The Summer Of ’17 – A Roller-Coaster Ride Brimming With Ecstasy At Avalon Consulting Company
Have you ever been on a roller coaster ride, the one where your heart nearly pounces out of your body? A roller coaster ride seems intimidating and gives you an adrenaline rush but at the end leaves you ecstatic. Well, my summer saga of 2017 at Avalon Consulting Company was akin to a roller coaster ride and probably the best one that I have experienced ever.
Before sitting on a roller coaster, everyone experiences some anxiety and fearfulness about the journey. Before my summer internship started in April ’17, I also experienced the butterflies in my stomach and the consternation of how the journey would roll out in the next 2 months. I always wanted to have strategy consultancy as my area of expertise but having had no experience in this domain gave me jitters of how I would be able to excel in it. Also, there was this excitement within me similar to that of a child who incessantly jumps in the air before venturing for his first ride in an amusement park, only that the ride in my case was corporate life.
The Roller Coaster Ride/Journey
Once you sit on a roller coaster there is no coming back and you need to go with the flow to complete the ride even though you are nervous. There are scary twists and turns with brief moments of calmness. But there never comes a break and every moment on the roller coaster catapults a stream of adrenaline rush throughout your body. You scream but no one is there to listen, you are on your own and you have to get through the ride completely on your own.
Well, the internship journey is exactly the same. Once you start the journey and get engrossed in the work, you cannot leave it. Strategy Consulting projects are both interesting and demanding. You have to slog to excel, but at every stage of slogging there is enormous learning. Clients will infuse ebbs and flows to make the journey dangerous but that same danger arouses excitement too as there is something new to learn, a different perspective to think from and if you are able to crack the problem and sail across, there is a sense of pride and satiation. My internship journey was filled with ups and downs too, just like a roller coaster as there were moments of pride when I made substantial contributions and also some moments of despair when the going was tough. But there was always some hope and motivation that this too shall end and then I shall find light at the end of the tunnel. Having said all this, there was never a dull moment in the entire journey where every day brought about a new challenge and a mesmerising experience.
When you try a new scary roller coaster, there is always a family member or a friend who has a soothing influence on you to calm you down. Well, my co-consultants and seniors had that same pacifying influence on me. They mentored me at every stage, rectified my mistakes and appreciated my good work. If the journey felt smooth, the support of these people had a big hand in it.
Living in a new city like Mumbai, makes you believe in your independence and capabilities. The city has its own rapid pace and you need to keep up with it or you would be left behind. This two-month journey which I fared alone made me realise the importance of responsibility and self-dependence. You need to complete the entire journey on your own, however daunting it might seem.
The Euphoria at The End
Once the roller coaster ride is over, your heart thumps fast and then you are relieved that it is finally over but there is also a sense of euphoria that you undertook the ride.
These were my exact sentiments once my two-month internship period was over. I was relieved that I would get a break from the work hours. At the same time, I felt delighted to have had the opportunity to work in a consulting firm on such an interesting project and learn the intricacies of the modus operandi in a Consulting Firm. The consulting culture and the approach were something I had only read in theory. But now after experiencing it practically, I felt that choosing consulting as a career was the right decision.
One of my favourite quotation is “Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish” and my internship experience made me believe that in Consultancy you have the privilege to always stay hungry and foolish. There is so much you don’t know, there is so much to learn at every stage, there is always a different perspective to think from and there is exposure to different kinds of business problems all around and above all it gives you the opportunity to grow and increase your knowledge and skill set at every stage of the journey. From my internship experience I can easily say that in order to excel in this domain, you need to have not only the intention but also the vigour to Stay Hungry and the audacity to Stay Foolish.