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How to build a consulting career that makes a difference.

Aim High
We help consultants solve bigger and better problems.
Consultants are in the business of solving problems: we define success, design our approach, measure results, and try again.

We believe the same rigor should be used when attempting to make the world a better place. At Consultants for Impact, we use research to explore how consultants can maximize their careers’ positive impact.

Every path to impact is different. But by following a shared set of principles, each of us can figure out which types of roles or projects are especially effective.

Choose Your problem
The problem you focus on significantly influences your impact.

Research shows the biggest contributor to how much the impact we will have in our lifetime may be the problems we choose to work on. The best chance at finding treasure is to look where others haven’t. In social impact, this is also true. 

We advocate thoughtfully estimating a projects’ potential for impact in order to decide, after sifting through all the potential options, yes, this is the one.

Hiding in plain sight: 
Protecting kids from lead exposure

Lead poisoning affects millions of kids and families around the world. Despite the high death toll, the issue hadn't received much media attention. As of early 2024, lead paint was still legal to make in 55% of countries even though cheap alternatives were often available. This was a problem just waiting for a project.

In 2020, a handful of concerned professionals started the Lead Exposure Elimination Project (LEEP), which effectively advocates for better lead laws around the world. LEEP’s programs are estimated to protect children from lead exposure for only $1.66 per child, or less than $5 per year of healthy life. And they're scaling, fast.

Three characteristics of a problem that has especially high impact potential:


How large is this problem? How many lives are affected, and to what degree?


How far can one more dollar, or one more full-time employee, go towards solving the problem?


How saturated is the market for solving this problem? Is it crowded relative to others?

Curious to learn more? Watch Peter Singer, one of the 21st century’s leading moral philosophers, explain how this framework can help us all make our social impact work more effective.

Case Study
From a speech science PhD to supporting safer AI regulation

While BCG consultant Anneke Pogarell was pursuing her doctorate in speech science, she grappled deeply with where she could make the biggest difference. After working with Consultants for Impact, she decided to use her problem-solving skills and language fluencies to build support for better AI regulation.

Anneke Pogarell
Anneke Pogarell

“It’s hard to estimate how much more impactful my current career will be than my previous path, but it’s probably more than 50x” Anneke shared, “I’m uncertain if my previous career path had any significant impact at all – I was a little lost there, driven by the belief that I couldn’t contribute to making a difference in this world.”

Explore the unexpected
Find opportunities where your skills are irreplaceable, not just nice-to-have.
Consider the counterfactual: would the project be okay without you? To make the biggest impact, it’s not just about finding important, solvable, and neglected problems. It’s also asking, “where are my skills needed the most?” or  “if I wasn’t there, how hard would it be for the project to get the job done?” We call this “considering the counterfactual.” It’s a good way to test whether an opportunity is impactful or just exciting.

Sometimes this means going weird places. Few of us felt passionately about pandemic preparedness before COVID-19, even though researchers (and Bill Gates!) were sounding the alarm. Often, the best opportunities involve serving causes or groups that many charities miss, such as people who live far away, animals, or those not yet born. Some of our members are pivoting to work on reducing severe risks from AI, which is moving faster than anyone expected.

Find your leverage
You really can make a difference – and we can help.

If you resonate with our principles and want to increase your lifetime impact, please reach out. Our team and global network of like-minded consultants would love to meet you.

If you work in consulting, you are likely curious, driven, analytical, and deeply invested in outcomes. And you’re not alone! No matter your skills or background, we’re excited to explore how these might translate to a meaningful career path. We’re here for all stages of the career planning journey, from brainstorming fields to comparing job offers.

Consultant and mentor