L.E.K. Consulting Reviews

Updated October 24, 2014
Updated October 24, 2014
168 Reviews
3.8
168 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
L.E.K. Consulting Global Managing Partner Stuart Jackson
Stuart Jackson
46 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Improving attempts to manage work/life balance compared to the past (in 8 reviews)

  • Great people to work with at the consultant and associate level (in 12 reviews)


Cons
  • Obviously work/life balance is tough but better than competitors due to no travel (in 34 reviews)

  • Long hours (but typical of other consulting firms, as I understand it) (in 31 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Glad it's over

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consultant
    Current Employee - Consultant

    I have been working at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Good money, decent exit opportunities

    Cons

    Unpredictable hours, managers who don't care. Terrible culture.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Try to create a better work/life balance for employees

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Hard working, fast paced, poor lifestyle

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Summer Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Summer Consultant in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at L.E.K. Consulting as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Exposure to many different industries. Tons of responsibility. As a consultant, you are a project manager

    Cons

    Lots of PE work means long hours. Lots of responsibility...can be overwhelming at first.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3. 2 people found this helpful  

    worst work life balance you will ever experience short of iBanking

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Associate Consultant
    Former Employee - Associate Consultant

    I worked at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    growing brand
    resume builder (but has ways to go to compare with McK and BCG)
    OK pay (not great given the hours or compared to other firms)

    Cons

    work life balance is non existent. burns you out like nothing else.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    staff projects better. learn how to scope. implement better people management norms. we are not slaves.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 4 people found this helpful  

    Reasonable "stepping stone" for business career with serious shortcomings (constant stress, no support, toxic culture)

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Interesting, enthusiastic colleagues in the associate and consultant positions. Great place to build business skills and open a lot of doors. You learn a lot in a short amount of time and see a lot of companies, industries and problems to solve.

    Cons

    - The partners who are the root cause of unpredictable hours and constant rework; they then turn around in office-wide meetings and tell you to "defend yourself" and your work/life balance.
    - The lack of accountability as an organization to manage long hours. There is a huge contingent of born-and-raised L.E.K. management (esp. managers) who perpetuate the culture of late nights and face time. There is no metric really ever tracked that holds an Office Head responsible for bad hours.
    - There is a philosophy at L.E.K. that you should learn from others, however with all the long hours and excessive partner re-works -- there is little time to actually teach another person. If you choose to teach someone something, that's on your own time and really just extending your day by another hour or two. The in-house training (PD) is very weak unless you are an A1, maybe A2, and really a waste of time that you'd rather have back to make your overall day shorter.
    - The allocations manager / process that rewards you for doing a good job by never giving you a down day if you have solid reviews. There is no such thing as "beach days", that is a consulting term that only refers to other firms. At L.E.K., you do 10 hours of client development work on your down day. Never expect to be staffed on an industry or case you've requested, as the L.E.K. system is too small and it virtually never happens if you are a generalist (not in Life Sciences / Healthcare).
    - The often not executed HR policy that: if you work more than 80 hours in a week, you get a day off. While this is written in L.E.K. policies, it's subject to your manager's, and maybe partners', discretion. Even if they choose to give you one, the allocations manager can still REJECT that. Do not count on these days (but work the same hours)!
    - The entire review / feedback process demotivates everyone since even if you do a good job, your superior will just write pages on how you can do better "to be at the next level".
    - The firm is run by accountants who count every penny. You are nickel-and-dimed when you leave (you might have to pay back $30 to the firm). Also, since allocations is run by accountants, they want to have their "resources" (staff members) on cases 100% of the time. They might even double staff you and change 2 clients, however you would never see any of that.
    - There is NO post-L.E.K. career support. You do not get any time off or time off with pay like other major firms. You do not get partner support or assistance in reaching out to their business contacts to get you interviews (again, unlike other firms). The process of leaving is: keep in a secret, maybe find a job while you are still at L.E.K., quit, have allocations try to turn your 2 weeks of pay into 1 more day (again, it's run by accountants, so they don't want "dead weight" sitting around on payroll), leave, sleep, begin the job search. As a result, there is a much smaller group of loyal L.E.K. alumni. While associates and consultants help one another, very few are loyal to the firm (rather they are loyal to the people they went through this with). It's overall a negative cycle that the partners should probably realize hurts future business --> keep alumni (a.k.a. future clients) happy!

    All this said, it can still be the right place if you are looking for a jumping off point in a business career. Endure it for 2 years and don't look back. I would never recommend this place to my friends, because I don't want them to go through the same ordeal; however it served me well in getting exactly what I needed.

    As for the business outlook (mentioned below), in terms of revenue - I think the firm will do fine in coming years. In terms of organizational change, I wouldn't hold my breath.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I don't believe there's any advice to give that would actually be acted upon. The attempt to hold "tough" partners accountable for case team abuse, longer hours and poor office morale has resulted in nothing in recent years. The lack of incentives to management to create a nice culture (i.e., maybe say "thank you" every 6 months) has really not been a good long term strategy for the firm's retention levels. There is a clear sense of partners viewing case team members as resources and not actual people.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great people, exciting work, lots of hours

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consultant in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Consultant in Boston, MA

    I have been working at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    People are fun to be around, work is exciting and (mostly) pure strategy, culture feels like a small company. Responsibility is given early to MBA graduates, and fast promotion is possible for high performers. Great pay.

    Cons

    Hours can be long. At times there is a culture of feeling the need to stick around for long hours for the sake of it. IT systems are outdated and frustratingly slow

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Upgrade IT, maintain team culture, keep selling exciting projects, staff teams so hours are more manageable.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    A great means to an end, but not for a long-term career

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Consultant in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Consultant in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great experience and responsibility in a relatively limited amount of consulting time; limited travel relative to other consulting firms; promotion largely based on merit and not tenure

    Cons

    Very tight timelines and short-staffing are rampant on projects to maximize profitability, but this results in limited to no work-life balance, frustration, burnout, and high turnover

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Implement policies to enable a more sustainable work-life balance for dedicated and talented employees

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Know what you're getting into; great learning experience, helps identify what you're looking for (and what you're not)

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Associate in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    - Small case teams
    - First year salary competitive with other consulting companies
    - Greater visibility given smaller office
    - Shorter cases exposes you to a wider array of content matter than at other consulting firms

    Cons

    - Allocations (getting put on a case week 2 of 3 of a due diligence can lead to sub-optimal contributions to the team)
    - Bureaucracy (SWAP variability, wide variability in case experience even within offices)
    - Hours (some teams will have more of a "face time" culture than others; others will stay around past dinner each night more out of habit than actual productive working time)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Benchmark other consulting companies and offer similar benefits to your employees to retain top talent.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Excellent strategic consulting firm to build your business foundation

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Associate Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Associate Consultant in Chicago, IL

    I worked at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Develop very practical skill sets, ranging from conducting in depth due diligence for private equity firms to building merger synergy models to sizing markets and writing business plans

    Cons

    The hours can be long

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Experience depends entirely on the office location, the culture of your team, and the partner leading it.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant

    I worked at L.E.K. Consulting full-time

    Pros

    Small shop with lean case teams results in good client exposure for associates and consultants

    Cons

    Partners range from "engaged and collaborative" to "mostly absent until the last second and unimaginable a**holes"

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hold those problem partners accountable for abuse of their teams and turnover rates.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11.  

    Challenging environment builds great skillbase

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Senior Associate Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Associate Consultant in Chicago, IL

    I worked at L.E.K. Consulting full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Almost universally a good team that you want to work with, even very late. Minimal travel, shorter projects (though sometimes too short), good office locations. Partners will push you and managers will give you more and more challenges if you do well. Learn both the "soft" skills of management consulting, as

    Cons

    Some projects are cookie-cutter and not too stimulating. Some associates have poorer experiences if they get on a few unlucky projects. External hires in the middle (consultant, manager) are generally worse than internal promotes.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep the start-up/entrepreneurial feel, unique perks, and culture (firm-wide and office-specific). Reward long-term employees.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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