Networking from a target school?

internship networking
New answer on Jul 27, 2022
5 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on May 09, 2022

Hello, I finished my second year from a US T10 school, I am interested in consulting. I've done some networking, but I am confused with a question. What role does networking play from someone at a target school because everyone I network with say that the companies will be on campus and that college alumni would do resume screening. Thanks.

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Francesco
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replied on May 10, 2022
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.000+) | 1.400+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ InterviewOffers.com) | Ex BCG | 9Y+ Coaching

Hi there,

A referral is still useful, even if you are from a target school. The reason is that you can distinguish yourself from other good candidates from your school who don’t have one.

I coach a lot of candidates from target schools (eg INSEAD) and always recommend they look for referrals – exactly because there are still many candidates from target schools they compete with.

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To find a referral, you should follow three main steps:

  1. Identify the people that can help you
  2. Write them a customized email
  3. Have a call and indirectly ask for a referral

As general tips:

  • Don’t use LinkedIn for your communication – emails work better. You should target 30% conversion for your messages; if you are not achieving that, there is space for improvement
  • When sending emails, your goal should be to organize a call, not to ask questions – you can then use the call for the questions
  • You need to close the call with an indirect request for a referral – don’t leave that to chances. There are specific ways to phrase it

You should prepare three main things before the call:

  • Your own pitch. 3-4 lines should be enough
  • 3-4 questions on the personal experiences of the person. Avoid to ask questions about the company
  • A closing question for the referral. It should be an indirect request to avoid being too pushy

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You can find more on how to get referrals here:

 How to Get an MBB Referral

Best,

Francesco

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Florian
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replied on May 10, 2022
#1 rated McKinsey Case and PEI Coach | 5 years at McKinsey | Mentorship Approach | 120+ McK offers in 18 months

Hey there,

You want to differentiate yourself in a pool of candidates with similar backgrounds, successes, grades, work experience, etc.

Most people from your school have a similar profile. To stand out, networking will help you to get your foot in the door more easily. Ian's chart (love it btw - first time I am seeing data on that) brings the point home.

Network with intention!

The outcome of your networking should be one or several referrals, the more senior the better.

All the best!

Cheers,

Florian

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Clara
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replied on May 11, 2022
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

And indeed they have a great point, so measure your efforts: networking can be one of the most tiring and time consuming things to do. 

If you have people coming to campus, I would wait and see how that plays out and what the follow up is, first of all, and take it form there. 

Hope it helps!

Cheers, 

Clara

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Ian
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updated an answer on May 10, 2022
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Here's research I did while at my FT MBA (all data points are from MBAers at a target school).

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Source: NYU Stern (and SpencerTom)

Conclusion: The data speaks for itself. Network. It improves your odds of getting invited to interview.

(edited)

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Udayan
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replied on May 09, 2022
Top rated McKinsey Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /6 years McKinsey recruiting experience

Hi,

 

Great question! In general yes you do not need to network as hard at a target school because the process is very standardized. However, going to events, showing up at discussions and generally building a relationship with the on campus ambassadors will give you a great shot at being invited to interview. Being at a target school does not guarantee an interview, so you want to show enthusiasm and desire to be at the firm and that will help tremendously with scoring an invite. It will also help with getting many insider tips on how to prepare for the various rounds. In short networking will only help you with the interview process if done right.

 

Best,

Udayan

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Francesco gave the best answer

Francesco

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