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Which master should i do?

BCG bcg consulting MBB McKinsey Mckinsey operations operations operations strategy
New answer on Jul 07, 2023
6 Answers
Jacopo asked on Jul 05, 2023

EDIT: First of all thanks to those who answered for the precious tips, but i stil have one doubt, is it possible with a MiM to break into the Ops practice or would i be hired as a generalist?

Hi everyone, i’m Jacopo and i’m studing my bachelor in industrial engineering at Politecnico di Milano. At the moment i am really enjoying the idea of working in the Operations in the future, and the goal is to get into Mck or BCG ops. I was wondering if it was best to purse a master in Industrial engineering at PoliMi -which is the natural prosecution of my bachelor, and deepens topics i’m interested in-, or a more prestigious MiM such as RSM‘s CEMS MiM -which has exams i’m less interested in but offers a stronger brand, plus i like the netherlands. 
Thanks for the attention.


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Content Creator
replied on Jul 05, 2023
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.500+) | 1.500+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ | Ex BCG | 10Y+ Coaching

Hi Jacopo,

Q: Which master should I do?

Between the more interesting exams (Poli) and better location (CEMS) you have to consider what you value most – it is a personal decision so you will have to put your own weight. Personally, I see a lot of value in an experience abroad if you didn’t have one before.

In terms of the best brand for MBB, you can check it as follows:

  1. Go to LinkedIn
  2. Add each university as "School" one at a time. If possible filter by  your master as well
  3. Add each MBB as “Company” one at a time
  4. Check how many current/former consultants are present in your target regions
  5. Normalize the results for the cohort size of the schools

This should help to have a data-driven answer.

Good luck!


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replied on Jul 07, 2023
Top-Ranked Coach on PrepLounge for 3 years| 6+ years of coaching

Hi Jacopo,

You can definitely break into the Ops practice with a MiM, though you'll have to think carefully about how to position yourself in applications and how to talk to recruiting about your desired role!

Regarding your latter question, it seems like you are weighing up the appropriate factors, but no one apart from you can make that determination. You are right that it is easier to break into consulting from a more prestigious school, so you need to evaluate that + the location factor vs. the interest factor, and decide which is more important for you. There is no right answer, and it is possible to break into consulting with degrees from a “less prestigious” school too, if you go about it the right way.

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Content Creator
replied on Jul 05, 2023
#1 rated MBB & McKinsey Coach

Hi Jacopo, 

Yes, you can definitely do it with a MiM. 

In the end, it's not the MiM that makes the difference, but the value proposition that you convey through your application package. 

That means that:

1. Your CV should show clear evidence of you having both experience and knowledge within Operations.

2. Your Cover Letter should provide the motivation as to why it is that Operations interests you so much. 

It would also help to network with recent hires in the Operations practice and figure out from that what made their application successful. You can use the following guide to conduct these discussions:

Last but not least, make sure that you apply broadly for Operations roles. Even if MBB is your focus, start by applying to other firms to sharpen your skills. You can use the following guide to design this sort of strategy:


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Content Creator
replied on Jul 05, 2023
#1 BCG coach | MBB | Tier 2 | Digital, Tech, Platinion | 100% personal success rate (8/8) | 95% candidate success rate

Hi Jacopo!

Yes, it's possible to break into the Ops practice. That said, you are more likely to be pegged as a generalist. Especially for MBB, they prefer to hire and have you be generalist for a few years. Ops would be either later in your career at MBB or right away for certain boutiques/specialist firms.

Here's some more info on getting internships + full-time offers:

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replied on Jul 05, 2023
BCG 1st & Final Round interviewer | Personalized prep with >95% success rate | 7yrs coaching | #1 for Experienced Hires

Hi there,

I suggest you take a very outcome-oriented approach here - think where you want to be in a few years, then backsolve for what's the best way to get there - in my view, would be a MiM, let me explain:

  1. If your primary goal is to get into McK or BCG, pick the option that will make it easier to get hired by those companies
  2. Both firms highly value engineers, even if they don't have any business background. What they value even more though is candidates that have a track record of combining both disciplines, as it signals stronger business acumen and judgment from the start
  3. Given you already cover the engineering side, a Masters in Management can be a great way to pick up the business side
  4. In addition, MiM traditionally have a stronger reputation and track record in placing students into MBB firms. So, subject to the exact school, you will likely get more recruiting exposure to the top firms than you would from a more technical degree

Hope this helps.

Regards, Andi

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replied on Jul 05, 2023
Ex-Bain | Effective case prep for DACH & Middle East | Offers from 5/6 recruitment processes (3 regions, '20 & '23)

Ciao Jacobo,

Thinking outcome oriented here might help you in making a decision: 

  • Goal / objective of master: Why do you want to do a master? I am aware that it feels like a must in Italy, but technically it's not. So do you want to maximise chances to get into strategy consulting, deep dive in a certain field or have an “easier", less study and more personal growth experience?
  • Where do you want to work? Be aware that consulting outside of Italy will be an uphill battle given the language barrier. So if you want to start your career in another country, choosing a university in the same country makes a lot of sense. In that case, Italy can be your second option during the application. 

Hope it helps, good luck with your future.

Best, Daniel

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Francesco gave the best answer


Content Creator
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