Received interview from BCG Seoul, but don't want to take it

BCG MBB reapplication Withdraw
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Anonym A fragte am 7. Dez. 2022

Hi all,

I recently applied for BCG at both London (primary location) and Seoul (secondary) but to be honest was looking for a job at London. I recently received an invite for interview at Seoul, and the email said I should assume that London had rejected me. Would it look bad if I withdraw the application?

I know about the unique hierarchical culture of Korea, and obscenely long hours worked, so was pretty put off the prospect of ending up there. I'm thinking of reapplying next year/year after to London/US offices but was wondering if withdrawing my application to Seoul would be detrimental to my chances of getting in the next year?

 

EDIT - I also want to ask to recruiters, in the case I do land a job at Seoul, what would the chances be of me deferring the offer by a year let’s say, then getting into London with my initial offer?

Many thanks for answering this in advance

(editiert)

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Cristian
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bearbeitete eine Antwort am 8. Dez. 2022
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Hi there, 

Interesting situation, but I would look at it in a different way. 

I would go ahead with the interview in Seoul. You only stand to win from this. 

If you fail, then at least you got to experience the interview process, learned a lot from it and you know what to expect next year (when you were planning on re-applying next year). 

If you succeed, then you can already get started with work. I wouldn't be too concerned about the working culture in Korea because you can either make an effort to be staffed mostly externally (which wouldn't be difficult considering BCG's global footprint), or take it as a challenge and try to learn from it. Then you can always transfer to London in 1-2 years. 

You can find HERE a few tips on how to deal better with lifestyle challenges at the start of your consulting career. 

Best,

Cristian

(editiert)

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Francesco
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antwortete am 8. Dez. 2022
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Hi there,

1) I'm thinking of reapplying next year/year after to London/US offices but was wondering if withdrawing my application to Seoul would be detrimental to my chances of getting in the next year?

If you don’t want to take the Seoul offer, you will have eventually to withdraw anyway. I would recommend to withdraw now with a “reasonable” reason and if possible calling HR to explain it – I cannot see reasons to proceed forward just to reject the offer later.

2) In the case I do land a job at Seoul, what would the chances be of me deferring the offer by a year let’s say, then getting into London with my initial offer?

It is very difficult to move to a different office before joining. That’s even more difficult if you ask to defer one year and then ask to move. So I would not count on that strategy.

You could however join in Seoul, work there 1-2 years and then look for a transfer.

Best,

Francesco

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

Hi there,

to your last point first: If you were to get an offer from the Seoul office but then decided to defer it for a year with the hope of converting it to a London offer, it is very unlikely to succeed. There are many threads on PrepLounge with people asking how switching office location works (probably worth a read as there are many factors playing a role).

While Korea is probably one of the most extreme in terms of hours worked, you can assume to be working pretty long hours everywhere when you get into consulting. If you cannot see yourself sticking it out in Korea, you can view the process as an exercise. 

If you get rejected, you are blocked from re-applying anywhere at BCG for a year  - but you are not planning on re-applying before then anyway. If you get accepted, you can always use some personal circumstances as reason to not accept the offer.

For future reference, it's probably a good idea to do some research on culture and working norms specific to certain geographies before listing them as your location priorities

 

 

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Ian
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bearbeitete eine Antwort am 7. Dez. 2022
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Hi there,

Not sure why you applied to Seoul then…

That said, I personally would proceed with the interview. The worst case scenario is you learn and get valuable practice. Best case, they give you an offer and then you can decide from there (realize the offer is valuable and worth the 2 year sacrifice, OR ask to defer a year an then ask for London).

As you commence your prep, make sure to read the following: https://www.preplounge.com/en/articles/pitfalls-case-interview-preparation

Good luck!

(editiert)

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Maikol
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antwortete am 7. Dez. 2022
BCG Project Leader | Former Bain, AlixPartner, and PE | INSEAD MBA | GMAT 780

If this year you have been rejected by BCG London, you will likely be rejected also in one year, in particular, if you decide not to go ahead for Seoul and in one year your CV is not remarkably different. 

If you don't want to work insane hours in Korea, why did you apply for Korea as a secondary location?

It would be smart to try to land a job in Korea and then try to move to another location. 

PS: Why London? Do you have everything in place for immigration? Do you know the UK market? MBB hiring is getting tougher, so expectations should be considerably reviewed and made concrete.

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Rushabh
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antwortete am 7. Dez. 2022
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Hello,

This is quite tricky because if you have willingly applied to Seoul, you should be ready to interview with them atleast. 

I think it will look bad on your next year's applications because HR will certainly have a record of your current application, and the fact that you cancelled the interviews would also be recorded.

You could probably do one of the following:

1- Withdraw the Seoul application citing a reason that is not offensive. Maybe something like your personal circumstances have changed (e.g. partner has moved to London). Do not make any false claims, just frame it carefully in a way that does not rub them the wrong way.

2- Do the interviews, if you get the offer - you can choose not to accept it. If you do not get the offer - nothing to worry.

All the best!

Rushabh

 

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Hagen
Experte
antwortete am 10. Dez. 2022
Bain Project Leader and interviewer for 7+ years | >95% success rate | mentor and coach for 6+ years

Hi there,

First of all, congratulations on the invitation!

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's generally acceptable to withdraw your application to a job if you are no longer interested in the position or location. In your case, if you are not interested in working at the BCG office in Seoul and would prefer to reapply to the London or US office in the future, it's perfectly acceptable to withdraw your application to the Seoul office.
  • Withdrawing your application to the Seoul office is unlikely to have a significant impact on your chances of being hired by BCG in the future, as long as you handle the withdrawal professionally and with respect. If you choose to withdraw your application, it's a good idea to notify the recruiting team at BCG and explain your reasons for doing so in a polite and professional manner.
  • In terms of the possibility of deferring your offer if you are hired by the Seoul office, this is ultimately up to BCG and the specific circumstances of your offer. Some companies may be willing to defer an offer for a limited time, depending on the needs of the business and the availability of the role. However, it's important to keep in mind that deferring an offer is not guaranteed, and you should be prepared to accept the offer and begin working at the Seoul office if that is the outcome.

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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Florian
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antwortete am 8. Dez. 2022
#1 rated McKinsey Coach | Top MBB Coach | 5 years @ McKinsey | Author of the 1% | 120+ McK offers in 18 months

Hey there,

I would definitely go ahead with the interviews now:

  • Worst case: a practice opportunity and you do not leave the recruiting funnel on bad terms
  • Best case: you get a BCG offer, which provides you with a lot of room for negotiation and future opportunities (e.g., open doors with other firms, internal transfer to London at a later stage

Cheers,

Florian

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Cristian

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