English Interview in Germany?

English German germany language

Hello all,

I'm a Brazilian living in Germany and just finished my Masters. I am applying at MBB and other companies (Capgemini, Horvath, Simon Kucher, Roland Berger).

I speak German fluently (+3 years work experience in German) however still not at the same level as English. I can express myself well in German however doing an interview and specially cases in English would still be easier.

Has anyone had experience in a similar situation and know if it is possible to "ask" to do part of the inerview in English? Especially parters that involve solving cases.

Do companies really expect a foreigner to speak German flawlessly without commiting any grammer mistake or do you think they tollerate it well? I come from a industry background in Germany and there many people didnt speak German at all or spoke it with some mistakes and it was perfectly fine.

Thank you very much for your input.

Best of luck to all of you.

Franco

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on Jul 22, 2021
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Hi,

I heard about the cases when MBBs accepted the candidates without the knowledge of German, but it was in Digital teams. So if you have a relevant experience - you have some leverage.

If not - I believe it will be pretty hard to change the process.

Best

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Thanks for your input, Vlad. What excatly do you mean by digital teams and relevant experience? BEst ,Franco

Hi Franco,

from my experience, the company will want to see whether you are able to express yourself and communicate in German. It does not have to be perfect, but good enough. Grammar mistakes are ok, vocabulary is definitely more important.

I believe it's totally ok to ask to express something in English if you get stuck - but the default should be German. I would not try to do entire sections of the interview in English though.

Hope this helps,

Elias

(edited)

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Thanks for your input, Elias. I express myself well, however sometimes not as "to the point" as in English. I'll prepare for the cases in German, I think it might help.

Hi,

I have seen a case in my home country where a consultant didn't speak french while it used to be mandatory. For his specific situation, his was at first working on due diligence exclusively, since this ib less exposed to client and sometimes requires working on external market, while he was building his competencies in French.
Hope this will help

Best
Benjamin

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Anonymous B on Oct 12, 2020
High Benjamin. You say it used to be mandatory. Is it not the case these days that French is required?
Anonymous A replied on Oct 29, 2018

I‘m in a similar position! I’m fluent in English and B2/C1 in German and Spanish but my main concern about applying is interviewing in German. I’ve done it before, but not for a case interview...I’m looking forward to the answers! When I’ve been networking with people from some MBB officers here they’ve all said that the majority of their client work was done in English, but of course team/office environment stuff in German-not sure how accurate that is. I’m constantly improving my German but still not ‘client ready.’ I’d love it if I could do the FIT in German an Case Interview in English or something.

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Thanks for replying, I totally fell you. Daily work and presentations in German for me are not a problem, have worked for quite a while in German speaking companies. However, interviews and cases per se already create a lot of pressure, thus I have some doubts. Let's see if anyone shares more views with us.

Hi Franco,

there are a lot of consulting companies in Germany that are doing their interviews fully in German. I think there is currently some change ongoing, however the main reason for this is that a lot of work in big German cooperations is still mostly in German. And esp. T1/2/3 consultancies are severing those big German companies ;-)

Bottom line - best is to check case-by-case with the consulting company what level of German they require.

 Hope that helps!

 Simon

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Hello!

No matter what the local language is, the materials are going to be in English (e.g., in my case, Madrid office, interviews were in Spanish mostly but the interview materials and test were in English). It makes sense if you think it, since it´s the way to standarize it.

Cheers,

Clara

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Dear Franco,

Fluent communication in German is needed, even in cases

Best,
André

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Vlad gave the best answer

Vlad

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