Updated: Jun 22, 2022
Career Insights by GGI is a new series by GGI sharing hacks and tips around management consulting, MBA, product management, and public policy.
In this career insight, we share with you 2 Major Skills You Need to Get into Management Consulting: Career Insights by GGI.
I get gazillion questions in my inbox on how to get a shortlist from BCG, Mckinsey, and Bain or how to crack case interviews? Most people run after management consulting because it has a fancy title attached to it, and rightly so. Boston Consulting Group (BCG), McKinsey & Company, and Bain & Company are not just employers but frankly institutions in themselves. Working in MBB upskills you and provides you with a fantastic career launchpad, which many times can be better than career acceleration provided by top #MBA institutes! You learn and explore a lot of different sectors while working in consulting from structured problem-solving to communication. Now let's get to the main point- Step 1- HOW TO GET A SHORTLIST? The best way to distinguish your CV is by making it brief and having a spike. Ideally, your CV must be 1 page to demonstrate a good grasp of brevity in your communication skills. This rule doesn't follow if you have more than a decade of consulting experience. Today, with 10 years of experience, I still have 1 page CV. 1.1. What is a Spike The concept of a spike is being an extraordinary candidate in 1 of the 3 sections in your CV (academia, work experience, and extra-curricular) and good amongst the other two compared to your peers. The spike may vary from person to person. A good example of a spike is being a national-level swimmer. Many of you may wonder why the concept of spike exists. Well consulting is a client-centered business, meaning consultants work for hand in glove with top CFOs, CEOs, and akin. The spike ensures that young professionals can demonstrate their aptitude for success through historical evidence. 1.2 Getting Referrals The value of a partner's referral in MBB is way too high and getting a partner's referral is extremely rare also but valuable. You are typically interviewed at the Partner level or equivalent in MBB. And this makes the system very hard to game. I know sons and daughters of top bureaucrats being rejected in case rounds! STEP 2- CASE INTERVIEW HACKS Let's talk basics. You need to solve a number of diverse sets of problems if you are invited for interviews. Doing 5-6 won't do for you at least for MBB! Solving the case question can be broadly divided into 4 categories- scoping the case, forming an issue tree, asking to follow-up questions, and making final recommendations to solve the problem. The interviewer is particularly interested in following your chain of thought and problem-solving skills than the final solution. Once again, case solving is a muscle you build. The skill cannot be acquired by passive reading format. This writeup is an effort to respond to the many- many messages I get on a daily basis. Hope this helps. Like I always say, working in BCG and Mckinsey should not be the end of your dreams. There are multiple paths to achieving the same success point in the 21st-century world ❤️.