Travel Profession: Business Consultant
Ksenia Yashin from Moscow worked in all parts of the world and swept over 50 different countries. Over the past six months, at least 23 hotels and 88,000 airlock bonus miles and 88,000. "My planet" of Ksenia tells about how the office of the business consultant helps her personal growth, as in traveling, it opens up new faces of cultural and teaching, and most importantly, as after his numerous wandering around the world, she came to the awareness of their roots and love to Russia.
I am a business consultant in a major consulting company, which is engaged in consulting management. We work with companies and government agencies on issues of strategy, marketing, operations and risks. I work in the Moscow office, but we, in principle, there are offices around the world.
I studied at Moscow State University, at the Institute of Asian and Africa. I am an oriental with a bias in the economy, engaged in China. After the university, I did not understand very well what I want to do. Often it happens that when people are not very confident in the industry, nor in features inside this industry, they choose the option to go to consulting. This is a great opportunity to try completely different activities.
I worked on projects with banks, telecommunications, metallurgy, automotive industry, education – strategy, marketing, operations, pricing. I very quickly develop thanks to this work, and it is very pleased with me.
We have to travel a lot. We work for the client, and customers are in completely different places. In addition, we have a lot of trainings, meetings, conferences. Trainings and conferences were in the UK, Austria, Holland, China. And during the vacation, I worked as a volunteer in Africa.
– Why did you decide to go to Africa? In which country worked? What did you do?
– I have long been deeply felt the need, as I call it, "save the world". I have long wanted to be in NGO, I have long wanted to be a volunteer, I have long wanted to go there, where people are not easy. I went as a result of a volunteer in Ghana for the project for the development of entrepreneurship. Worked in a small village. Led the team from five Chinese students there. We worked together with farmers, trying to understand how they get more harvest, how to sell it more expensive, on what else, except for agriculture, they could earn.
– How you adapt to the local working etiquette and to the mentality of the country?
– I’m just trying to look at people as carefully. When I communicate with someone, especially with foreigners, I pay attention to all non-verbal signals, where he turns, smiles or smiles. I always start most carefully. I smile a lot, I give my business card and try to be extremely polite. Say, I’m talking about the weather or kidding somehow quickly. It is necessary to be as polite as possible, do not lift sick themes and exercise enhanced attention. You need to determine at what level you can build communication. I had, for example, a very difficult moment in America. All customers were Americans, completely different age, people for 50 engaged in agriculture. They grew up at another time, accustomed to the other, and with them initially communicated was very hard. I had to force myself to smile and joke. And after each call or meeting, I exhaled: Fuh, I had enough strength, and I coped. Emotionally it was very hard.
– Where was the most inconvenient place to work?
– If you do not consider Africa, where there was no water and completely flies flew mosquitoes, then, of course, the metallurgical plant in Russia. It is very given – air, pollution, small depressive city, climate.
– Tell me about one of the cities in which they managed to plunge.
– for example, Milan. It seems such an industrial city, well, and still shopping. The expectations were the bad, and the whole working week was: steel boxes of plants outside the city, sandwiches from the store for lunch and coffee from automatic machines. And on Friday I came to our office, it is located right on Duomo. Immediately learned from funny colleagues about some small home restaurant nearby. In the evening, accidentally found a wonderful local bar, where there were no women, making Outlets, but were local guys, who even called me a visit the next day. At the weekend found some street musicians who were just lovely and played almost Prokofiev. And somehow it happened, that just like Milan, in the shops asking "you in Russian or in Ukrainian?"Smoke factory chimneys – and I was so mentally there appeared.
– how to change the outlook on life?
– There are a few moments. Of course, I became much more tolerant. I used to have a clear idea – so right and so wrong. It began with the fact, as I studied a year in China. I came back with a clear view – that it is a culture, and this lack of culture. Spitting on the floor in a building or a champ – it incivility. But then just begin to understand that there are different ideas about culture. And if a person champs, it does not make it worse. I learned how to treat everything easier and look at things from different angles.
– For example?
– For example, a person is calling me to visit his best five times in a row, and when I write to him, "Well, OK, let’s address and the time to come" – he pauses. This culture: call in guests – a sign of courtesy, but it does not mean that a person really wants to see you. Or, for example, a person says yes, send your commodity, such volume at that price – and does not send. They improper to say "no", it’s my job to know where not, and where, yes, and in fact, when you are more familiar with the culture, you start well and clearly understand what "yes" that it means. It’s like a second language proficiency, nothing more.
In general, it seems to me, I began to see a lot more differences between people and cultures and to understand how this or that culture developed historically and in what way the Europeans are different from Africans. But on the other hand, I understand, in fact all people are alike. It’s an amazing feeling.
– What are the new skills you have acquired?
– Skill to quickly go through all the controls to zip and run. Now for me to come to the airport 20 minutes before departure – absolutely normal. I know where it is better to go through what to print, and what is not, how to go through online registration and buy a ticket to Aeroexpress in the iPhone Appendix. In this regard, I am a professional. Every step is thought out in advance.
More useful experience – I now feel very comfortable in any city, at any train station and at any airport. I know where to go and how much time it takes. In any country, even if there is not talking about my language, I can explain quickly and efficiently, deal with bureaucracy. The feeling of comfort, when you know that we definitely won’t disappear, wherever you entered, is a pleasant feeling.
– Who met on the way?
– Each trip, I can remember a curious case. In the same Africa, when I worked as a volunteer, people with education, candidates of sciences pounced on me with a knife, because they could not defeat me in the controversy words. This is clearly an exceptional experience, and, of course, it left strong impressions.
In the Texas terrible town we drank with farmers – Hey, Russian girl, let’s drink vodka together. And in the same place, I met an incredible person who flies around the world and thinks that it would be new to build it: Does not build a plant for the production of fertilizers or metallurgical plant? Which industry will be new, what trend will be interesting, what service to offer? He has absolutely no borders. He has a team that works out the details and then! – And he decides to invest a million. Sometime it brings profit, and sometime no. Such large-scale people are a very pleasant spectacle.