Which extracurricular activities best for MBB entry?

CV extracurricular activities MBB Resume selection criteria Volunteering
Edited on Jan 16, 2020
8 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Jun 28, 2017

Hey folks!

My plan is to polish up my CV some more to increase my chances to get into MBB consulting.

Now that I fulfill the major criteria (academic and work related) I would like to gain some more extracurricular experience. I am wondering if it matters what kind of activities I choose or which ones you would recommend me. I could join some "skill improving" workshops like toast masters or other public speaking seminars perhaps, or more social projects like Leo Club or other charity like organizations.

It's not that I only do it for my CV, I also enjoy joining teams and getting to know other people, but still I want to keep in mind which will help me most to get into MBB.

Please let me know if you have any advice for me on this!

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Vlad
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replied on Mar 05, 2018
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School

Hi,

I will look at the following buckets sorted by priority:

  1. Launching your own venture and entrepreneurial activities (even failing them is fine)
  2. Grants / scholarships - even better if related to some research or entrepreneurial projects
  3. Projects for companies - you may consider doing a free project for the company or a startup or writing a case that future grads will use
  4. Volunteer / social activities. I would aim at the activities where you can have a leadership role. Organizing some club may work as well.
  5. Case Competitions-especially the ones organized by your target company
  6. Researches / articles published in well-known sources

I would try to go deep rather than broad. It's good to have something that you can put as a part-time job in your resume rather than just a bullet point. It will also give you great stories for the FIT part of the interview.

Best,

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Francesco
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replied on May 31, 2018
#1 Expert for Coaching Sessions (3.600+) | 1.300+ Reviews with 100% Recommendation Rate | Ex BCG | 8+ Years of Coaching

Hi Ian,

I would stick to experiences that could provide evidence of one of the usual values consulting companies look for:

  • Leadership
  • Drive
  • Impact
  • Teamwork

Most if not all of the extracurricular activities you may do will involve at least one of these areas, thus as mentioned I would mainly concentrate on those you are actually passionate about.

Best,

Francesco

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Cyril
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replied on Jul 05, 2017
Ex-BCGer who can unlock the entire MBB+ interview process | Part of BCG recruiting team and case practice facilitator

Hi

I can directly answer this question because I have screened CVs at my firm. The point of extracurriculars are twofold:

  1. leadership/ expertise - you want to demonstrate either leadership OR expertise via each of your hobbies. It's very easy to put down an endless array of clubs/ groups/ sports that you participate in. However, the most compelling ones are organisations in which you are in a leadership role or have reached a significant level of expertise.
  2. show you are an interesting well rounded person - at the end of the day, the interviewer will likely spend a significant amount of time with interviewees. Interesting people are simplier easier to be around during those late hours.

To use your example, toastmasters would be more compelling if you were to demonstrate that you helped to organise meetings or were an instructor/ facilitator. Sports are similar in that respect - no one cares that you enjoy running. If you participated in several marathons or helped to run the local running club, that is a much more compelling story.

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Danny replied on Jun 29, 2017

I think there is no standard answer for specific ec activities. However, if yours make impact, show your entrepreneurship and initiative, it should be great. They really value your personal impact. And make sure you quantify your personal impact in CV. Hope it help!

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Anonymous replied on Sep 22, 2020

Hi Ian,

I agree with my colleagues that whatever activity you choose make sure it can show you have soft skills the targeted firms are looking for.

Leadership, adaptability, teamwork, critical thinking, entrepreneurship, conflict resolution, etc. are among them.

Best, André

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Clara
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updated an answer on Jan 16, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

Anything that shows curiosity, eagerness to learn and try new things, entrepreneurial drive... think of the stories that you tell in the FIT, this should be in line.

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

(edited)

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B
Expert
replied on Mar 04, 2018
NOT AVAILABLE

Hey Ian,

Literally any activity (choose the ones that you actually like, don’t do it just because of the CV!) where you can boost (and then sow that you have done it) any important skill: leadership, team collaboration, creativity, entrepreneurial, etc

Some examples I see and like are student associations and clubs, charities/working with underprivileged, Boy Scouts (or similar), launch a start up.

Best

Bruno

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Gaurav
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replied on Oct 22, 2020
Ex-Mckinsey|Certified Career Coach |Placed 500+ candidates at MBB & other consultancies

Actually, any volunteer activities that are in line with developing these qualities are fine: leadership, entrepreneurship, teamwork, conflict management.

Also, you can try to find some internship, which might add good points to your CV.

Does it make sense to you?

GB

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Vlad gave the best answer

Vlad

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McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School
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