McKinsey Case Interview Video, new: Learning the answer-first approach
Candidates should never begin their case preparation by learning the McKinsey approach. For the simple reason that if the interviewer is leading, which is the McKinsey style, how does the candidate know they would have identified the area of analysis without guidance? Those prompts from the interviewer are more important than candidates realize and many cannot solve cases without them.
So we start from the BCG approach, where the candidate must lead, and we can test their ability to prioritize issues and solve the case. Only after they can prove their skill to lead us in the analyses, we will switch and lead the candidate. McKinsey, and Bain, use an answer-first approach, sometimes called hypotheses. The problem with building hypotheses is that they are messy; it is difficult to apply MECE and application thereof usually requires some knowledge of the subject. For example, how easy is it to brainstorm the drivers of Pharma trial success if you know nothing about the industry? Not easy at all.
Most candidates build terrible hypotheses, which overlap and not really insightful We teach candidates a very clever and simple technique to build elegant, appropriate and MECE hypotheses by using the BCG style approach they have learned until now. In other words, candidates have to make just one change to the approach we already taught them, and they can use hypotheses. After this session, candidates should now be able to handle Bain, BCG and McKinsey cases.
Beyond a logical way to build hypotheses, we also teach a simple and useful technique to develop more than one key hypothesis. This is one of the most effective techniques to generate multiple relevant hypotheses.
There are profound differences between BCG, Bain and McKinsey, both in terms of their approaches to cases and the firms themselves. In this session we take some time to discuss these differences, and the implication for the candidate’s style of working and preferences.
Clients will find this video in Session 6 of the online case solution library. The video is only available to clients of our case coaching service.
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