Project Leader, Athens
I am learning at BCG that the greatest skill is not to know. It is to remain undeterred, committed, and enthusiastic in the face of the new and unknown.
Coming from a background of international affairs and policy research, BCG has been an unexpectedly fulfilling career change for me.
What makes me proud to be part of BCG is that, despite the valuable tools at our disposal and the extensive reservoir of BCG knowledge and experience, we are challenged to explore new frontiers for every client. This almost entrepreneurial mind-set pushes us to expand our own thinking and ensures that our work offers the maximum value to the client.
What makes me happy to be part of BCG is the BCG family. No matter how intense the work or time pressure, fellow BCGers care about you—and you can feel it. There is always someone available to wholeheartedly listen, share, help, coach, offer insight, celebrate the wins with, and keep you on top of your game. This is no coincidence; it is only a demonstration of BCG's emphasis on and respect of its people.
Thalia holds a master of international relations from Columbia University and an MBA from INSEAD. Prior to joining BCG, Thalia held different research and management positions in the public sector and cofounded three start-ups in the retail and education sectors.
Q: What inspires you about BCG?
A: What inspires me about BCG is the opportunity the firm gives us to really make a difference. Clients' questions are more often than not rather complex and touch upon uncharted waters. Easy solutions do not apply. And the appropriateness, ambition, effectiveness, “implementability,” and sustainability of our recommendations result in a lot more than just shareholder value. This opportunity to really make a difference in people's work, lives, and sense of fulfillment is what makes our work truly meaningful.
Q: What was one of your favorite case experiences?
A: One of my favorite case experiences was a social impact project for a foundation that was struggling to balance the increased demands of local society with its shrinking income, both a result of the financial crisis. The recommendations were very unconventional, as they often are, and the client, through remarkable determination, managed to fully transform the foundation, ensure its financial sustainability and, more important, the sustainability and relevance of its societal mission. Realizing the impact our work would have on ordinary lives of people in dire need gave a whole different meaning to value-adding.
Q: Why is BCG a good place for a woman to work?
A: What makes BCG a good place for a woman to work is the fact that gender is not what defines a BCGer in any way.
What makes BCG family-friendly is the fact that, especially after a certain point in a BCG career, one is better able to influence one's work schedule and location. As long as a parent, woman or man, is able to live up to her or his role, flexibility is a given at BCG and makes the combination of family and promising professional prospects possible.