Bicycles, paddle boards, kayaks, hot tubs,…IPAs, and candy—just not at the same time. Some days, your consulting work is more related to the things you have at home—or would like to have at home—than others. For Brett Conradt, Managing Director in Stax’s consulting practice, working in consumer and retail is an area of interest and expertise.
“Stax started looking at the craft beer space about six years ago, and it’s been fascinating to see how it’s grown during this time,” Conradt says. “We’ve been looking at it from both a brewer and supplier perspective. It’s been interesting to follow the ‘re’-evolution of an industry and shifting consumer preferences, and then apply that knowledge to tackle classic business dynamics of a rapidly growing market. Plus, being invited to tastings at different breweries happens to be a nice bonus.”
“While I love the consumer and retail space, my focus is on solving business problems and identifying opportunities for growth, across industry sectors, through data and market knowledge,” says Conradt. “It doesn’t matter what the end industry is—healthcare, information technology, industrials, or consumer products—you have to start with the data.”
Having joined the firm in 2006 as a Consultant, Brett credits Stax with giving him opportunities to pursue engagements and clients aligned with his interests, and to start developing direct client relationships early on in his career. The access and opportunities allowed him stretch and learn—which wasn’t always easy—but provided the best learning and paid dividends in the long run. He encourages the newer members of the team to identify what they’re passionate about and how they can push themselves and Stax’s efforts forward in those areas.
“If you find yourself with a desire to read through potential changes to the ACA on the train in the morning, you may want to spend more of your time in our healthcare vertical. But regardless of the end industry, your core passions also need to include helping clients make good decisions and grow their businesses.”
With social responsibility being a shared value at Stax, Brett has also been able to bring resources to the community. He leads the Stax relationship with the Illinois Consulting Academy at the University of Illinois, helping students to prepare and ready themselves for careers in consulting. Brett and his family also support a number of local community organizations, and he regularly encourages colleagues to get out and get involved.