Having my first network call with a consultant. Any advice on what questions to ask?

MBB networking
New answer on Dec 05, 2022
4 Answers
Anonymous A asked on Dec 02, 2022

So I'm having my first call with a consultant tomorrow. He's a school alumni & works for an MBB company. He made the meeting 30 minutes, so I don't think it's going to be appropriate to ask him to case with me. He also told me to send my CV so I got my elevator pitch ready and prepared for any questions based on the CV. So far, these are the questions I'm planning to ask:

- Why this region (he works in the middle east) and not Europe (since he's European!)?

- What would you do differently if you were recruiting all over again today?

- Out of all industries you advised which you liked the best & why and which products/projects did you like working on most?

- Is there a specific cases theme this office is focused on during interviews? What sections of the case book (the school book, he had told me to get it) is most important?

- How many cases have you prepared before interviewing?

- "I heard from one of your colleagues at a campus networking event that you enjoy 100% of your weekends. Describe a good weekend.." (<--- this is cheesy and kinda cringe but I wanna make the conversation "personal" and "fun" and this is the best I can come up with lol).

I will end the conversation by hinting at talking again, maybe in a month, to do a case. So far these are the questions I have in mind. Any suggestions?

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Content Creator
replied on Dec 05, 2022
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

Ok I'm going to have to strongly disagree with the other coaches telling you these questions are bad.

These are great questions! You're being genuine and not canned. You're asking things you're really curious about, and that's going to show! You're coming in with the intent of having a real conversation with them.

I think you've done a great job here.

My only advice is to not just rattle off the list. When he answers question #1 or 2 and there's a followup Q that pops in your head, ask it! Make sure these questions are your basis/starting point but that from them you have a real conversation.

Good luck - my view is you're thinking about this right :)

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updated an answer on Dec 03, 2022
Seasoned project leader with 7+ years of consulting and recruiting experience in USA and Europe

I would make it more about your interviewer. He is giving you 30 minutes of his probably busy schedule. Ask questions that are appropriate enough to not alienate him but specific enough for you to get value out of them. A few thoughts below in no particular order:

  • What were your reasons for entering consulting?
  • What are the things you like about your company?
  • How did you prepare when you were recruiting?
  • What are the factors that make a good consultant?
  • What is a good work-life balance for you?
  • ..




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CoachingPlus Expert
Content Creator
replied on Dec 02, 2022
Immediately Available! | 50% off 1st Session | BCG Expert | #1 in Middle East | 80+ Mocks Delivered | Free 30 Min Intro!


These are great questions! I think you have covered a lot of interesting areas to get them talking. Of course, try to make it conversational so ask them follow on questions as needed :)

Lastly, you should definitely ask them if they would be open to do a mock with you at some point. But remember that you should practice a lot with peers and coaches before you do a mock with them - use them to get you from an 8 to a 10, not from a 4 to a 6.

All the best!


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Content Creator
replied on Dec 02, 2022
BCG Project Leader | Former Bain, AlixPartner, and PE | INSEAD MBA | GMAT 780

I don't like your questions because they are not addressing the key points.
Rember, the goal of those conversations is to have info on the firm you can use in interviews.

The first question has a straightforward answer: money and type of projects.

The second is a bad one: your contact is at MBB, no particular reason to review his recruiting process. You should ask for advise for you! That is the only question you should ask.

With the third question you just show you don't have a clue about what you wanna do. Ask about what type of project he does, so that you have the opportunity to learn something. 

On the forth, there is no typical case in interviews. Besides, no serious consultant will refer to pages of a case book, because every case book is just garbage and consultants solve cases in another way. 

The number of cases is pointless. 

The last question is a really bad one. 

Ask questions about what interviewers want to see, and about hiring activity in a specific office. 

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Anonymous A on Dec 05, 2022

No offence but this is terribly misleading. I am not a coach, but I have used case books from top schools and they were EXTREMELY helpful, not garbage at all. I'm not sure if you're aware but most case books from top schools have answer recommendations from actual consultants.

Ian gave the best answer


Content Creator
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep
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