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Phil Stott

Phil Stott is a Vault Editor. Since joining Vault in 2007, he has covered a variety of industries including consulting, consumer products and technology. He is also well-versed in general career issues, having worked in a variety of fields including freelance journalism, consumer banking, English language teaching, soccer coaching and more. Originally from Scotland, he holds an undergraduate degree in English Literature and Modern History and a Masters in Research in Civil Engineering. 


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All Posts by Phil Stott

Should You Get Paid More for Working on Leap Day?

by Phil Stott  |  February 29, 2016

It's the rarest date on the Gregorian calendar, which raises an important issue: if you're a salaried employee, should you be getting paid more for dragging yourself to work for this extra day? (Especially when it's a Monday). So what's your take? Should we all be enjoying an extra day off? Banking an extra 366th of our salary (or whatever fraction would be relevant for the number of days we actually work in a normal year)? Or just grinning and bearing it? Let us know in the comments... Read More >

Are Long Hours Good for Your Career?

by Phil Stott  |  February 24, 2016

"I often refer to the series Mad Men, taking place in the '60s, where they're drinking and smoking in the office. And you think, 'What are you doing? You're at work!' But we're doing the exact same thing right now. We're showing up just as bad, in terms of performance. We're not nearly having as much fun, though." That quote, from McKinsey specialist Els van der Helm in a recent McKinsey podcast, suggests that there's an epidemic of poor behavior that is afflicting workers in this day and... Read More >

Interview Skills: The Marco Rubio Edition

by Phil Stott  |  February 08, 2016

The most recent Republican primary featured a by-now infamous exchange between presidential hopefuls Chris Christie and Marco Rubio. Ostensibly about whether or not Rubio had sufficient experience required to do the job of President, the exchange is notable for Rubio's use of a seemingly-canned piece of exposition three times in as many minutes-a piece of theater all the more remarkable for the fact that he was taking flak from Christie for using it, while using it. If you haven't seen the... Read More >

'Netflix for Air Travel': A Consultant's New Best Friend?

by Phil Stott  |  February 01, 2016

By now, we're well-used to the concept of paying a monthly fee for unlimited, on-demand access to something, whether it's episodes of streaming video, DVDs in the mail (remember those?), or, uh, New York Times articles. There's still a question, however, of how the concept scales when it comes to things that we typically don't consume on a daily basis-especially when those things cost a lot of money. Which makes the model offered by OneGo-a new startup that is aiming to give frequent... Read More >

McKinsey Goes to Prison: Unusual Consulting Assignments

by Phil Stott  |  January 27, 2016

I'll admit that my eyebrows went up when I received an email from a colleague this week with the headline "McKinsey Back in Prison." First, a moment of self-doubt: was there a scandal I'd missed? An appeal hearing related to the Galleon Group affair? Nope: everything is on the level. As it turns out, the firm has been contracted to fulfill one of the more esoteric consulting assignments I've heard about recently: fixing the problem with violence among inmates at New York's Riker's Island... Read More >

Raises at Wal-Mart: Why You Should Pay Attention

by Phil Stott  |  January 25, 2016

Wal-Mart is raising pay for the majority of its hourly-wage employees, according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal. Great news for those people but hardly of much interest to the rest of us, right? But maybe it should be. According to the Journal article, the move will affect close to 1.2 million employees of Wal-Mart and Sam's Club stores. Want some context on that number? Try this: if Wal-Mart built a city just for its hourly employees, it would be the 10th-largest city in... Read More >

Is Gender Pay Discrimination a Myth?

by Phil Stott  |  January 21, 2016

The gender pay gap is a tricky, emotive subject to deal with at the best of times. As a recent Freakonomics podcast makes clear, even the best-known statistic about it-that women in the US make 77 cents for every dollar a man makes-can be problematic when teased apart. To be clear: that ratio is more or less correct for the population as a whole. But it's also misleading: it is possible to infer from the statistic, for example, that women are routinely paid 77% of a male colleague's... Read More >

How GM is Killing 250,000 Jobs

by Phil Stott  |  January 15, 2016

I've said it before and I'll say it again: the robots are coming for your job. The latest instalment of this real-life saga: GM's recent $500 million investment in ride-share startup Lyft, which the automaker swiftly followed up with an announcement that it is seeking launch a pilot program of a self-driving fleet of cabs in Austin, Texas. While the exact date of that pilot remains unknown at present, it's as clear a signal as you could hope for about the future direction of the taxi... Read More >

Guess Which MBAs Earn the Most

by Phil Stott  |  January 11, 2016

Are you looking for proof that, the higher you go in an organization, the less likely you are to be a victim of pay discrimination because of your gender or race? Sorry about that: As the above chart from Bloomberg shows, even at post-MBA level, a pay gap exists not only between members of different racial groups, but also between men and women within those racial groupings. At the top of the hierarchy: white and Asian males. At the bottom: black, Hispanic and Native American... Read More >

How to Tell If College Is Worth It

by Phil Stott  |  January 06, 2016

In all the discussion over student debt and the question of how big a crisis the ever-expanding mountain of it represents to the future prosperity of today's students, it's often easy to overlook one key factor: not all debt is created equal. While expensive, the cost of a medical degree or an MBA can often be paid back more easily than, say, the loans for a MFA that doesn't necessarily lead to a lucrative career. But it turns out that there's much more than simple choice of major involved... Read More >

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