Call with a Consultant

MBB networking Referral
Neue Antwort am 31. Jan. 2023
6 Antworten
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Anonym A fragte am 27. Jan. 2023

Dear Coaches,

I am thankful of the coaches here. By following your advice, I was able to get a call with consultant at one of the MBB's. Since am the one who asked for the call, how should I maximize it? we don't have common things with the consultant, so how do I navigate through the call? Most consultants here say don't ask for referral directly, but we all know most of these calls' objectives are to get a referral. so How do I do it without coming off desperate?  What are some of the questions or topic I should ask or discuss? How do I end the call before the consultant feel I am taking more time than necessary, and do I suggest follow up chats/meeting etc? The call is about 30 min and my fear is before that time ends, I may run out of ideas or questions

Any advice regarding the call will be highly appreciated? 

Thank you to all the coaches. I had no idea how to network or what to say but through your advice, am making some progress on that front.



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Victoria Christine
antwortete am 27. Jan. 2023
1st&2nd Session 50% off|BCG Consultant ME|President of the Consulting Club|Esade MBA |Offers from McKinsey & BCG

Dear A,

Congrats on scheduling the call. It is not always easy and proves that you have good communication skills.

I am gonna give you some tips that have worked great for me in the past, and I expect them when I have calls with people who would like to work for BCG.

1. Start by presenting yourself in 1-1,5 minutes. Keep it short and keep it interesting. You will need it for your interviews as well, so please prepare this.

2. Ask very specific questions. Don't start by saying that you just wanted to meet them and make it seem like a casual chat. Consultants are super busy and want to interact with people who know what they want and need. Otherwise, they'll feel that you're wasting their time.

3. They know you need a referral so please don't make it awkward and ask for it. They'll most probably offer to do it if they like you. If you really want to ask though, frame it like this “Do you think that a referral is a must in order to have my CV reviewed, or can I just submit my application on the website and still have a chance to be considered”? By this sentence, you give them the chance to kindly offer you the referral.

4. Keep it as short as possible. When you don't have something else to ask, then just be honest about it and say that you don't have any more questions and that you really appreciate they took the time to talk with you.

5. Show that you understand how busy they are and make very clear how thankful you are they devoted their time to answering your questions.

6. After your call, send a follow-up thank you message.

That's all from me! Hope I helped:)

Best of luck with everything:)

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Anonym A am 27. Jan. 2023

Thanks, Victoria, for the detailed answer. I will sure follow your advice.

Victoria Christine am 30. Jan. 2023

Let me know if you need anything else:)

Anonym B am 30. Jan. 2023

This is very helpful Victoria. I have sent you a pm. Hope we can book a short session to talk about this.

Content Creator
antwortete am 28. Jan. 2023
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

So glad that we've been able to help!

Please remember that free Q&As, while helpful, are about 1/10th of what you can get with coaching. If you're truly nervous about this call (and have all these questions!) I cannot recommend a coaching call enough.

Now, here are some key tips:

  1. Remember this is a conversation - try not to psyche yourself out. Actually speak with them
  2. Ask genuine questions. What do you really want to know?
  3. Please don't suggest a follow-up call/meeting. They don't want you to start hanging on them. They've given you this call, let them go in peace
  4. You can “hint” at a referral depending on how the call goes
  5. Remember this is a numbers game - 1 call is not enough…it's just the beginning!
  6. There are ways you can keep the thread alive and get referrals - these are techniques I teach my candidates
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Anonym A am 28. Jan. 2023

Thanks Ian

antwortete am 27. Jan. 2023
Seasoned project leader with 7+ years of consulting and recruiting experience in USA and Europe

Hi there,

I would make the call about your interviewer. They are giving you 30 minutes of their probably busy schedule. Ask questions that are appropriate enough to not alienate them but specific enough for you to get value out of them. A few thoughts below in no particular order:

  • What were your reasons for entering consulting?
  • What are the things you like about your company?
  • How did you prepare when you were recruiting?
  • What are the factors that make a good consultant?
  • What is a good work-life balance for you?
  • What is the best way to get my application in front of a recruiter? (here you are hoping that the consultant will ask you to send them your CV)

Many companies have a type of “hire a friend” mechanism in place where consultants can submit referrals and are rewarded for successful ones (if the candidates end up getting hired). 

While the intent is for consultants to refer people they personally know and believe are a good fit for the firm, there is a general incentive structure. 

Expect to get vetted by the person you ask for a referral because it is their credibility and reputation on the line internally. But don't be afraid to bring up the topic of referral in your call because

  • that's really what you are doing these calls for anyway
  • there is a good chance that the consultant has an own incentive for providing a referral

Good luck

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Anonym A am 28. Jan. 2023

Thanks Dennis

Content Creator
bearbeitete eine Antwort am 29. Jan. 2023
Ex-Bain and interviewer for 7+ years | >95% success rate | mentor and coach for 6+ years

Hi there,

First of all, I am happy the forum and us coaches are of help!

I think this is an interesting question that may be relevant for many people. I would be happy to share my thoughts on it:

  • To maximize the call with the consultant, it's important to have a clear objective in mind and prepare in advance. Some tips to keep in mind include:
    • Research the consultant: Before the call, take some time to research the consultant's background and experience. This will give you a better understanding of his/her work and areas of expertise, which can help guide the conversation.
    • Prepare a list of questions: Have a list of thoughtful and relevant questions prepared in advance to ask the consultant. This will show that you are genuinely interested in his/her work and experiences.
    • Be honest about your intentions: It's okay to express your interest in the consulting industry and to ask for advice and guidance. However, be mindful of how you phrase your request and avoid coming across as desperate.
    • Show gratitude: Remember to thank the consultant for his/her time and for sharing his/her insights with you.
    • End the call professionally: As the call comes to a close, it’s important to wrap up the conversation in a professional and courteous manner. Suggesting follow-up chats or meeting would be appropriate after you have established a good relationship with the consultant.
  • Keep in mind that you have about 30 minutes to get to know the consultant and build a relationship. Do not ask for referral directly, instead, aim to build trust, show interest in the consultant's work and the company, and ask for advice.

If you would like a more detailed discussion on how to address your specific situation, please don't hesitate to contact me directly.




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Content Creator
antwortete am 30. Jan. 2023
ex-McKinsey | Senior Interviewer & MBA Coach @ McKinsey | Personalized key-skill coaching |Blue-chip Strategy Lead

Hi there,

Well done on getting this call lined up - that's how it's done. Your objective for the call should be three fold:

  • Get answers to specific questions: This isn't always the case because candidates can find a ton of information online. But if there's something you really want to know and can't easily find, make sure you note it down. Please don't ask if you don't actually care about the answer i.e., asking smart questions just to sound smart.
  • Build rapport with a potential supporter: Treat the call as the first step in a longer relationship and don't make it too transactional i.e., don't ask a series of questions and hang up again. Instead, focus on getting to know the person and learning about their experiences or whatever else they offer, which is generally how people connect. Consultants love to talk about themselves and their work so there shouldn't be awkward silence.
  • Getting referred: It may not happen in the first call and you shouldn't push this, but a referral should generally be a desired outcome of this relationship. Hence, be sure to balance the previous bullet i.e., listening, with confidently talking about yourself and your goals. The interview must get a good impression of you. Be prepared to ask whether they'd consider supporting you throughout the process, which is a less direct way to ask for a referral and leaves room for them to find the right level of support, if they're inclined to give it.

As you can see, plenty to talk about for 30 min!

Best of luck,

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Content Creator
antwortete am 31. Jan. 2023
#1 McK Coach by rating & recommendation rate| Honest feedback: no sugar-coating | Success stories ➨

Hi there, 

I've written an article on PrepLounge that addresses precisely this question. You can read it HERE.



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Victoria Christine gab die beste Antwort

Victoria Christine

1st&2nd Session 50% off|BCG Consultant ME|President of the Consulting Club|Esade MBA |Offers from McKinsey & BCG
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