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Opening Structure - Detail

Recent activity on Apr 21, 2018
1 Answer
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Anonymous A asked on Apr 21, 2018

Hi everyone, just transitioning from McK preparation into the interviewee led BCG / Bain cases and the first thing I've noticed is that I need to be more concise in opening structure - can anyone advice on how much detail should be included in a BCG / Bain opening? For example, should I just say:

- "I'll analyse customers: what affects their buying decision, customer segments, and growth rates"

- "I'll also look at competition: who they are, how their market share has trended"

Or should I be elaborating more, similar to how I would do in a McK interview?

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replied on Apr 21, 2018
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School


  • In some cases, you'll be able to build a fully MESE structure (e.g. Profitability, Value chain). Usually, you go 2-3 levels deep in your structure in the beginning of the case.
  • In other cases, you should be using a broader structure. For example, in a private equity / due diligence case your structure can be: Market, Company, Competitors, Feasibility of exit. For the 2nd layer, you make subpoints (e.g. in the Market you put: size, growth rate, profitability, segmentation, regulation, etc). I usually use a bullet point list under each bucket.

While presenting the structure you present the 1st level and then you go deeper and say what you would like to explore in each of the buckets.

For example: "In the market, I would like to look at size, growth rates, segmentation and regulation. In the company I would like to look at A,B,C,D, etc"

Alternatively, you may present the structure as the set of the hypothesis (but you still have to lay out a full structure on paper

Present your 1st level Hypothesis:

  • - "In order to understand whether we should invest in Company A, I would like to check that the Market is Attractive, the Company is Attractive, the competition is favorable and we have good opportunities for of exit"

Present the key 2nd level Hypothesis:

  • "In the market, I would like to make sure that the market is big enough and growing;
  • In the company I would like to find additional opportunities for growth;
  • In competition I would like to check that the market is fragmented enough;
  • Finally, I would like to check if we have potential buyers and can achieve desired exit multiples"


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McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School
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