Framing negative internship experience properly in PEI?

behavoural fit interview McKinsey McKinsey PEI PEI
New answer on Jul 28, 2021
7 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Jul 25, 2021

My internship experience this summer started off rocky, in that my assigned manager essentially "ghosted" me by going on leave for the first week of the internship (without notifying me or the intern head) and did not respond to any of my requests for a project schedule. I had to contact the lead intern manager to raise a complaint and a lot of the internship was muddled in trying to work with my manager to actually repsond. A lot of this stemmed from me being placed under a data analyst with no data analytics experience on my end. It also felt extremely routed in me being a woman. I'm not sure how to capture this experience, or if I should mention it at all?

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Ian
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replied on Jul 25, 2021
BCG | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

Please be very careful here!

I think you have fantastic material for a story. However, if you have strong negative feelings towards this event, you are at risk of being overly/overtly negative and using wording you shouldn't.

When creating your story around this, make sure to always sound objective, matter-of-fact, and focus on actions you took to resolve things without placing blame. Of course, leave out any commentary around "ghosting", complaints, sexism etc. Focus on the problem and how you figured out a solution.

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Florian
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replied on Jul 26, 2021
#1 rated McKinsey Case and PEI Coach | 5 years at McKinsey | Mentorship Approach | Imbellus Expert

Hey there,

I am not sure this story targets a specific PEI dimension.

Please have a look at the article I wrote here, that discussed each dimension in more detail: https://www.preplounge.com/en/mckinsey-pei

My hunch is that I would rather not use this story and go for something else --> Reach out if you have more concrete PEI questions.

Cheers,

Florian

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Erica
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updated an answer on Jul 25, 2021
Ex-McKinsey / 100% offer rate / LBS / Principle driven / Real case/ If you get the interview, you should get the offer!

Hi there. I can see this experience turn into a great PEI story if the way you coped with it demonstrates strong leadership and created lasting personal impact on a system or person(s). 

If you need further explanation please let me know :)

(edited)

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Ken
Expert
replied on Jul 25, 2021
Ex-McKinsey London final round interviewer

Which PEI dimension are you thinking of? Although the your personal experience might have been negative, it's more about how you frame the story around a challenge you solved. Having said that , I don't see a natural fit with any of the PEI dimensions where, for example, you're not really influencing someone to drive personal impact, etc. 

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Anonymous B replied on Jul 25, 2021

I'm not sure what your question is.

If your whole PEI story is a great fit for one or more of the dimensions, then tell this whole story but try to share the circumstance objectively instead of bashing your former employer / boss. 

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Adi
CoachingPlus Expert
Content Creator
updated an answer on Jul 25, 2021
Accenture, Deloitte | Precision Case Prep | Experienced Interviewer & Career Coach | 15 years professional experience

So, you were put in a tricky situation & faced difficulties. You did certaint things to overcome the challenges and steered the ship back on track. What impact did you have upon yourself and others around you in this process? What did you/have you learnt? How is this experience going to be valuable for you in future?

Frame the story this way and this could be a good PEI story. Avoid any blame or bashing, stick to facts.

(edited)

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Udayan
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replied on Jul 28, 2021
Top rated MBB coach with many offers /Ex McKinsey EM in New York /6 years McKinsey recruiting experience/Real cases

The best way to see whether a story based on this experience works or not is to answer a specific dimension of the 4 PEI dimensions being asked by McKinsey. It is likely that any PEI story here will fit into either Entrepreneurial Drive (you taking initiative to solve challenges on your own) or Personal Imapact ( you convincing others to do x instead of y). If you are able to craft stories based on this then you can practice with others to see if they work.

On its own it is not worthwhile bringing it up as it does not really answer any question and you may come across as negative.

Udayan

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Ian gave the best answer

Ian

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