Hi all, thank you for the helpful advice. Would you be also able to suggest appropriate questions to give to the partners? I am worried about striking the right balance. I feel like I already have my answers from the information available, from talking to people working at the MBB company, former employees as well as my first round interviewers. I don't want to choose something that I can obviously learn from these other sources, but equally I don't want to be too personal. Thank you in advance
What questions would you ask the partners in 2nd round?
I would recommend you to study the company news feed in advance. Maybe you will find an interesting recently published study of this company or any other relevant news and could ask specific questions about it.
Another way is to ask the partner about his motivation for consulting and company, i.e.:
- What makes you wake up every Monday at 5 am in the morning and go to the client after all these years?
- How do you manage your work pressure with a family?
- Where do you see the benefit of the Company XY comparing other MBB, tier-1?
A little bit provocative question, but will definetely make partner to remember you:
- What is important for you during the interview - how do you select the candidates?
Hope it helps.
Good luck with an interview and let me know if you need any help in preparation!
I fully agree to your opinion to NOT ask any obvious questions which you can gather from other sources as well - there is definitely a better way than that to use valuable partner face-time.
Concerning "too personal": it depends on what precisely you refer to, but there is nothing wrong with personal questions in terms of personal views or opinions on some topics ... and that might even lead to some interesting insights. Some questions I am thinking of are e.g.
- Where exactly do you see the competitive advantage of [company] vs. their competitors?
- Which three things turned out to be differently after joining [company] than what you anticipated in advance?
Hope that helps to think into the right direction!
Next to the excellent answers posted here - you can also ask him/her:
If you could go back in time, what would you do differently in the first 6 months when you started at XYZ firm?
This will essentially give you a tip of what you should focus on if you receive the offer.
Does this help?
In most of the cases, you'll have no chance to research in profile. From what I've seen only Bain shares interviewers names.
The main objective is to have a good conversation and highlight your intellectual capacity and curiosity. Thus:
It is ok to ask:
- Questions that cause positive emotions and highlight consulting pros (e.g. Mck people)
- Questions on the topics you are excited about (e.g. data science)
- Non-business questions (e.g. team retreats)
It's not ok to ask:
- Questions that can cause negative emotions (e.g. work hours)
- Information you should learn before the interview (e.g. typical career path)
- Questions that may show that you are unfamiliar with consulting work (Like are you specialized in strategy or operations?)
Be prepared and good luck!
You could ask about team structure and culture, how many people are in his team, what is the background of the people, how do they work together, do they do stuff outside work etc. This is always interesting because it's information you can't find on the website, and shows the interviewer you are a team player who cares about more than just doing a good job.
Tell me of a situation where you had an opinion and no one seemed to agree with you. What was your goal when you decided to join university / work / clubs / a sports team? Did you have a goal that you were not able to reach? What did you do? What do you want to be remembered for and how are you a ... Open whole case
What arouses your interest when you are working / studying / doing another activity (from the CV)? Tell me of a time where you had no idea what you were doing. When did you use an uncommon approach to do something? Have you ever had responsibility for other people? Tell me of a situation where y ... Open whole case
Tell me about a difficult situation you had to cope with. Tell me of a task which you didn’t like doing and explain why you performed it nevertheless. Why do you do things? What do you like doing most / What is your favorite hobby? Walk me through a situation where you showed leadership skills. Open whole case
Questions Tell me something about your background. Why should we hire you? Describe a difficult situation and how you handled it? What did your boss or colleagues criticize about you? Do you rather work in a team or independently? Open whole case