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

Ian

100% Recommendation Rate

291 Meetings

25,037 Q&A Upvotes

USD 289 / Coaching

5

Bain or BCG Southeast Asia?

Hi guys, I was lucky enough to receive offers from both and have been speaking to consultants on both sides over the past week. Would appreciate the answer to the following questions:

1. Is BCG really that superior when it comes to career/exit opportunities compared to Bain?

2. Is Bain's culture and sustainability really that much better compared to BCGs?

My assumptions:

I'm not too fussed about compensation, and am trying to optimise for both career opportunities and culture/people-centricity, but it seems like both of the firms have a respective strength in each.

On one hand, BCG has a larger network, better presence in the SEA region, and thus more diverse cases. I am not sure how long i will stay in consulting, but I have dreamed about working for the likes of Amazon, Disney or Netflix. And due to BCG's bigger network, my thoughts are that maybe it will help me get closer to those firms, even though the pipeline in Media in this region isn't great overall.

On the other hand, Bain has impressed me a lot with their people. They seemed so much more fun and enjoyable to be around during the interview process, and it made me feel like working in that close-knit culture with these awesome people would be the best fit for me. But I'm not sure if being a Bainee brings me close to the big companies I mentioned before.

Any insiders here who can shed some light on this?

Hi guys, I was lucky enough to receive offers from both and have been speaking to consultants on both sides over the past week. Would appreciate the answer to the following questions:

1. Is BCG really that superior when it comes to career/exit opportunities compared to Bain?

2. Is Bain's culture and sustainability really that much better compared to BCGs?

My assumptions:

I'm not too fussed about compensation, and am trying to optimise for both career opportunities and culture/people-centricity, but it seems like both of the firms have a respective strength in each.

On one hand, BCG has a larger network, better presence in the SEA region, and thus more diverse cases. I am not sure how long i will stay in consulting, but I have dreamed about working for the likes of Amazon, Disney or Netflix. And due to BCG's bigger network, my thoughts are that maybe it will help me get closer to those firms, even though the pipeline in Media in this region isn't great overall.

On the other hand, Bain has impressed me a lot with their people. They seemed so much more fun and enjoyable to be around during the interview process, and it made me feel like working in that close-knit culture with these awesome people would be the best fit for me. But I'm not sure if being a Bainee brings me close to the big companies I mentioned before.

Any insiders here who can shed some light on this?

(edited)

5 answers

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

100% Recommendation Rate

291 Meetings

25,037 Q&A Upvotes

USD 289 / Coaching

Hi there,

First, congratulations and well done! Now, my biggest piece of advice is be happy/at peace with your final decision no matter what. You'd be ecstatic if you only had one of these offers, so recognize that you really can't go wrong here!

1. Is BCG really that superior when it comes to career/exit opportunities compared to Bain?

In SE Asia yes 100%. More exit opps, better reputation, more diverse projects, etc.

2. Is Bain's culture and sustainability really that much better compared to BCGs?

So, this really comes down to the individual. Both are known for caring more about sustainability. Culture depends on the individual here - they're for 2 somewhat different types of people! That said, you say the following:

"They seemed so much more fun and enjoyable to be around during the interview process, and it made me feel like working in that close-knit culture with these awesome people would be the best fit for me. "

Your decision: Ultimately, it seems you have to decide between prestige/ops and culture fit here. Both have their pros/cons...

Hi there,

First, congratulations and well done! Now, my biggest piece of advice is be happy/at peace with your final decision no matter what. You'd be ecstatic if you only had one of these offers, so recognize that you really can't go wrong here!

1. Is BCG really that superior when it comes to career/exit opportunities compared to Bain?

In SE Asia yes 100%. More exit opps, better reputation, more diverse projects, etc.

2. Is Bain's culture and sustainability really that much better compared to BCGs?

So, this really comes down to the individual. Both are known for caring more about sustainability. Culture depends on the individual here - they're for 2 somewhat different types of people! That said, you say the following:

"They seemed so much more fun and enjoyable to be around during the interview process, and it made me feel like working in that close-knit culture with these awesome people would be the best fit for me. "

Your decision: Ultimately, it seems you have to decide between prestige/ops and culture fit here. Both have their pros/cons...

Original poster here. Thanks so much, Ian. I appreciate the wishes and the very detailed feedback. I am indeed deciding between optimising for opportunities and optimising for people. A tough decision indeed. But I think you've made it a bit easier for me to make a decision, so many thanks. — Anonymous A on May 08, 2021

My pleasure! Best of luck with the GREAT decision that lays before you...you can't go wrong, I promise :) — Ian on May 09, 2021

Book a coaching with Francesco

100% Recommendation Rate

3,464 Meetings

16,847 Q&A Upvotes

USD 449 / Coaching

Hi there,

Congratulations on the offers! I would consider the following to choose:

  1. Where do you want to be in 5-10 years? Based on that, look for how many alumni are more present in that field. It is not relevant that BCG has more Alumni, if they are not related to what you really want to do in your life. If you still don't know, everything equal the BCG brand is stronger.
  2. If you consider the average consultant/partner you talked to in each company, which one would you rather be? Quoting Jim Rohn, you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. And you will spend a lot of time with your colleagues in the next years. Be sure you chose a company where people are close to the person you want to become.
  3. What is your gut feeling telling you? Our gut feeling is able to catch elements we cannot rationalize. You may “feel” a company is better, but don’t know exactly why. Don’t base your decision on that only, but dig deeper on why you feel that way.

If you want to do extra due diligence, contact Alumni (not current consultants) that worked ideally for both. You will learn more in a 30min call with them than with any online research you may do.

Best,

Francesco

Hi there,

Congratulations on the offers! I would consider the following to choose:

  1. Where do you want to be in 5-10 years? Based on that, look for how many alumni are more present in that field. It is not relevant that BCG has more Alumni, if they are not related to what you really want to do in your life. If you still don't know, everything equal the BCG brand is stronger.
  2. If you consider the average consultant/partner you talked to in each company, which one would you rather be? Quoting Jim Rohn, you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. And you will spend a lot of time with your colleagues in the next years. Be sure you chose a company where people are close to the person you want to become.
  3. What is your gut feeling telling you? Our gut feeling is able to catch elements we cannot rationalize. You may “feel” a company is better, but don’t know exactly why. Don’t base your decision on that only, but dig deeper on why you feel that way.

If you want to do extra due diligence, contact Alumni (not current consultants) that worked ideally for both. You will learn more in a 30min call with them than with any online research you may do.

Best,

Francesco

Original poster here. Thank you for the advice Francesco. I agree with your first point about BCG having the better opportunities. Trying to do some additional research on their alumni. Your next two points do make me think a lot about Bain. Particularly the third one about gut feel. I felt that I did fit a bit better with their culture and people, and I believe it's because in my career so far, I've really seen how the people im with can make a bad project so much better — Anonymous A on May 09, 2021

Congratulations! I heard that BCG has one of the strongest reputations in SEA with most alumnis working in world-class companies like the ones you mentioned. In terms of culture and people, I only know people from McK and BCG - I feel like BCG has more helpful and friendly people of the two. Overall, you cannot go wrong with either Bain or BCG, but personally I would probably take BCG for exit opps, growth opps, brand and people.

Congratulations! I heard that BCG has one of the strongest reputations in SEA with most alumnis working in world-class companies like the ones you mentioned. In terms of culture and people, I only know people from McK and BCG - I feel like BCG has more helpful and friendly people of the two. Overall, you cannot go wrong with either Bain or BCG, but personally I would probably take BCG for exit opps, growth opps, brand and people.

Thanks Anon B, certainly some solid alumni from BCG based on a quick LinkedIn search! — Anonymous on May 08, 2021 (edited)

Book a coaching with Antonello

98% Recommendation Rate

165 Meetings

6,600 Q&A Upvotes

USD 219 / Coaching

Hi, congrats on the offers :) I confirm BCG has a better reputation, but they are both a great choice. I would also consider your personal experience during the interview process and all the interactions you have had with consultants

Best,
Antonello

Hi, congrats on the offers :) I confirm BCG has a better reputation, but they are both a great choice. I would also consider your personal experience during the interview process and all the interactions you have had with consultants

Best,
Antonello

Book a coaching with Clara

100% Recommendation Rate

59 Meetings

16,242 Q&A Upvotes

USD 229 / Coaching

Hello!

Big congrats, well done! This is a great dilemma :)

Anwer to questions 1 and 2 is NO :)

There is not a bad decision to be made here, both are truly fantastic chances, so really just go with your gut and you will be fine.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Hello!

Big congrats, well done! This is a great dilemma :)

Anwer to questions 1 and 2 is NO :)

There is not a bad decision to be made here, both are truly fantastic chances, so really just go with your gut and you will be fine.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Related case(s)

Bain case: Asian lubricants producer

Solved 164.5k 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 29686
| 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 71.4k times
Bain Case: Old Winery You have inherited the “Old Winery” from your grandfather, a winery that 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 a conventional way, i.e. they are not organically farmed and certified. The vine stocks are in a good condition regarding age and care. Overall, the 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 winemaking, but find the idea of owning a winery exciting. Your plan is to give the winery some fresh impetus.
4.4 5 1944
| Rating: (4.4 / 5.0)

You have inherited the “Old Winery” from your grandfather, a winery that 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 a conventional way, i.e. the ... Open whole case

BCG Questions

Solved 27.6k 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 5 213
| 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 25.1k 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.
4.5 5 297
| Rating: (4.5 / 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 18.4k 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 5 647
| 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