What are the ways to spend one year before applying to MBB one more time after rejects?

Anonymous A asked on Oct 02, 2017 - 4 answers

Hello everyone,

I have rejects from MBB on an interview (1 out of 3) and test stages (2 out of 3). For now, I secured a position at one of the local banks and turned out an offer from a strategy department of big-4 firms in order to have time for preparation. I have initial ideas how to spend this year, but maybe somebody could share your experience or piece of advice.

I think that I should apply after 1 year, when 2 out of 3 bans are gone, but maybe it is better to do as soon as possible.

Any ideas are appreciated.

4 answers

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Best Answer
Ray replied on Oct 02, 2017


My understanding is you still hold the local bank's offer and have not made a decision yet? Honestly speaking, turning down the Big 4 Strategy offer was a huge mistake in my humble point of view. Here are (like all consulting answers) three reasons why:

1. The experience on paper you gain will be invaluable and will help you secure first-round interviews for MBB next year. This is because there is no guarantee that next year you will make it pass CV screening like you did for this year

2. The actual on-the-job skills will help you in your recruitment process (e.g. data analyses, graph interpretation, being concise in communication, time management etc.) because at the end of the day case interviews are supposed to be a simplified replication of actual consulting engagements

3. You have weekends + holidays + extra holidays (if you scale up) + sick leave to prepare in a given year. That, to me, is more than enough given you've already had initial preparation for this year's recruitment round

That's just my two cents on this. MBB is great but if you did get an opportunity for actual strategy work then I really think you should have taken it.

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replied on Nov 06, 2017
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Hi Anonymous,

the easiest way to transit to MBB after 1-3 years is joining another strategy consulting firm (ideally an internationally recognized brand such as Roland Berger, Oliver Wyman, ATK, etc.). This would also have the additional benefit to let you start in the environment you would like to move later, allowing you to (1) clarify if consulting may be the right path for you in the medium/long term and (2) potentially stay with that company if you find a great environment/growth opportunities.

Another option may be a strategy role for a major brand, although in this case you may need to add a good referral to get an interview. In some countries, MBB is also starting to accept people from digital world (people with startups experience, former country managers for e-commerce, etc) for their digital practice.

You may also consider additional jobs allowing to develop the following skills:


Anything that is not allowing you to develop the skills in the previous list would make more difficult for you to receive an invitation. However, even for "unrelated" jobs, you may still have the opportunity to be invited if you would join an MBA program after some years and then reapply.

The ideal company to start with may also be different according to the geography you are applying for. There is a simple method to verify which may be the best profile in a specific country, that is, looking at the profile of people on LinkedIn currently in MBB for your target office and check what they did before. That should give you a more complete overview.



replied on Oct 08, 2017
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  1. If you failed 2 out of 3 tests you should work on test. Take McKinsey PST in 60 min. If you solve >16 question correctly, you just need to practice available test prep materials (Check V.checng videos). If your result is worse than that - I recommend to hire a GMAT tutor and practice IR, CR and Math parts. When you'll be able to score >700 in GMAT, go back to test prep materials.
  2. Make your resume stronger - do the projects and extracurricular activities that you'll be able to speak about. Think of it in the McKinsey format: you should make a story capital of examples in achievement, personal impact, leadership
  3. Practice cases. Preplounge is the best way.

Good luck!

Matteo replied on Oct 07, 2017
Lived and worked in Europe and UAE - Want to dust off before MBB intervies (BCG coming up)

I wouldn't have turned down the other offers but if that feels too much of a commitment for you.

A smaller commitment could be an internship that'll fill up some space on the CV give you some skills and still the time to prep.

If I were you I would go intern in somewhere I could then spend on the resume and with MBB, try unpaid internships in PEs like Leopard Capital (pre emerging markets) super cool, very interesting or other places that'll make you stand out of the crowd once you'll apply again.