[MBB] Entering consulting with work experience

italy MBB selection criteria tips
Edited on Sep 05, 2021
2 Answers
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Alessandro asked on Aug 29, 2019

Hi all! My name is Alessandro, I write from Italy and I hope you will help me to clear some doubts about entering consulting (target Big 3) with work experience.

A brief introduction just for framing the situation properly: I am currently based in Italy working (since end-2018) as Project Manager for a multinational firm operating in the Aerospace sector; I have been also recently appointed for a double hat role in a French-based consortium (participants companies are the strongest in EU in this field), similar role in the program mgmt area. My previous experience (3.5 yrs overall) was made in a small engineering company operating in the general industry sector, where my father was one of the founders. I started as Project/Proposal Engineer, moving to Project Management role straight forward, having always great autonomy and direct contact with major clients (multinational companies).

I hold a MSc in Aerospace Engineering from an Italian top tier institution; anyhow, my academic track record was not excellent (I was involved at that time in other activities, I did not commit myself properly to University). My final work was developed in Australia.

I will start a MBA in two months (completion exp. in Q2 2021). The Business School is associated to one of the best and well-known universities in Italy, but is far from being comparable to INSEAD, LBS or Bocconi for example. The program is part-time so I will continue to work meanwhile.

My questions:

1) Considering my background and experience and my (not-excellent) academic track record, what is my current probability to be selected for an interview? What could I do for maximizing my chances to be selected for an interview? Any idea, tip and suggestion is welcome (also frankness!)

2) Considering that my MBA programme will finish in Q2 2021, what would be the best moment to start the application process? Prior to the end of the programme or after?

Thank you for your help!

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updated an answer on Sep 05, 2021
Former BCG | Case author for efellows book | Experience in 6 consultancies (Stern Stewart, Capgemini, KPMG, VW Con., Hor


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replied on Aug 29, 2019
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School


Answering your questions:

1) Hard to say. Engineering background is quite valuable and the grades do not matter at this point. You should definitely apply via a referral. More on the referral here:


2) Depends on whether you are ready to leave your MBA. If not - you can try in Jan 2021 with other MBA candidates and later in Q2 as well


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Alessandro on Aug 29, 2019

Thank you, Vlad! I decided to apply for a MBA programme in order to gain new skills and new valuable knowledge, considering my Engineering background. I honestly do not plan to leave the course: I hope at the same time the MBA will be beneficial to my application. Just a curiosity: assuming a 6+ years overall work experience at the time of application (of which 3.5 years in project/program management area) + MBA, what is the position in the firm hierarchy I could be selected for? And what should I expect to be the selection/interview process applying via referral? Thanks again, Alessandro

Marco-Alexander gave the best answer


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Content Creator
Former BCG | Case author for efellows book | Experience in 6 consultancies (Stern Stewart, Capgemini, KPMG, VW Con., Hor
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