Consulting for a "Big Three'"

PROVO, Utah – Nov 02, 2017 – Sam Andersen took a different path from his high-achieving peers in the finance program when he decided consulting was a better fit for him than investment banking. Now he works as a senior associate consultant for Bain and Company, one of the world’s leading business consulting firms.

“Consulting allows me to solve big problems and work in teams in a collaborative culture,” says Andersen, a BYU Marriott 2015 graduate. “It opens up the possibility for top-tier business schools with excellent brain potential and greater chances for placement in respectful companies. It just felt like a natural middle ground.”

While still attending school, Andersen never imagined he’d get a job at one of the “big three” management consultancies. A friend recommended he apply to Bain, so he dropped off a rèsumè and was surprised when he was invited to interview, which led to an internship offer.

In his two years consulting for Bain, Andersen has worked on a variety of projects with case experiences in cell phone carriers, oil gas companies, private equity funds, and chemical corporations. He tackled a number of problems with cost cutting and customer loyalty implementation. He also had the opportunity to learn how to manage others by working with, coaching, and mentoring the work of a first-year associate.

“Managing others adds a new dimension on how lead those you work with, so you can get more done collectively,” Andersen says. “It’s a net opportunity.”

Bain offers an externship program employees can participate in after working for two years. The company allows an extended leave of absence for employees to do something they are passionate about and work for influential leaders. Andersen is currently on loan to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint’s Missionary Department to work under managing director Gary Crittenden, who is also a BYU Marriott alum and former Bain vice president.

Andersen is grateful for the experience he had at BYU Marriott. He says the school helps students explore what they like and obtain knowledge to know where to start and continue. The school provides a network of supportive faculty ready to go to bat for their students. He also gives a shout out to the Finance Society for encouraging upperclassmen with jobs to help underclassmen find internships and job opportunities, which is why he now helps run BYU recruiting for Bain.

“There’s the natural give-and-take,” Andersen says. “People helped me, now I feel the need to help others. The Finance Society brings that in, as well as the finance program in general. We do not necessarily compete against each other; we’re all on the same team working together.”

Colby Wright, associate teaching professor of finance, says he loves how Andersen works hard to pay it forward by spending countless hours answering emails, talking over the phone, and meeting with students to help them.

“He could have easily put BYU in his rearview mirror and focused exclusively on maximizing his own personal success, but he’s been tireless and enthusiastic about turning around and mentoring anyone at BYU interested in consulting,” Wright adds. “He’s the embodiment of our slogan, ‘Enter to Learn.  Go Forth to Serve.’”

Media Contact: Jordan Christiansen (801) 422-8938
Writer: Emily Colon