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Why consulting? - Interview answer

FIT fit interview MBB tier2 why consulting
New answer on Jun 16, 2020
11 Answers
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Anonymous H asked on Jun 14, 2020

Dear Experts,

I would be very grateful for your advice on the following question.

For the interview question 'why consulting?', is it ok to talk about wanting variety in my work engagements and tasks?

Thank you very much.

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Clara
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Jun 14, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

This is a question that for sure will pop up at some point, and that you need to have well prepared.

The "Integrated FIT guide for MBB" has been recently published in PrepLounge´s shop (https://www.preplounge.com/en/shop/tests-2/integrated-fit-guide-for-mbb-34), and this is one of the questions targetted.

It provides an end-to-end preparation for all three MBB interviews, tackling each firms particularities and combining key concepts review and a hands-on methodology. Following the book, the candidate will prepare his/her stories by practicing with over 50 real questions and leveraging special frameworks and worksheets that guide step-by-step, developed by the author and her experience as a Master in Management professor and coach. Finally, as further guidance, the guide encompasses over 20 examples from real candidates.

To the WHY CONSULTING in particular, some tips:

  • In most cases, there is more than one reason. Write your ideas, in order of importance, in bullets points
  • Start your answer by an introduction to those bullet points (e.g., There are mainly 3 reasons why I would like to work in consulting)
  • Comment the bullets in order or importance, clearly separating the ideas. This makes it easier to follow, more structured and dynamic
  • Finish with a summary of the points, as long as a “tweet” (e.g., In a nutshell, the 3 reasons why I want to work in consulting are the multidisciplinary approach, global scope and client-facing engagements

This would be a good example:

There are two main reasons why consulting is the way that I want to start my career. I studied Architecture since I loved the multi-multidisciplinary approach: from Math to History, from Construction to Aesthetics. However, I realized that, when it comes to working as an architect, the scope narrows down a lot. Hence, the 1st reason why I want to transition to consulting is to keep the multi-discipline and multi-industry focus. Furthermore, I love being constantly challenged and learning at high speed, and I know that consulting has one of the steepest learning curves. In a nutshell, the 2 reasons why I would like to join consulting are the multi-disciplinary focus and the constant challenge that drives exponential growth

Feel free to PM me for disccount codes for the guide, since we still have some left from the launch!

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Sidi
Expert
replied on Jun 15, 2020
McKinsey Senior EM & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 350+ candidates secure MBB offers

Hi!

It is actually quite simple. The best possible answer can be crafted in two steps:

Step 1: Define your objectives over a 5-10 years horizon - both career-wise and personal.

Step 2: Think about why and how Consulting/the particular firm can help you achieve these objectives in an optimal way.

Cheers, Sidi

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Udayan
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Jun 14, 2020
Top rated McKinsey Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /6 years McKinsey recruiting experience

Hi,

Variety is okay as an entry point but variery in and of itself is not sufficient. Just having different experiences is okay what you want is to say why that matters. For example you can talk about how the ability to learn from different situations will accelerate your learning. Or how working across different industries can improve your ability to solve problems by helping you focus on both your approach and the industry specificities.

In short the reason is currently superficial - go to the next level to make it a strong reason

Best,

Udayan

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Anonymous replied on Jun 14, 2020

Hi there,

It's a very valid reason - Consulting will offer you various engagement in different geographies, markets, and industries. Also, it will allow you to work on a large spectrum to tasks from the highly quantitate ones (financial modeling) to the highly qualitative ones (vision/mission definition workshops)

Make sure your answer isn't generic - show your character through your answer. The last thing the interviewer wants to hear is a plain answer without a real flavor :)

Best of luck in the process

Khaled

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5
Anonymous replied on Jun 15, 2020

Hi,

I totally agree with what has been said so far but I would add one thing:

If you make a good introduction this question should not be asked !

Indeed, it is important when you present yourself to show the logic of your journey and explain why consulting is the next obvious step. If we ask you this question, it is because your intro was not convincing enough on this dimension.

We can discuss it in PM if you want.

Best

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4
Luca
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Jun 15, 2020
BCG |NASA | SDA Bocconi & Cattolica partner | GMAT expert 780/800 score | 200+ students coached

Hello,

SUre, it would be more thank okay. Other good reasons can be:

  • Motivations that consultancy can give, challenging you everyday
  • Quality of people working there, you can learn from

Best,
Luca

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Ian
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Jun 14, 2020
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there!

It's a good answer, but make sure 1) You include other reasons and 2) You highlight traits behind this that show they they want you.

I.e. "I love learning, I learn quickly, I run towards the unknown/ambiguity, I handle changes well, "etc."

NOT "I get bored easily"

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Antonello
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Jun 16, 2020
McKinsey | top 10 FT MBA professor for consulting interviews | 6+ years of coaching

Hi, I think it is a good point to discuss. Further interesting considerations can be made about:
- quality of people: consulting can attract and retain the best resources available every year
- high-level exposure with top clients: especially for most junior people, no role has comparable exposure with C-level of top organizations
- impact on large companies: in a team of 3-4 people you can really bring impactful changes in the business

Best,
Antonello

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Anonymous replied on Jun 16, 2020

Dear A,

“Why consulting?”, "Why company X" is quite a common questions to assess your motivation to be a consultant in general and to work in that particular firm. They will check how you have prepared for the interview with this specific company and what you’ve learned about them. They also want to make sure that you have a clear intention to work in consulting.For this question I would recommend you to find the reasons that are important for you and logically fits everything you have done before.

So, regarding to your question, actually you can use it but align it with consulting topic that lead to the logical answer - why consluting

If you need any further help or advice, feel free to reach out.

Best,
André

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Robert
Expert
Content Creator
replied on Jun 15, 2020
McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author

Hi Anonymous,

I am afraid you approach this question from a different (if not to say inccorrect) angle.

The question is not really that much what's in it for - the question is more how exactly can you contribute to the client's and firm's success with everything you bring to the table.

Please consider that consulting is a service business - what's in it for you (variety etc.) is a tertiary factor - the ranking is always 1) client 2) company 3) consultant. So try to align your argumentation also along this hierarchy, and connect your argumentation with specific examples of your past to make it credible (as opposed to generalized statements).

Hope this helps - if so, please be so kind and give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!

Robert

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Vlad
Expert
replied on Jun 15, 2020
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School

Hi,

Please never use "A variety of projects" as why consulting answer for the following reason:

  1. It's the answer 90% of candidates give and it is super boring
  2. Consulting is not about a variety of projects. Success in consulting is all about specialization

Best

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Clara gave the best answer

Clara

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McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut
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