Corporate Strategy

What is this industry?

Corporate strategy groups provide recommendations to senior leadership (often the CEO) on the direction of the company, including important strategic decisions such acquiring or selling companies. Corporate strategy groups work under a Vice President of Strategy but often interface directly with the CEO, CFO, and other senior members of the company.

What is a “day in the life”?

  • Depending on the needs of your company at the time, you could be working on any variety of projects. Common activities include research on competitors, scanning for growth opportunities (e.g., M&A targets), or researching/developing a recommendation on other strategic decisions (e.g., hiring, products, etc.) 
  • The day-to-day work will involve meetings with leadership as well as business units if working with other parts of the business on strategy development or implementation. You’ll do a fair bit of analysis and research, and you’ll likely be working in powerpoint everyday, given your deliverables will be primarily slide decks sent to management.

How to ace your interview

  • Similar to consulting, it is important to have practiced case interviews as you’re likely to receive at least one but often more during the interview process.
  • Make sure you have a view on the key challenges the company you’re interviewing with is likely facing, and some ideas for growth opportunities
  • Make sure you know who the company’s key competitors are, and what are the dynamics of the industry they play in (new potentially disruptive trends, etc.)

Resources for learning about this industry

It’s most helpful to make sure you’re up to speed on what’s going on in the industry that the given company is in.

Typical challenges in this industry – and how to deal with them

Given the corporate strategy is typically working directly for senior leadership including the CEO, while hours won’t be as bad as in other industries, they can be brutal at certain times before important deliverables, and the day-to-day can be stressful given the high stakes of decisions being made.

Typical industry entry process

Spending 2 or more years in consulting is the most common pathway to a corporate strategy position. In very rare cases, a company might have an introductory rotational program hiring new graduates directly into the corporate strategy group.

Typical career trajectory

Some companies may sponsor MBA, but definitely not as common the way it is for consulting firms.

Companies to know in the industry

On-Campus resources related to industry

[don’t think there are any]