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At the interview stage does Mckinsey care about your work experience

case interview preparation Resume
New answer on Sep 12, 2020
4 Answers
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Emily asked on Jan 27, 2019
3 weeks till mckinsey 1st round

Hello, I have a interview with McK. I am a non-target school and non-target gpa (3.4). However, I've worked for some of the most innovative companies in the world (unicorns / Elon Musk companies). When you're being compared to other candidates, do they only look at your case interviews by the final round, or do they still consider your work experience?

I know the immediate answer is "yes they do care", however I've heard that for referrals, they only care about how you did on the case.

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replied on Jan 28, 2019
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School


Once your resume goes through - It's not about the actual brand of your company and not about your title. Think about it in the following way:

  • Having work experience that may be relevant for McKinsey gives you an extra advantage. E.g. if you have background in tech and you are interviewing for McKinsey digital - it gives you extra points at the partner interviews since the partner's objective is to build a team of professionals. Each professional in a team is a selling point for a client
  • Work experience is important for your personal stories. If you were doing spaceships launches or working on opening the new Tesla factory - your stories will differentiate you from the candidates with less interesting stories.


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Emily on Jan 28, 2019

Thanks so much for the feedback! How much is the PEI weighed against the case interviews? I was told 20/80, do you have other opinions?

Anonymous replied on Sep 12, 2020

Hi Emily,

Well, yes, they do care about your work experience BUT it is not a core issue.

However, you can use your previous work experience in PEI stories and it would definitely be an advantage among other candidates.


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replied on Jan 28, 2019
Ex-MBB, Experienced Hire; I will teach you not only the how, but also the why of case interviews

I agree w/ Sidi and Vlad: In general, background/profile really only matters to decide whether to grant you an interview; HOWEVER, it can also help you get a more vivid story at part of the PEI => all else the same, you would have a leg up vs. another interviewee with more traditional profile but no cool work story

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replied on Jan 28, 2019
McKinsey Senior EM & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 350+ candidates secure MBB offers

At the interview stage, it is only about your interview performance. However, that might of course be a function of your work experience (since PEI stories are mostly drawn from a working context.

Cheers, Sidi

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