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Break into McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Oliver Wyman, Accenture, and other top management consulting firms with resources provided by top consultants and ex-consultants from around the world. The Management Consultants Network provides you everything you need to succeed in the consulting recruitment process - from start to finish. Best of all? It's completely free. Register for the site and check it out. 

b2ap3_thumbnail_Music_Business_Program.jpgToday's success story focuses on Kevin Drennan, a music major from McGill University and MCN member who will be joining McKinsey full-time in 2014. After an initial, unsuccessful attempt at breaking into consulting, he buckled down, focused on the essentials, and secured multiple offers before deciding to join McKinsey. In this guest post, he discusses his path to consulting, and the factors that helped him succeed as a non-traditional applicant.

The following is written by Kevin, is purely a personal viewpoint, and in no way, shape or form represents the official position of any organization on the recruiting process. The image represents what we expect Kevin to look like next year. 

“From Music-Major to McKinsey”

Breaking into Consulting from a Non-Traditional Background

Last year at this time I was reeling after finishing consulting recruitment with no offers. I had a non-traditional background (music major at McGill; 3 minors in math, economics & business), but I thought that my strong GPA, extracurriculars, and ‘uniqueness factor’ would lead to at least one or two good offers.

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Posted by Khaled Kteily on in All About Consulting

The facts: 

Announced just a few hours ago, PwC is planning to purchase Booz & Company, pending a vote by Booz's 300 partners in December. For those of you who read our post two months ago - "Will mid-sized consulting firms exist in 2015?" this does not come as a huge shock, although at the time talks were focused on PwC acquiring Roland Berger. 

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How big is the acquisition?

According to the Financial Times, "Neither group would disclose the value of the transaction, though it is understood to be worth several times Booz’s $1bn of annual revenues, according to people familiar with the agreement."

For reference, PwC's Advisory revenues are about $9B, and Booz's revenues have recently been pegged between $1B and $1.4B, meaning that this is a fairly substantial acquisition. 
 
What does this mean for the industry?
 
Large consulting firms are increasingly pressured to provide 'complete services', which includes major strategic work. Historically, this has been the strength of strategically-focused firms such as McKinsey, BCG, Bain, Oliver Wyman, Monitor Group, etc. and represents an immediate new threat. Such firms might have beaten out Booz and PwC independently, but it will be increasingly difficult to compete against a firm that can provide both top-tier strategy consulting and large-scale transformational capabilities. 
 
The better question is: Who's next?
 
Check out our original article for some more background on potential acquisitions, relative sizes of firms, and our projections for what will happen. 

I'd like to begin by welcome the newest member of our Advisory Board, Badreddin Edris.

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A longtime supporter of the MCN, Badreddin is a Stanford PhD in Genetics and is now a Consultant at Bain & Company, where he focuses on biotechnology and pharmaceuticals. In addition to winning more awards and being published in more journals than he knows what to do with, Badreddin will be contributing to the MCN on various topics, including how to break into consulting as a graduate student. (Full bio below)

His first post is on the qualities that students must demonstrate in order to break into consulting. As a reminder, any and all posts on the MCN represent a personal viewpoint and are in no way, shape or form intended to represent an employer's views. See here for more details. 

Posted by Khaled Kteily on in Interviews

A recent blog post from Bain Voices is a description from a new consultant on the types of cases that she faced in her first- and second-round interviews at Bain & Company. Unlike many more, marketing-speak postings from firms, I found it provided real insight into the types of interviews you can expect to face. She breaks it out into four types of cases:

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1. The Seemingly-Easy Question

“Would it be profitable for us to open MyPizzaCo to compete with PopularPizzaCo around the corner from here?”

2. The Charts & Data Overload Question 

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Posted by Khaled Kteily on in Succeeding as a Consultant

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This post is Part 5 in a five-part series on the skills you will need to succeed in consulting, and focuses on developing a frame of mind that will help you achieve a sustainable lifestyle as a consultant.

P.S. We recently updated our site so that all registered members receive e-mail updates about new blog posts. If you're not interested, please just hit the 'unsubscribe' button in the e-mail you've received.

The series:

Part 1: Hard skills and staying organized

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We recently came across an iPhone app called LoungeBuddy - we haven't used it yet but it's making the rounds on a number of travel sites and it seems promising if you're traveling to a new or foreign airport. 

The way it works is you tell it what frequent flyer memberships you have, what airline you're traveling on, what airport you're in, and it'll tell you what lounges you have access to. The list is actually pretty comprehensive - ranging from various AmEx cards to whether you have a military ID. It'll also let you specify amenities that you're looking for (e.g. showers), which sounds pretty handy. 

Drop us a line in the comments if you've used it and let us know what you think!

Posted by Khaled Kteily on in All About Consulting

As interviews are heating up and the offers start rolling in, you should be taking the time to consider what's really important to you. For some it will be culture, for others it will be prestige, flexibility, or project work. 

I know that when I was going through the recruiting process, I cared about all of those things. Flexibility was probably the lowest on my list - I wanted to come in, work hard, do a good job, and then figure out what comes next.I'll be at the two and a half year mark soon - putting me just around the median tenure for a consultant. And what you don't realize as a student - or what you talk yourself into downplaying - is that consulting is hard work, man!

Posted by Khaled Kteily on in Site Updates

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A quick site update for everyone - we recently updated the site's subscription settings, so that you don't have to register for the site and subscribe to the blog separately. If you register for the site, then you are automatically subscribed to receive blog updates as well, which we think makes a lot more sense. 

If you've already signed up for the site and would prefer not to receive updates, please just click the 'unsubscribe' button at the bottom of the e-mail. We won't be offended!

And for those of you who haven't been following the blog, here are a few of our most popular posts and resources:

1. Succeeding as a consultant (Part 1 of 5)

2. Will mid-sized consulting firms exist in 2015?

3. How to dress like a consultant... on the cheap

4. How to game the system when scheduling your interviews

5. How many hours does a consultant work? 

6. The most common case interview types

7. The inside scoop on recruiters' e-mail addresses

And don't forget to check out our member-only resources, which include the 75+ page '6 Steps to Success'. It's broken out into 6 sections:

Step 1: Learning about consulting

Step 2: Preparing your applications

Step 3: Developing the basics

Step 4: Refining your knowledge

Step 5: Focusing on the details

Step 6: Receiving your offer

Recruiting season is in full-swing at this point. If you know of any friends are colleagues who are interested in breaking into consulting, please pass along the link to the site. As always, the content is completely free. 

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