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Denis

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6

How does working in McKinsey differ from working in Bain?

I am not very much interested in projects (e.g. I know that McK is larger and might have more diverse projects, Bain is leading in the PE space) per se but more in culture, international exposure, mentorship, development path... I am considering moving from Bain to McK.

I am not very much interested in projects (e.g. I know that McK is larger and might have more diverse projects, Bain is leading in the PE space) per se but more in culture, international exposure, mentorship, development path... I am considering moving from Bain to McK.

(edited)

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Book a coaching with Denis

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Hi all,

this is a very subjective question that depends on what position you will have when you join Bain and especially what office or what country you are (e.g. Bain experience, and for that matter MBB experience is significantly different in, say Scandinavia vs. Germany or the US or even Asia). Some offices tend to generate more revenues in a certain industries or with certain projects (e.g. no one would be surprised to hear that MBB and Bain Frankfurt / Germany have a very large portion of Financial Services, Insurances, Private Equity vs. the Berlin office for example). This is just driven by the geography and the type of clients accumulated in a certain area.

Bain US uses a different staffing model (office centric) versus McK and BCG (i.e. as a West Coast Bainie you would likely do most of your cases there and not fly to the Midwest or the East Coast for cases. Those will be served by the local offices). Bain Europe is similar, i.e. clients in a particular country get staffed with Bainies from that country's Bain offices, however not in 100% of the cases. Personally, I was able to work across Europe from the South up to UK and Scandinavia because I asked for it. MAKE YOUR OWN BAIN. A creed you will hear everyday. That said, I think I saw my BCG and especially McK friends more frequently going on cases around the world or in far-flung corners of Europe than myself. Again, Bain staffs regionally for the most part.

Personally, I had the feeling that given Bain's relatively smaller size in general it was easier to switch practices and pursue different cases with different partners, MDs (less red tape). But again, this is subjective. The culture I think, to a certain extent, reflected the ongoing challenge of winning new clients (that may had been served by BCG of MCK before) and, hence, created a more team-like atmosphere.

Private Equity deserves a special mention. All MBB firms engage in Private Equity (i.e. Commercial Due Diligence Consulting for big PE funds). However, most would agree that Bain has a special role and size in this comapred to BCG and McK. Personally, the PE ringfence was one of the key criteria why I ended up signing with Bain. People say consulting years are already accelerated ("dog years"), however this is squared when working in the PE ringfence on CDD (commerical due diligence) or VDD (Vendor Due Diligence) lasting 2-3 weeks (CDD) and 2-3 months (VDD). Incredible refinement of consulting core skills. I enjoyed it that much that I tried to stay as long as possible and, at point, was the junior consultant with the longest tenure in the German PE ringfence (average stay 6 months, I stayed for almost 18 months). Bain was open for it and supported my desires.

A Bainie never lets another Bainie fail. This is not just a HR slogan, this is it. I always had excellent relationships with everyone from junior consultant up to MD. People are very open for mentoring and making things happen. I had the feeling Bain tries to set me up for success throughout and people care.

Professional and personal development is taken very seriously. Development paths are clear and you can expect that you will get all the help, open feedback as possible and that Bain makes sure you get pushed out of your comfort zone every single day to make you a better version of yourself.

Best,
Denis

Hi all,

this is a very subjective question that depends on what position you will have when you join Bain and especially what office or what country you are (e.g. Bain experience, and for that matter MBB experience is significantly different in, say Scandinavia vs. Germany or the US or even Asia). Some offices tend to generate more revenues in a certain industries or with certain projects (e.g. no one would be surprised to hear that MBB and Bain Frankfurt / Germany have a very large portion of Financial Services, Insurances, Private Equity vs. the Berlin office for example). This is just driven by the geography and the type of clients accumulated in a certain area.

Bain US uses a different staffing model (office centric) versus McK and BCG (i.e. as a West Coast Bainie you would likely do most of your cases there and not fly to the Midwest or the East Coast for cases. Those will be served by the local offices). Bain Europe is similar, i.e. clients in a particular country get staffed with Bainies from that country's Bain offices, however not in 100% of the cases. Personally, I was able to work across Europe from the South up to UK and Scandinavia because I asked for it. MAKE YOUR OWN BAIN. A creed you will hear everyday. That said, I think I saw my BCG and especially McK friends more frequently going on cases around the world or in far-flung corners of Europe than myself. Again, Bain staffs regionally for the most part.

Personally, I had the feeling that given Bain's relatively smaller size in general it was easier to switch practices and pursue different cases with different partners, MDs (less red tape). But again, this is subjective. The culture I think, to a certain extent, reflected the ongoing challenge of winning new clients (that may had been served by BCG of MCK before) and, hence, created a more team-like atmosphere.

Private Equity deserves a special mention. All MBB firms engage in Private Equity (i.e. Commercial Due Diligence Consulting for big PE funds). However, most would agree that Bain has a special role and size in this comapred to BCG and McK. Personally, the PE ringfence was one of the key criteria why I ended up signing with Bain. People say consulting years are already accelerated ("dog years"), however this is squared when working in the PE ringfence on CDD (commerical due diligence) or VDD (Vendor Due Diligence) lasting 2-3 weeks (CDD) and 2-3 months (VDD). Incredible refinement of consulting core skills. I enjoyed it that much that I tried to stay as long as possible and, at point, was the junior consultant with the longest tenure in the German PE ringfence (average stay 6 months, I stayed for almost 18 months). Bain was open for it and supported my desires.

A Bainie never lets another Bainie fail. This is not just a HR slogan, this is it. I always had excellent relationships with everyone from junior consultant up to MD. People are very open for mentoring and making things happen. I had the feeling Bain tries to set me up for success throughout and people care.

Professional and personal development is taken very seriously. Development paths are clear and you can expect that you will get all the help, open feedback as possible and that Bain makes sure you get pushed out of your comfort zone every single day to make you a better version of yourself.

Best,
Denis

(edited)

Book a coaching with Gaurav

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Hello there!

I agree with the experts that knowing the geography could let us provide some specific information.

Some general things to consider:

  • International travel at Bain is less frequent
  • the quality of alum relations is considered to be better at Bain
  • McKinsey is known for long legacy client relationships and reports
  • McKinsey has the most extensive reach

It's worth mentioning, though, that many points are quite subjective. I know people from both firms in different offices and think that working at both is equally great.

Good luck!

GB

Hello there!

I agree with the experts that knowing the geography could let us provide some specific information.

Some general things to consider:

  • International travel at Bain is less frequent
  • the quality of alum relations is considered to be better at Bain
  • McKinsey is known for long legacy client relationships and reports
  • McKinsey has the most extensive reach

It's worth mentioning, though, that many points are quite subjective. I know people from both firms in different offices and think that working at both is equally great.

Good luck!

GB

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Hello!

It´s almost impossible to respond at this general level. Can you detail geographies and areas your wnato to focus on? With that info, you do see interesting differences.

Best regards,

Clara

Hello!

It´s almost impossible to respond at this general level. Can you detail geographies and areas your wnato to focus on? With that info, you do see interesting differences.

Best regards,

Clara

Book a coaching with Vlad

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Hi,

I would mention several things:

  • McKinsey has much faster promotions
  • McKinsey has more project opportunities since its simply much bigger
  • Bain seems to have a better culture
  • Bain is more flexible with up or out

Best

Hi,

I would mention several things:

  • McKinsey has much faster promotions
  • McKinsey has more project opportunities since its simply much bigger
  • Bain seems to have a better culture
  • Bain is more flexible with up or out

Best

Book a coaching with Ian

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Hi there,

In general, Bain is known for being more extroverted, "fratty", sociable etc. Very much work hard play hard sort of culture. McKinsey is know for being a bit stiffer, type A, but also brilliant. Of course, these are generalizations, and, in reality, I think people from all 3 of MBB are fantastic to work with and talk too...I've gotten along incredibly well with people across the 3.

What matters much more is your particular office AND the individuals you end up working with (for example, I've been told Bain and BCG are "flipped" culturally in Australia compared to the US")

I would focus much more on how you currently feel at Bain and how well you get along with the people you specifically expect to work with in the Mckinsey office.

Hi there,

In general, Bain is known for being more extroverted, "fratty", sociable etc. Very much work hard play hard sort of culture. McKinsey is know for being a bit stiffer, type A, but also brilliant. Of course, these are generalizations, and, in reality, I think people from all 3 of MBB are fantastic to work with and talk too...I've gotten along incredibly well with people across the 3.

What matters much more is your particular office AND the individuals you end up working with (for example, I've been told Bain and BCG are "flipped" culturally in Australia compared to the US")

I would focus much more on how you currently feel at Bain and how well you get along with the people you specifically expect to work with in the Mckinsey office.

Book a coaching with Antonello

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Hi,

It really depends on you (your interests, ambitions, etc.) and the working environment you are experiencing at the moment (e.g. teammates, work culture, project, industry, etc.).

It is therefore really hard to give an objective answer.

Interviewing for McK could be a great way to get closer to an answer that works for you.

Hope this helps.

Best,

Antonello

Hi,

It really depends on you (your interests, ambitions, etc.) and the working environment you are experiencing at the moment (e.g. teammates, work culture, project, industry, etc.).

It is therefore really hard to give an objective answer.

Interviewing for McK could be a great way to get closer to an answer that works for you.

Hope this helps.

Best,

Antonello

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