Cristian

Expert
Content Creator
5.0
#1 rated and most recommended McKinsey Coach | 97% success rate (tracked) | Honest feedback: no sugar-coating
McKinsey & Company
English
Germany (UTC +1)
USD 349 / hour
255
Meetings
5,182
Q&A Upvotes
46
Awards
5.0
90 Reviews

Top Skills

mindset training
case deconstruction
strength-based development

My Approach

Reviews

Q&A Contributions

Education & Profession

Awards

My Approach
  • My Approach
  • Reviews
  • Q&A Contributions
  • Education & Profession
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Hi there and welcome! 

I am Cristian and I look forward to supporting you in getting multiple offers from your target firms. I have the confidence that whoever you are and where you come from, between you and your dream job is just a bunch of work. And I am here to help you get through it in the most efficient, effective and elegant way possible.

WHY WE SHOULD WORK TOGETHER

You will have one of the highest success rates of any candidates on the platform:

  • I am ranked as the number 1 McKinsey coach on PrepLounge (check Coaches section on PrepLounge, filter for McKinsey and check ranking for ‘Awards last month descending’ and ‘Recommendation rate descending’)
  • 97% of my candidates secure at least one offer within six months of our sessions - I track each of my candidates across the entire recruitment pipeline
  • My average coachee receives at least two offers and feedback that they were a top candidate throughout the recruitment process
  • I have successfully coached candidates across the entire spectrum of roles - from Senior Manager to Intern, from Generalists to Specialists, from Digital to Implementation and from New Joiners to Experienced Hires.

You will receive mentorship that goes beyond the confines of management consulting interviews:

  • I will tell you whether your performance is a pass or fail, why and what you need to do to close the gap. I am very honest, so there will be no sugar-coating.
  • I advocate for zero-based thinking in building structures, helping you develop the skills you need as a consultant, instead of teaching you overused frameworks. This will not only set you apart as a candidate, but will help hit the ground running once you start work
  • I was a distinctive consultant in problem-solving and client relations. I’ll teach you how to get there, impress the interviewer and become one yourself when you join
  • I quit McKinsey to dedicate more time to writing. Storytelling is what I care most about and I’ll help yours shine for the interview.
  • Since I recently left McKinsey, I have a fresh understanding of the recent changes in the recruitment process and I am still in close contact with my former colleagues

You will receive all the assets and materials you need to secure multiple offers:

  • Written feedback scorecard after every session based on MBB criteria, with grading per each individual question, including strengths, areas of development and a tailored improvement plan with clear, actionable next steps
  • Real cases from McKinsey's interviewing database and original cases built from real McKinsey engagements
  • Collection of real personal fit (PEI) interview questions (covering +95% of any potential questions) from candidates who went to interviews within the last year
  • Recording of a successful PEI interview (Associate, US) so you know what a great story sounds like, what is the structure, how much time the candidate spends on each part and what are the sort of questions the interviewer asks
  • Math drills pack containing dozens of problems sets and exercises to improve calculation speed and accuracy, as well as effective chart interpretation
  • Library of case books containing several hundred practice cases
  • Collection of the most helpful free online resources to accelerate your prep, including articles, Youtube channels, practice exercises and websites
  • Recording of our session for your individual review (if requested)
  • Long-term mentorship extending beyond interview coaching. I am in touch with virtually all of my candidates who now work as consultants and supporting them in performing at the top of their cohort

Feel free to reach out for a free introductory call if you want to get to know each other or if you have additional questions
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FREE RESOURCES:

> Advice on what to expect and how to best prepare for a job in consulting - LINK

> A realistic image of how hard consultants work, why and how you can optimize for it - LINK

> Practice cases based on real McKinsey engagements - HERE, HERE and HERE

> For a free copy of my ‘4 Steps to Case Math’ guide, a battle-tested solution for excelling at case numericals (soon to be provided as a paid resource on PrepLounge), send me a direct message.

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ABOUT ME (the too honest version)

I joined McKinsey virtually by accident. I never planned to become a consultant. As I was about to graduate from Oxford, I was offered a great job which I decided last minute not to take because it required some sacrifices I was not willing to make. So fresh out of university, I found myself jobless and with no clue which way to go. My girlfriend at the time was applying for management consulting. It seemed like the cherry at the top of the corporate world, so I gave it a short. I practiced hard (including on PrepLounge), got a few offers and chose McKinsey. I was so happy! 

It turned out though that I knew absolutely nothing about consulting and I hated the job at the start. My performance reflected that. By the end of the first year I was close to ‘issues’, which in McKinsey terms is the last step before being 'encouraged' to look for another job. I sought out mentorship and I spent a lot of time thinking about my own path. I gradually understood that I was not just a consultant, but an agent of change within the Firm and the client’s organization. With my mindset, my performance changed. 

During the last three years at the firm I was consistently in the top quartile of Firm performers in the region. I was fast-tracked promoted twice, worked across eight countries and nine industries. I had clients genuinely, personally, thank me for the impact I delivered. I spent time coaching more junior colleagues and acted as faculty at McKinsey’s new joiners training (basically coaching new consultants on how to take their game to the next level).

Recently, I quit McKinsey. It was a great place, but I decided it was time to move on. Like in a marriage where we just grew apart but stayed friends, we still share nice memories of each other. I now write, I started a professional coaching business and I cause mayhem with my son. It’s a great a life.

Feel free to reach out! I’m always happy to share advice and talk about my experience. Most importantly, stay positive. Anybody can do this. Set a clear goal, make a plan, stay consistent and just do it! I’ll be cheering you on from the back.

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MY APPROACH TO COACHING

“What is the most common reason candidates fail the interview with you?” I asked my friend, a McKinsey partner and former mentor. 

I had done by then plenty of mock interviews with candidates and had once been a candidate myself, but I was curious what he’d say. Everybody has their own answer.

Common sense,” he replied.

At first I thought he was joking, but reflecting on my own experience, there’s hardly a better way to put it. The thing is, many elements are important to pass an interview with a top consulting firm: case study practice, knowledge of frameworks, genuine personal fit stories, self-control under pressure, etc. Partners making the final hiring decision may bat an eye at one of these, deeming it coachable along the way, but they will never pass someone without common sense. 

Common sense, of course, means critical thinking, which is the ability to genuinely, actively think through the case and have a conversation with the interviewer. It does not mean taking a super busy senior consultant or Partner and dragging them through frameworks. That’s not what the job is about. That’s not how it works. What they all have in mind as you’re speaking is “What will happen if I have this person in my team and I put them in front of the client? Will they manage?” They usually figure it out quite fast. 

That’s what I focus on primarily - coaching your mindset. That is, of course, a lot harder than teaching you frameworks, but it is essential. For instance, having a positive, constructive outlook about the recruitment process and engaging with the interviewer like they are a supporter and not a gatekeeper, will help you not only pass the interview, but perform among the top consultants once inside the firm. 

Of course, beyond this, we will cover all the things that are important and you can’t do without: the case studies, the frameworks and so on. My approach goes along the McKinsey personal growth strategy: strengths based development. We’ll find out your strengths and make them shine. Those are your spikes. Then we’ll figure out where you’re missing the mark and how to bring you at a good enough level. If you try to be great in everything, you’ll most likely be great in nothing.  

The reason I do this is because I have a strong belief: anybody can be a top management consultant. Everything is coachable. Nobody is born doing it. What makes the difference is how committed you are to the goal (i.e. what is the intensity you’re willing to practice at x the time you’re willing to take). 

Lastly, as a word of warning: I am very honest. I have nothing to lose. And the only way I can win is to get as many people hired as possible. As I’ve often told candidates, interviews can be moved, rarely repeated. If you are not ready, I will tell you on the spot and we’ll then plan together how and what you need to get there. 

Now you can relax, you’re in good hands.

Cristian's Coaching Package
Join The Firm Package - 5 sessions
Includes 5 sessions
Fundamental mindset shift
No sugar coating
Practice materials included

If you want to accelerate your recruitment process and maximize your chances of securing an offer, this package is for you. These five sessions are intended as a complete overhaul of your approach to case solving, personal fit story-lining and the overall recruitment process

The program is completely customizable for each candidate, but here is an overview of the usual structure:

SESSION 1: Baselining - Following a short discussion to understand more about your objectives, recruiting status and self-assessment, I will provide you with a real McKinsey case. This case will be longer (potentially even 2x) than the one in the actual interview in order to score you across all dimensions interviewers look at (usually what the first round aims to cover with two interviews). After this, we will move to feedback where we will discuss for each question you answered what were the strengths, areas of development and what is required to improve on each of them. I will answer all your questions about the interview, as well as how to practice most effectively. At the end, I will lay out all the feedback in written form, including an actionable set of next steps for you to work on until the next time (i.e., homework). Following the session, you will receive access to a Dropbox folder where all feedback scorecards will be added, and where you will find all the training assets that I own. 

SESSION 2: Growth - We will meet again whenever you feel like you managed to improve on the feedback provided in the first session. Now I will give you another real McKinsey case, this time of a significantly different type (e.g., atypical) and increased difficulty to test your development across each of the areas discussed the last time. We will then again do feedback and track your improvement vs the previous session across each of the questions. We will work together to understand what helped you improved (so we can do more of it) and where you are lagging behind (so we can adjust the approach). As before, I will provide you at the end with the written feedback and a set of focus areas to practice on before the next case session (e.g., structuring exercises).

SESSION 3: PEI - This session will require that you do pre-work, in terms of preparing three PEI stories (one for each of the dimensions). I will explain to you beforehand how to most effectively prepare them, a few tips and tricks and I will share with you a recording of a successful PEI interview so you get to understand what great sounds like and what sort of questions you can expect from the interviewer. Then in the actual session we will go through each of your stories and workshop them, focusing on structure, content and delivery. I love this part the most!

SESSION 4: Mock interview - This session integrates the two core parts of the interview we have been practicing separately until now: the PEI and the case. We will start with the PEI (as most interviews do) where you will get to tell the story and receive deep-dive questions like in the real interview, then transition to another real McKinsey case of a different type. At the end, we will do feedback on both and assess what are the last areas that you need to improve on as you approach the actual interviews. 

SESSION 5: Role-play full mock - This is meant as an end to end assessment of your interview performance and it always ends up also as a hilarious exercise. That is because we connect pretending that we are meeting each other for the first time and you are the candidate and I am the interviewer. We will then go through the usual steps of a real interview: brief chit chat, meet and greet questions, PEI, case, then Q&A. This will allow me to give you feedback not only on the case and PEI skills, but also on how you are likely to be perceived by an interviewer, what is the extent that you managed to connect with them and what can you do to improve. This fifth session will also include a detailed discussion on your readiness for the interview, as well as practical advice on how to adjust your mindset to maximize your chances on interview day.

Important to know:

  • Included in this package are also all the other resources I own (math drills packs, case books, etc.), as well as access to my current base of candidates for high-impact practicing.
  • Package requires focused work by the candidate between the sessions based on a custom training plan I will provide after every meeting
  • Other topics you are interested in knowing more about or receiving feedback on (e.g., CV review) can be discussed as part of the package at no additional cost or sessions
  • Meetings happen at the pace preferred by the candidate. There is no deadline for using the credits in the package. 
  • Additional individual sessions - if requested - come at the same percentage discount as those in the package.
  • Sessions can be on video and recorded if you prefer that. I am happy to adjust to whatever you find most useful.
  • Lastly, I put a lot of heart in my candidates succeeding (i.e., I care). As a consequence, I am very honest and direct with feedback.

RESULTS: 97% of those who book this package secure at least an offer within six months and feedback that they performed as a top candidate throughout the recruitment process.

*** Only four packages available each month ***

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July 16, 2022 by Nicholas

Excellent coaching. Cristian provided written and verbal feedback and a wealth of resources - he coaching was absolutely essential in getting my offer from McKinsey!

3 users found this review helpful.
July 14, 2022 by Danielle

Fantastic actionable feedback for case and personal experience/behavioral interviews. I utilized Cristian for McKinsey style cases and felt comfortable, and was successful in my interview cases

2 users found this review helpful.
August 22, 2022 by Anonymous

Cristian is an amazing coach. His honest but patient coaching style is very helpful to me, who used to be totally new to consulting. His written feedback is always constructive, directly telling me my weak areas and how to practice them. Also, I like the score system he used in the feedback. The score is a powerful indicator of my performance, enabling me to keep track of my improvements.

0 users found this review helpful.

Blog Articles by Cristian

Coffee Chat Questions in Consulting – What to Expect in an Informal Interview
11/04/2022
Reading Time: 6 Minutes
Guide
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Career
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Coffee Chat Questions in Consulting – What to Expect in an Informal Interview

In his article, our expert Cristian will explain what to expect from the coffee chat questions.
How Long Are the Hours in Consulting?
07/06/2022
Reading Time: 5 Minutes
Guide
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How Long Are the Hours in Consulting?

It's no secret that very long working hours are the norm in consulting jobs. But have you always wondered how long the working hours are in the consulting industry? Of course, there is no one number ...
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