Fit Questions - How long should an answer be?

Personalfit
New answer on Oct 29, 2020
5 Answers
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Maxim
Proficient
asked on May 29, 2017

Hi everyone,

I was wondering how long an answer to a standard fit question should be on average. (Referring to non-PEI interview questions)

For example: Describe a time you made a substantial impact on the outcome of a team project you were on.

Thanks!

Maxim

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Francesco
Expert
Content Creator
updated an answer on May 01, 2020
#1 Expert for Coaching Sessions (3.600+) | 1.300+ Reviews with 100% Recommendation Rate | Ex BCG | 8+ Years of Coaching

Hi Maxim,

many non-PEI questions take 1.5 - 2 minutes per answer; there are exceptions to the rule (for example, in case of several points required in an answer, such as “Which are your three top strengths and weaknesses”, or if the interviewer asks you follow-up questions), but usually, that should be sufficient time.

For PEI questions, the story usually takes longer - say between 2 and 4 minutes. The interviewer usually asks followup questions so that may take some additional time.

Hope this helps,
Francesco

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Anonymous replied on Apr 30, 2020

Hi Maxim,

Your answer shouldn't be soo long. I would recommend for that following structure:


1. Start with a 1 sentence summary of your background

2. Bring out some problem


3. Talk about 3-4 of your roles (may be professional, education,
extracurricular), 3 sentences each.


4. Shortly explain how did you resolve that

5. Your learnings

Best,
André

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Anonymous updated the answer on Jun 08, 2020

Hi,

I agree with what has been communicated before but I would like to add a comment on the major pitfalls I've seen so far during fit interviews.

Please find below a slide I've done on this topic.

Best,

David

Fit interview pitfalls

(edited)

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Gaurav
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Oct 29, 2020
Ex-Mckinsey|Certified Career Coach |Placed 500+ candidates at MBB & other consultancies

Hi Maxim,

How much time exactly is not just depended on you, but it also depends on the interviewer. Because a lot of interviewers like to ask follow-up questions on your stories, and sometimes for the single stories the interviewer can spend the entire FIT part (it's around 20 minutes).

However, what I can surely tell you that, when you are answering, every answer you should try to restrict within the 3 minutes. Because psychologically, more the 3 minutes of a monologue is not good communication, because the opposite person loses his concentration.

So, how does that pen out?

For example, if the interviewer asks, "Can you tell me a story where you demonstrated entrepreneurship spirit?", so make your answer usingSTAR model. That answer shouldn't be longer than 3 minutes. It should be exhaustive to cover the story, but it shouldn't be too long. However, be prepared to answer the follow-up question, if an interviewer specifically says: "Ok, so why don't you tell me, what exactly you did in this particular part of the story?".

Again, your time will start, and make sure that this answer is in line with the structure and don't talk longer than 2-3 minutes.

This series of conversations sometimes gets to the entire FIT part, or sometimes interviewers ask different questions.

Does it make sense to you?

GB

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Clara
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 27, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

On top of the insights already shared in the post, next week will be pusblished in PrepLounge´s Shop material related.

In concrete, the "Integrated FIT guide for MBB". It provides an end-to-end preparation for all three MBB interviews, tackling each firms particularities and combining key concepts review and a hands-on methodology. Following the book, the candidate will prepare his/her stories by practicing with over 50 real questions and leveraging special frameworks and worksheets that guide step-by-step, developed by the author and her experience as a Master in Management professor and coach. Finally, as further guidance, the guide encompasses over 20 examples from real candidates.

Here I leave you the link > https://www.preplounge.com/en/shop/tests-2/integrated-fit-guide-for-mbb-34

Feel free to PM me for disccount codes!

Hope you find it useful!

Best,

Clara

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Francesco gave the best answer

Francesco

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