As part of our 2016 Summer School programme, students from across the world visited Imperial College Business School for three weeks to study our Business Strategy & Consulting course.
Led by Academic Director Dr Paolo Taticchi, the course involved a combination of lectures, workshops and trips, all delivered by world-class Imperial College academics and inspiring industry guest speakers. Dr Taticchi explained “The programme is designed to inspire and train young people for careers in consulting and industry. The amount of knowledge students develop in three weeks is remarkable. This is highly appreciated by international recruiters, which value the programme and the reputation of Imperial College Business School”.
After learning concepts in strategic management and the frameworks for analysis, students had the chance to put their knowledge to the test by working in groups to develop business solutions based around case studies presented to them. This was interspersed with guest speaker sessions, including a talk from former CEO of Microsoft Europe, Jan Mühlfeit who commented:
I believe the Business Strategy & Consulting Summer School is a great way to unlock potential of all students, through practical experience and global faculty.
Managing Partner EMEA at GBU Healthcare, Diego Patanè, also visited the students to talk about his career in consulting: “Sharing my entrepreneurial life with the Imperial College Business School students was a truly remarkable experience. Their interest and questions confirm my strong belief that combining resources, authentic projects/case studies and testimonies can create a varied and complete palette that receptive and motivated candidates can choose from to build a solid future.”
Another of the highlights from the programme was a visit from international management and technology consulting firm BearingPoint. Senior Recruiter, Neha Shah and Analyst, Justine Healey, led a session with the group which gave an insight into what consultancy involves followed by a case study workshop. Neha compared the different types of management consultancy firms such as strategy houses and consultancy firms which are used to outsource certain functions or processes. BearingPoint, whose clients range from the automotive industry to the oil and gas sector, falls somewhere in the middle of these two styles as they offer operational improvement by creating unique software solutions based on clients’ needs and requests.
Following some handy hints and tips, groups were all given a fictional case study based on a UK car manufacturer and were asked to perform a review of the business which would lead to recommended solutions which BearingPoint could implement to improve the performance of the business. After around an hour of planning, students enjoyed presenting their ideas which ranged from small process changes to a complete reshuffle of the management board. The representatives from BearingPoint gave positive feedback to the groups, highlighting that the key to being a successful consultant is to be able to back up your solutions with data and facts, whatever your recommendation may be. Before the end of the session, Neha and Justine gave the class some very useful advice on the application process to become a consultant, which many of the Summer School students will find beneficial in the future.
A key part of the course, as in the world of consulting, is an emphasis on group work. One of the students, Antonio Ng, commented on the importance of gaining this experience: “Teamwork is inevitable when one steps into the corporate world. With an emphasis on group work, I firmly believe that my time at Imperial has prepared me for such an environment.”
The Business Strategy & Consulting Summer School enables students to see into the world of consultancy through the experiences of top global firms and consultants, whilst also being taught the relationship between the different strategic management concepts and consulting strategies. The diversity of the cohort also provides the chance to exchange different perspectives whilst developing a network of highly motivated and dynamic individuals.