• Role: Strategy Consulting Summer Intern
  • Location: London
  • University: Oxford
  • Degree: Chemistry
  • Organisation: PwC

Doug Sexton

Why did you choose to do an internship with PwC?

It seemed like a great opportunity to experience the business world before attempting to apply for jobs. I knew it would give me a feel for the company to see if I could imagine working there. It was also an invaluable experience and I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that it was a really useful piece to put on my CV.

How did it tie in with your overall career plans?

With my degree being in chemistry, it gave me a great opportunity to experience what working in a professional environment is like and learn a lot more about the world of business.

What was the application process like?

The application process was a really good experience. It was very streamlined and mostly enjoyable (unfortunately there are the obligatory online tests). The assessment days were really great with as much focus on the interviewees seeing if PwC was a good fit for them as PwC seeing if the interviewees were right for the role.

What attracted you to your role?

The opportunity to work across a breadth of industries on short projects. It gives you a great opportunity to learn a lot about business in a short space of time, which was ideal for someone like me who had little practical experience.

What were your main duties?

As interns, we were essentially treated as associates would be upon joining the organisation. Over the eight weeks, I worked on 3-4 projects alongside a few other pieces of work. It was a great experience and gave me an unrivalled insight into what life as a full time associate would be like.

What were the most important things you learned from the internship?

I gained a comfort with new challenges and a willingness to give things a go. Maybe it’s a bit of a cliché, but because you become part of the team so quickly after training, you are somewhat thrown in the deep end and it makes you much more comfortable with being in that situation further down the line.

Do you have any advice for someone seeking an internship?

Definitely make the effort to go to the recruitment events; they give you much more insight into the business than a web page can. Practice talking about businesses that interest you and thinking through how they work and earn revenue. It sounds simple but an ability to articulate basic concepts like that will help hugely for interviews. Finally, don’t be intimidated by what other applicants have done or the experiences on their CV. You may not be doing a business/economics degree but don’t worry, you aren’t expected to turn up an expert in the world of business – an ability to think through problems logically is far more important.

What skills did you acquire or improve during your internship?

I acquired a grounding in major technical skills that I use day to day in my current role (e.g. interviewing, research, some of the analysis we do etc.).
Also, there was a huge learning curve on the business acumen side of things. An ability to identify the key points to a business or market, key opportunities and risks is something you end up practicing a lot. 

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