How does a recent joiner get staffed on a specific practice?

BCG Private Equity
Neue Antwort am 12. Dez. 2022
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Anonym A fragte am 11. Dez. 2022

I have a first round interview with BCG Dubai in 2 weeks (asked them to delay it as I have my finals now) for associate position. I have finance MSc plus CFA level 2. I'm more inclined into finance specialties but I'm not too sure about joining a bank now, though I had the opportunity to, just because I still want to get the best of all worlds, hence why consulting. I don't want to corner myself narrowly now. However, I'm really interested in the PIPE practice at BCG, especially in the middle east. I feel like it's the best utilisation of my skills & experience. Question is - is it a good idea to tell the interviewer I'm interested in this practice? And generally, how do they staff their recent joiners? Does preference play a role?

I indicated my interest in PIPE in my cover letter, needless to say.

Appreciate any help!

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Hagen
Experte
Content Creator
antwortete am 11. Dez. 2022
#1 Bain coach | >95% success rate | interviewer for 8+ years | mentor and coach for 7+ years

Hi there,

This is indeed an interesting question which is probably relevant for a lot of users, thus I am happy to provide my perspective on it:

  • It is generally a good idea to let the interviewer know if you have a specific practice or area of interest within the firm. This can help the interviewer tailor the conversation to your interests and give you a better sense of whether the firm and the specific practice are a good fit for you. Additionally, expressing interest in a specific practice can also demonstrate to the interviewer that you have done your research and are knowledgeable about the firm's offerings.
  • In terms of staffing, most consulting firms, including BCG, have a generalist model, which means that recent joiners are typically not placed into a specific practice or project right away. Instead, they go through a training program to develop their consulting skills and are then assigned to projects based on the needs of the firm and the individual's skills and interests.
  • That being said, preferences do play a role in the assignment process. Consulting firms want to ensure that their consultants are engaged and motivated, so they typically try to align consultants with projects and practices that align with their interests and career goals. So while expressing interest in a specific practice may not guarantee that you will be placed in that practice right away, it can certainly increase the likelihood.

In case you want a more detailed discussion on what to do in your specific situation, please feel free to contact me directly.

Best,

Hagen

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Cristian
Experte
Content Creator
antwortete am 12. Dez. 2022
#1 McKinsey Coach by rating & recommendation rate

Hi there, 

It's great to see that you have a specific idea of what you'd like to do. 

Yes, it's a good idea to tell the interviewers you're interested in a specific practice. It shows them that you understand how different practices work and that you've spent time researching to understand how you could best leverage your skills. 

In terms of staffing, the process is messier than anybody involved would like it to be. The reality is that in the beginning it's assume you have no skills or value proposition, so you're basically allocated in whatever is out there that is willing to take you and where your presence makes at least a bit of sense. 

You don't have much of a say, to be honest, unless you are in a very fortunate situation to have work experience in a certain area and now there happen to be several projects that are looking for someone like you. Honestly, these are exceptions and not the rule. With time, i.e., after the first 1-2 projects, staffing is something that you can have increasingly more control over. As an example, I only used the input from my staffer in the first year and from there I ‘staffed myself' by basically moving from project to project within my network. 

I also wrote an article HERE with a few useful tips on how to handle your beginning as a consultant. 

Best of luck!
Cristian

 

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Ian
Experte
Content Creator
antwortete am 11. Dez. 2022
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

You're a generalist so please make sure you don't give them an indication that you're not a “team player”. You need to show adaptability and flexibility in role assignment. Because that's what will have to happen.

Always be cognizant of how you're coming across! Of course you can say PIPE interests you, but please don't make it look like that's all you care about.

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Dennis
Experte
antwortete am 11. Dez. 2022
Seasoned project leader with 7+ years of consulting and recruiting experience in USA and Europe

Hi there,

as a new consultant, the most important development process will be for you to develop the consulting skill set that you can apply across all topics and industries. Therefore, it is not required (or desired) that you have a specialization from Day 1.

It is absolutely okay to have interests and preferences and I would feel free to talk about them in your interviews. However, the interesting thing about consulting is the opportunity to get a broad overview across many areas. Don't limit yourself and keep an open mind.

As you climb up the ladder, you will want to develop a career focus and position yourself as an expert in specific areas - but you still have time until then

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Rushabh
Experte
Content Creator
antwortete am 11. Dez. 2022
Limited Availability | BCG Expert | Middle East Expert | 100+ Mocks Delivered | IESE & NYU MBA | Ex-KPMG Dxb Consultant

Hello,

Congratulations on receiving the interview invite!

From my personal experience of interviewing for BCG Middle East and receiving the offer, here are my thoughts:

1- It is fine to show excitement to work with PIPE, but in a delicate way. E.g. In your why BCG answer, you can add a point saying "I have heard really great things about the PIPE practice in Middle East. I have spoken to xx and know that BCG deals with top clients in this field…"

2- However, at your career stage - you should fully expect to be placed on any or all projects based on staffing needs

3- Thus, during the interview stage, don't push it too much beyond point 1. 

4. However, after receiving the offer and once you join, you can express your strong interest to the staffing team.

If you need any further help with BCG Middle East, feel free to reach out to me via chat.

All the best!

Rushabh

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Florian
Experte
Content Creator
antwortete am 12. Dez. 2022
Highest-rated McKinsey coach (ratings, offers, sessions) | 450+ offers | Author of The 1% & Consulting Career Secrets

Hey there,

The first project is usually allocated by your staffers based on

  • supply and demand of projects
  • partner requests
  • resume/project fit
  • your preferences

usually, in that order. After that, it becomes much more like an informal job market.

Cheers,

Florian

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Hagen

Content Creator
#1 Bain coach | >95% success rate | interviewer for 8+ years | mentor and coach for 7+ years
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