RealJobs: Alexandra Faklis

Today was one of my more favorite Mondays because it ended with another BC Beanpot win!  Congrats BC!  There’s a BC bar in Lincoln Park where the Chicago Chapter hosted a game watch.  It was great to run into old friends and meet other BCers.  Life can still be fun post college after all…

I’m not traveling this week for work, which is unusual.  For the past few weeks, I’ve been up at 3:30 am on Monday morning to catch a 6 am flight out to my client on the East Coast.  I am very thankful for Starbucks.

This morning, I was fortunate to be able to get up at 6:30 am and was in the office by 8:30.  I started off the morning working on a “Practice Development” initiative for our Managing Directors, which required obtaining information for a slide deck that will be presented on Friday.  I appreciate how responsive everyone in my company is to internal requests – I had everything that I needed by mid-day, which is ideal since I need to get a rough draft out to the Managing Directors by tomorrow night.  If you work in consulting, you can expect quick turnarounds.  I feel like my coworkers and I thrive in the fast-paced environment, and it’s really exciting to see what we can accomplish as a team.

There are many different “teams” at Huron.  I work on the “Research Services” team and we provide consulting for staff that mainly work in Research Administration at universities. From there, we’re on smaller project teams, which can range from 1-30+ people depending on the budget and client needs.

I spent most of my morning on client work, which is ideal since it’s billable.  We’re charged with billing a certain percentage of our time to client work each month to align with the company’s financial goals.  I focused on digging into data related to a Facilities and Administration rate calculation project.  To give you the cliff notes for this type of rate, universities are eligible to be reimbursed by the federal government for the costs that they incur for sponsored research.  There are several different variables that go into this calculation including space, interest, equipment, operations and maintenance…this list goes on.  I’ve spent the majority of my time on this project since Thanksgiving and should wrap up in early March.  If I can give you any advice about consulting, it’s to take an Excel or data management course as an undergraduate.  I spend at least 50% of my day in Excel or other data management systems.  Those skills are very valuable in the consulting field.

My workday ended at about 7 pm after I finished up a phone call with my Director to update her on the status of the project.  Just in time to catch the second period of the hockey game.

Happy Monday!
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