Cookie and Privacy Settings

This website uses cookies to enable essential functions like the user login and sessions. We also use cookies and third-party tools to improve your surfing experience on preplounge.com. You can choose to activate only essential cookies or all cookies. You can always change your preference in the cookie and privacy settings. This link can also be found in the footer of the site. If you need more information, please visit our privacy policy.

Data processing in the USA: By clicking on "I accept", you also consent, in accordance with article 49 paragraph 1 sentence 1 lit. GDPR, to your data being processed in the USA (by Google LLC, Facebook Inc., LinkedIn Inc., Stripe, Paypal).

Manage settings individually I accept
expert
Expert with best answer

Clara

100% Recommendation Rate

50 Meetings

12,396 Q&A Upvotes

USD 229 / Coaching

6

Answers to the fit portion of BCG interviews? 2-3 minute answers okay?

For the BCG fit interview, is it okay to present a story in 2-3 minutes? Questions such as "tell me about a time you overcame a challenge" and such.

What is the ideal amount of time. Most of my answers are at 2.5 minutes. Is that long or short?

For the BCG fit interview, is it okay to present a story in 2-3 minutes? Questions such as "tell me about a time you overcame a challenge" and such.

What is the ideal amount of time. Most of my answers are at 2.5 minutes. Is that long or short?

6 answers

  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best Answer
Book a coaching with Clara

100% Recommendation Rate

50 Meetings

12,396 Q&A Upvotes

USD 229 / Coaching

Integrated Fit Guide for MBBHello!

I would not agree at all with 2-3 mins for the Behavioural question. Indeed, you would need at least a 5-7 mins presentation to arrive to the level of depth that is needed, not even including the follow up and clarification questions asked by the interviwer.

In case you want to deep dive on this topic, the "Integrated FIT guide for MBB" has been recently published in PrepLounge´s shop (https://www.preplounge.com/en/shop/tests-2/integrated-fit-guide-for-mbb-34)

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.

Furthermore, you can find 2 free cases in the PrepL case regarding FIT preparation:

Feel free to PM me for disccount codes for the Integrated FIT Guide, since we still have some left from the launch!

Integrated Fit Guide for MBBHello!

I would not agree at all with 2-3 mins for the Behavioural question. Indeed, you would need at least a 5-7 mins presentation to arrive to the level of depth that is needed, not even including the follow up and clarification questions asked by the interviwer.

In case you want to deep dive on this topic, the "Integrated FIT guide for MBB" has been recently published in PrepLounge´s shop (https://www.preplounge.com/en/shop/tests-2/integrated-fit-guide-for-mbb-34)

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.

Furthermore, you can find 2 free cases in the PrepL case regarding FIT preparation:

Feel free to PM me for disccount codes for the Integrated FIT Guide, since we still have some left from the launch!

Hi A,

Your answer should not be too long, 1-2 minutes is what you should aim for for non-PEI questions. For PEI-questions it usually takes a bit longer (2-4 minutes). It is mostly about quality, not quantity.

I would recommend using the following structure:

  1. Start with 1 sentence summary of your background.
  2. Bring out the problem.
  3. Talk about 3-4 of your roles (may be professional, educational, extracurricular), 3 sentences each.
  4. Shortly explain how you resolved that.
  5. Tell what you learned from that.

Best, André

Hi A,

Your answer should not be too long, 1-2 minutes is what you should aim for for non-PEI questions. For PEI-questions it usually takes a bit longer (2-4 minutes). It is mostly about quality, not quantity.

I would recommend using the following structure:

  1. Start with 1 sentence summary of your background.
  2. Bring out the problem.
  3. Talk about 3-4 of your roles (may be professional, educational, extracurricular), 3 sentences each.
  4. Shortly explain how you resolved that.
  5. Tell what you learned from that.

Best, André

Hi there,

I think that 1.5 - 2 minutes should be ok if you do the following:

  • Tell a compelling and consitent story about your career & educational choices and decision
  • Have a catchy opening sentence that summarizes your background and also use connecting words between the different parts of your story
  • Variate your tone to capture and highlight the most important stories & experiences
  • Attract interviewer's attention by mentioning some key projects & experiences (he/she will then follow up with more detailed questions about them)

I think that answering the "tell me about yourself" question in 2 minutes is fine, but you will have to take less time in answering the remaining fit questions.

I will be happy to discuss this further with you if needed.

Best,

Mehdi

Hi there,

I think that 1.5 - 2 minutes should be ok if you do the following:

  • Tell a compelling and consitent story about your career & educational choices and decision
  • Have a catchy opening sentence that summarizes your background and also use connecting words between the different parts of your story
  • Variate your tone to capture and highlight the most important stories & experiences
  • Attract interviewer's attention by mentioning some key projects & experiences (he/she will then follow up with more detailed questions about them)

I think that answering the "tell me about yourself" question in 2 minutes is fine, but you will have to take less time in answering the remaining fit questions.

I will be happy to discuss this further with you if needed.

Best,

Mehdi

Book a coaching with Ian

100% Recommendation Rate

195 Meetings

16,224 Q&A Upvotes

USD 289 / Coaching

Hi there,

That's too long! The interviewer is going to stop listening! Importantly, this also shows that you don't have an ability to articulate clearly and concisely....surely you can get the point across in half the time.

Now, 1-2 minutes is what you should aim for. However, ultimately quality not quantity matters! So, if you can tell the same story in 60 seconds (i.e. demonstrate your skills / thinking, do the story justice, etc.), aim for the faster time!

In terms of interviewer-adjustments, read the room! If they're getting fidgety, speed things up (i.e. cut) or adjust the pace!

-------------------------------------------------------------------

How do you create the answers for these questions?

Resume walkthrough

  • Needs to be chronological
  • Only keep important details that make you look good (i.e. I worked across 7 industries and rose up the ranks twice in the course of that role)
  • Keep a theme of "why consulting"
    • I.e. at each step you need to show that you both got exposure to aspects of consulting AND thrived + enjoyed them
  • Finish with: And that's why I'm here today looking for consulting with your company

Why Consulting

  • You need to summarize what you did before along the theme of consulting aspects you liked and consulting aspects that were missing
  • You then combine those two - i.e. I know I like + am good at x, y, and z which is required for consulting, and I really am excited to get a, b, and c
  • You finish with a "mini" why x company

Why x company

  • Start with a "mini" why consulting
  • Then have 2-3 reasons why x company is your target
  • Every "reason" needs to incorporate 1) That you know they value x 2) That you not only value x but have exhibited it and done it in the past
  • Be very very mindful of what they want you to want

Personal Stories

Step 1 - Categorize the main stories

There are 5-10 "themes" you need to prepare for. i.e. Leadership, teamwork, challenge, etc. Figure out this list and make sure your stories cover this range (PM me and I can provide you with a template for this list)

Step 2 - Create FLEXIBLE stories that cover a range of categories

You need to create 4-6 stories that each cover a range of topics. They need to be powerful stories that can be adjusted and adapted based on the question asked.

One of my "core" or "killer" stories was usable for Initiative, Achievement, Leadership, Challenge, Change of direction, AND Persuasion.

Write down these stories along STAR or similar format...use bullet points

Interview questions notes

Step 3 - Organize these stories so you know which ones can be used for what and PRACTICE

Make sure you cover the whole gambit. Then, practice getting asked a question and thinking of which stories apply. I can assure you, no-one is coming up with full stories in a few seconds. Rather, they have practiced how to adapt an existing story to the question asked.

Interview stories notes

Hi there,

That's too long! The interviewer is going to stop listening! Importantly, this also shows that you don't have an ability to articulate clearly and concisely....surely you can get the point across in half the time.

Now, 1-2 minutes is what you should aim for. However, ultimately quality not quantity matters! So, if you can tell the same story in 60 seconds (i.e. demonstrate your skills / thinking, do the story justice, etc.), aim for the faster time!

In terms of interviewer-adjustments, read the room! If they're getting fidgety, speed things up (i.e. cut) or adjust the pace!

-------------------------------------------------------------------

How do you create the answers for these questions?

Resume walkthrough

  • Needs to be chronological
  • Only keep important details that make you look good (i.e. I worked across 7 industries and rose up the ranks twice in the course of that role)
  • Keep a theme of "why consulting"
    • I.e. at each step you need to show that you both got exposure to aspects of consulting AND thrived + enjoyed them
  • Finish with: And that's why I'm here today looking for consulting with your company

Why Consulting

  • You need to summarize what you did before along the theme of consulting aspects you liked and consulting aspects that were missing
  • You then combine those two - i.e. I know I like + am good at x, y, and z which is required for consulting, and I really am excited to get a, b, and c
  • You finish with a "mini" why x company

Why x company

  • Start with a "mini" why consulting
  • Then have 2-3 reasons why x company is your target
  • Every "reason" needs to incorporate 1) That you know they value x 2) That you not only value x but have exhibited it and done it in the past
  • Be very very mindful of what they want you to want

Personal Stories

Step 1 - Categorize the main stories

There are 5-10 "themes" you need to prepare for. i.e. Leadership, teamwork, challenge, etc. Figure out this list and make sure your stories cover this range (PM me and I can provide you with a template for this list)

Step 2 - Create FLEXIBLE stories that cover a range of categories

You need to create 4-6 stories that each cover a range of topics. They need to be powerful stories that can be adjusted and adapted based on the question asked.

One of my "core" or "killer" stories was usable for Initiative, Achievement, Leadership, Challenge, Change of direction, AND Persuasion.

Write down these stories along STAR or similar format...use bullet points

Interview questions notes

Step 3 - Organize these stories so you know which ones can be used for what and PRACTICE

Make sure you cover the whole gambit. Then, practice getting asked a question and thinking of which stories apply. I can assure you, no-one is coming up with full stories in a few seconds. Rather, they have practiced how to adapt an existing story to the question asked.

Interview stories notes

Book a coaching with Vlad

97% Recommendation Rate

404 Meetings

11,349 Q&A Upvotes

USD 239 / Coaching

Hi,

In "Tell me about yourself" you should be talking about your career path till now. You can finish this story with an argument about why consulting is the next logical career step.

I would recommend the following structure:

  1. Start with a 1 sentence summary of your background, why you are relevant for McKinsey and what's your unique selling point
  2. Talk about 3-4 of your roles (may be professional, education, extracurricular), 3 sentences each. The more experienced you are the more you should speak about professional roles. It can be also the distinct roles within the same organization. Typical structure: 1) What was the company 2) What you were responsible for 3) Greatest achievement in that role, that will stay in the memory of the interviewer (E.g. While working at Adidas supply chain I was personally responsible for the delivery of soccer balls to the Worldcup in Africa)
  3. The main reason why consulting (or McKinsey if you were a consultant before) is the next logical career step for you

Why consulting?”, “Why McKinsey” or “Why BCG” questions are used to assess your motivation to be a consultant in general and to work in that particular firm. They will check how you have done your homework and what you’ve learned about them. They also want to make sure that you have a clear intention to work in consulting.

  • The answers to these questions are supposed to be short and take no more than 30 seconds each.
  • For each question, you should provide three bullets points with different reasons.
  • Make sure that you guide the interviewer through your reasoning. Words like “The first reason”, “Moreover”, “Finally” will help you.

When answering “Why consulting” questions, provide three reasons why you want to pursue a career in a consulting firm. A general rule is to find the reasons that are important for you and logically fit everything you have done before (e.g. you want to grow further in financial services and get exposure to these clients). You can always use some personal rationale like your experience of working with consultants on a client side.

"Why this company" is a more specific question and can include the following arguments:

  • The general marketing story the company is trying to sell (e.g. Bain is a small "Family" company)
  • Brand / positioning / market share in the region
  • More clients / projects / expertise in the industry you are interested in
  • More well-known stories of success in your city
  • Your friends working there
  • Your interactions with the other consultants before the interview
  • Your prior experience of working with the Firm on a client side
  • Office traditions
  • Work experience with firm alumni
  • etc

For the PEI question I recommend using the STAR framework:

  • Start with a 1 sentence summary what is the story about
  • In Situation, you should briefly provide the context, usually in 1 or 2 sentences
  • Task usually includes 2 or 3 sentences describing the problem and your objective.
  • Then you provide a list of specific actions you took to achieve the goal. It should take 1 or 2 sentences per action (Usually 3-4 actions). Note that the interviewer can stop you any minute and ask for more details.
  • The results part should have 1 or 2 sentences describing the outcomes. This part is finalizing your story - make sure it can impress the interviewer and stay in the memory.

Best!

Hi,

In "Tell me about yourself" you should be talking about your career path till now. You can finish this story with an argument about why consulting is the next logical career step.

I would recommend the following structure:

  1. Start with a 1 sentence summary of your background, why you are relevant for McKinsey and what's your unique selling point
  2. Talk about 3-4 of your roles (may be professional, education, extracurricular), 3 sentences each. The more experienced you are the more you should speak about professional roles. It can be also the distinct roles within the same organization. Typical structure: 1) What was the company 2) What you were responsible for 3) Greatest achievement in that role, that will stay in the memory of the interviewer (E.g. While working at Adidas supply chain I was personally responsible for the delivery of soccer balls to the Worldcup in Africa)
  3. The main reason why consulting (or McKinsey if you were a consultant before) is the next logical career step for you

Why consulting?”, “Why McKinsey” or “Why BCG” questions are used to assess your motivation to be a consultant in general and to work in that particular firm. They will check how you have done your homework and what you’ve learned about them. They also want to make sure that you have a clear intention to work in consulting.

  • The answers to these questions are supposed to be short and take no more than 30 seconds each.
  • For each question, you should provide three bullets points with different reasons.
  • Make sure that you guide the interviewer through your reasoning. Words like “The first reason”, “Moreover”, “Finally” will help you.

When answering “Why consulting” questions, provide three reasons why you want to pursue a career in a consulting firm. A general rule is to find the reasons that are important for you and logically fit everything you have done before (e.g. you want to grow further in financial services and get exposure to these clients). You can always use some personal rationale like your experience of working with consultants on a client side.

"Why this company" is a more specific question and can include the following arguments:

  • The general marketing story the company is trying to sell (e.g. Bain is a small "Family" company)
  • Brand / positioning / market share in the region
  • More clients / projects / expertise in the industry you are interested in
  • More well-known stories of success in your city
  • Your friends working there
  • Your interactions with the other consultants before the interview
  • Your prior experience of working with the Firm on a client side
  • Office traditions
  • Work experience with firm alumni
  • etc

For the PEI question I recommend using the STAR framework:

  • Start with a 1 sentence summary what is the story about
  • In Situation, you should briefly provide the context, usually in 1 or 2 sentences
  • Task usually includes 2 or 3 sentences describing the problem and your objective.
  • Then you provide a list of specific actions you took to achieve the goal. It should take 1 or 2 sentences per action (Usually 3-4 actions). Note that the interviewer can stop you any minute and ask for more details.
  • The results part should have 1 or 2 sentences describing the outcomes. This part is finalizing your story - make sure it can impress the interviewer and stay in the memory.

Best!

Book a coaching with Robert

96% Recommendation Rate

317 Meetings

3,639 Q&A Upvotes

USD 219 / Coaching

Hi Anonymous,

I completely agree with Andre who is one of the experts always giving excellent 'real-life' advice from a seasoned consultant.

On top of that I'd just like to mention that the main principle is structuring your answer top-down. In this case the actual length of your prepared answer becomes even mostly irrelevant, since you can always easily react to your interviewers' implicit signals and stop anytime. With that top-down approach he still always gets the full picture (as opposed if you would build your answer bottom-up).

Hope that helps - if so, please be so kind to give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!

Robert

Hi Anonymous,

I completely agree with Andre who is one of the experts always giving excellent 'real-life' advice from a seasoned consultant.

On top of that I'd just like to mention that the main principle is structuring your answer top-down. In this case the actual length of your prepared answer becomes even mostly irrelevant, since you can always easily react to your interviewers' implicit signals and stop anytime. With that top-down approach he still always gets the full picture (as opposed if you would build your answer bottom-up).

Hope that helps - if so, please be so kind to give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!

Robert

Related BootCamp article(s)

Interviewer-Led vs Candidate-Led cases

Case Interviews can be led by the candidate or by the interviewer: In Candidate-led cases the main challenge is the structure. In Interviewer-led cases the main challenge is to adapt quickly

Related case(s)

Bain case: Asian lubricants producer

Solved 153.7k times
Bain case: Asian lubricants producer LubricantsCo, a very successful Asian premium producer of lubricants in their native region, would like to further increase their revenue and profit. The product range ranges from lubricants in the automotive sector (e.g. motor and gear oil) to industrial applications (e.g. fats, heavy-duty oils). According to preliminary examinations, further growth potentials in the Asian core market are rather limited. Thus LubricantsCo would like to investigate options to internationalize in the passenger car business – also outside the premium segment which is given priority. Therefore your consulting firm was instructed to elaborate a market entry strategy for the European market.  
4.6 5 29335
| Rating: (4.6 / 5.0)

LubricantsCo, a very successful Asian premium producer of lubricants in their native region, would like to further increase their revenue and profit. The product range ranges from lubricants in the automotive sector (e.g. motor and gear oil) to industrial applications (e.g. fats, heavy-duty oils). ... Open whole case

Bain Case: Old Winery

Solved 66.1k times
Bain Case: Old Winery You have inherited the “Old Winery” from your grandfather, a winery which has been family owned for five generations and can be dated back to the 16th century. Half of the eleven hectares are used to grow white grapes, the other half to grow red grapes. They are grown in the conventional way, i.e. they are not organically farmed and certified. The vine stocks are in a good condition regarding age and care. Overall, only ¼ of the harvest is made into wine by the winery itself; the rest is sold. Your grandfather never wanted to change the image of the winery and left the managerial and administrative task to a young and energetic wine-maker. Due to the not so well-known brand , the demand for the “Old Winery” wine is currently rather low. You do not intent to run the winery operatively, given your limited knowledge of wine making, but find the idea of owning a winery exciting. Your plan is to give the winery some fresh impetus.
4.4 5 1786
| Rating: (4.4 / 5.0)

You have inherited the “Old Winery” from your grandfather, a winery which has been family owned for five generations and can be dated back to the 16th century. Half of the eleven hectares are used to grow white grapes, the other half to grow red grapes. They are grown in the conventional way, i.e. ... Open whole case

BCG Questions

Solved 26.9k times
BCG Questions What arouses your interest when you are working / studying / doing another activity (from the CV)? Tell me of a time where you had no idea what you were doing. When did you use an uncommon approach to do something? Have you ever had responsibility for other people? Tell me of a situation where you were not the official leader.
4.5 5 212
| Rating: (4.5 / 5.0) |
Difficulty: Intermediate | Style: Fit Interview | Topics: Personal fit

What arouses your interest when you are working / studying / doing another activity (from the CV)? Tell me of a time where you had no idea what you were doing. When did you use an uncommon approach to do something? Have you ever had responsibility for other people? Tell me of a situation where ... Open whole case

Bain Questions

Solved 24.7k times
Bain Questions Tell me about a difficult situation you had to cope with. Tell me of a task which you didn’t like doing and explain why you performed it nevertheless. Why do you do things? What do you like doing most / What is your favorite hobby? Walk me through a situation where you showed leadership skills.
4.6 5 296
| Rating: (4.6 / 5.0) |
Difficulty: Intermediate | Style: Fit Interview | Topics: Personal fit

Tell me about a difficult situation you had to cope with. Tell me of a task which you didn’t like doing and explain why you performed it nevertheless. Why do you do things? What do you like doing most / What is your favorite hobby? Walk me through a situation where you showed leadership skills ... Open whole case

MBB Final Round Case - Smart Education

Solved 15.3k times
MBB Final Round Case - Smart Education Our client is SmartBridge, a nonprofit educational institution offering face-to-face tutoring services. The client operates in the US. The mission of SmartBridge is to help as many students as possible to complete studies and prevent that they drop from the school system, in particular in disadvantaged areas. The client is considering starting operations for its services in the Chicago area. They hired us to understand if that makes sense. Due to the nonprofit regulation, SmartBridge should operate on its own in the market, without any partnership. How would you help our client?
4.6 5 529
| Rating: (4.6 / 5.0)

Our client is SmartBridge, a nonprofit educational institution offering face-to-face tutoring services. The client operates in the US. The mission of SmartBridge is to help as many students as possible to complete studies and prevent that they drop from the school system, in particular in disadvant ... Open whole case