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Meet an Analyst
Lisa Pettersson Lisa Pettersson B.A. in Art History and Pre-Med from Columbia University

How did you choose such disparate majors at Columbia?

I majored in art history and had a pre-med minor. Art has always been one of my passions, and I thought it was a wonderful opportunity to be able to study it in a city that has such a vibrant, textured artistic community. At the same time, I was attracted to the rigorous analytical challenges that were posed by my pre-med courses.

While I wouldn't say these two areas came together in an entirely cohesive way, I really valued being exposed to such distinct modes of thought.

What attracted you to MMG Partners?

When I decided to go into business, I knew that I wanted to do consulting. It is a challenging profession that provides recent graduates with the greatest breadth of experience. I wanted to be given real problems that would challenge and stimulate me intellectually. Since joining MMG Partners, I have been able to work on a multitude of projects, from cost-cutting at a bulge-bracket investment bank to evaluating trading systems at a Middle Eastern financial exchange.

What is it like working at MMG Partners? How have you been able to balance work and personal life?

To be perfectly frank, balancing the two is not a simple task. Nevertheless, I've been given more responsibilities here than I could dream of anywhere else. I've been exposed to a variety of projects, worked closely with upper management, and traveled to places as distant as Jamaica, Sweden, and Dubai. All things considered, I've found it to be a highly rewarding experience.

This isn't to say that I haven't had time for myself. I still have a many interests outside of work that keep things exciting. Last year, I practiced and sang with the Young New Yorkers' Chorus, performing pieces by Brahms, Durufle, and Bernstein. Recently, I curated an art exhibit in Brooklyn featuring contemporary pieces from two up and coming artists.

What advice do you have to give applicants?

When it comes to interviewing, I would advise people to be honest and really try to understand the questions that are being asked. Although this may sound simple in theory, it can be difficult in practice. Some candidates are afraid that their interviewer will be critical of them and have a very preconceived idea of what they are looking for. Meanwhile, those who dare to ask questions for clarification purposes are the most effective interviewees.
Consulting largely focuses on analytical processes and client encounters. Therefore, it is crucial to maintain a relaxed yet professional demeanor and to feel comfortable posing critical questions to quickly get to the core of the problem you are trying to analyze.

Good luck!