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what is the best way to prepare for a first case interview here at prep lounge?

Anonymous A
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Andrea
Expert
replied on 02/26/2018
Former BCG decision round interviewer with 300+ real interviews in 8 years

1. Read the fundamentals (cosentino, cheng, MBA consulting club books)

2. Practice 10-15 cases with peers

3. Have first check-in with expert to nip in the bud any vices in your form

4. Practice 10 more cases with peers

5. Start alternating 5-10 cases with peers with 1-2 with experts (according to time, ability and willingness to invest, capability with case-type interviews). I’veseen People be ready to go with as little as 20 cases in total and I’ve seen people who practiced 150 cases and I could tell that they would need a dose of luck to pass their interview (even though they would have made amazing consultants)

6. Finish off with just expert interviews according to need

7. Do not do anything besides relaxing and sleeping the 24-48 hours before interview

Take the above with a grain of salt, one size doesn’t fit all and the above is clearly a high-level, albeit prescriptive, structure that I would recommend to someone I do not know but that I would like to set up for success.

hope it helps,

andrea

Vlad replied on 02/26/2018
McKinsey / Accenture / Got all BIG3 offers / More than 300 real MBB cases / Harvard Business School

Hi,

Agree with the approach of the other experts. Several things that you should be doing on a regular basis:

1) Every 10 cases revisit the previous cases and think how you would structure them differently now having the new experience and having solved the new types of cases

2) Build business judgment. Read about different industries and functions. I strongly recommend practice drawing structures for each industry - profitability, value chain, etc . Then I will switch to getting functional knowledge and key concepts in Marketing (Brand and trade marketing tools, etc), Supply chain (Ops metrics like cycle time and throughput time, distribution and delivery specifics, etc), Finance (Basic Accounting and Valuation). Good sources might be:

  • Books - one good book about airlines with numbers and industry analysis can give you all needed industry knowledge
  • Company reports, equity reports, etc - usually have a good overview of company and industries.One of the best sources to prepare
  • HBS cases - quite useful, but not sure if lot's of them available publically. Probably worth buying

Again, every 10 cases revisit the previous cases and think how you would structure them differently now having the new knowledge

3) Practice fast math

  • Learn how to multiply double digit numbers (google fast math tips)
  • Learn the division table up to 1/11 (i.e. 5/6 = 83.3)
  • Learn how to work with zeros (Hint: 4000000 = 4*10ˆ6)
  • Use math tools (Mimir math for iOS), Math tool on Viktor Cheng website to practice

4) Read Viktor Cheng Book and listen to LOMS. I recommend to reread the book and listen to LOMS every 15 cases. Every time, having more experience, you’ll be finding something new.

! Important: don't forget about the FIT interview part. Crafting you stories and backups stories will require a couple of weeks!

Best!

Currently non-active expert
Expert
replied on 02/26/2018

Hey anonymous,

Would you be able to clarify what do you mean: how to prepare to do your first mock interview with other candidate/expert at preplounge? Or how to use/leverage preplounge to do your first real life interview?

Assuming it’s the second, I would strongly advise you on: I) strongly leverage practice sessions with other candidates of (at least) your level; ii) go through the support materials on topics that you may feel bigger development needs; iii) if you can’t have access to friend in consulting (or formers), leverage the wide network of experts here to guarantee that you’re not missing being on some key points

Best

Bruno

Francesco replied on 02/26/2018
Ex BCG | MBB Specialist | #1 Expert for coaching sessions (1400+) and recommendation rate (100%)

Hi Anonymous,

a good preparation for a consulting interview will likely move through the following areas:

  1. General understanding of the process: get a general idea on what a consulting interview is about
    • Resources: Case in Point, Victor Cheng free videos, PrepLounge Resources section
  2. Learning structures and main fit questions
    • Resources: Victor Cheng Look Over My Shoulder, MBA Handbooks, PrepLounge Resources section, Expert sessions
  3. Practicing with live partners to apply knowledge and improve communication
    • Resources: PrepLounge P2P interviews, friends preparing for consulting
  4. Final review to eliminate the last mistakes
    • Resources: PrepLounge P2P interviews (experienced users), friends working in consulting, Experts sessions

You should be aware that just reading Case in Point and doing Victor Cheng LOMS won’t be sufficient as preparation. Such material is ok to get an understanding of the process, but not to get to the advanced level to get an offer without further live preparation.

During the preparation, you should focus on the usual steps for case interviews, working on:

  1. Fit questions (eg Why do you want to work for Deloitte?)
  2. Cases (eg Our client is a commercial bank losing money, how would you increase profits?)
  3. Your questions at the end for the interviewer.

I would actually not recommend doing nothing in the 24-48h before the interview. Although you should not ideally cover new stuff as you won’t have time to integrate it in your approach, that’s a great time to review all your previous mistakes (because yes, ideally you should keep track of them) and re-read the most challenging cases (you should keep track of them as well).

Finally, please keep in mind that a good preparation to target an MBB offer starting from zero will require a minimum 150h on your own (less if you use experts coaching – you should be able to save 5-15h per session according to the coach), thus you should structure a calendar accordingly.

Hope this helps,

Francesco