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Bryan

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How to practice specific case types efficiently?

Hello! I'd want to seek some advice on how to prepare specific case types efficiently. I know its important to prepare enough cases (at least 30+), but everyone's case type done is very different. Should I divide case according to 1. industry 2. case types, and try to practice each specific type at the same extent? Or should I focus on preparing more common case types, such as profitability case?

Hello! I'd want to seek some advice on how to prepare specific case types efficiently. I know its important to prepare enough cases (at least 30+), but everyone's case type done is very different. Should I divide case according to 1. industry 2. case types, and try to practice each specific type at the same extent? Or should I focus on preparing more common case types, such as profitability case?

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Hi there,

I'd add two pieces of advice.

1) Varying case types is useful, particularly from different case prep books, to ensure that you get comfortable with different approaches. Most of Victor Cheng's cases, for example, work great with his frameworks. But loads of cases don't. In addition, think about highly quant cases vs. ones without any numbers at all. Finally, I'd agree that doing case types as you say is useful, profitability vs. market entry, but just remember that only a few cases you'll see in actual interviews hew to these case types.

2) Isolate the specific skills you're trying to train. If quick math: do that for an afternoon. If frameworks, do a bunch of case starts. Personally, I found it very useful to practice structuring the math bit of the case, doing hundreds of GMAT-type word problems (PM me for specific examples) to ensure I could crush those out. But remember that a full, 45 minute case is a special beast, and being able to focus and think hard for that amount of time is a skill unto itself.

3) General industry knowledge is a skill itself, and so I'd suggest reading business news for an hour or so a day (FT, businessweek, economist), to get a sense of different industries to help solve for the creative recommendations bit of cases.

Hi there,

I'd add two pieces of advice.

1) Varying case types is useful, particularly from different case prep books, to ensure that you get comfortable with different approaches. Most of Victor Cheng's cases, for example, work great with his frameworks. But loads of cases don't. In addition, think about highly quant cases vs. ones without any numbers at all. Finally, I'd agree that doing case types as you say is useful, profitability vs. market entry, but just remember that only a few cases you'll see in actual interviews hew to these case types.

2) Isolate the specific skills you're trying to train. If quick math: do that for an afternoon. If frameworks, do a bunch of case starts. Personally, I found it very useful to practice structuring the math bit of the case, doing hundreds of GMAT-type word problems (PM me for specific examples) to ensure I could crush those out. But remember that a full, 45 minute case is a special beast, and being able to focus and think hard for that amount of time is a skill unto itself.

3) General industry knowledge is a skill itself, and so I'd suggest reading business news for an hour or so a day (FT, businessweek, economist), to get a sense of different industries to help solve for the creative recommendations bit of cases.

Hi Bryan, thanks for your helpful Q&A replies (came across some of them)! Concerning your third point: is there any quick way to get familiar with different industry? Is there any resource that covers key drivers for each industry? :) — Anonymous B on Feb 16, 2020

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Hello there,

Typically, it is advised to set the case types as your overarching practice categories, and then industries underneath it.

Try to get familiar with the foundational types such as profitability, market situation, and a combination of both, before expanding to other types such as 4P, Ansoff Matrix, M&A, investments decisions, etc.

After getting more familiar with each types, practicing each of these types across different industries would then help you to understand more on the diffferences between sectors (e.g. revenue and cost drivers).

Hope it helps.

Kind regards,
Nathan

Hello there,

Typically, it is advised to set the case types as your overarching practice categories, and then industries underneath it.

Try to get familiar with the foundational types such as profitability, market situation, and a combination of both, before expanding to other types such as 4P, Ansoff Matrix, M&A, investments decisions, etc.

After getting more familiar with each types, practicing each of these types across different industries would then help you to understand more on the diffferences between sectors (e.g. revenue and cost drivers).

Hope it helps.

Kind regards,
Nathan

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Make sure you cover all the different case types, and practices at least 3-4 cases for each type so you get comfortable. Split by industry is nice to have, but not the first priority to me.

Best,

Emily

Make sure you cover all the different case types, and practices at least 3-4 cases for each type so you get comfortable. Split by industry is nice to have, but not the first priority to me.

Best,

Emily

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Hello,

There is a significant difference between casebooks and real cases. During your interviews 80-90% of your cases will be P&L, Market entry and Market sizing. Give priority to these typologies.

Best,
Luca

Hello,

There is a significant difference between casebooks and real cases. During your interviews 80-90% of your cases will be P&L, Market entry and Market sizing. Give priority to these typologies.

Best,
Luca

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Yes, you should practice as many case types as possible, with a priority on market sizings, P&L, and market entry cases.

Best,
Antonello

Yes, you should practice as many case types as possible, with a priority on market sizings, P&L, and market entry cases.

Best,
Antonello

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Hello!

The important thing is to first get familiar with the overall strategy of making cases correctly -e.g., how to structure them in a holistic way, right questions to make, etc.-

Once this basis is set, there are some type of cases that are somehow peculiar and that is worth practicing at least once (e.g., M&A, pricing, market entry, etc.). Industry knowledge is secondary, since once you have the basics covered -which is not much more than general culture and some particularities- is totally impossible to learn about all of them -and, overall, is time that has a much better ROI doing other stuff.

I would recommend you, if you feel you are getting stuck, to work with a coach to prep with/for you a coaching plan covering the possible "blind spots" you might have.

Hope it helps!

Best,

Clara

Hello!

The important thing is to first get familiar with the overall strategy of making cases correctly -e.g., how to structure them in a holistic way, right questions to make, etc.-

Once this basis is set, there are some type of cases that are somehow peculiar and that is worth practicing at least once (e.g., M&A, pricing, market entry, etc.). Industry knowledge is secondary, since once you have the basics covered -which is not much more than general culture and some particularities- is totally impossible to learn about all of them -and, overall, is time that has a much better ROI doing other stuff.

I would recommend you, if you feel you are getting stuck, to work with a coach to prep with/for you a coaching plan covering the possible "blind spots" you might have.

Hope it helps!

Best,

Clara

Related BootCamp article(s)

Focusing on The Core: Mock Interviews

It is to practice as many cases as possible - both as interviewee and as interviewee. Here are a couple of guidelines to help you get started

Case Studies

The case study is the most important element of the case interview, which you'll have to nail in order to get into strategic consulting. Here you can learn the specific skills and concepts necessary to solve them.

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