Expert with best answer


100% Recommendation Rate

68 Meetings

314 Q&A Upvotes

USD 249 / Coaching

Is there room for negotiation?

Anonymous B asked on Jan 05, 2018 - 5 answers

As offers begin to role in, is there room to negotiate on salary? I appreciate that this increases with seniority (partner vs year 1 associate), but what about experienced hires entering at consultant or senior consultant level? Should one try to negotiate their salary package? And how much leeway are they afforded?

5 answers

  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best Answer
replied on Jan 06, 2018
Current partner @ Andreessen Horowitz (VC firm). Ex-Mckinsey, ex- strategy guy at Google.
Book a coaching with Hemant

100% Recommendation Rate

68 Meetings

314 Q&A Upvotes

USD 249 / Coaching

Definitely negotiate.

- top ranked firm typically will pay less (because they can). Use a counter-offer to bring their base to the highest possible.

- If base seems inflexible, definitely get a large signing bonus + guaranteed yearly bonus locked in at a higher %age of base.

- Relocation bonus is usually not negotiable.

Francesco replied on Jan 24, 2018
#1 Expert for Coaching Sessions (2.400+) | 1.100+ Reviews with 100% Recommendation Rate | Ex BCG | 6 Years Coaching Experience
Book a coaching with Francesco

100% Recommendation Rate

2,416 Meetings

2,581 Q&A Upvotes

USD 319 / Coaching

Hi Anonymous,

as mentioned by others, the main thing you can negotiate is your entry level in the firm (eg Senior Associate with 12 months to Consultant vs 6 months to Consultant). It would be very difficult to negotiate a different standard salary for a fixed seniority level, as this would create inequality in the firm. On the other hand, if you can negotiate a higher initial entry level, this should bring a higher salary or faster promotion track without creating imbalance in the company, thus would be feasible.

You can definitely try to negotiate your entry level in the firm. The degree of negotiation depends obviously on how valuable you can be for the company (usually the more senior, the more valuable). In any case, you should be aware that with a higher level, expectations on your performance will also be higher.



replied on Jan 06, 2018
Former BCG decision round interviewer with 300+ real interviews in 8 years
Book a coaching with Andrea

100% Recommendation Rate

103 Meetings

752 Q&A Upvotes

USD 269 / Coaching

In USA Bain, BCG and McKinsey base salaries for all levels excluding partner are fixed and non-negotiable. They are also fixed across cities without any cost of living adjustments.

What can be negotiated is:

-tenure recognized when joining (e.g. I've seen several people being offered a Consultant position with zero months of tenure negotiating successfully to have 1 year of tenure being recognized to them)


-sign-on bonus

Hope it helps,


Oleksandr (Alex)
replied on Jan 05, 2018
Very experienced ex-McKinsey consultant with cross-country expertise
Book a coaching with Oleksandr (Alex)

9 Meetings

58 Q&A Upvotes

USD 179 / Coaching

Hi there,

Typically, there is a upper & lower limit. it depends on your particular case, but sometimes you may negotiate and sometimes not. The upside: 5-8%. But! I would encourage you to think multiple times before doing so. You may start from the wrong leg and then create a certain reputation within the firm.


Originally answered:

Salary negotiation

replied on Jan 16, 2017
Specific coaching: company you are applying for; 1st or 2nd round; your professional background; ...
Book a coaching with Marco

100% Recommendation Rate

28 Meetings

55 Q&A Upvotes

USD 109 / Coaching


the offers you receive from Tier 1 (and usually Tier 2) management consulting firms are usually standardized and depend on the country of the office you applied to. Note that when I say offer I mean both the base salary, the entry bonus and the benefits (car, insurance, etc.).

The space you have to negotiate is usually quite narrow and I wouldn't expect major changes in the offer they put forward. You should definetly negotiate if the company's offer is lower than the ones their competitors make to people at your same level and with the same background (i.e. Associate joining after an MBA, Manager with 6 years of experience in operations, etc.).

Another potential reason might be that you are considering two offers: Company A offered you X to work in Amsterdam and Company B offered you X to work in Dubai, you prefer to live in Amsterdam but you would consider option B for an 1,5X salary, in this case you could negotiate but always make sure your requests are aligned to the standard in that country.

Most of the others reasons you might have to negotiate a salary (MBA loans to repay, relocation needs, necessity to have a car, etc.) are usually already taken into consideration when the company makes you the offer, if some reason they are not it is definetly a good idea to bring them forward and discuss them.

Hope this helped,


Related BootCamp article(s)

Interviewer-Led vs Candidate-Led cases

Case Interviews can be led by the candidate or by the interviewer: In Candidate-led cases the main challenge is the structure. In Interviewer-led cases the main challenge is to adapt quickly

Related case(s)

Bain case: Asian lubricants producer

Solved 94.8k times
4.7 5 27144
| Rating: (4.7 / 5.0)

LubricantsCo, a very successful Asian premium producer of lubricants in their native region, would like to further increase their revenue and profit. The product range ranges from lubricants in the automotive sector (e.g. motor and gear oil) to industrial applications (e.g. fats, heavy-duty oils). ... Open whole case

Bain Case: Old Winery

Solved 33.6k times
4.4 5 896
| Rating: (4.4 / 5.0)

You have inherited the “Old Winery” from your grandfather, a winery which has been family owned for five generations and can be dated back to the 16th century. Half of the eleven hectares are used to grow white grapes, the other half to grow red grapes. They are grown in the conventional way, i.e. ... Open whole case

McKinsey Questions

Solved 31.7k times
4.5 5 830
| Rating: (4.5 / 5.0) |
Difficulty: Intermediate | Style: Fit interview | Topics: Personal fit

Tell me of a situation where you had an opinion and no one seemed to agree with you. What was your goal when you decided to join university / work / clubs / a sports team? Did you have a goal that you were not able to reach? What did you do? What do you want to be remembered for and how are you a ... Open whole case

BCG Questions

Solved 21.3k times
4.5 5 182
| Rating: (4.5 / 5.0) |
Difficulty: Intermediate | Style: Fit interview | Topics: Personal fit

What arouses your interest when you are working / studying / doing another activity (from the CV)? Tell me of a time where you had no idea what you were doing. When did you use an uncommon approach to do something? Have you ever had responsibility for other people? Tell me of a situation where y ... Open whole case

Bain Questions

Solved 20.9k times
4.6 5 261
| Rating: (4.6 / 5.0) |
Difficulty: Intermediate | Style: Fit interview | Topics: Personal fit

Tell me about a difficult situation you had to cope with. Tell me of a task which you didn’t like doing and explain why you performed it nevertheless. Why do you do things? What do you like doing most / What is your favorite hobby? Walk me through a situation where you showed leadership skills. Open whole case