Be less hesitant?

communication MBB
New answer on May 06, 2020
6 Answers
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Serdar
Certified
asked on Oct 28, 2019
Scheduled Bain first rounds. 80+ cases done, real interview experience. Looking for experienced partners.

Hi everyone,

Many of my case partners recently pointed out that I am hesitant while speaking and not very fluent. Do you have any advice for being more fluent and concise? To clarify, it is not an English specific problem as I have that issue with my native language, too. I also practiced solving cases (80+ cases with partners).

Thanks in advance!

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Antonello
Expert
Content Creator
updated an answer on Oct 28, 2019
McKinsey | MBA professor for consulting interviews

Hi Serdar,

do you think it is an issue of taking uncertain conclusions based on poor data? Some candidates I have coached, during final recommendation, had your similar attitude (especially those from technical backgrounds, like engineers or mathematicians. In fact, in university they usually learn to arrive at a solution only after have studied all the possible data and demonstrate its accuracy).

In consulting instead, you have to face complex problems with strict constraints in terms of time, data and resources: a team of 3 young consultants has often to deliver a huge impact in 3 months starting with the same amount of data clients are struggling with from years.

Interview cases try to simulate a project, with even less time (30 minutes) and data (a few numbers). Therefore keep in mind that arrive at the perfect solution is not needed, while there will be assessed your problem solving, case structuring, and analytical skills.

Hope this helps,

Antonello

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Francesco
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replied on Oct 29, 2019
#1 Expert for Coaching Sessions (3.700+) | 1.300+ Reviews with 100% Recommendation Rate | Ex BCG | 8+ Years of Coaching

Hi Serdar,

it is difficult to provide specific feedback without additional details, but in general the following points should help to appear more fluent:

  • Use icebreakers to start the conversation. When the interviewer asks challenging questions, it is a good idea to start with an icebreaker such as “That’s an interesting question”, instead of just keeping silent – this will show more confidence
  • Ask for time before providing an answer. Don’t feel forced to answer immediately to questions during the case – you can take one minute to define an approach
  • Structure an approach for your answer. As mentioned by Giulia, if you can present levels in your communication you will appear more structured and fluent in your communication

Hope this helps,

Francesco

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Ian
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replied on May 04, 2020
BCG | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi Serder,

First, identify the root cause

I this caused by nervousness, lack of confidence, too many thoughts going on, or some combination?

Second, address the root cause

Depending on the root cause, you can try signposting (saying "There are x main areas"), try taking a breath before speaking, practice thinking outloud, ask for time to write down thoughts, write while you speak, etc.

Any combination of the above can help, but first you need to be clear about what's causing your problem!

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Anonymous replied on May 06, 2020

Dear Serdar,


It's hard to judge based o this feedback, if I have not heard your performance in the real life. If you want, we can have a quick call where I can assess your level and then provide you with actionable recommendations.

Best,

André

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Thomas
CoachingPlus Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 03, 2020
150+ interviews | 5+ years experience | Kearney & Accenture | Sold consulting startup| London Business School

Great comments have been given. Something else I would suggest is to practice summarizing a case and to play around with using a different tone of voice to see what works for you.

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Anonymous replied on Oct 28, 2019

Dear Serdar,

from my personal experience what I can tell you is the following:

1. State clearly the main points you want to discuss and later deep dive them (e.g., the factors I would consider in entering this market are A, B, C. A that is bla bla, ....; B that is bla bla, ...; C that is bla bla...)

2. When you want to convey a final message/so what always start with a top-down approach and then back it up (e.g., As final conclusion the company should enter the market. That's because x, y, z)

3. (More personal suggestion) Even if you are not 100% confident of what you are saying, speak up clearly. Later in your discussion you can back up your statement wit your assumptions or re-think about it saying like "actually, looking at it from a different perspective and considering these new assumptions it may change from x to y"

Hope it helps! :)

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Antonello gave the best answer

Antonello

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McKinsey | MBA professor for consulting interviews
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