I am applying to MBB, for my CL I have the structure: Why the firm (25%), why that office (25%) and why me (50%). Is this good? and is name dropping necessary?
Cover letter advice
Overview of answers
I have an example of a perfect cover letter for consulting with comments inside, if you are interested, please drop me a line.
I'm happy to share it.
I'm sorry but this is all wrong!
- Step 1 - Figure out the topics for your key paragraphs. These need to be based on what consulting companies are looking for. I recommend any of the following
- Quantitative + qualitative analytical skills
- Communication (written + verbal)
- Client managment skills/experience
- Diversity (can be working with diverse clients, teams, etc.)
- Curiosity / passion for learning
- Step 2 - Once you've picked 3-5 of these, write your paragraphs
- Make them succinct (3-5 sentences)
- Make sure they lead with e.g. "x company values y, and I do too"
- Make sure they focus on your achievements. You have to sell yourself here
- Step 3 - For any given company cover letter, find out what the company cares most about. Then slot in 3 of the paragraphs that fit best (again, ideally you have 5 to choose from)
- Step 4 - Tweak the language of each paragraph to fit the company's website, application posting, etc. I.e. Curiosity might become passion for learning.
Then, of course, you need an intro paragraph summarizing your interest + reasons why as well as a closing paragraph doing the same with new language.
And yes, if you can, you should include "after speaking with x person I learned firm x values y"
Feel free to send me your CV for a quich review.
I also have some examples of good CVs.
All the best,
I disagree with some of the other experts here. Based on my own experience, there are cases in which an explanation of why you are applying to the specific office is relevant. But this depends on your situation:
Somewhere throughout your application, you need to give the recruiters the confidence that you know what you're getting yourself into when moving to that city. This can be done in your CV (e.g. you've lived there, studied there, etc) or in the cover letter. To give an example: When I review an application for an Amsterdam office from a US student that did an MBA in Singapore, I want to be confident that they don't leave us after 6 months because they realize they don't like the city.
This might not be relevant for all applicants, but it is an example of when you need to use the cover letter to make a very important point.
You don't need "why office" section at all.
In terms of the structure I would use the following (in paragraphs):
- Intro of who you are
- Why you (several reasons)
- Why "The Company" (Usually 3 reasons)
In terms of the content:
Why you is about your career path and extracurricular activities. Depending on your experiences either start from the first or from the last role (the later you are in your career the more sense it is to start with last one). You can mention a couple of your unique selling point and structure your lifepath around it. Add memorable projects or experience with high impact / cool brands / etc. that will stay in the memory of the reader.
Why "The Company" question can include the following arguments:
- Brand / positioning / market share in the region
- More clients / projects / expertise in the industry you are interested in
- More well-known stories of success in your city
- Your friends working there
- Your interactions with the other consultants before the interview
- Your prior experience of working with the Firm on a client side
- Office traditions
- Work experience with firm alumni