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From Stethoscope to Strategy: A Medical Doctor's Journey into Management Consulting

Written by Jan Verdonck


consultant-working-in-the-office-and-being-approached

With a deep-seated passion for both medicine and business, I initially chose to pursue a path in medicine. The reason? Transitioning from the medical field to the business sector typically presents fewer obstacles than the other way around. Deciding to pursue my other interest after having dedicated a significant portion of my life to the medical field is still the best choice I have ever made.


This might sound like an odd turn, but it turns out my medical background brought a unique angle to the consulting world, with BrightWolves being the perfect place to prove that a diverse foundation can be a powerful asset in the business realm.


The overlap: Healthcare & Consulting

At first glance, you might think that medicine and management consulting are worlds apart. But look a little closer, and you will see they are not so different after all. Both fields require for instance an ability for critical thinking, problem-solving, data analysis or, of course, effective communication.


For instance, my experience diagnosing complex medical cases sharpened my ability to work out complex business challenges. Or, my proficiency in communication, critical when discussing treatment plans with patients, was equally valuable when presenting findings and recommendations to corporate clients. These skills formed the foundation upon which I built my career as a consultant.


Diverse Projects, Invaluable Learnings

Having been a part of the BrightWolves pack for over a year, I am grateful for having had the opportunity to contribute to a variety of projects in many different industries. This variation is exactly what drew me to consulting in the first place. Here is a glimpse into the journey of a doctor-turned-consultant at BrightWolves!


Take the time I worked with a solar panel manufacturer, focusing on operational excellence. Sure, medicine and manufacturing might seem entirely different, but they both thrive on efficient, quality-driven processes. Using logical reasoning, understanding cause and effect, and digging into data, I was able to fine-tune their production processes and improve efficiency.


Then there was a project that combined my two main interests – optimizing operations in a hospital's operating theatre. There, I could bring my medical know-how, but also apply lessons from my manufacturing project to enhance patient flow and resource use. It was a prime example of how cross-industry knowledge can revolutionize service delivery.


The beauty of consulting is in the diversity of projects you work on. By tackling two commercial due diligences, I explored a less tangible side of business. Yet, my medical background came into play once more, equipping me with the analytical skills to dissect market trends, financial health, and growth potential. And just like making a diagnosis, I found myself assessing risks and benefits with a clinician's eye – a skill that is surprisingly transferable in the business world.


Embracing the journey

Reflecting on my transition from physician to management consultant at BrightWolves, three key learnings are:


  1. Embrace bold decisions: taking calculated risks can lead to rewarding outcomes that you may never regret.

  2. Transferability of experiences: skills and lessons from one field can unexpectedly become useful in another.

  3. Consulting accelerates development: this profession really accelerates both personal and professional development remarkably.


My transition to management consulting at BrightWolves has been more than just a leap of faith; it has been a strategic alignment of my capabilities and aspirations. With a great affinity for the ethos of the company and a clear passion for the work at hand, BrightWolves has proven to be the perfect environment to further deploy this chapter in my life. As I continue this exciting journey, I look forward to not only shaping my own future but also contributing to the impact we have on our clients' projects.

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