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Asking to connect with an associate before 1st round? - For info/research purposes

Anonymous A

Hi all

I've been offered a first round with the in-house consulting team of a European multinational.

The interview was arranged by one of the team's senior project managers. I was planning to ask him about being connected to a junior associate for informational purposes.

The in-house consulting team is relatively new so there's little information online but I'm keen to do some digging/research before the interview. There's quite a few questions I'd like to ask that are probably a bit basic for the Q&A part of the interview. (what kind of work they primarily focus on, team culture etc.)

So I'm wondering - Do you think it is reasonable to ask to be connected to an existing employee for informational purposes before the interview? I know it is commonplace with MBB to be connected with a consultant beforehand, but I'm not sure of the etiquette when the connection hasn't been offered by the hiring firm.

Any advice much appreciated

P.S. Given the small nature of the team, I'm reluctant to reach out to existing employees on LinkedIn/email without going through my interview contact because I'm sure he'll hear about it anyway.

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Guennael replied on 12/05/2018
Ex-MBB, Experienced Hire; I will teach you not only the how, but also the why of case interviews

I think you should definitely do your homework - and reaching out to current employees is part of the due diligence process. Do it

Mathias
Expert
replied on 12/05/2018
McKinsey consultant and former German Diplomat - current MBA at the London Business School

You could either ask your contact to connect you or you can reach out to employees on LinkedIn yourself. Both is totally acceptable. Just make sure that you are doing your research before the actual interview. I would not ask basic questions in the interview, but rather cover this in informal coffee chats cprior to the actual interview.

Vlad replied on 12/05/2018
McKinsey / Accenture / Got all BIG3 offers / More than 300 real MBB cases / Harvard Business School

Hi,

Why don't you want to ask your questions at the interview? It is not common for MBB companies as well. Usually, you find these people on your own.

Best