Students interested in consulting or banking: When you're a student going through recruitment, it's tempting to tell a firm that you have offers from dozens of firm across the board, all eagerly awaiting your response to the offer letters that they have practically thrown at you and are begging you to sign. I'd like to give you a quick and simple example of why this is a bad idea.
A number of firms have "non-evaluative" mechanisms in place to help candidates feel comfortable. McKinsey had their non-evaluative buddies, BCG has a non-evaluative coffee chat, and almost all firms have their "pre-interview dinner". Ultimately, the goal is to let the candidates be themselves and learn about the firm in a non-threatening environment. Below I discuss what the phrase non-evaluative really means.
Building a complete and meaningful LinkedIn profile is important, but what's the point if no-one takes a look? Below is a surprisingly easy way to get consultants to check out your profile on LinkedIn.
This is one of the most common questions that I receive from students - "How do I network with a consultant?" Let's face it, it's a tricky situation with a high upside and a dangerous downside - below I discuss some of the right and wrong ways to network with consultants for the first time.
Unfortunately, getting the interview doesn't always mean getting the offer or even the final round. The following is an excerpt from an e-mail exchange with a Political Science student who used The MCN's resources to secure interviews with McKinsey, BCG, and Bain. While things didn't work out, you can learn from his experiences.
At one firm I interviewed with, the partner pulled out a piece of paper that was so crumpled and faded that it had clearly been used for years. You'll find that interviewers will often re-use the same case over and over again. There's a very good reason why (click on through to see the reasoning)
When you successfully secure a first-round interview, does your CV matter anymore? The answer is not especially. Only candidates with strong CV's will get selected to begin with - transferable skills are important but not especially influential when it comes time to make an offer. But what about your first-round performance? Click through to see why it has more of an impact than you think.
1. Firms WILL look through the attending list to see who showed up and who didn't. If you didn't even bother to come for an hour and a half (and free food!) then are you genuinely interested in the firm?
2. If you can't make it for any reason, e-mail the school recruiter to let them know! It'll leave a positive impression as someone who is organized, professional, and interested in the firm.
3. As one consultant put it "It's much easier to stand out in a bad way than a good way at an information session". During one of the information sessions I attended last year, a student asked a consultant if their firm solved problems through a "chaotic approach".
Another showed up with a cast on his arm that had "Firecrotch" written on it in big black (or was it red?) letters. Be careful about the things that you say and do as the assumption is that you would present yourself to a client the same way you are presenting yourself to a firm at their information session,
There's a long section in the '6 Steps to Success' about the information session networking process, so register to check it out (if you haven't already), just wanted to add on a couple of new tips....