BCG Consultant |Consulting Case Coach at London Business School
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What to ask interviewer?

Anonymous A

Just curious, what should we ask our interviewer or what's the appropriate question after finished case interview?

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Mitchell
Expert
replied on 12/27/2017
BCG Consultant |Consulting Case Coach at London Business School

To be honest, by the time that you've reached the point in your interview that you're able to ask questions, the interviewer will have already made up their mind about whether to progress you to the next round. In my opinion, an insightful question is not likely to change a 'no' decision to a 'yes'. So ask any questions that you genuinely want to know about consulting or the particular firm, without asking anything controversial or sensitive (e.g. salary).

Vlad replied on 12/27/2017
McKinsey / Accenture / Got all BIG3 offers / More than 300 real MBB cases / Harvard Business School

Hi,

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!

Currently non-active expert
Expert
replied on 02/24/2018

Hey anonymous,

I fully support Mitch's point - the interviewer is not going to take any decision based on your final questions (at least for McKinsey!), so you should really feel free to ask about something that is really important and relevant for you (and that's not too general that could be easily find in a 1min google search or company presentation). But it also depends highly on the communication spin that you are able to introduce to your question: back in my days I've asked one my interviewer, who had a heavy financial background, why did he chose McKinsey/consulting over Investment Banking and still got my McKinsey offer (while I hear so many people labelling this as a too generalist question, which I still disagree).

Best

Bruno

An (Jack)
Expert
replied on 12/26/2017
Google Strategy Manager | Ex- BCG Consultant | References Available

Hi there,

I would say it depends on the profile of the interviewer, stage of interview, anything "interesting" that the interviewer may have said earlier, and of course what you are really interested in learning about.

When I was recruiting, the ultimate goal I had in mind was to give the impression that I am eager, curious and also someone who listens and can hold a conversation well.

As such, I would have a few buckets of prepared questions but try hard to tailor the question depending on some of the factors above. For example, I would usually try to start the question by linking it to something particular about the interviewer's background or something the interviewer said.

For example:

1. [For a partner / later round interview] I loved hearing about your consulting experience earlier - if I was also looking for long term success in this profession, what do you think were some of the key things that you think is important to being a successful consultant in the long term?

2. [For a more junior consultant / early round interview] As you know I am just starting out in my career, so learning and development is really important for me - how have you found the amount of learning and development you've had at Firm X? What do you think were some of the biggest learning areas?