5 skills you need to succeed as a data science consultant

5 skills you need to succeed as a data science consultant

5 skills you need to succeed as a data science consultant. Soft skills to develop for data science consulting career

One famous notion in the consulting industry is that “data science is not about science!”. When we hear this notion for the first time, it sounds a bit odd because, after all, data science has vital routes in highly theoretical fields like machine learning and statistics. But maybe what this notion wants to point out is that there is much more to data science in the consulting industry than just working with statistical methods or machine learning.

Of course, data science is a highly interdisciplinary field built as a combination of machine learning, statistical data analysis, business analytics, and software engineering. But there are some hidden soft skills that one needs to be successful in working as a data science consultant. Here, we discuss those soft skills:

1) Client-facing skills

Client-facing skills matter more than you expect. Often in the consulting industry, you have to interact closely with clients or at least help your superiors to do so. Therefore, you need to have a management consultant’s mindset, understand & manage business requirements, effectively communicate with project and client stakeholders, and present actionable insights & recommendations.

2) Management consulting skills

There are many skills that a highly-qualified management consultant has that data scientists often overlook. Typically, when a consultant, regardless of their capability, interacts with a client, and for that, some specific language and communication styles are required. The management consultant approach to problem-solving, innovation and business analysis is unique and mostly only taught in business schools. Therefore, data scientists working in the consulting industry either have to go back to business school and study an MBA or learn these skills on the job. While the former option might look very attractive, experience shows that working in a world-class consulting company provides a unique chance to grow management consulting skills.

machine-learning consulting big-data careers data-science

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