Get Active in Our Amazing Community of Over 457,000 Peers!

Schedule mock interviews on the Meeting Board, join the latest community discussions in our Consulting Q&A and find like-minded Case Partners to connect and practice with!

What is the difference between Partners, Principals, Directors at MBB consulting firms?

director MBB partner principal salary
New answer on Oct 28, 2023
2 Answers
30.9 k Views
Anonymous A asked on May 23, 2017

Concerning position, tasks, perks, salary etc.

Overview of answers

Upvotes
  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best answer
Benjamin
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Oct 28, 2023
Ex-BCG Principal | 8+ years consulting experience in SEA | BCG top interviewer & top performer

Hi,

I'll share a POV from a BCG perspective. The position progression is as follows:

Principal/"Partner" → Managing Director & Partner → Managing Director & Senior Partner

The key differences

  1. Tasks
    • Generally, the key difference between Principal and MDP is the KPI
    • MDPs biggest KPI is sales generation / revenue
      • Other KPIs that are different include building up practice area, building up your junior partner network (if you are an MDSP)
    • Principals at BCG are still expected to deliver/execute projects
  2. Salary
    • Salary rises significantly once you become an MDP
  3. Perks
    • At least where I am from, MDPs do get to fly business class, but not for the Principals

Hope this helps to clarify!

Was this answer helpful?
Michal
Expert
replied on May 23, 2017
Ex-Bain consultant, got offers from McK, BCG, Bain. Now a Product Manager at a startup

Principal - in practice the same as manager, but as this is the gateway position to the partner promotion, they sometimes do partner-level work. They have a stable salary with a variable bonus.
Partner - they sell the cases, typically have several assignments at any given time, and they oversee projects. Their involvement varies - sometimes you would see a partner daily on your project, sometimes you would see them once a month or even less frequently.

Director - a "super partner". They sometimes oversee junior partners, act as ultimate experts and sometimes they manage functional areas of expertise (e.g. Global head of Airlines Practice at Bain would typically be a Director).

Regarding salary, for principals it's a set salary with a bonus, for partners and directors the variable element is much higher. Although it depends on several factors, a partner can expect to make at least upwards of £150K plus bonus. There are rare cases when partners/directors earn about £1M and more. It is mainly driven by how much business they bring in.

Cheers!
Michal

Was this answer helpful?
Benjamin gave the best answer

Benjamin

Content Creator
Ex-BCG Principal | 8+ years consulting experience in SEA | BCG top interviewer & top performer
380
Meetings
7,074
Q&A Upvotes
35
Awards
5.0
31 Reviews
How likely are you to recommend us to a friend or fellow student?
0 = Not likely
10 = Very likely
You are a true consultant! Thank you for consulting us on how to make PrepLounge even better!
^