Contrary to some 'expert' advice on this topic, you should NOT re-use the same stories. Try to think 'customer-oriented' and put yourself into the shoes of McKinsey - it just doesn't make sense waisting precious face-time of partners/directors just to hear again the same stories.
Before the redesign of their website, McKinsey has published the following paragraph at http://www.mckinsey.com/careers/faqs/experienced_professionals concerning this topic:
The paragraph above is left over to some interpretation. While McKinsey does not explicitly say to not repeat the same experience across multiple interviews, McKinsey clearly wants to get a good sense of you, your unique style and your skills. And, as mentioned explicitly, the more examples you provide, the better.
For this reason it seems rather clear that it’s advisable to prepare and share multiple examples across interviews, and not the same one. Just in case that you really, really, really cannot find a second strong example for a particular PEI dimension, re-use the same example – but the additional insight and thus value of this PEI will be close to zero for McKinsey, at the same time clearly showing your lack of experience in a certain PEI dimension.
Now, after having looked at what McKinsey is saying, let’s think on our own why it does not make sense to re-use the same PEI examples across different McKinsey interviews or interview rounds:
- It does not add any value to your profile at McKinsey – repeating the same information to different interviewers is a waste of precious face-time to convince McKinsey about your skills and experience.
- You communicate implicitly that you don’t have a lot of experience in those areas, if there is just one single situation you can talk about in one or more of your interviews.
- What typically happens in the second round of the interviews is that they will try to better understand those aspects where you could not fully convince the interviewers in the first round. So the interviewers in the second round will bring up this specific aspect again – and in case that this was a specific PEI dimension, it is not very clever to tell the same example a second time if it was not convincing in the first place.
Please note that you specificially asked for using the same PEI stories. What is not a real issue is using the same underlying context than in previous round, but focusing on entirely different challenges/aspects of that!
Specifically for McKinsey PEI prep, which is really an interview format of its own needing dedicated prep, PrepLounge recently published s short guide on the McKinsey PEI which is esentially an excerpt of my Ultimate McKinsey PEI Prep ebook. It shows how to correctly structure and where to specifically focus and go deep in your PEI examples, which is what most candidates do completely wrong in the first place. You can find it here: https://www.preplounge.com/en/shop/tests-2/the-secret-mckinsey-pei-cheat-sheet-42
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