In your situation, it would be very useful to have a referral from an alumnus of either the top 2 strategy firm who moved to MBB or of your universities - potentially more challenging since it is not a target school.
The most powerful way to counterbalance any weak point in your CV (as a non-target school) is indeed to find a good referral.
To find a referral, you should follow three steps:
- Identify the people that can help you
- Write them a customized email
- Have a call and indirectly ask for a referral
As general tips:
- Don’t use LinkedIn for your communication – emails work better. You should target 30% conversion for your messages; if you are not achieving that, there is space for improvement.
- When sending emails, your goal should be to organize a call, not to ask questions – you can then use the call for the questions.
- You need to close the call with an indirect request for a referral – don’t leave that to chances. There are specific ways to phrase it.
You should prepare three main things before the call:
- Your own pitch. 3-4 lines should be enough
- 3-4 questions on the personal experiences of the person. Avoid to ask questions on the company
- A closing question for the referral. It should be an indirect request to avoid to be too pushy
Before the call, you should have your CV and Cover ready – in this way you can send them right away it if the person wants to refer you.
If you are interested to know the exact email to write, questions to ask and indirect closing to land the referral, please feel free to PM me.
I provide a 30 min session at 50% discount to understand the right steps to get MBB referrals, directly from home – no events participation required.
This includes all the scripts needed for the email to send and the call to have with the consultant.
Following the same process, I managed to get 6 invitations out of 6 applications – including all MBB. I regularly see my mentees getting referrals for MBB with that.
Note: some people will ask you to pay money for a single referral – there is no need to do so if you know the right steps to get all the referrals you want.