What would be good improvement points to mention during an job interview?

improvement points
New answer on Mar 12, 2021
6 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Mar 11, 2021

Hi all,

I am wondering what would be a good answer to the question "what are your improvement points?". I would like to shape an answer that fits into what the interviewer wants to hear. More specifically, I would like to avoid to mention skills that are important to the consulting job (presentation, communication skills etc.).

Examples of what I was thinking but I consider as not possible to mention because having the risk of being a dealbreaker:

- I could improve on giving presentations to senior level managers because it could make me nervous to tell a senior manager what to do when I am inexperienced and young.

- Having a difficulty to make decisions while choosing one of the multiple alternatives (indecisive).

- Paying too much attention to little details while reviewing my work, which slows me down and little details don't always are very important (not sure if this is a good one).

I definitely could use some help on this. Thank you!

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Best answer
Denis
Expert
replied on Mar 11, 2021
Ex-Bain 5 yrs | Goldman Sachs Investment Banker NYC | MBA Chicago Booth | Passed > 13 MBB > 20 IB interviews

D'accord with other coaches on mentioning non-red-flag issues. Pick true weakensses, potentially classic weaknesses ppl tend to have in the beginning of their careers (e.g. focusing too much on the numbers or details and not bigger picture, low share of voice in meetings, not good at delegating etc). Dont forget - IT IS NOT A CONTENT CONTEST, goal should be to BOND WITH THE HUMAN BEING in front of you. And this can only be done being HONEST, SINCERE, EMPATHETIC. Whatever weaknesses / development opps you mention, they should be unique to you and based on your unique weaknesses in life.

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Anonymous A on Mar 11, 2021

Thanks for all the replies. I know that I shouldn't pick any red-flag issues or improvement points. Could you guys give me some tangible examples of improvement points that do not have a (big) negative impact on your capabilities as a strategy consultant?

Denis on Mar 11, 2021

I listed them in my post - more junior-level issues that are not that important to senior ppl and quite easily fixable.

Antonello
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Mar 11, 2021
McKinsey | MBA professor for consulting interviews

Hi, I recommend talking about some non-red-flag issue that happened 6+ months ago. It's important to show how you understood the importance of it and how you worked in the following months to improve it, potentially with a result

Best
Antonello

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Anonymous A on Mar 11, 2021

Thanks for all the replies. I know that I shouldn't pick any red-flag issues or improvement points. Could you guys give me some tangible examples of improvement points that do not have a (big) negative impact on your capabilities as a strategy consultant?

Ian
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Mar 11, 2021
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

This is a hidden "Biggest Weakness" question!

Remember, the key here is two-fold:

1) Your weakness isn't really quite a weakness in the right context (i.e. I get too excited about things and forget to wait for my team, I get really committed/devoted quickly and sometimes forget to take care of myself, etc.)

2) You've learned (from some interesting experience) how to tame the weakness. I.e. you know when it happens, why it happens, and you have methods to address it...so, ultimately it's not even a thing that really happens anymore.

Some Prior Q&As:

https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/what-do-you-consider-to-be-your-weaknesses-4818

https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/personal-fit-weaknesses-negotiation-skills-example-9050

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Raj
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Mar 11, 2021
Strategy&| ex-interviewer | 170+ coached over career |95% success @ MBB, S&, RB, LEK, OW, Big4 [SUCCESS STORIES BELOW]

Be honest and identify a real weakness (one not critical to the job of a consultant), and talk about how you are addressing it. Watch out for the pitfall of saying something that isn't really a weakness. Interviewers easily sniff that out and it looks disingenuous. At the same time, don't mention something that will actually be critical in your role e.g. public speaking.

Frame the answer as this being something you are already taking steps to address.

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Anonymous A on Mar 11, 2021

Thanks for all the replies. I know that I shouldn't pick any red-flag issues or improvement points. Could you guys give me some tangible examples of improvement points that do not have a (big) negative impact on your capabilities as a strategy consultant?

Gaurav
Expert
Content Creator
updated an answer on Mar 11, 2021
Ex-Mckinsey|Certified Career Coach |Placed 500+ candidates at MBB & other consultancies

Hey there!

It's better no to mention any vital and crucial skills for the job as „the area of improvement“. The management will not be impressed by that and your chances of getting the desired position will significantly decrease.

Moreover, do not bring up any joking phrases like „I am good mostly at everything but I work too much“. They wanna hear a clear honest answer from you.

So, basically pick up an area, which you really want to be improved at. Some aspects that do not influence directly the desired position, but would be great for self- and career development.

If you have any other questions - you can text me!

GB

(edited)

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Anonymous A on Mar 11, 2021

Thanks for all the replies. I know that I shouldn't pick any red-flag issues or improvement points. Could you guys give me some tangible examples of improvement points that do not have a (big) negative impact on your capabilities as a strategy consultant?

Adi
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Mar 12, 2021
Accenture, Deloitte | Precision Case Prep | Experienced Interviewer & Career Coach | 15 years professional experience

Hey,

Have a look at these threads for some more answers to this question:

  • https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/what-would-you-answer-to-what-are-your-weaknesses-and-explain-9185
  • https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/personal-fit-weaknesses-negotiation-skills-example-9050
  • https://www.preplounge.com/en/consulting-forum/give-me-a-reason-why-i-should-not-put-you-on-a-project-9317

Here's extract of my answer:

Here's some pointers to help you think about areas for examples fo genuine weaknesses:

  1. Communication style: are you assertive (clear, concise) or passive; does your style change when you are with senior/high power people
  2. Managing difficult situations & people: how do you do this today & how can you improve
  3. Something goes wrong or doesnt happen the way you wanted: how do you deal with it? What areas can you improve at
  4. How do you deal with lot of information/data or very vague information: what can you improve

The tip is to dig a bit deeper into your life, school, internships, work experience and analyse what can you improve. Come up with genuine examples (avoid I work super hard, I am perfectionist etc etc) and practice storytelling techniques for impactful delivery in interviews.

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Denis gave the best answer

Denis

Ex-Bain 5 yrs | Goldman Sachs Investment Banker NYC | MBA Chicago Booth | Passed > 13 MBB > 20 IB interviews
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