MBB in Italy: which fits me the best?

Digital italy MBB work life balance
New answer on Mar 28, 2020
3 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Sep 28, 2019

Hi guys, I am a Bocconi student and I am looking to apply for internships in MBB in Italy. The main criteria that I am taking into account are the following:

- I am very concerned by the working hours, and I was wondering which Italian office (in Milan) in general offers the best WLB (flexibility, working hours, etc.). I did an internship in consulting and I know it can be very brutal, but I know that being consulting very office-centred it could change a lot from one company to the other.

-Which among the MBBs in Italy has the best digital/high tech practice?

-Which is considered the overall market leader in Italy?

- Lastly: how many weeks does an internship last? I have to coincile it with my academic obligations...

Thank you very much in advanced!

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Giulia
Expert
replied on Sep 28, 2019
McKinsey Business Analyst | 3+ years Experience | MBA at LBS

Hi,

I work in Milan in MBB and I can tell you that there no much difference from one another in terms of work/life balance. A good life-style project is one that starts at 9am and ends at 9pm. But it is a very good lifestyle, you can also have projects that starts at 9am and end at 3am every day. It can happen and it is very difficult to "avoid" them. You can try, knowing people, being proactive, but there is no guarantee that you'll not be staffed in terrible projects. Thus, if you don't think you can accept this risk and this kind of lifestyle, look elsewhere for your career. The job is demanding also in terms of your life outside work, that's one the reasons why consultants are so well paid :) MBB are great career accelerator, but you have to take into account that a few years of your life are going to be tough.

- Both BCG and McKinsey has a dedicated digital practice, thus I would say both of them. Honestly, don't know about Bain

- I think BCG is bigger than McK, but McK is the most prestigious one. That's why salaries are a bit lower than BCG: the brand is part of the benefit, it's going to open more doors that other's when you want to leave

- The internship is usually 3 months. You are working exactly as a BA, but with a lower salary. Since the process to hire is the same from internship and full-time position, it is highly probable that you'll get an offer for full-time position after the internship.

If you want to know more about life in MBB in Milan send me a message and I'll answer all your questions!

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Anonymous A on Oct 02, 2019

Hi Giulia, thanks for your kind answer! What about Bain Italy? And how did you manage to have a social and personal life with such long hours and work even during weekends?

Giulia on Oct 02, 2019

Hi, Bain is the same as McK or BCG, the long hours are not different from one another. I was not so unlucky as Deniz, but I can confirm his words about Italy. During weekends I only worked 1h max and it only happened 4-5 weekends in 3 years. There are projects in which you work every weekend all day, but they are just a few, weekends are usually "protected". Social life is tough during the week, especially if you are in another city. You do social life with your colleague during the working hours and if you manage to go out for dinner in a fancy restaurant. If you are in your home city, it's difficult as well, because you don't know when you are going to exit until the very last minute, thus it's difficult to program something. You can do social life during weekends, though. I bet that also your friends are going to work during the week, thus it's easier for everybody to organise during weekends. Friday is usually "shorter" than other days, thus unless you are in an unfortunate project as Deniz was, you can easily go out for dinner with your friends

Anonymous A on Oct 02, 2019

Hi Giulia, thanks for your prompt feedback. Is Bain Italy considered as the same level as BCG or McKinsey? When I did my internship in another consulting firm, I had the feeling McK and BCG in Italy were considered as the best of the best and Bain as inferior.

Giulia on Oct 02, 2019

I can confirm that sensation ;p BCG is also considered just slightly less than McK (that's why McK is paying you a bit less, brand is part of the benefits)

(edited)

Deniz
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Sep 28, 2019
BCG | Kearney | 350+ trainees | 5+ years of experience in London, Dubai and Istanbul

Hi,

I can answer for BCG in Italy, as I was part of the IGT (Italy, Greece, Turkey) system for four years and did several projects in Italy.

In terms of the work-life balance, I am afraid that Italy is one of the most demanding offices in Europe. For instance, I remember that I had to work all weekends, including the last day of the project on a Friday until 10 pm (even though it was my birthday, and I specifically asked to be at my home office).

In terms of digital, BCG has made a significant move in the past few years, thus I am confident that you can be staffed in top profile projects in this space.

Lastly, internships typically last 4-8 weeks, but BCG is usually flexible with this dependent on your schedule and the needs of available projects.

Best,

Deniz

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Luca
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Mar 28, 2020
BCG |NASA | SDA Bocconi & Cattolica partner | GMAT expert 780/800 score | 200+ students coached

Hi,

I have been working in the BCG office and I did the interviews also for Bain and Mckinsey, where I have many friends. It's really hard to summary the differences between these 3 offices but I will tray to address your points:

  • Culture: The working culture is really similar in each office, the customer comes first, no matter what. Mckinsey is maybe still the office where you feel "more exclusive" but probably also the more though for work. Bain and BCG have developed a little "start up" attitude with some small initiatives that make your life better.
  • Growing: BCG has been impressively growing in the past years (double digit per year), while McKinsey has slowed down a bit in Italy . Bain has just joined the international network and is in the middle as growth.
  • Type of projects: I would say no difference between McK and BCG (there are often teams of both companies for the same client). Bain is doing these kind of projects but also differentiating a bit focusing on small projects (that's why you could experience double staffing even as new hire)

All of them are excellent offices and place to work, but you should try to understand which office is closer to your personality, also looking around and knowing people working there during the interviews. One aspect that you should consider is also the MBA policies, that are quite different between them.
I know that is difficult to understand differences between them from outside, I had really hard time to decide which offer to accept.
Feel free to contact me if you want to discuss more about it, I can share with you which were the drives of my decision and some general insights.

Best,
Luca

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Giulia gave the best answer

Giulia

McKinsey Business Analyst | 3+ years Experience | MBA at LBS
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