A Day in the Life of Mike B.
Mike is based in Avascent’s London office, joining Avascent in July 2017 after completing an Executive MBA at London Business School. Prior to this, Mike worked for eight years in the corporate strategy and development team for Cobham plc. Mike is currently an associate and manages engagements across Europe. He also serves as a key member to Avascent’s civil aviation practice.
Leave home, walk to the train station (if it’s nice weather) and take the train then tube to the office. As I have a fair commute, I like to check my e-mails I’ve missed overnight and review Feedly for all the aerospace and defence news, sharing any relevant articles I find with either my project teams or the company via Chatter.
Arrive at the office. Priority one: tea. This is the London office after all.
Review latest draft of the slides the team has been working on. We’re looking at the underlying market demand for an aerospace parts company. I provide some comments on areas to look at in more detail and challenge the assumptions behind the model.
Sit down with the analyst doing the market model and discuss some of the key inputs. He’s also having trouble with some complicated Excel lookup formulas, so I walk him through the process.
Meeting with the project director. He shares some perspectives he would like to incorporate into this afternoon’s deliverable.
Lunch. I didn’t bring today, so we round up the troops and head out to a local eatery to grab salad boxes. We eat lunch in the conference room and have a meandering conversation that begins with some political debate that somehow descends into talking about how you embroider two layered fabric.
The analysts finalise their slides and send over the final draft for review. I do one last check over – everything looks good, so we send across the client.
We gather in the conference room ready to brief our materials to the client. I begin by outlining the progress we’ve made and the high-level takeaways for the brief. The analysts then present their results to the client in turn. We have a few challenging questions, but between us manage to cover each well. We celebrate a successful meeting with tea.
I compile the notes from the meeting and draw up an action plan to deliver on the requested amendments and deliverables for next week. We have a lot to do, but that’s the nature of M&A diligence work!
It’s been a packed day… definitely time for a fourth tea. I also grab a snack and chat to one of the analysts who’s getting coffee.
I finish and circulate the notes to the team and then swing by each analysts’ desk to discuss the approach and provide guidance as to how to address the problem. We have a lively debate on how to model a particular segment, but the analyst makes some great points about data availability, so we go with her methodology.
We send across an update to the client outlining the work tasks for the week.
The client has some additional requests looking at specific verticals that they’d like incorporating into the work plan for next week. Knowing that this will stretch our analysts given the time available, I respond saying we will review the ask and get back to them ASAP. I grab a much needed sugary pick-me-up from the snack cupboard.
After discussing with the project director, I call the client to let them know that we will adjust the scope of work for the next week to focus more on the requested verticals but will have to push the financial analysis by a couple of days. They say that they understand but would like us to try to provide at least a “quick and dirty” look at the financials. Which in consulting speak means: “the same level of comprehensiveness and how much time you need is your problem”.
Realising it’s now 8:00, I decide to pack up and head home, grabbing dinner at the train station.
I continue to work on the train home, planning out how to best tackle the financials in a way that sufficiently addresses the client’s request whilst not creating days of work. It’s tough, but I have a plan that shouldn’t involve too many late nights.
It’s late and dark, so I get a cab back home. I decide to catch a couple of episodes on Netflix, answer a couple more e-mails that have come in late and then head to bed.