability to think in a more concrete way? is it exposure to new ideas? is it the same for everyone?). The conversation drifted to other things (as these type of conversations often do), but when we finally ended 2 hours later, a manager mentioned that these types of conversations were important to the work we do. That meant A LOT to me. It really made me feel blessed and lucky to have my job. I get to spend my day talking and thinking about subjects about which I'm extremely passionate. And while I'm doing it, my employer actually cares whether I get something out of the experience. I recognize that everyone doesn't have that. I'm very grateful that I do.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Last week was my first week at work, and today was my first day in my office. I'm extremely excited to start work on the case I'm working on.

Last week was fabulous. It was great to have so much training. At previous jobs, training usually consisted of benefits orientation and a point towards my corner of the office. So a full week is somewhat new. And next week we'll go through another week of Bain training. It's a whole new world.

Working for a professional services firm is taking some adjusting. I've never been in an environment so focused on professional development. People seem genuinely interested in making sure I learn to do my job and providing constructive feedback. And the place is INCREDIBLY organized. That's what really floored me. I'm used to masked chaos. It's definitely different.

But what's truly been awesome has been the people. My co-workers are amazing - extremely smart and VERY passionate about the work we do. It' s so wonderful to be surrounded by people so focused on mission oriented work. I've had good conversations - like the kind you have in undergrad after a night of beer and pizza. It was an amazing week.

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