There are more than 250,000 management consultants in the United States today, according the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
For a majority of these professionals, especially the 40,000 or more who leave their positions or firms each year, a question burns: How do I leave the role of consultant and move into an operating position within a company?
Successes and Failures
It's an understandable question given high-profile success stories of transitions from consulting into top-level operating management.
Harvey Golub and Lou Gerstner, for example, moved from McKinsey /&/amp; Company to American Express, with Golub going on to become CEO in 1993. Gerstner left the financial services giant to become CEO of RJR Nabisco and then, most famously, became CEO of IBM and led it back from the brink.
While there are numerous other cases of successful consultant-to-operator transitions, the fact is that there are many more cases of dismal failures..............