This year again, we entered a young international team of CEMS students from University of Economics in Prague to the fascinating world of management consulting. For three months we simulated a real client consulting experience – development of a go-to-market strategy for a JV of utility and telco companies.
From left to right A.T. Kearney consultants Martin Ivánek, Zdeněk Vaniš, Martin Strnad and CEMS students Ekaterina Bochkareva, Matěj Pára, Jakub Mazal.
We run a project kick-off meeting and then regularly checked on the progress during five steering committees. There we challenged the team with our questions and comments and let them to adapt to the client’s reactions and align with his expectations. Second part of our regular sessions was always dedicated to extended informal feedback discussions. Our goal was to act as coaches to the students and we tried to hand-over our industry knowledge as well as soft skills like PPTs development, their communication, listening, writing, etc., that our team of three consultants managed to gather in more than 10 years combined. The students noted these practical discussions as something extra-ordinary to other CEMS business projects with high value for them.
From the content point of view, the team submerged into intense analytical work. They needed to understand strengths and business opportunities of the telco and utility companies and to identify inspiring case studies from around the world and applicability for their client. Then they were working on answering the following key questions of the assignment:
- What can these two companies do when they join forces?
- What markets they should target?
- How should their value position look like?
- What will be their target audience?
- How big is the potential / how will the business case look like?
Final presentation, delivered also to Partner and A.T. Kearney Prague Office Leader Jiří Steif, was a nice demonstration of the progress our team made on the way – and we were honestly quite proud of their achievement. Two of the three students expressed high interest in internship with A.T. Kearney, which was the best reward from our point of view.
Overall, we feel strongly encouraged to continue also next year with an interesting topic and project set-up thanks to a motivating project testimonial that the student team provided to us and to their colleagues by saying: “All in all, the learning curve in consulting is much steeper than in any other industry. It was not all bed of roses, but if you are ready to work hard, willing to broaden your horizons and open to practical experience valuable for any prospective career, do not hesitate!”