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

Francesco

100% Recommendation Rate

3,378 Meetings

14,348 Q&A Upvotes

USD 449 / Coaching

3

Consulting Resume Questions: Expert Advice Needed!

Hello all!

I will be applying to the Top 3 Firms, and I know the application process is competitive and in order for an applicant to stand out, they must have an outstanding resume. I'm pretty proud of the leadership opportunities that I was able to grasp throughout my college experience but a few things:

1) I am an undergraduate student through the USC Marshall School of Business (a non-target school). I've asked this question before, and I know Mckinsey may not recruit at my school, but I do know some alumni who have been able to score a job at Bain and BCG, so I'm not too worried about the prestige of my institution. I think BCG even has a USC presence now with the amount of Trojans they brought in within the last two years at their LA Office).

2) I've had internships but not at any Big Employers or Fortune 500 Companies. Will this make or break my ability to get an interview offer at any of the Top 3? I'm working my butt off right now to try and find an internship, but in my area, there are only internships at mid-tier tech companies (nothing notable to the Top 3, I don't think). Most of the internships are for Summer 2021; however, my goal is to work as a Business Analyst intern or Summer Associate at any of the Top 3 Firms.

3) My standardized test scores are horrible. I'm talking low 20's on the ACT (and I never took the SAT). It's been a journey to get where I am today, but should I retake the SAT/ACT? Do you think it matters or should I focus my efforts on the GRE?

Hello all!

I will be applying to the Top 3 Firms, and I know the application process is competitive and in order for an applicant to stand out, they must have an outstanding resume. I'm pretty proud of the leadership opportunities that I was able to grasp throughout my college experience but a few things:

1) I am an undergraduate student through the USC Marshall School of Business (a non-target school). I've asked this question before, and I know Mckinsey may not recruit at my school, but I do know some alumni who have been able to score a job at Bain and BCG, so I'm not too worried about the prestige of my institution. I think BCG even has a USC presence now with the amount of Trojans they brought in within the last two years at their LA Office).

2) I've had internships but not at any Big Employers or Fortune 500 Companies. Will this make or break my ability to get an interview offer at any of the Top 3? I'm working my butt off right now to try and find an internship, but in my area, there are only internships at mid-tier tech companies (nothing notable to the Top 3, I don't think). Most of the internships are for Summer 2021; however, my goal is to work as a Business Analyst intern or Summer Associate at any of the Top 3 Firms.

3) My standardized test scores are horrible. I'm talking low 20's on the ACT (and I never took the SAT). It's been a journey to get where I am today, but should I retake the SAT/ACT? Do you think it matters or should I focus my efforts on the GRE?

(edited)

3 answers

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

100% Recommendation Rate

3,378 Meetings

14,348 Q&A Upvotes

USD 449 / Coaching

Hi Natalie,

Not sure what the question is for 1). As Ian said, networking is critical

For 2): big brands help but are not a deal-breaker. You normally have to compensate that with referrals

For 3): I would rather spend time with networking. The only thing that may possibly be useful is the GMAT if you are planning to apply to B-School in the future. But even for that, it won’t give any advantage unless you get an impressive score (eg 750+).

You can find more on referrals here:

https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/hey-everyonehope-all-is-well-3176

Best,

Francesco

Hi Natalie,

Not sure what the question is for 1). As Ian said, networking is critical

For 2): big brands help but are not a deal-breaker. You normally have to compensate that with referrals

For 3): I would rather spend time with networking. The only thing that may possibly be useful is the GMAT if you are planning to apply to B-School in the future. But even for that, it won’t give any advantage unless you get an impressive score (eg 750+).

You can find more on referrals here:

https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/hey-everyonehope-all-is-well-3176

Best,

Francesco

Book a coaching with Ian

100% Recommendation Rate

236 Meetings

20,718 Q&A Upvotes

USD 289 / Coaching

Hi there Natalie,

1) Not sure what the question is, but my #1 piece of advice is network, network, network :)

2) Short answer is it will not make or break your ability to get an interview offer. I got an offer at BCG (amongst others) with a full-time job only at a company called Appian. Much more important was that I had been given/shown large responsibility and desireable skills.

3) It doesn't matter...don't even list it on your resume

Bonus - for your resume

  • The template you use is critical. I've had candidates with amazing experience but horrible templates. Make sure your resume layout brings the eye to whats important, is sharp/clear, and organized/clean
  • Be concise + clear with your experience bullet points. Make sure, where possible, bullet points articulate both clear skills/responsibilities (verbs) AND impact ($ or %). Do so with as few words as possible (without taking away the "bigness" of it
  • Less can sometimes be more. Make sure you inlude the experience that actually matters. Anything you add that is uninteresting doesn't just add 0 value, it detracts from the rest of your experiences!

Good luck!

Hi there Natalie,

1) Not sure what the question is, but my #1 piece of advice is network, network, network :)

2) Short answer is it will not make or break your ability to get an interview offer. I got an offer at BCG (amongst others) with a full-time job only at a company called Appian. Much more important was that I had been given/shown large responsibility and desireable skills.

3) It doesn't matter...don't even list it on your resume

Bonus - for your resume

  • The template you use is critical. I've had candidates with amazing experience but horrible templates. Make sure your resume layout brings the eye to whats important, is sharp/clear, and organized/clean
  • Be concise + clear with your experience bullet points. Make sure, where possible, bullet points articulate both clear skills/responsibilities (verbs) AND impact ($ or %). Do so with as few words as possible (without taking away the "bigness" of it
  • Less can sometimes be more. Make sure you inlude the experience that actually matters. Anything you add that is uninteresting doesn't just add 0 value, it detracts from the rest of your experiences!

Good luck!

Dear Natalie,

Feel free to share your resume with me and I will provide you with feedback and actionable recommendations for improvement in order to increase your chances of passing the screening.

Best,

André

Dear Natalie,

Feel free to share your resume with me and I will provide you with feedback and actionable recommendations for improvement in order to increase your chances of passing the screening.

Best,

André

Related case(s)

Bain case: Asian lubricants producer

Solved 158.5k 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 29512
| 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 68.6k times
Bain Case: Old Winery You have inherited the “Old Winery” from your grandfather, a winery which 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 the conventional way, i.e. they are not organically farmed and certified. The vine stocks are in a good condition regarding age and care. Overall, 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 wine making, but find the idea of owning a winery exciting. Your plan is to give the winery some fresh impetus.
4.4 5 1871
| Rating: (4.4 / 5.0)

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

McKinsey Questions

Solved 39.4k times
McKinsey Questions Tell me of a situation where you had an opinion and no one seemed to agree with you. What was your goal when you decided to join university / work / clubs / a sports team? Did you have a goal that you were not able to reach? What did you do? What do you want to be remembered for and how are you achieving it? What is your typical way of dealing with conflict?
4.5 5 863
| Rating: (4.5 / 5.0) |
Difficulty: Intermediate | Style: Fit Interview | Topics: Personal fit

Tell me of a situation where you had an opinion and no one seemed to agree with you. What was your goal when you decided to join university / work / clubs / a sports team? Did you have a goal that you were not able to reach? What did you do? What do you want to be remembered for and how are you ... Open whole case

BCG Questions

Solved 27.2k 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 5 212
| 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 24.9k 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.
4.6 5 296
| Rating: (4.6 / 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