Have multiple MBB offers, not sure how to decide (Bain Middle East and McKinsey Pakistan)

Bain & Company BCG McKinsey and Bain Interview McKinsey McKinsey offer Middle East Multiple offers offer time to sign the offer
New answer on Mar 23, 2020
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Anonymous A asked on Mar 18, 2020

Hello!

I currently have offers from both Bain and McKinsey and I am having trouble making my decision. Just some details, the offers are from different offices/geographies which is why the decision is tough. The Bain offer is for the Dubai office in the Middle East and the McKinsey offer is for the Karachi Office in Pakistan (both offers are for an entry level undergrad consulting role). I personally see a better fit with Bain as I have a lot of friends and ex colleagues working there. My main issue is foregoing the McKinsey brand, however McKinsey Pakistan seems to be highly localised (the compensation is fairly low to global standards, work is mostly going to be in Pakistan and the cultural fit doesn't seem to click). I'm getting on call with managers from both firms but what would you guys recommend? Should i opt for the interntional exposure for Dubai or go for the bigger brand name of McKinsey?

How would my decision change if I can convince McKinsey to give me Dubai office?

Thank you all in advance!

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Sidi
Expert
updated an answer on Mar 18, 2020
McKinsey Senior EM & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 350+ candidates secure MBB offers

Hi!

Given your description you have a couple of options:

A. Join Bain in Dubai

B. Join McK in Karachi

C. Try to join McK in Dubai

Since you don't feel comfortable with working in Pakistan, are concerned about the compensation and miss the personal click, it is a no-brainer that option A dominates option B. The question is whether McKinsey in Dubai would be a better fit for you (compared to Karachi)? Compensation wise for sure, but what a bout the people?

  • If you still see a better fir with Bain, even if you compare the Dubai offices, then go for option A!
  • If it is not the case, then you have nothing to lose by being open with McKinsey and tell them that you have decided to start in Dubai and that you have another offer there. Just ask whether starting in Dubai would be an option. If yes, great. If not, go for Option A.

Cheers, Sidi

(edited)

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Anonymous replied on Mar 19, 2020

Hey A,

First of all my congratulations to both offers – really well done!

Let me share my story.

I am born Ukrainian and started my consulting career with an internship in Kyiv in 2010. After my studies in Ukraine and Germany I applied to several consulting companies, got multiple offers including MBB and decided to go for RB in Munich HQ and later on Dubai.

Over the past years I used to work and live in Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Russia, Far East and Middle East where I spent roughly two years.

So first of all don’t listen to us, but listen to your gut feeling!!!

If it says, you need to join Bain Dubai (due to 3 reasons: better cultural fit & existing network, international exposure and absolutely great tax free compensation) then simply go for it!

You will be more successful at Bain Dubai than at McKinsey Pakistan if that’s the right choice for you?

If you need any help, I am happy to share my experience since I have a partner at Bain Dubai.

Good luck,

André

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Udayan
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replied on Mar 19, 2020
Top rated McKinsey Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /6 years McKinsey recruiting experience

I have a bias towards McKinsey, however I do see your point. Culture is very important and if you feel like you fit in better with Bain then you should go for it.

One thing to keep in mind is that McKinsey is very good at trasnfering you internationally after 2 years. However prioritize fit - you will enjoy your experience where you fit in best

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Francesco
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updated an answer on Mar 19, 2020
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Hi there,

first of all congratulations on your offers!

Bain in the Middle East is not particularly strong, however in terms of plus and minus you considered, Bain seems the best choice vs McK Karachi:

+

  • Higher compensation
  • International location
  • Cultural fit

-

  • Lower brand recognition (although Bain still has a strong brand as Tier 1)

McKinsey Dubai could be an interesting option (although they may ask to do additional rounds if you ask to move there). If it is possible to move, you should check if there is a cultural fit, and make a decision based on that versus Bain Dubai.

Since the average tenure of consultants is 3 years, you may also want to consider which are the usual exit opportunities for the various options you have (you may check on LinkedIn) and see which one fits better your long-term goals.

Hope this helps,

Francesco

(edited)

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Clara
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replied on Mar 18, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

I would personally prioritize the location and go for Dubai, that is a totally privilaged hub.

Furthermore, in you post you yourself mention a + for Bain (you have a community already, which helps, and you feel a bigger fit) and a - for Pakistan (that is very localized).

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

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Daniel
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replied on Mar 19, 2020
McKinsey / ex-Interviewer at McKinsey / I will coach you to rock those interviews

Hi! Definitely try to convince McKinsey to give you an offer from Dubai. Just tell them openly that you have a Bain offer from there and you prefer the location. I think they can definitely do something. If not, I would go for Dubai anyway.

Hope this helps!

Best,

Daniel

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Antonello
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replied on Mar 23, 2020
McKinsey | MBA professor for consulting interviews

Hi Congrats! Bain Dubai is the best option also in my opinion :)

Best,
Antonello

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Robert
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replied on Mar 18, 2020
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Hi Anonymous,

Based on your description the decision looks rather straigt-forward to me as an external party.

Let's start with the seemingly simplest option frist: If you can convince McKinsey to give you an offer for Dubai, then this is the way to go.

If this won't be possible, my advice would be Bain/Dubai.

Robert

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Sidi gave the best answer

Sidi

McKinsey Senior EM & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 350+ candidates secure MBB offers
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