I first joined L.E.K. as a summer intern between my first and second years of business school. The internship flew by as I worked on varied and challenging cases with supportive teams. At the end of the summer, I received an offer to return full-time and decided to accept. Now I’m back full-time as a consultant and with the benefit of a few months of work, I’ve come to appreciate the L.E.K. internship experience even more than I did at the time.


The first benefit I’ve gleaned has been from the training. The week of training on hard and soft skills as part of the internship provided a solid foundation for my summer. However, many of the key takeaways and finer points didn’t fully sink in until I went through full-time training and had the advantage of more case experience. For example, we covered the role of a consultant on a case team and how to be effective in the role in internship training. I tried to be mindful of this through the summer but it’s only now that I’ve come to appreciate the subtleties we discussed in terms of how to effectively manage upward and downward.


Perhaps the clearest area where the internship helped me was in providing real case experience that I’ve been able to draw on. I worked on projects that couldn’t have been more different - consumer trends for a food company and growth strategy for an engineered industrial products company. Yet I’ve drawn on both experiences in my recent cases in terms of what makes for an attractive growth opportunity in industrial products and how to effectively communicate customer insights in PowerPoint slides, for example.    


Lastly, I’ve benefited from the relationships I formed through the summer. These have included senior mentors, peers, fellow interns and team members who I’ve kept in touched with and worked with again in some cases. Summer associates and consultants are valued members of the consulting staff. 


In sum, I’ve found the transition from internship to full-time at L.E.K. to be smooth and having the summer experience to be hugely advantageous in my career. I highly recommend applying for the summer associate internship if you are in your penultimate year of undergraduate or business school.