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McKinsey & Company Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Jul 23, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

39%
31%
11%

Interview Experience  

69%
20%
9%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
726 candidate interviews
in

No Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Consulting Intern Interview

Consulting Intern

I applied online and the process took 4 weeks - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in January 2011.

Interview Details – The first round included taking the test and two group interviews on case studies.
The second round included 3 case-study interviews with three different cosultants.
Overall, the consultants were very friendly, approachable and had good feedback after the whole process ended.

Interview Question – Describe in detail a conflict you experienced in the past?   Answer Question


No Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate

I applied through a recruiter and the process took 8 weeks - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in July 2011.

Interview Details – My recruiter sent in my CV and I was then invited to sit a Problem Solving Test, for which there were set days that I could choose from.

I found out the next day that I'd passed this and was again sent a list of possible dates for first round interviews.

After that I received a phone call from the McKinsey recruiter to tell me they'd like to invite me to final interview.

Whole process took several weeks but that was mainly because I was choosing to leave a few weeks between rounds to give myself time to prepare.

Interview Question – Tell me about a situation where you were working in a team and it was very challenging.   View Answer


1 person found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate
London, England (UK)

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in January 2012.

Interview Details – The best and also the most thorough hiring process I have been through. Everything was transparent from Day 0. The much-feared test is actually very much like GMAT, the tough thing is getting through the 5 interviews (3+2). My interviewers were very different personalities with very different mindsets which was a great thing -- by the time I walked out of the 5th interview I knew a lot about the firm. The first round is very tiring with 3 interviews back to back, the second round on the other hand is more stressful because of the stakes being much higher. They give you instant feedback, I got to know within an hour about their decision which was a great thing. After the successful first round I got advice on how to master the second round.

Interview Question – The guessestimation questions. Remember to stay calm and structure the problem and ask questions.   View Answer


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate
London, England (UK)

I applied online and the process took 2+ months - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in December 2008.

Interview Details – Thorough. McKinsey wants to know how you think and the case interviews are a way to simulate that. I was very well prepared - I'd recommend "Case in Point" by Marc Cosentino. Cases are what they are - tricky to generalize about. I think you need to practice a lot - which I did - but also practice with someone good - which I'm not sure I did. I practiced with friends like me, and they didn't really know about the process, so the practice wasn't that much like the interview. Anyway, I got tripped up by the math on one question, and by getting stressed I didn't help myself. The PEIs were fine for me - I just was myself and had prepared some experiences (but sounded relaxed and not like I was reading some speech). It was a conversation. I tightened up a bit in the case, but that's expected.

Interview Questions


No Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate
City of London, England (UK)

I applied online and the process took 4 weeks - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in November 2011.

Interview Details – Very professional. First round consisted of two 1:1 interviews and each interview followed exactly the format the recruiters specified: Personal Experience conversation followed by one case study. The consultants and HR staff with whom I conversed were friendly, nice and easy to get along with. Prior to the First Round interview, candidates must take the Problem Solving Test, which consists of 26 multiple-choice questions that must be answered within one hour.

Interview Question – Tell me about a time you had to lead a team and you were challenged.   Answer Question


No Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate

The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in March 2011.

Interview Details – Great process. Intense but rewarding, they take alot of time to prepare you for the interviews, giving you buddies and mentors along the way.

Interview Question – Case study on exiting a market   Answer Question


1 person found this helpful

Declined Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate
Zürich (Switzerland)

I applied through college or university and the process took 3+ weeks - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in September 2012.

Interview Details – McKinsey has an extremely well-organized interview process, and interviewees are treated with respect. I had a very good experience interviewing with McKinsey and received extensive feedback after every stage of the interview process.

Interview Question – One of the case questions I was asked was about opening a port on a small island. The interviewer explained the various transportation ways (hub and spoke, relay system) and asked me whether the port should be built.   View Answer

Reason for Declining – The intense work-life balance (or absence thereof) at McKinsey is not a secret, and I chose to work for a smaller consulting company that offers me a better work-life balance and a less hierarchical structure.


No Offer

Positive Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate
Moscow (Russia)

I applied online and the process took 5+ weeks - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in October 2010.

Interview Details – Nothing new in my interview that other didn't comment in their respective posts. First the Problem Solving Test, one month later a batch day which consisted of three 1:1 interviews with EMs and three 1:1 interviews with senior managers only in case you passed the first round.

Being not used to the case method because it is used in my country only by big Consulting companies I concentrated in its preparation and I didn't take the time to ace other important issues.

Probably it is interesting to note that I'm not russian and I don't live in Russia now. Be aware that most parts of the interview were in Russian (which was OK for me),

Interview Questions


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Negative Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate

The process took 4 weeks - interviewed at McKinsey & Company in November 2011.

Interview Details – I interviewed for McK as APD candidate. The recruiting process is really intense and competitive and unfortunately it's not true that if you "pass the bar" they'll hire you (as they keep repeating at recruiting events).

1st Round: written test (26 questions in 1hr) + 2 group case interviews

2nd Round: 2 or 3 case interviews + personal experience interview with Engagement Managers --- be sure to practice many cases McK style: in this round even if you do a small minor mistake you'll pass (I did), as long as you show confidence and good analytical skills. The good thing about 1st and 2nd round is that you are competing against other PhDs, who have more or less the same skill set, so it's a fair game. I was called ~ a week later and told that I passed. My final round was scheduled 2 days later that call.

3rd Round: three 1:1 interviews with Associate Principals and Partners and 1 case group interview (thankfully, this kind of interview is not done in every office) --- case interviews with AP/Partners are basically the same, the group interview is different from round 1: you are given slides and expected to solve the case with the other candidates for 30 minutes. Partners are in the room and will observe you the whole time. After 30 min, they'll act as your client and you'll have to present them your findings. I was told to be collaborative and be myself during this role play: however, my impression was that the most aggressive and arrogant candidates (who would not shut up for a second to hear your opinions) were the ones considered successful. Also, the other candidates might be MBAs as well, so I let you judge if that's a fair assessment. I was called the same night and told that I was not offered a position.

Reasons: I had great presence and everybody enjoyed meeting me BUT during the case I was a bit slow in answering a question and I didn't fully address it according to my interviewer. In reality, I really felt as if my interviewer was trying to come up with excuses since I asked a clarifying question and it took me probably 30 seconds to understand what he was asking me and fully answer it (I remember him saying "great" after I was done talking). Also, my interviewer didn't know the feedback from the other AP/Partners so I wonder how they discuss the candidate performance if they don't share these details.

At the end of the day I felt I wasted my time, the recruiting process is not as transparent as McK claims it to be. The main reason why I think I was not hired is because I am not aggressive and arrogant enough for McK and honestly, already having an equally good job offer, I am happy this way.

Interview Question – I can't disclose the questions, but really the standard cases from any business school case book.   Answer Question


1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Very Difficult Interview

Associate Interview

Associate

I applied through college or university and interviewed at McKinsey & Company.

Interview Details – 1st Round Interviews: two 45min sessions. Each session included (i) Fit and (ii) Case.

1st Session: Regarding the fit, my interviewer asked me for a specific experience in my CV. The challenge was to use that story to transmit the values McKinsey is looking for. The case was a specific case regarding a Pharma company.

2nd Session: Same as with the first interviewer. This time they also used a Pharma case, but there were no numbers. It was all conceptual.

Interview Question – Case: Big pharma company wants to buy a smaller pharma company. Assess the strategic fit.   Answer Question

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