I reached the Director's round interview in a consulting firm. What type of questions should I expect?

consultant
New answer on May 08, 2020
6 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Feb 26, 2020

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Emily
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replied on May 08, 2020
BCG Project Leader | 3+ years interview experience for BCG SEA recruiting | Kellogg MBA, NTU, Peking University

The interview at Director level would focus a lot more on fit. Expect to spend more time discussing your personal experiences, your plan for the next couple of years, how you can fit into the new firm / get used to consulting style of working etc.

There might still be case, but unless you haven't done consulting before (senior experiene hire from industry), the cases are more of a formality and you might not have it in every interview.

Best,

Emily

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Vlad
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updated an answer on Feb 26, 2020
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School

Hi,

In the final round, I would expect a bit more structured and demanding approach to the fit part. The partners in the last round are more experienced and they will challenge every single detail of your story. So make sure that you have a couple of backup stories. Thus:

1) Make sure that you've prepared everything: A story about yourself, motivational questions and the main FIT stories. Also, don't forget about your questions to the interviewer - you'd rather have an interesting conversation and score some point instead of a simple Q&A session

2) Then go through each story and think of the additional questions the interviewer may ask. It’s important since additional questions will take up to 50% of the interview. Try to remember the main details and facts and make sure that you know how to explain the key concepts quickly. Test your stories with your friends, ideally consultants, and ask for their feedback. There can be multiple groups of additional questions:

  • The interviewer may be interested in details about the context
  • He may want to check whether this was your effort or more sort of a team effort.
  • “Have you faced any difficulties while implementing your solution?”- Typically an interviewer would like you to tell him how you’ve overcome those difficulties.
  • Your interviewer will check how real your story is. You should be ready to provide even more granular actions, key milestones and a breakdown of potential effects.

3) Now work on 3-6 backup stories. During your interviews, you can then use these stories or adapt these stories to the additional questions your interviewer asks you.

You may be interested, why you need to prepare several stories for each question? At the end of the day, it's not that easy to come up with all of these stories. I've answered here: Repeating Fit Interview Stories

As for the cases - Partners and Directors have their own favorite cases and they will want you to lead the case. Specifically for McKinsey the key difference from the candidate led cases will be the following:

  1. You ask clarifying questions in the beginning and make a structure
  2. You lead the case through the structure you've prepared a) asking questions and trying to identify the root-cause of the problem in the branch of your structure b) making a transition to the next branch c) proactively calculating the data and making data-driven conclusion from the data they give you d) Making a conclusion when they ask you to finish a case

It may seem to you that these 2 types of cases are different, however, the interviewer-led type is just a simplified version of the interviewee-led case. My advice is to always prepare in the interviewee-led format so that you could solve both easily.

Best

(edited)

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Luca
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replied on Feb 26, 2020
BCG |NASA |20+ interviews with 100% success rate| 120+ students coached |GMAT expert 780/800 score

Hello!

Unless you are applying for senior position, don't expect radical change in the final round with directors. There are only 2 points that you have to keep in mind:

  • Fit part will have a crucial role and it will probably take more time than in previous rounds
  • Cases are usually less structured than the ones you are used to, probably stated in only one sentence

Hope it helps,
Luca

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Antonello
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replied on Feb 29, 2020
McKinsey | MBA professor for consulting interviews

Hi,
the interview will be structured in 3 parts:
- Personal Experience Interview: fit and CV questions to assess your personal impact, leadership skills, and entrepreneurial spirit
- Case Interview: typical business case to evaluate your structure in approaching problems, problem-solving skills, and business sense
- Your final questions to the interviewers

Best,
Antonello

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Ian
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replied on Feb 27, 2020
BCG | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

The standard is the same. But, sometimes the 2nd round is a 2nd chance to prove you can do something. They may focus on a particular weak area they identified earlier, to make sure you're up to scratch. There will also likely be more emphasize on fit AND the interviewers are generally more senior which can be more intimidating/stressful (in addition to them challenging you more and being more likely to engage in brainstorming sessions mid-case)

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Clara
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replied on Feb 26, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

Nothing different that what you have had alredy had, particularly in the FIT part -I guess you are asking about that one-. The only thing you have to expect is more "free hand" and less structure in his/her side.

Good luck!

Cheers,

Clara

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Emily gave the best answer

Emily

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BCG Project Leader | 3+ years interview experience for BCG SEA recruiting | Kellogg MBA, NTU, Peking University
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