Strategy consulting firms like McKinsey are traditionally involved in working on projects at a ‘high-level’. This type of work may involve how companies or organisations can improve efficiencies or how to play in a specific market.
Once a consulting firm provides its recommendations, the organisation then generally implements the recommendations by themselves. This is a generalisation but it’s useful to be mindful of when we look at other types of management consulting firms, those who normally provide advice in technology, process and operations.
For these consulting firms, its more about ‘rolling up the sleeves’ and generally involves embedding employees within an organisation to assist with the change and recommendations. This could involve anything from designing and implementing new technology to developing cost-saving efficiencies and training the organisation's employees on the new process. Depending on the organisation you consult, you may be in regular contact with the CEO and other high up employees, which is a great learning curve for graduates.
Whilst this is a generalisation about how strategy versus process, operations and technology consultancies work, you will find that some larger consultancies are increasingly offering implementation support.