Get Active in Our Amazing Community of Over 458,000 Peers!

Schedule mock interviews on the Meeting Board, join the latest community discussions in our Consulting Q&A and find like-minded Case Partners to connect and practice with!

2nd Round at McKinsey & Company

McKinsey Partner Interview Partners second round
New answer on Sep 30, 2023
5 Answers
10.0 k Views
Ben asked on Jul 03, 2016
PE Intern, Oliver Wyman Intern, Managing Director of a student business consultancy for >2 yrs., Development Banker for >3yrs.

Hey there,

I am currently preparing for my second (and final) round of interviews at McKinsey for an Internship in the Netherlands.

I heard that the second round at McK (2 partner interviews) is slightly different than the first round (1x fit only, 2x case + PEI). To be more specific, I heard that the cases might be more candidate-led and, in some occasions, the interviewer even decided to leave out a case and only talk about personal experience / fit.

Does somebody of you have experience in this matter (or perhaps knows somebody who has been in this situation)?

Many thanks and kind regards,


Overview of answers

  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best answer
Content Creator
replied on Sep 30, 2023
Ex-McKinsey Associate Partner | +15 years in consulting | +200 McKinsey 1st & 2nd round interviews

Hi Ben,

Great questions! The answers for them would depend on the interviewer style. In general, during second round interviews you can expect:

  • More focus on your PEI stories / soft-skills
  • Shorter / more direct questions on cases
  • Extra sharpening on your communication and structuring skills

I hope this helps.



Was this answer helpful?
replied on Mar 09, 2017
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School


Fit interview question are the same at McKinsey interviews on both rounds (Why mck, why consulting, story about you, 3 stories on competencies)

Here is what I wrote for similar question re case types in this forum:

It greatly depends on with whom are you having an interview.

  • Engagement managers (1st round interviews if you think of phone interview as round 0) generally use Mck casebooks and normaly make interviewer-led interviews. In this case they ask you a) To make a structure (issue tree) b) to drill down in some branch of your structure and calculate something. Or they may even ask to analyze smth unrelated to the structure c) question on creativity (e,g, list 10 ways to increase revenues). However you should be ready for both type of interviews at this point
  • Partners and directors have their own favorite cases and mainly want you to lead. The key difference:
  1. You ask clarifying questions in the beginning and make a structure
  2. You lead the case through the structure you've prepared a) asking questions and trying to identify the root-cause of the problem in the branch of your structure b) making a transition to the next branch c) proactively calculating the data and making data-driven conclusion from the data they give you d) Making a conclusion when they ask you to finish a case

It may seem for you that these 2 types of cases are diferent, however the interviewer-led type is just a simplified version of the interviewee-led case. My advice is to always prepare in interviewee-led format so that you could solve both easily.

Was this answer helpful?
Content Creator
replied on May 15, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut


On top of the insights already shared in the post, next week will be pusblished in PrepLounge´s Shop material related.

In concrete, the "Integrated FIT guide for MBB". It provides an end-to-end preparation for all three MBB interviews, tackling each firms particularities and combining key concepts review and a hands-on methodology. Following the book, the candidate will prepare his/her stories by practicing with over 50 real questions and leveraging special frameworks and worksheets that guide step-by-step, developed by the author and her experience as a Master in Management professor and coach. Finally, as further guidance, the guide encompasses over 20 examples from real candidates.

Here I leave you the link >

Feel free to PM me for disccount codes!

Hope you find it useful!



Was this answer helpful?
Anonymous replied on Aug 22, 2020

Dear A!

In the second round, there is more emphasis on communication and fit for the company.

Specifically, the main difference you will find in a final round with partners is that at that stage they:

  1. spend more time on fit questions and your alignment with the company.

  2. check more closely your communication (eg how you react to challenging questions).

  3. may not have a “proper” structured case to present – during one of my MBB finals I had one interview which was made by two market sizing questions and a brain teaser, without any business case. That's because during the final they know you can structure and crack a case (you passed 1 or 2 rounds already) and are more interested in your logic, personality, and fit with the company.



Was this answer helpful?
Content Creator
replied on Nov 21, 2017
McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author

While first round interviews are highly standardized especially at McKinsey, in second-round interviewers bascially everything can happen.

The main idea of second/final round interviews is to ensure your performance in those areas in which you did not convince McKinsey in the first round interviews. This can be either the case interview or the McKinsey PEI, or both. Whatever it is, your weak points from first round interviews are where you can expect a strong focus in the second/final round interviews.

Was this answer helpful?
Alberto gave the best answer


Content Creator
Ex-McKinsey Associate Partner | +15 years in consulting | +200 McKinsey 1st & 2nd round interviews
Q&A Upvotes
31 Reviews
How likely are you to recommend us to a friend or fellow student?
0 = Not likely
10 = Very likely
You are a true consultant! Thank you for consulting us on how to make PrepLounge even better!