The Art of the Consulting Fit Interview


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The Art of the Consulting Fit Interview

  1. 1. Preparing for Your Consulting Interview: The Art of the Fit Interview featuring: Darren Lafreniere President & Founder of Hosted by: Caitlin Quan Evisors Marketing & Operations Associate Hosted by: Career Advisors on
  2. 2. 1. Introduction 2. What is a Consulting Fit Interview? 3. Key Takeaways from recruiters at top Consulting firms 4. What key skills are the firms looking for? 5. Common Fit questions and suggested approaches 6. Q&A Agenda Hosted by: Career Advisors on
  3. 3. Background Hosted by: Career Advisors on
  4. 4. Owner of Final Round Prep (2009 – Present) Final Round Prep (FRP) helps students and working professionals obtain jobs in the Management Consulting industry @FinalRoundPrep Hosted by: Career Advisors on
  5. 5. What is a Consulting “Fit” Interview? The Application The Interview Fit / Behavioural Interview Case Interview •Assess personality •Determine applicants: –Personal qualifications –Communication skills –Problem-solving abilities –Teamwork –Client impact potential –Academic and work experience –Interest in the firm –Overall fit with the firm “Tell me about a time when…” Hosted by: Career Advisors on
  6. 6. Your “Fit” evaluation actually extends beyond the “Fit” portion of the interview 2 Minutes 8 Minutes 30 Minutes 5 Minutes Fit Interview Case Interview Candidate Questions Welcoming Ice Breaker “FIT” Hosted by: Career Advisors on
  7. 7. Key takeaways from top Consulting recruiters on the Fit portion of the interview  “It surprizes me how often candidates can underestimate the fit interview”  “The candidates who did not advance in the interview process this cycle did not demonstrate a passion for the job, and for our firm”  “The fit interview is not evaluated in a vacuum; it is just one part of the overall evaluation process”  “My evaluation begins as soon as I greet the candidate; it doesn’t start after we sit down and begin the interview” Hosted by: Career Advisors on
  8. 8. The firms are looking for you to demonstrate a specific set of Consulting based skills Skill-set Description Leadership / Initiative • Taking initiative; supporting and motivating team; defining project direction; developing and achieving goals Analytics • Analyzing data; identifying issues; structuring the problem; conducting complex analyses; drawing conclusions and formulating sound recommendations Creativity / “Entrepreneurial Thinking” • Developing unique solutions and insights using new and existing data; “Thinking outside the box” Communication • Interviewing clients; developing written communications (powerpoint); speaking and presenting to clients Team and Engagement Management • Contributing to the team; managing internal and client stakeholders (managing expectations); planning and controlling the project; managing project risks Client Relationship • Knowing the client; managing client communications; building rapport and relationships with the client; broadening relationships; gaining client acceptance Hosted by:See the rest at
  9. 9. There are 5 different fit question areas that you should be preparing for Behavioral Interview Area Description Work Experience • Focused on gaining an understanding of your educational and work related experience to date in order to determine your “consulting readiness” Education • Focused on understanding why you chose to do your degree(s) • Looking to identify the alignment between your pre- degree experiences and your post degree goals Goals • Focused on your short and long-term goals after you complete your degree (HINT: you want to be a consultant for at least 3-5 years!) Consulting (Industry and Firm) • Test your understanding of the Consulting industry, and Consulting as a career • Determine your specific areas of interest – i.e. industry, function • Gauge your knowledge of the firm, and test your potential “fit” General Business • Test your knowledge of current business issues • Determine your ability to “think on your feet” Hosted by:See the rest at
  10. 10. Some common behavioral interview questions; you should be prepared to “nail” these  Walk me through your resume  Tell me about yourself  Why do you want to do consulting?  Why do you want to work for our firm?  What is your greatest accomplishment? Failure?  Tell me about a time when… leadership / teamwork  Tell me about a time when… challenge (client, team, individual)  Tell me about a time when… problem solving Hosted by:See the rest at
  11. 11. Some interesting fit questions asked by top firms in the last few recruiting cycles  Tell me about a time when you had to improvise on a project  Tell me about a time when you had to get buy-in from your team on your idea(s) – and about a time when you had to get buy-in from someone senior to you on your idea(s)  Tell me about a time when you missed a deadline  Tell me about a time when you had difficulty getting information / data from a team mate (client, etc.) There were also some real doosies…  Tell me about a time you lead a project (spent 30 minutes talking about 1 example) – What was motivating the people on your team? What was motivating you? – What were the names of your team mates?  Phone rings – “go ahead, pick it up, it’s a voicemail from the client” (!!) Hosted by:See the rest at
  12. 12. Keep your responses to ~2 minutes in length, and utilize a “C-A-R” or “C-A-R-L” structure Tell me about a time when you led a team…. On a successful project And you missed a deadline + - C-A-R C-A-R-L Hosted by:See the rest at
  13. 13. To prepare for behavioral questions, build a “Work Experience Matrix” Context Job / Role 1 Job / Role 2 MBA Extra Curricular KeySkills Leadership Analytics Creativity ….. Hosted by:See the rest at
  14. 14. For the “Candidate Question” part of the interview, prepare a “Reverse Interview” 1. Come up with 2 or 3 categories for discussion – Your journey from MBA to Consulting – Projects you are working on currently – Growth areas of the firm 2. Write 2 to 3 leading questions per category The “Reverse Interview” then goes something like this… “There are 3 areas I would like to touch on – 1, 2, and 3… so let me ask you, <first leading question for category 1>… • After the leading question, your objective is to “probe” • Demonstrate client control by “moving” the conversation to the next category Hosted by:See the rest at
  15. 15. Questions & Answers Hosted by:See the rest at
  16. 16. Questions & Answers Question 1: Do different consulting firms have different fit standards? Hosted by:See the answer at
  17. 17. Questions & Answers Question 2: When preparing answers for fit interview questions, how should you integrate different firms’ cultures? Hosted by:See the answer at
  18. 18. Questions & Answers Question 3: How would you convince the interviewer you are the right candidate for the position given an unconventional background? Hosted by:See the answer at
  19. 19. Questions & Answers Question 4: Do you have any suggestions for candidates who don’t have a great GPA? Hosted by:See the answer at
  20. 20. Questions & Answers Question 5: Is it okay if you check out a consultant’s LinkedIn profile? Hosted by:See the answer at
  21. 21. Connect Book your session with Darren at: He can help you with any consulting service including: • Informational Interview • Resume & Cover Letters • Interview Practice …and more! Darren Lafreniere President & Founder of Hosted by:See the rest at