1st round interview and math mistakes

case math math mistakes performance qualitative analysis quantitative
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Enrico fragte am 21. März 2022
40+ cases solved. Worked in consulting & finance. Bain+LEK+DLittle candidate. Looking for great partners!


Can you please help me evaluate my performace? Will I pass to the second round?

I just went throug the 1st round interview for Bain. I have done 2 cases with 2 Senior Managers. 

First question: why consulting? why Bain? I was prepared so I gave the right answers and the interviewed looked satisfied.

Then started the FIRST CASE. I think the qualitative part went pretty well, I framed the problem effectively, changed my hypothesis when the interviewer added new information, recognized a revenue cannibalization problem and sinergies in other revenue areas. All in all, the interviewer looked happy with my answers. BUT the quantitative part was a little MESS. He put me some pressure the last 10 minutes and I started to make very stupid mistakes like not being able to make 1% of 50 million…..I just got very emotional for 10 minutes. I got right 50% of calculations, for the other 50% the interviewer got me through. Let's say that there were 11 calculations to make and I got right 5-6 of them…

At the end, I concluded the case in the right way, giving the right recommandations and providing appropriate next steps.

At the end the interviewer asked me how it was and I said that the qualitative part was well done and the quantitative part was messed up because of emotions. He said “Yes, alright”.

The SECOND MANAGER looked not very interested about time passing. He talked a lot about the firm and asked me if I had questions first, so we had a nice talk about opportunities at Bain and what differenciates the firm from competition. It was a very friendly talk that lasted something like 20 minutes.

So, the SECOND CASE lasted 20-25 minutes. He just asked me to help a friend to open a car parking business in the Milan (Italy) citycenter. Let's try to make a P&L.

Again I framed the problem well and started discussing assumptions about number of parking slots, price per hour, opening hours, occupancy rate…and provided a raw estimate of max revenues per year. We did not have enough time to go trough costs, but I am sure that I mentioned the most relavant ones in the qualitative part. I MADE NO MATH MISTAKES IN THE SECOND CASE. So at the end the P&L wasn't complete but the calculations and assumptions made since the beginning were fairly accurate and the interviewer had a very friendly approach to me from the beginning to the end.

My simple question is: will I pass to the 2nd round considering the overall perfomance?

Thank you!

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Content Creator
antwortete am 21. März 2022
#1 McKinsey Coach by rating & recommendation rate

Hi there, 

As you might imagine, it's very hard to tell, but based on the info provided, if you do pass, it's going to be a borderline pass

Don't imagine that you need to have a perfect performance in order to pass management consulting interviews. Not at all. In fact, I made several mistakes in my interviews and in fact my final interview probably was the worst. 

What matters more is your ability to rebound after a mistake, to take a step back, reassess, and attack the problem from a different angle, while maintaining a positive attitude throughout the process. 

You should be hearing back soon from the firm your interviewed with. I hope you get a good answer. If not, don't forget you can always deploy your exiting knowledge to apply to other roles. 

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Enrico am 21. März 2022

Thank you for the answer! Is a borderline pass something that could penalize my application even if the second round is well done? Or the second round will be an independent assessment? thank you

Anonym antwortete am 21. März 2022

Hello there, 

Seems like the decision to qualify for the second round will hinge what the second interviewer felt about you and your competence. Analytical errors such as the ones you highlighted sometimes become a complete no-go even when you ace the rest of the interview. In any case, as the coach above highlighted there is no point speculating. You should get the results in a day-or two. Make sure you ask for proper feedback from whoever calls you with the outcome of the interview.

Good luck!


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Enrico am 21. März 2022

Thank you. As far as I understand you think the first case is a no-pass and I have just to hope for the second manager to defend my application. How would it work in this case? Do the 2 managers talk to each other to make a common stance or the HR will do it for them? Thank you

Anonym am 21. März 2022

Yes, If the second manager gave you a definite yes and the first one was a maybe (or even definite no), then the HR would reach out to the two managers to come up with a consensus decision. But the second interview will have to be a definite yes in this case

Content Creator
antwortete am 21. März 2022
Accenture, Deloitte | Precision Case Prep | Experienced Interviewer & Career Coach | 15 years professional experience

Hey, there is no point speculating. Its very hard to predict the outcome here. Sounds like overall you did fine here. Dont try to anticipate what the interviewer should/shouldn't do. You job is to enjoy the interview, give your best and take it from there. I know this is not what you want to hear…

There are two important questions for you to consider:

  1. Did you give your best?
  2. Which areas you think you can do better next time?

As long as you continue to give your best, dont worry about the outcome. Let things happen. We all get hung up too often on the outcome and create unnecessary anxiety. 

All the best and fingers crossed for you.

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Enrico am 21. März 2022

Thank you for your answer, it is valuable. I know it is difficult to evaluate my performance, I am currently swinging from "Well, overall you were not so bad!" to "F**k, you deserve not to pass for those stupid mistakes...". At the beginning of the interview the manager asked me if it was the first time for Bain, I hope he will take it into account too. Next time I will surely be more accurate, just hope there will be a next time!

antwortete am 22. März 2022
BCG 1st & Final Round interviewer | Personalized prep with >95% success rate | 7yrs coaching | #1 for Experienced Hires

Hi Enrico,

thanks for sharing your experience.

Suggest you wait and see - there is no point speculating, as interviews, by nature, have a certain degree of subjectivity.

In general, strong, stable quant skills and composure are a prerequisite for MBB but also other consulting firms, so for your next interviews, suggest you double-down / come over-prepared on the Maths part. 


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Content Creator
antwortete am 22. März 2022
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut


So hard to tell, but indeed there are some red flags unfortunately… fingers crossed, but it´s gonna be tight. 



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PT antwortete am 14. Jan. 2023

Hello Enrico , 

I am in the same situation. Did you pass ?


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Cristian gab die beste Antwort


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