Here’s what an Internship at Deloitte Consulting looks like: IIM K Internship Kronicles – Ankita Pai

Variety of experiences, diverse sectors, challenging projects, early responsibility, autonomy, travelling, high pay packages- you guessed it right! We’re talking about Consulting- the domain that attracts the top notch students at any B-school. Careers in the field of consulting are known to be faced paced, challenging and highly popular among MBA graduates.

This edition of Internship Kronicles focusses on the summer internship experience of PGP student, Ankita Pai, who interned at Deloitte Consulting, Hyderabad. Ankita has completed M.Tech in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Technology from Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai and has worked with Aranca for 11 months in the field of Intellectual Property Research.

ankita

Here’s what she shared about her experience at Deloitte Consulting:

1.      What was the domain and role offered to you at Deloitte?

I was offered the role of ‘Consulting Intern’ in the Strategy service line for Health Care and Life Sciences (HCLS).

2.      Did you undergo any preparation for your role prior to the internship?

Not really, we were imparted specific training in the first week itself. We had a one day onboarding session for all the interns across all of Deloitte’s functions, and the rest of the week was spent in an intensive induction program which gave us a thorough overview of the core consulting skills for Deloitte S&O Consulting. We ended the week by solving a case challenge, where we were guided by a team of managers, who were always available to answer our questions, no matter how trivial. The entire internship program was highly structured, with intermittent sessions to help us navigate through the internship, and of course, we could just walk up to anyone on the floor to get our doubts cleared.

3.      Describe the project assigned to you in brief. What were the biggest challenges you faced for accomplishing your goals? 

My project involved identifying a care pathway for lung cancer patients. This meant pinpointing barriers to care that patients face during diagnosis or therapy, and then prioritizing them as intervention opportunities for our client. The biggest challenge I faced was collating all the information we had from primary and secondary research and storyboarding the insights in a manner that we could present to the client.

4.      You have prior work experience in the Intellectual Property domain. How different was the experience working as an MBA intern in a top consulting firm?

My previous experience in Intellectual Property Research equipped me with strong secondary research skills that were most definitely useful during my internship. My projects were more technical in my previous job, but equally interesting. What is different about Deloitte is the culture. It is truly flat, and as interns, we were encouraged to go up to people and talk to them, no matter what their designation. There were numerous parties, lunches and dinners arranged for us, just so that we could bond with the senior leadership in a better way. It was amazing how the leadership took the time to interact with us and saw to it that we were having a great time.

5.      Having completed M.Tech in Pharmaceutical Sciences, would you say that your knowledge about the Pharma sector helped you in your project?

Yes, my background certainly gave me an added advantage. It helped me grasp client requirements quickly and there were instances where my technical background helped move the project faster. But I must say that having a related background is not a pre-requisite; Deloitte is one place where you are free to express your desire to work in a different domain, and if you’re good enough, you will get that opportunity.

6.      Deloitte is an organization that has interns from some of the best B-schools of the country. How would you describe your interactions with the other interns?

I made some great friends during the internship, not only from the Consulting function, but from the other functions as well. I think each of us had a lot to learn from the others and we had all formed a pretty close-knit group.

7.      You were placed in the Hyderabad office of Deloitte. Being a Mumbaikar, how would you describe your short stay in a new city?

I am not really a stranger to Hyderabad, I have been there a couple of times before. However, a lot has changed since the last time I went there. It is definitely becoming more cosmopolitan, thanks to the MNCs that have set shop in Hi Tech city. Compared to Mumbai, it is a lot quieter and has fewer crowds. Transport is not an issue at all. The food is simply mouth-watering, there’s something for everyone. I, for one, certainly did not miss Mumbai.

8.      What was the most interesting or unique aspect about your summer internship?

The most interesting part of the internship was that I had the opportunity to have a face to face meeting with the client at their Mumbai office. My team had enough confidence to let me present a part of the deliverable to the client, which was a huge motivator for me. Also, the people I worked with were extremely generous with their time, in terms of ensuring that my learning objectives were met, checking on whether I could keep up with the pace, asking for my opinions and most importantly giving feedback that I could improve upon.

9.      The PPI/PPO process is one of the most sought after aspects about the summer internship. What was the process like for you and what challenges did you face?

The entire internship in itself is the PPO process. You are continuously evaluated right from the beginning to the end. If I had to describe the formal procedure, there are two reviews, one mid-way into the internship and another at the end. The entire senior leadership is present at both these reviews. The most challenging part of this process is that you only have 3-4 minutes to describe what you have worked on and what you have learnt, so you have to really rack your brains to figure out what you really want to say in those few minutes.

10.  Other than delivering an excellent performance in the project, in your opinion, how important are other aspects such as networking while interning in the consulting sector?

Networking is the single most important thing in the consulting sector. The high level of autonomy given to consultants means that they need to pick and choose the projects they really want to do, and this means knowing people who will be willing to work with you on the project. The more people you know, the more opportunities you have in terms of the projects you can work on, leading to better learning.

11.  What is your most significant takeaway from your internship?

The most significant takeaway for me was the immense amount of knowledge I gained about the Pharmaceutical sector in such a short span of time. I had the opportunity to work, not just on my project but also other firm activities that were extremely effective in improving my understanding of this vast domain.

12.  How has your understanding of the consulting sector evolved during the course of the internship?

I had an end-to-end view of how the consulting world operates in the two months of my internship. I was given the opportunity to work on every different step of a project, right from the proposal to the final client presentation. However, that is just a small drop in the ocean, because the most important thing to learn in consulting is building a strong relationship with the client, which takes quite some time to learn.

13.  Having experienced the nuances of the consulting field for two months, what kind of role do you envisage for yourself post MBA?

Given my background in the pharmaceutical sector and intellectual property research, I think consulting is a natural progression for my career. It lets me do what I do best, and have fun at the same time.

14.  What advice would you like to give to the recently joined junior batch about internship in the consulting sector?

I would just say, keep your eyes and ears open on the floor, get to know as many people as possible, not just within your office location, but at other locations as well. Take full ownership of your deliverable, aim to make it good enough that nothing needs to be changed before it reaches the client. Don’t hesitate to ask questions or give opinions, it’s always appreciated.

 

Interview conducted by:

Ipsita Acharya- Media Cell, IIM Kozhikode

 

This article has been complied by the Media Cell of IIM Kozhikode as part of the ‘Internship Kronicles’ series. For further information please contact us at media@iimk.ac.in

Read the entire series of IIM K Internship Kronicles here.

Visit IIM Kozhikode’s home page on InsideIIM here.

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