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Does break-even calculation case consider a profitability case type?

break-even analysis profitability analysis
New answer on May 06, 2024
7 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on May 03, 2024

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Agrim
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updated an answer on May 04, 2024
BCG Dubai Project Leader | Learn to think like a Consultant | Free personalised prep plan | 6+ years in Consulting

I'm not sure what connections you are trying to draw here. Can you give us more details into your question pls?

Update based on comment by OP: In a so-called profitability case, you can be asked to do one or more of the following:

  1. Diagnose reasons for problems with profitability
  2. Suggest ideas to improve problems with profitability
  3. Evaluate options to proceed for improving the problems with profitability.

Breakeven calculations would likely feature in the third option here. Hope that helps.

(edited)

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Hagen
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replied on May 06, 2024
#1 Bain coach | >95% success rate | interviewer for 8+ years | mentor and coach for 7+ years

Hi there,

I would be happy to share my thoughts on your question, to the extent that I understood it correctly:

  • First of all, yes, break-even calculations might be used when solving a profitability-related case, even if this depends on the question at hand.
  • Moreover, given the irritation you seem to have with the initial structure, I would advise you to reach out to an experienced coach to improve on the skill of structuring case studies. I have designed the Case Structuring Program specifically for those candidates who struggle with structuring a case study like a consultant would do.

If you would like a more detailed discussion on your specific situation, please don't hesitate to contact me directly.

Best,

Hagen

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Sidi
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replied on May 06, 2024
McKinsey Senior EM & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 350+ candidates secure MBB offers

Hi, 

Your question completey lacks clarity, indicating a significant degree of confusion about case studies and problem solving in general.

 

Firstly, the term "profitability case" is straight out nonsense!

 

Now, please read the above sentence again... “Profitability” is merely an objective! In fact, it is the most widely used objective across all types of case problems. But it is not a valid categorization for a problem! This is super important to understand, because practically the entire "case preparation literature" is teaching this rubbish, mirroring the lack of understanding among the authors of most casebooks. Getting this right would already make you stronger than 95% of interviewees out there.

Secondly, there's no rule of thumb dictating when you should calculate a break-even point. It's simply a component of your analysis to address the client's question and formulate a logical recommendation. Only if calculating a break-even point is relevant to anwer the concrete question at hand, then it becomes a pertinent part of your analysis. Otherwise not!

Cheers, Sidi

_______________________

Dr. Sidi Koné 

(🚀 Ex BCG & McKinsey Sr. Project Manager, now helping high potential individuals join the world's top Strategy Consulting firms (McKinsey | BCG | Bain))

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Francesco
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replied on May 03, 2024
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.500+) | 1.500+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ interviewoffers.com) | Ex BCG | 10Y+ Coaching

Hi there, 

Q: Does break-even calculation case consider a profitability case type?

Not sure I understood the question. If you mean if, as part of a case related to profitability, you might have to do a break-even calculation, the answer is yes. This might also not happen though.

Hope this helps,

Francesco

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Dennis
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replied on May 03, 2024
Ex-Roland Berger|Project Manager and Recruiter|7+ years of consulting experience in USA and Europe

Hi,

if you are trying to solve a profitabilty case, you might have to consider the break-even point (depending on the case specifics). However, there can also be profitability cases that do not require you to do that.

It really depends on what the individual case asks for and how that contextualizes to break-even calculation.

Best

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Pedro
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replied on May 03, 2024
Bain | Roland Berger | EY-Parthenon | Mentoring Approach | 30% off first 10 sessions in May| Market Sizing | DARDEN MBA

A break-even calculation is a profitability question. In fact, it is one of the most frequent profitability questions. In that regard, being prepared for this type of question is important if you expect to get a profitability type of case.

However, your case partner was more likely thinking on a specific performance diagnostic and recommendation type of case, which usually requires using a profit tree as part of the solving approach.

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Cristian
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Content Creator
replied on May 03, 2024
#1 rated MBB & McKinsey Coach

A profitability focused case can include a break-even question - if that is what you have in mind. 

My recommendation would be though to stay away from the ‘case type’ mindset. This is rather old school and likely to lead it to learning frameworks, which, at best, are going to ensure an average performance. 

What you need to focus on is structuring and thinking from first principles. 

Happy to develop on that if you'd like to know more. 

Best,
Cristian

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Agrim gave the best answer

Agrim

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