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Expert with best answer

Franco

100% Recommendation Rate

3 Meetings

515 Q&A Upvotes

USD 219 / Coaching

3

Internship interview fail... Full time recruiting help.

Hey,

I'll get straight to it - I'm currently in my third year of university and was recruited by BCG, got an interview, but completely underestimated how long it would take to prepare for the case portion of the interview. I got some casebooks from a few universities and just tried to hammer them out with someone for 3-4 weeks... Didn't really get a ton of feedback or learn formal structures/approaches/tips etc... So when it came around I completely bombed one of them and did alright on another... Kind of expected.

I want to re-recruit for full-time while completing my internship (private equity, not consulting). I'm pretty sure I could get another opportunity with BCG, I just need to be in game-shape by August/September which leaves me around 4-5 months to prepare.

I'm really motivated and want a consulting role, what is the best way to approach this? Should I hire a coach? I'm definitely not going to do what I did last time... Would love to hear any tips/feedback/planning prep help!

Hey,

I'll get straight to it - I'm currently in my third year of university and was recruited by BCG, got an interview, but completely underestimated how long it would take to prepare for the case portion of the interview. I got some casebooks from a few universities and just tried to hammer them out with someone for 3-4 weeks... Didn't really get a ton of feedback or learn formal structures/approaches/tips etc... So when it came around I completely bombed one of them and did alright on another... Kind of expected.

I want to re-recruit for full-time while completing my internship (private equity, not consulting). I'm pretty sure I could get another opportunity with BCG, I just need to be in game-shape by August/September which leaves me around 4-5 months to prepare.

I'm really motivated and want a consulting role, what is the best way to approach this? Should I hire a coach? I'm definitely not going to do what I did last time... Would love to hear any tips/feedback/planning prep help!

3 answers

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Best Answer
Book a coaching with Franco

100% Recommendation Rate

3 Meetings

515 Q&A Upvotes

USD 219 / Coaching

Hi Sam,

4-5 months are more than enough to get fully prepared and get your BCG job offer.

Since you have already completed a couple of interviews before you already know what to expect and the basis of consulting interviews are, so you're not starting from scratch and that is good.

My recommendation would be to aim for at least 50-60 mock interviews completed before facing the real ones. I would definitely leverage the support of an experienced coach (if you are interested I can help, I spent 10 years in BCG), but in order to maximize your money invested in coaching sessions I would do something like this:

  • 5-10 cases alone or if possible with a case partner - during these cases you should note down what are the major difficulties and the points you feel you need to improve on (e.g. case structure, math, top-down communication)
  • After these 5-10 cases I would move on to 1 coaching session with an expert - This session should be a touch base to understand from an outsider where you should focus your preparation efforts
  • Other 5-10 cases alone or with a case partner
  • Finally, I would alternate other 2-4 coaching sessions with an expert with 20-25 cases (alone or with a partner) to refine your skills and be 100% ready for the interview

My last piece of advice is to spend enough time on the personal fit part of the interview. I've seen too many candidates working 99% of their time on the case and eventually failing the real interviews even before starting the case. The first 5-10 mins of an interview (well before starting the case) are the most critical! Don't mess them up.

Hope it helps,

Franco

Hi Sam,

4-5 months are more than enough to get fully prepared and get your BCG job offer.

Since you have already completed a couple of interviews before you already know what to expect and the basis of consulting interviews are, so you're not starting from scratch and that is good.

My recommendation would be to aim for at least 50-60 mock interviews completed before facing the real ones. I would definitely leverage the support of an experienced coach (if you are interested I can help, I spent 10 years in BCG), but in order to maximize your money invested in coaching sessions I would do something like this:

  • 5-10 cases alone or if possible with a case partner - during these cases you should note down what are the major difficulties and the points you feel you need to improve on (e.g. case structure, math, top-down communication)
  • After these 5-10 cases I would move on to 1 coaching session with an expert - This session should be a touch base to understand from an outsider where you should focus your preparation efforts
  • Other 5-10 cases alone or with a case partner
  • Finally, I would alternate other 2-4 coaching sessions with an expert with 20-25 cases (alone or with a partner) to refine your skills and be 100% ready for the interview

My last piece of advice is to spend enough time on the personal fit part of the interview. I've seen too many candidates working 99% of their time on the case and eventually failing the real interviews even before starting the case. The first 5-10 mins of an interview (well before starting the case) are the most critical! Don't mess them up.

Hope it helps,

Franco

(edited)

Book a coaching with Francesco

100% Recommendation Rate

3,416 Meetings

15,758 Q&A Upvotes

USD 449 / Coaching

Hi Sam,

Sorry to hear the interview didn't go well.

First of all, I would not target BCG only when you apply again.

It is very risky to put all your eggs in one basket. Unless you are strictly interested in BCG only, I would apply to all MBB + Tier 2 to maximize the chances to get at least one offer (after few years in a Tier 2 it is possible to move to MBB).

In terms of practice: I would recommend the following steps to maximize the likelihood of an offer. You have probably already covered some of them since you already prepared.

  1. Define a calendar for your preparation. Check the deadlines for the applications. Then identify how many hours you have before that and allocate a time slot for preparation in your calendar for each day, working on the points below. Many people need 100+ hours to be ready before the interview so you can keep that as a benchmark.
  2. Read Case In Point or Case Interview Secrets for a general understanding of what a consulting interview is. Don’t focus on the structures proposed in the books, as they are not good enough nowadays.
  3. Start reading good MBA Consulting Handbooks – you can find several for free online (Insead is a good one to start). Read the cases and try to apply your structure to solve them. Whenever you see there is something missing, upgrade your structure with the new insights. Try to read a new case per day – in this way you will absorb better the information with constant learning.
  4. After the first 5-10 cases in books/handbooks and basic theory, start to practice live. PrepLounge can be helpful to connect with other candidates for that. There is a relevant part of the interview score that is based on your communication, which you cannot practice at all if you read cases only. Keep track of your mistakes and see if you repeat them. If so, try to identify the source of the mistake (feedback of experienced partners would be particularly useful for this). Be sure to focus on both the behavioural part and the case part. The case part should also cover market sizing, math and graph analysis.
  5. Before your application, be sure to review your CV and Cover, so that they are in the required format for a consulting application.
  6. At least 3 weeks before the application deadline, start networking to find referrals for your target companies.
  7. Before the interviews, be sure to prepare your questions for the interviewer –great way to show you prepared in advance and to connect with the interviewer for a good final impression.

If you have to do the Online Case, you should also consider preparing for that before the test day.

If you want to spend few hours only instead of 100+ and cover everything mentioned above, I developed a program to do precisely that. You can click on the following link to find more:

https://u.preplounge.com/63phuq

Gym Logo

After this program, you will know exactly what to expect in your interview, what to work on, and how to focus on the real differentiators to land a top consulting offer.

Please feel free to PM me if you need more information.

Best,

Francesco

Hi Sam,

Sorry to hear the interview didn't go well.

First of all, I would not target BCG only when you apply again.

It is very risky to put all your eggs in one basket. Unless you are strictly interested in BCG only, I would apply to all MBB + Tier 2 to maximize the chances to get at least one offer (after few years in a Tier 2 it is possible to move to MBB).

In terms of practice: I would recommend the following steps to maximize the likelihood of an offer. You have probably already covered some of them since you already prepared.

  1. Define a calendar for your preparation. Check the deadlines for the applications. Then identify how many hours you have before that and allocate a time slot for preparation in your calendar for each day, working on the points below. Many people need 100+ hours to be ready before the interview so you can keep that as a benchmark.
  2. Read Case In Point or Case Interview Secrets for a general understanding of what a consulting interview is. Don’t focus on the structures proposed in the books, as they are not good enough nowadays.
  3. Start reading good MBA Consulting Handbooks – you can find several for free online (Insead is a good one to start). Read the cases and try to apply your structure to solve them. Whenever you see there is something missing, upgrade your structure with the new insights. Try to read a new case per day – in this way you will absorb better the information with constant learning.
  4. After the first 5-10 cases in books/handbooks and basic theory, start to practice live. PrepLounge can be helpful to connect with other candidates for that. There is a relevant part of the interview score that is based on your communication, which you cannot practice at all if you read cases only. Keep track of your mistakes and see if you repeat them. If so, try to identify the source of the mistake (feedback of experienced partners would be particularly useful for this). Be sure to focus on both the behavioural part and the case part. The case part should also cover market sizing, math and graph analysis.
  5. Before your application, be sure to review your CV and Cover, so that they are in the required format for a consulting application.
  6. At least 3 weeks before the application deadline, start networking to find referrals for your target companies.
  7. Before the interviews, be sure to prepare your questions for the interviewer –great way to show you prepared in advance and to connect with the interviewer for a good final impression.

If you have to do the Online Case, you should also consider preparing for that before the test day.

If you want to spend few hours only instead of 100+ and cover everything mentioned above, I developed a program to do precisely that. You can click on the following link to find more:

https://u.preplounge.com/63phuq

Gym Logo

After this program, you will know exactly what to expect in your interview, what to work on, and how to focus on the real differentiators to land a top consulting offer.

Please feel free to PM me if you need more information.

Best,

Francesco

Book a coaching with Ian

100% Recommendation Rate

268 Meetings

23,213 Q&A Upvotes

USD 289 / Coaching

Hey Sam!

Look, my #1 motto is "The greatest accomplishments come from temporary defeat."

Let's learn from this and not repeat our mistakes! Your 4-5 month timeline, coupled with your lessons learned, puts you in a good spot to do well!

I genuinely and wholeheartedly recommend a coach for you. If your goal is to maximize your odds of success, a (good) coach is the best way. They will be able to tell you exactly what to focus on and what not to focus on, what materials are best to use and which aren't, where your real weaknesses are and how to improve them, etc. etc.

Now, do your research! Message a few coaches that appeal to you. Ask them for a call and suss them ask. Ask those hard questions! i.e. "What is your plan for me" "What is your success rate" "What is your coaching style/methodoloy and why do you believe it works". Then, go with the one that fits you best!

A few tips regarding this:

  1. This is not a product to shop cheap on (leave that for rental cars or flights or clothes)
  2. Pick a trainer/mentor/coach,/educator not someone who just gives x and y case type with feedback

Good luck in your search and your 2nd race!

Hey Sam!

Look, my #1 motto is "The greatest accomplishments come from temporary defeat."

Let's learn from this and not repeat our mistakes! Your 4-5 month timeline, coupled with your lessons learned, puts you in a good spot to do well!

I genuinely and wholeheartedly recommend a coach for you. If your goal is to maximize your odds of success, a (good) coach is the best way. They will be able to tell you exactly what to focus on and what not to focus on, what materials are best to use and which aren't, where your real weaknesses are and how to improve them, etc. etc.

Now, do your research! Message a few coaches that appeal to you. Ask them for a call and suss them ask. Ask those hard questions! i.e. "What is your plan for me" "What is your success rate" "What is your coaching style/methodoloy and why do you believe it works". Then, go with the one that fits you best!

A few tips regarding this:

  1. This is not a product to shop cheap on (leave that for rental cars or flights or clothes)
  2. Pick a trainer/mentor/coach,/educator not someone who just gives x and y case type with feedback

Good luck in your search and your 2nd race!

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