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BCG Commencement 2018

Celebrating University Graduation 2018

This year, we asked BCG leaders to give advice for graduates, sharing some of their own personal experiences—to inspire those who are at the beginning of their careers.

Facing the Future—with Head, Heart, and Hands

In this 2018 BCG commencement address, Senior Partner Jim Hemerling advises the new crop of graduates to envision their future, discover purpose and inclusion in their work, and be ready for a lifetime of adaptation and learning.

Words of Wisdom for Graduates

“Don’t be afraid to redefine the problem! We were required to do two research proposals (beyond our dissertation) to graduate. By the time I did my second, I knew I wasn’t going to pursue academics, so I got approval to do it on why there weren’t more women professors in the hard sciences. My approval committee was my advisor, one of the inventors of the birth control pill, Carl Djerassi, and a professor from the school of education. (Side note: Clearly my passion for #WomenatBCG started early.) This was a valuable lesson that I carried into consulting! I routinely dig into what my clients say is their problem to see what their challenges truly are.”
– Michelle Russell, Senior Partner & Managing Director

“Be prepared to go outside of your comfort zone – the most transformative experiences you will have in your career will be those that are new (and uncomfortable) to you. To successfully navigate this new terrain, be sure to maintain perspective and confidence through the tough times. At the end of the journey, the experience is always worthwhile.”
– Justin Rodriguez, Principal

“I started at BCG as an associate in 1983, and it’s been quite a journey since then. Over the course of 30-plus years, I’ve learned a lot. In particular, I’ve learned about people. I’ve learned that it’s the responsibility of leadership not to presuppose they know what employees want. I’ve learned that people don’t want special treatment—they want to feel they are being treated fairly with the support they need to do their jobs. I’ve learned that ‘burnout’ doesn’t help us—or our clients. And I still have a lot to learn.”
– Matt Krentz, Senior Partner & Managing Director

“As a sophomore in college, I decided to explore new ways of thinking. I broke out of my majors in government and economics and actively began a pursuit of lateral thinking in art history (modern, Japanese, Chinese) and psychology. I found that both my energy and my personal growth accelerated when I stretched myself to explore new fields and new ways of thinking in diverse and unknown areas. At BCG, I have found the same. It has been the times in my career when I have explored new topics, businesses, geographies, teams, or leadership challenges that I have learned and grown the most. BCG has provided a steady stream of opportunities to pursue my passions, which is what keeps me energized about BCG as I head into my 20th year with the company.”
– Adam Farber, Senior Partner & Managing Director

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In Their Own Words

How Can You Take the Lead in Your Career?

BCG Senior Partner and Managing Director Roselinde Torres—a leadership expert and TED@BCG speaker—shares her advice with new graduates in this commencement address.

Career Paths

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