After 5 months at Capgemini, having a first short stint on the bench, time spent not resourced onto a project, gives a CDCer the opportunity to reflect on a whirlwind start to life as a consultant.

Following my induction, I was straight onto a project with a major UK retailer. The time on the project was largely spent preparing and delivering workshops, all aimed towards the client designing an improved operating model. The workshops themselves were a fantastic opportunity to learn, both from the client and from the Capgemini team. To be interacting with and listening to senior figures from the world’s third biggest retailer only months into my consulting career was quite something! However the lessons I learned on the project extended far beyond the acquisition of workshop skills.

The non-hierarchical structure of the project team (which reflects Capgemini’s wider ethos) meant that I was able to lead internal meetings and presentations, directly engage with the client, and manage a team of fellow CDCers for certain workshops. As such, you are always on a learning curve and looking for the next opportunity to do something new, so never become too stuck in a routine to make whatever it is you are doing feel too much like ‘a job’!

Beyond our project work, CDCers are encouraged to lead, innovate and help drive forward the consulting organisation. There is so much peer-to-peer learning, which complements the structured training programme all CDCers embark upon, and this access to other people’s ideas and experience helps to foster a culture where people are genuinely thrilled to see and share in each other’s successes. The Quarterly Meetings, in particular, bring the CDC together to share advice and stories (including both highs and lows), as well as getting access to senior Capgemini figures from consulting and beyond. As thrilled as we are to see each other though, CDCers are usually more thrilled to see the drinks appear after the meeting itself please enjoy responsibly

I remember someone in the Capgemini team on the project, after a particularly demanding day preparing for a workshop, remarking that “a day in consulting where you don’t learn something is a day wasted”. I can certainly attest to the fact that, at Capgemini, there is always something to learn.

Will Gallimore, OMPI
Will joined Capgemini as an Associate Consultant in January 2014, after graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in English Studies from the University of Nottingham. Will is part of the Operating Model and Performance Improvement team in Capgemini Consulting. His main interests lie in business development and innovation, particularly in the Consumer Products and Retail sector.