Can you turn an interviewer-led case into a candidate-led case?

Candidate-led or Interviewer-led?
New answer on Aug 13, 2020
4 Answers
asked on Aug 11, 2020
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Hi everyone!

I have a casing buddy who really would like to be prepped for candidate led cases; but most of my casebooks are interviewer-led. Is there an easy way to convert those, or should I focus on finding some new casebooks?

Thanks so much!

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replied on Aug 11, 2020
Ex-McK Experienced Hire and EM - I show you how to perform at your best

The reason that casebooks are interviewer led is because it's pretty hard to write a book that's not author-led! (Reminds me of Choose your Own Adventure from when I was a kid!)

I think the best way help your partner do this is by focusing on the "where would like to go first?" and "what data is most important for you?" type of questions. If you know a case well, you can evaluate your partners answers to these questions.


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Ellie on Aug 11, 2020

This is really helpful - thanks!

Allen on Aug 11, 2020

Ellie, I would try to do this for every single case you "give" to a partner and have them do the same for you. Remember this: Just because the case book takes you in one direction, doesn't mean it's the most logicial. There are many option, the trick is to have make a reasonable choice and explain it. Make sense?

Content Creator
replied on Aug 12, 2020
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi Ellie,

  1. You essentially need to let them ask. Let them ask questions, and, make sure you have a really good understanding of the industry/topic.
  2. If needed, you can essentially "make up" information. Meaning, if they ask something that's not provided (i.e. where is this company located), just provide a logically country!
  3. You should aim to keep the case natural/dynamic in that, if they ask 4 "wrong" questions you don't just say "we don't have the information", but rather "Yes, we've done some research and that area looks ok" or something of the like.
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Content Creator
replied on Aug 13, 2020
McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author

Hi Ellie,

Different case books might be an option - but I believe the skillset of a strong interviewer makes a much bigger difference to convert an interviewer-led into a candidate-led case.

The basis nevertheless is knowing the case inside-out. Only if you do so, you can lead the case by the right questions here and there and let the candidate do the major work of driving the case forward. It takes experience but it's doable with some practice.

Hope that helps - if so, please be so kind and give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!


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Anonymous replied on Aug 13, 2020

Dear Ellie,

In fact you should simply understand what is the structure of the interview-led case and what is the content. And then, depending on the structure and content of the case, you can twisted to the candidate-led case. Simply candidate should drive the case and you should stay a little bit passive and share the information only if it's answered. So therefore there is not that difficult to turn the interview-led cases into the candidate-led. Otherwise, to make you life even more easier, there are plenty of books with candidate-led cases.

If you need any, just drop me a line and I'm happy to share materials with you.


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Ellie on Aug 13, 2020

Thanks Andre! That's really helpful, thanks :)

Anonymous on Aug 17, 2020

If you need any help, just text me in a PM ;)

Allen gave the best answer


Ex-McK Experienced Hire and EM - I show you how to perform at your best
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