Five Tips from Fords on Friday: Jeff Kotzen ’87 of BCG

Five Tips from Fords on Friday: Jeff Kotzen ’87 of BCG

Jeff Kotzen ‘87

Senior Partner & Managing Director

Boston Consulting Group

Economics Major

 

About Jeff Kotzen

Jeff Kotzen began his consulting career in 1991. He is a Senior Partner in the New Jersey office. He is the global leader of BCG’s Shareholder Value Topic which focuses on optimizing shareholder value creation (TSR) by aligning business, financial and investor strategies leveraging BCG’s proprietary tools and methodologies. Prior to joining BCG in 1997, Jeff was a Director at Braxton Associates, the strategy consulting division of Deloitte & Touche Consulting Group. Before receiving his MBA, he was a financial analyst in the investment banking division at Salomon Brothers. Jeff holds an MBA in finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He graduated from Haverford College with a BA in economics.

 

Five Tips from the Fords on Friday Talk

  1. Don’t know what consulting is? That’s okay! Neither did Jeff while he was a student at Haverford. Though it takes a lot of hard work to become a consultant, many undergrads do not have a great grasp on what a consultant actually DOES. In Jeff’s words, most know ‘just enough to be dangerous.” Read up now if you think you might be interested!
  2. Take the interview process seriously. Jeff, along with Amanda Fleming ’16 and Sam Yarosh ’16 (two Haverford alumni currently working at BCG), stressed the importance of nailing the case interviews when applying for a consulting position. He said to treat interview prep as a full-time job. The CCPA has a lot of resources to help you practice, find them here.
  3. There is no “typical” path to becoming a consultant. When asked what internships students should be seeking out to make them the best candidates for BCG, Jeff responded by telling students to “Do things you’re excited about, do them well.” The field of students’ internships or work experience does not matter as much as much as gaining responsibility and showing hustle do.
  4. People skill are important! Sam Yarosh emphasized how important, and potentially challenging the “people side” of consulting is. When he began his career with BCG, he had to quickly learn how to run meetings with senior clients, who are often in charge of multi-billion dollar companies. Similarly, Amanda Fleming stressed how critical her colleagues are in handling cases and helping her to grow in her position. Consulting decisions may rely on data, but being a consultant is centered around people!
  5. Consulting is more than data and analytics. While consultants depend on advanced analytics to make the best recommendations for their clients, having the right numbers is not enough. Translating data into insights and impacts is critical in this field. According to Jeff, consultants are simply “business doctors,” who need to do more than identify the problem. They need to communicate the solution in a meaningful and applicable way to see results.

 

Join us Friday, 9/14 at noon in Stokes 300 for our next Fords on Friday speaker: Michael Paulson ’86, Reporter from the New York Times!