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Rejection at MBB - would it be a good idea to try again?

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New answer on May 06, 2022
6 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on May 05, 2022

Dear prep lounge community, 

I had recently had the chance to interview at one of the MBBs and made it to first round of 2 interviews, but unfortunately was dinged due to unsatisfactory performance on one of the cases (was too nervous and could not do chart reading properly, resulting in inability to crack quant part of case fast enough). that eventually resulted in me not having enough time to move on to recommendations. Is this any reflection of how I am not a good fit for the industry? Or should I pick up on more practice and try again in a year's time? Also would like to point out that I am new to the consulting industry (with about 3 yrs work experience), but mgmt consulting has always been something I wanted to try since I came out of university. As for my profile - I graduated with a bachelors of business, but have traditionally been weaker at math compared to my peers (am definitely stronger in qualitative analysis). Would love to hear some thoughts/experiences, thanks in advance!

(edited)

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Udayan
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 06, 2022
Top rated Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /12 years recruiting experience

If one bad interview was indicative of whether one makes a good consultant, almost no one would ever get in!

Rejections happen, they are a very normal part of the interview process. In my experience rejections happen for the following reasons

  • Unfocused preparation - reading about everything but not actually focusing on what matters
  • Not developing the core skills for cracking the case 
  • Not spending the required time for creating strong PEI answers
  • Being overly anxious and stressed at the interview

A lot of people actually just end up doing poorly because of stress and anxiety. Having the right preparation strategy can help mitigate all of the above and improve your interview performance significantly.

All the best for next time,

Udayan

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Clara
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 06, 2022
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

Sorry to hear about this and how it is making you feel, I totally get you! People who are used to succeeding and achieving a lot don´t like this type of seatbacks, it´s very normal!

Also it´s really normal to be rejected tbh. And many of the people who are hired it´s not their first chance! Have you considered working with a coach?

Hope it helps!

Cheers, 

Clara

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Ana
Expert
replied on May 06, 2022
Bain consultant in private equity | Case interview mentor | Successfully mentored multiple acceptances at MBB & more

Dear candidate,

If you care enough about working in consulting, you can definitely try again in a year's time. I know many people (including myself) who applied more than once to MBB before getting an offer!

Sometimes the timing is just not right and if you prepare well for the next year, you will stand a chance again. Now that you know your weakness, you can start in advance with preparing those quant skills so that you can think fast in those case interviews, and also be a better consultant. Math was one of my weaknesses, so I did mental math drills every day for 10 minutes for a few months, and it worked wonders.

Good luck!

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Cristian
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 06, 2022
#1 rated MBB & McKinsey Coach

Hi there, 

I've met Partners in McKinsey who said they were rejected 2-3 times before they got in. So, no, being dinged doesn't mean you're not good enough / not worth it / … - it just means you weren't prepared enough. So learn from the experience, invest more time and energy preparing and go for it again, now wiser and with a clearer idea of the expectations.

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Ian
Expert
Content Creator
updated an answer on May 05, 2022
#1 BCG coach | MBB | Tier 2 | Digital, Tech, Platinion | 100% personal success rate (8/8) | 95% candidate success rate

Hi there,

I have had candidates who failed two years in a row (albeit without coaching), then succeeded in their 3rd attempt (albeit with coaching).

Additionally, casing prep + case interviews build up a lot of very important skills (interviewing, structured thinking, clear communication, quant analysis, etc.)

I can't tell you if it's “a good idea”, but if you want it badly enough, you need to decide what type of person you are - someone who works and pushes for what they want or not (and, sacrifices other things).

There is cost and benefit to this decision, and no 1 universally right move here - just the right one for you!

(edited)

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Ken
Expert
replied on May 05, 2022
Ex-McKinsey final round interviewer | Executive Coach

If it’s something that interests you then there’s no reason not to try again.  Cleary MBBs are excited about your profile where it sounds like it’s a matter of timing.

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Udayan gave the best answer

Udayan

Content Creator
Top rated Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /12 years recruiting experience
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