Cookie and Privacy Settings

This website uses cookies to enable essential functions like the user login and sessions. We also use cookies and third-party tools to improve your surfing experience on preplounge.com. You can choose to activate only essential cookies or all cookies. You can always change your preference in the cookie and privacy settings. This link can also be found in the footer of the site. If you need more information, please visit our privacy policy.

Data processing in the USA: By clicking on "I accept", you also consent, in accordance with article 49 paragraph 1 sentence 1 lit. GDPR, to your data being processed in the USA (by Google LLC, Facebook Inc., LinkedIn Inc., Stripe, Paypal).

Manage settings individually I accept
expert
Expert with best answer

Allen

100% Recommendation Rate

57 Meetings

967 Q&A Upvotes

USD 259 / Coaching

10

No Time for a framework when market sizing?

Hey,

in theory, one should take some time to structure a market sizing question before approaching it. However, in several interviews now I was given a market sizing question without giving time to structure it. When I said that I would structure the question my interviewer just replied that I just should start and take him through that process.

Is that considered normal in an interview?

Hey,

in theory, one should take some time to structure a market sizing question before approaching it. However, in several interviews now I was given a market sizing question without giving time to structure it. When I said that I would structure the question my interviewer just replied that I just should start and take him through that process.

Is that considered normal in an interview?

10 answers

  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best Answer
Book a coaching with Allen

100% Recommendation Rate

57 Meetings

967 Q&A Upvotes

USD 259 / Coaching

Hello,

Interesting question!

Firstly, I'd like to point out that your instinct is 100% correct - always take to the time to gather your thoughts and never assume that you are supposed to answer straight away. I have a friend who was unsuccessful in his final round interview because he thought the interviewer wanted him to answer straight away and then was given feedback that he was unstructured. This sort of situation is much more common than what you describe, in my experience.

That being said, I agree that there's an extra challenge here to guide the interviewer through your thinking as you are doing it. The interviewer knows this, they know you are thinking out loud, so of course they are not expecting the same answer as if you were reading your notes off a page, so it's okay if it's a little messier.

My main advice here is: After you finish, restate everything quickly in a more organized fashion. I find that interviewees don't do this often, but it's an easy way to make all your answers better and you can do it at almost any part of the interview, including behavioral to improve your answers. There's no rule that you only get one chance to say something and this is a good technique to improve your performance.

Hope this helps, happy to provide more details through the chat.

Best,

Allen

Hello,

Interesting question!

Firstly, I'd like to point out that your instinct is 100% correct - always take to the time to gather your thoughts and never assume that you are supposed to answer straight away. I have a friend who was unsuccessful in his final round interview because he thought the interviewer wanted him to answer straight away and then was given feedback that he was unstructured. This sort of situation is much more common than what you describe, in my experience.

That being said, I agree that there's an extra challenge here to guide the interviewer through your thinking as you are doing it. The interviewer knows this, they know you are thinking out loud, so of course they are not expecting the same answer as if you were reading your notes off a page, so it's okay if it's a little messier.

My main advice here is: After you finish, restate everything quickly in a more organized fashion. I find that interviewees don't do this often, but it's an easy way to make all your answers better and you can do it at almost any part of the interview, including behavioral to improve your answers. There's no rule that you only get one chance to say something and this is a good technique to improve your performance.

Hope this helps, happy to provide more details through the chat.

Best,

Allen

(edited)

Book a coaching with Ian

100% Recommendation Rate

236 Meetings

20,648 Q&A Upvotes

USD 289 / Coaching

Hi there,

This is exactly why I train my candidates to be prepared for anything!

Just because there are a million resources online, just because HR tells you the format will be x, doesn't mean the human element is eliminated! Ultimately, the interviewer will do what they want.

On a related note, you should also be prepared to have no time for a framework at the beginning of a case AND be prepared to have no time for a final recommendation (i.e. "Sorry, the CEO is calling right now" or "You've bumped into the CEO in the hallway")

Now, in terms of tips on how to handle this:

  • You want to practice live structuring with candidates/coaches
  • Learn to write while you talk
  • Write down the key words/buckets of what you're thinking
  • Learn to buy time ("Ah! That's a really interesting question. I think there are probably a few ways to approach it...I think there could be an x or y approach. But I think ultimately I'm thinking about it in the following way"...you say this all while thinking out your real structure)

Hi there,

This is exactly why I train my candidates to be prepared for anything!

Just because there are a million resources online, just because HR tells you the format will be x, doesn't mean the human element is eliminated! Ultimately, the interviewer will do what they want.

On a related note, you should also be prepared to have no time for a framework at the beginning of a case AND be prepared to have no time for a final recommendation (i.e. "Sorry, the CEO is calling right now" or "You've bumped into the CEO in the hallway")

Now, in terms of tips on how to handle this:

  • You want to practice live structuring with candidates/coaches
  • Learn to write while you talk
  • Write down the key words/buckets of what you're thinking
  • Learn to buy time ("Ah! That's a really interesting question. I think there are probably a few ways to approach it...I think there could be an x or y approach. But I think ultimately I'm thinking about it in the following way"...you say this all while thinking out your real structure)
Book a coaching with Dorothea

100% Recommendation Rate

21 Meetings

202 Q&A Upvotes

USD 219 / Coaching

Hi Anonymous,

interviewers sometimes to that in order to test how you act under pressure. This does not mean you don't need a structure (it is essential in any case!), but rather that you think about, draw and explain the structure to the interviewer all in one step - just "think aloud". Guiding the interviewer through your thinking process is an essential skill you should master when conducting interviews.

Why does the interviewer do it? It is very likely that you experience a situation in which a client asks a question that you haven't prepared an answer for. Now, what will you do? You wouldn't say "sorry, I don't have an answer to this, but I'll come back in an hour", would you? Rather, you are expected to think it through and develop an answer while simultaneously guiding the client through your thinking process.

Hope this helps!

Best

Dorothea

Hi Anonymous,

interviewers sometimes to that in order to test how you act under pressure. This does not mean you don't need a structure (it is essential in any case!), but rather that you think about, draw and explain the structure to the interviewer all in one step - just "think aloud". Guiding the interviewer through your thinking process is an essential skill you should master when conducting interviews.

Why does the interviewer do it? It is very likely that you experience a situation in which a client asks a question that you haven't prepared an answer for. Now, what will you do? You wouldn't say "sorry, I don't have an answer to this, but I'll come back in an hour", would you? Rather, you are expected to think it through and develop an answer while simultaneously guiding the client through your thinking process.

Hope this helps!

Best

Dorothea

Book a coaching with Francesco

100% Recommendation Rate

3,377 Meetings

14,295 Q&A Upvotes

USD 449 / Coaching

Hi there,

An interviewer may do that indeed to see how you react under pressure.

I would recommend keeping a structure anyway. Simply present it at the beginning without taking time. You may want to train with peers if you find it challenging.

You may do a mistake in laying down the first level of the structure because you didn’t have time to think. Just acknowledge it, correct it and go on, the interviewer won’t expect your structure to be perfect given you did not have time to think.

Best,

Francesco

Hi there,

An interviewer may do that indeed to see how you react under pressure.

I would recommend keeping a structure anyway. Simply present it at the beginning without taking time. You may want to train with peers if you find it challenging.

You may do a mistake in laying down the first level of the structure because you didn’t have time to think. Just acknowledge it, correct it and go on, the interviewer won’t expect your structure to be perfect given you did not have time to think.

Best,

Francesco

Book a coaching with Clara

100% Recommendation Rate

55 Meetings

14,640 Q&A Upvotes

USD 229 / Coaching

This is an interesting topic that affects many people.

Indeed, many times you won´t have time to lay down the structure, since this is one of the multiple parts a case interview has.

It´s common to have to figure it out on the go and walk you interviewer through the process.

The only way to get better at this -is scary, but then it gets better pretty soon- is to practice a lot with people who are experienced.

Best of luck!

Cheers,

Clara

This is an interesting topic that affects many people.

Indeed, many times you won´t have time to lay down the structure, since this is one of the multiple parts a case interview has.

It´s common to have to figure it out on the go and walk you interviewer through the process.

The only way to get better at this -is scary, but then it gets better pretty soon- is to practice a lot with people who are experienced.

Best of luck!

Cheers,

Clara

Book a coaching with Vlad

97% Recommendation Rate

406 Meetings

11,400 Q&A Upvotes

USD 239 / Coaching

Hi,

There is one trick that can help you: structure the market sizing top-down, not with a formula. In that case - you will not need any extra time.

A very simple example: you need to calculate the number of dogs on manhattan. A number of dogs = share of households having a dog * # of households. # of households = population / average household size. In the end, you'll have a pyramid where you have to fill the numbers on the base of the pyramid. This approach is much easier and help you track all the numbers

Best

Hi,

There is one trick that can help you: structure the market sizing top-down, not with a formula. In that case - you will not need any extra time.

A very simple example: you need to calculate the number of dogs on manhattan. A number of dogs = share of households having a dog * # of households. # of households = population / average household size. In the end, you'll have a pyramid where you have to fill the numbers on the base of the pyramid. This approach is much easier and help you track all the numbers

Best

Book a coaching with Gaurav

100% Recommendation Rate

197 Meetings

6,307 Q&A Upvotes

USD 169 / Coaching

Hi there! Interesting question!
Usually, they give time, however here you can see how it is essential to be ready for any unexpected circumstances. So during the preparation, you should also pay attention to this.
Good luck!
GB

Hi there! Interesting question!
Usually, they give time, however here you can see how it is essential to be ready for any unexpected circumstances. So during the preparation, you should also pay attention to this.
Good luck!
GB

Book a coaching with Adi

100% Recommendation Rate

62 Meetings

5,833 Q&A Upvotes

USD 159 / Coaching

Instead of quietly scribbling your structure, you just talk & explain your structure as you are drawing it. Its okay to strike out and start a new structure if you make a mistake. But keep talking. Generally, most interviewers will give you the time & space to structure and get ready before you start talking. But what you experienced is not uncommon.

Instead of quietly scribbling your structure, you just talk & explain your structure as you are drawing it. Its okay to strike out and start a new structure if you make a mistake. But keep talking. Generally, most interviewers will give you the time & space to structure and get ready before you start talking. But what you experienced is not uncommon.

Book a coaching with Antonello

98% Recommendation Rate

154 Meetings

5,251 Q&A Upvotes

USD 219 / Coaching

Book a coaching with Raj

100% Recommendation Rate

52 Meetings

867 Q&A Upvotes

USD 169 / Coaching

You're right, that is unusual. Normally, when interviewing the interviewer would offer 2-3mins at the start for you to structure.

In this case even if you don't get this prompt, you can propose it to the interviewer by saying you'd like a few minutes to think about this and then will answer the question, which would be absolutely fine

You're right, that is unusual. Normally, when interviewing the interviewer would offer 2-3mins at the start for you to structure.

In this case even if you don't get this prompt, you can propose it to the interviewer by saying you'd like a few minutes to think about this and then will answer the question, which would be absolutely fine

Related case(s)

Oliver Wyman case: Full Electrons Ahead

Solved 99.7k times
Oliver Wyman case: Full Electrons Ahead Your client, large automotive OEM WyCar, has developed its first fully electric vehicle (EV) and introduced it as a pilot on the Austrian market last year. However, sales have been far below the expected numbers. The management has engaged you to support them in understanding the reasons and advise them on how to adjust the product offering.
4.6 5 6486
| Rating: (4.6 / 5.0)

Your client, large automotive OEM WyCar, has developed its first fully electric vehicle (EV) and introduced it as a pilot on the Austrian market last year. However, sales have been far below the expected numbers. The management has engaged you to support them in understanding the reasons and advise ... Open whole case

Bain Case: Old Winery

Solved 68.5k times
Bain Case: Old Winery 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. they are not organically farmed and certified. The vine stocks are in a good condition regarding age and care. Overall, only ¼ of the harvest is made into wine by the winery itself; the rest is sold. Your grandfather never wanted to change the image of the winery and left the managerial and administrative task to a young and energetic wine-maker. Due to the not so well-known brand , the demand for the “Old Winery” wine is currently rather low. You do not intent to run the winery operatively, given your limited knowledge of wine making, but find the idea of owning a winery exciting. Your plan is to give the winery some fresh impetus.
4.4 5 1869
| 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

Roland Berger Case: Onlinestar

Solved 48.4k times
Roland Berger Case: Onlinestar Onlinestar, an online retailer of furniture and garden products (core business), has grown significantly in recent years as a result of an expansion of its product portfolio. The company mainly imports goods from Chinese manufacturers but also operates its own production of cat lavatories (special business) in Eastern Europe. The company sells its goods via Amazon and ebay, and recently via an online shop on its website. Despite this development, the financial ratios have deteriorated in recent years. In particular, gross profit margin decreased significantly. Combined with a significant increase in shipping costs, this led to a negative result for the first time in the recently ended fiscal year and a resulting strained financial situation. Against the background of expected stagnating sales for the current financial year, short-term action is required. The board of Onlinestar asks you for an analysis of the reasons for the negative result as well as a derived recommendation for action. As a consultant, you should bring in your knowledge in online trading and develop solutions. In addition, the management board would like to receive a sales and gross profit plan from you for the current financial year.
4.3 5 1019
| Rating: (4.3 / 5.0)

Onlinestar, an online retailer of furniture and garden products (core business), has grown significantly in recent years as a result of an expansion of its product portfolio. The company mainly imports goods from Chinese manufacturers but also operates its own production of cat lavatories (special b ... Open whole case

Nutripremium

Solved 69.7k times
Nutripremium Nutripremium is a very well-known premium nutrition food company in Europe (€1 billion revenue last year). It is based in Spain and has an excellent market share not only in its home country but also in Portugal, France, Italy and Germany.  Nutripremium has two main lines of products: Vitamin-supplements for pregnant women Concentrated dehydrated aliments and vitamin pills for sick patients (with Diabetes or Cancer). The CEO of Nutripremium thinks that the market in Europe is starting to get saturated and wants you to analyze the Chinese market. What are the key areas you would explore to determine whether this is a good idea?
4.5 5 2244
| Rating: (4.5 / 5.0) |

Nutripremium is a very well-known premium nutrition food company in Europe (€1 billion revenue last year). It is based in Spain and has an excellent market share not only in its home country but also in Portugal, France, Italy and Germany. Nutripremium has two main lines of products: Vitamin-su ... Open whole case

Children vaccine

Solved 61.8k times
Children vaccine Beyer, one of the biggest pharmaceutical companies in the world, just invented a very reliable vaccine against Chickenpox, a disease that affects children in the age from 2 to 16 years. Beyer came to you wondering what their potential sales in Europe in the first year would be if they launched this product next year. They are only interested in the overall sales revenue as they already know that the vaccine can be sold for a profit. This is more meant to show them how big the volume they have to supply is and what the revenue would be.
4.4 5 2229
| Rating: (4.4 / 5.0) |

Beyer, one of the biggest pharmaceutical companies in the world, just invented a very reliable vaccine against Chickenpox, a disease that affects children in the age from 2 to 16 years. Beyer came to you wondering what their potential sales in Europe in the first year would be if they launched this ... Open whole case