Bain fit questions from recruiter

Bain question
New answer on May 30, 2020
4 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Aug 02, 2019

I will have a conversation with a Bain recruiter on for as part of first round. What kind of questions can I expect?

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Francesco
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replied on Aug 03, 2019
#1 Expert for Coaching Sessions (3.600+) | 1.300+ Reviews with 100% Recommendation Rate | Ex BCG | 8+ Years of Coaching

Hi Anonymous,

the typical fit questions you can expect are:

  • Tell me about yourself
  • Why consulting
  • Why Bain
  • Give me an example when you led a team
  • Tell me about a time when you had to convince someone not agreeing with you
  • What has been your major achievement so far
  • Why should we hire you

The best way to prepare is to complete the following check list:

  1. Understand the difference between, leadership, impact and drive areas. You can find their differences here: https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/mckinsey-pei-difference-drive-and-personal-impact-918#a1780
  2. Identify good stories for each area. Ideally you want to have at least two stories for each area. Three would be even better.
  3. Use a structure for your story. I would suggest to use the STARR model (Situation, Task, Action, Rational for Action, Results)
  4. Identify for each story one sentence clarifying what the story is about and start with it. Think of it as the title of a journal article.
  5. Practice live, collect feedback from people listening to you, reiterate until you get fluent and convincing

Best,

Francesco

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Vlad
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replied on Aug 03, 2019
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School

Hi,

Bain consultants will be less concerned about your stories and will not have strict guidelines. They will mostly check your background and motivation

The interviewer usually asks 3 sets of questions:

  1. “Tell me about yourself” or “walk me through your resume”- this is how Consultants usually begin the interview. It's an opportunity for them to learn about you and to pick some interesting facts.
  2. “Why consulting?”, “Why Bain” questions are used to assess your motivation to be a consultant in general and to work in that particular firm.
  3. Some random questions - eg hobbies
  4. Your questions to the interviewer

“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.

Why consulting

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 our company

Answer “Why our company” question fits exactly the same logic. You can start with general facts about the local office. If you have an interest in a particular industry or client this may also be a great reason. If you have friends working in that company mention what you’ve learned from their experience.

Your questions to the interviewer

The main objective is to have a good conversation and highlight your intellectual capacity and curiosity. Thus:

It is ok to ask:

  • Questions that cause positive emotions and highlight consulting pros (e.g. Mck people)
  • Questions on the topics you are excited about (e.g. data science)
  • Non-business questions (e.g. team retreats)

It's not ok to ask:

  • Questions that can cause negative emotions (e.g. work hours)
  • The information you should learn before the interview (e.g. typical career path)
  • Questions that may show that you are unfamiliar with consulting work (Like are you specialized in strategy or operations?)

Be prepared and good luck!

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Anonymous replied on May 30, 2020

Dear A,

Hi,

They will be asking the following:
 Tell me about yourself (Walk me through your resume)
 Why consulting
 Why McKinsey
 The story about leadership (How you've taken an initiative and led the people
to achieve something)
 The story about Personal Impact (How you persuaded people)
 Entrepreneurial Drive (Innovative solutions that you are proud of most)
 Your questions to the interviewer

Also, for any of your story I would recommend you to use a specific structure, which consists of 5 components:

1. Situation (background)

2. Problem (Complication)

3. Your approach (how did you manage this problem)

4. Results (Outcomes of your approach)

5. Your learnings (what you take from this situation)

If you can apply this framework to every of your PEI stories and communicate in a top-down way, you would definitely leave great impression. For more details, feel free to approach me.

Best,

André

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Clara
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Content Creator
replied on May 27, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

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 > https://www.preplounge.com/en/shop/tests-2/integrated-fit-guide-for-mbb-34

Feel free to PM me for disccount codes!

Hope you find it useful!

Best,

Clara

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Francesco gave the best answer

Francesco

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