The Consulting Offer 2: 5 Michael's PEI/FIT Interview

The Consulting Offer 2: 5 Michael's PEI/FIT Interview

20 Episodes

The Consulting Offer Season 2 Part 5

Watch Kevin P.Coyne, ex-McKinsey Director and Worldwide Strategy Practice Co-Leader, mentor and train Alice Qinhua Zhou and Michael Klein for their McKinsey and BCG case interviews. Alice successfully joined McKinsey NYC at the conclusion of the program.

Kevin P. Coyne was a director and co-leader of both McKinsey’s Worldwide Strategy Practice and CEO Transitions Practice. At the time, he was the youngest associate at the firm and one of the youngest Principals appointed. He was the only person ever admitted directly into the Harvard Business School from his junior year of college, Rice University, which he attended by special permission before graduating from high school. Kevin has co-written 6 Harvard Business Review articles, 12 McKinsey Quarterly articles, 2 bestselling business books and articles across influential business publications. He spent time in the Federal Government as an Executive Assistant and sole policy advisor to the Deputy Secretary of the United States Treasury in the Reagan Administration.

Alice Qinhua Zhou is a 26 year-old candidate from Yale University. She attended Fudan University where she graduated 1st in her class. Alice has a strong track record of leadership at Yale, having served as President of the consulting club and editor-in-chief of a peer-reviewed journal. Alice has no full-time work experience. Coming off a McKinsey internship decline and unsuccessful Bain internship, Alice is interested in both McKinsey and BCG for a full-time associate position in NYC.

Michael E. Klein is a 30 year-old candidate from McGill and Brown University. Michael has a very strong analytic profile balanced by an equally artistic side: he was a candidate for ‘Canada’s Got Talent’ where he sang Prince lyrics accompanied by a harpist. Michael has limited work experience as a business journalist. Going into his very first interviews, Michael will have to prove he can use his technical skills to seamlessly understand and solve business issues, while demonstrating his leadership acumen in the fit interviews.

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The Consulting Offer 2: 5 Michael's PEI/FIT Interview
  • TCO II E5 1. KEVIN EXPLAINS THE PEI PROCESS

    Episode 1

    Building on the introduction provided during Alice’s PEI, Kevin introduces the PEI in a different manner by focusing on the overall format and structure of the interview.

  • TCO II E5 2. WHAT DOES A NEUROSCIENTIST ACTUALLY DO?

    Episode 2

    By asking this broad question Kevin is testing to see if Michael can communicate, without prompts, those 4 specific attributes McKinsey seeks in a PEI.

  • TCO II E5 3. WHAT IS A TYPICAL MONTH OR WEEK FOR YOU?

    Episode 3

    By continuing this theme of questioning, Kevin is signalling that the initial answer probably did not provide the information he was seeking.

  • TCO II E5 4. TELL ME ABOUT THE DATA ANALYSES PART?

    Episode 4

    Kevin is focusing the discussion on neuroscience specifically around the data analyses part. Michael needs to demonstrate he can explain the logic and insights in his analyses.

  • TCO II E5 5. WHAT IS THE HARDEST CONCEPTUAL PROBLEM YOU SOLVED?

    Episode 5

    Kevin is continuing the theme of problem solving, which indicates Michael’s previous answer was probably insufficient. Michael struggles to explain the problem and solution.

  • TCO II E5 6. WHAT LED YOU TO THIS INSIGHT?

    Episode 6

    Kevin consistently distinguishes between logical analyses and the insight developed. Michael, like Alice, tends to focuses on the logic at the expense of the insight.

  • TCO II E5 7. TELL ME ABOUT THE LAB WIDE-SHIFT?

    Episode 7

    Kevin shifts the direction of the interview and is testing another attribute McKinsey seeks. Michael does not recognize the shift and partially answers the question.

  • TCO II E5 8. KEVIN FOCUSES THE DISCUSSION ON WHAT MCKINSEY SEEKS

    Episode 8

    Kevin helps Michael by focusing on one area of leadership. Michael partially answers the question since he spends too little time on the group dynamics in this situation.

  • TCO II E5 9. KEVIN FOCUSES FURTHER ON THE LEADERSHIP ELEMENTS

    Episode 9

    Kevin directly asks for the leadership skill he is testing. Michael picks up on the “hint” but again focuses too little on the challenges of managing a group.

  • TCO II E5 10. KEVIN CONTINUES TO TEST FOR MICHAEL’S LEADERSHIP SKILLS

    Episode 10

    Michael has not sufficiently demonstrated his influence skills and Kevin continues to probe for this skill through an open-ended question on leadership.

  • TCO II E5 11. WHY DO YOU WANT TO LEAVE THIS INVESTMENT?

    Episode 11

    Michael needs to demonstrate he has thought though his reasons for leaving the sciences and that his answers are sincere.

  • TCO II E5 12. KEVIN POLITELY CHALLENGES MICHAEL

    Episode 12

    Kevin wants to know why Michael thinks research and industry careers in his field are limited. In other words, has Michael thought through his career options?

  • TCO II E5 13. HOW KEVIN STRUCTURED THE PEI INTERVIEW

    Episode 13

    Kevin explains the methodical approach he used in structuring the PEI into 4 distinct parts: requiring 4 different answers.

  • TCO II E5 14. HOW TO SHOW MCKINSEY YOU CAN SOLVE PROBLEMS

    Episode 14

    Kevin explains why Michael was “on the mark” 30% - 40% of the time. Kevin discusses how the McKinsey interviewer will analyze the PEI answer, particularly w.r.t. insights.

  • TCO II E5 15. HOW TO SHOW MCKINSEY YOU CAN INFLUENCE PEOPLE

    Episode 15

    Kevin explains why Michael was “on the mark” 30% - 40% of the time. Michael tended to focus too little on the challenges of influencing a large group of peers.

  • TCO II E5 16. HOW TO CHOOSE PEI STORIES IN AN INTERVIEW

    Episode 16

    In this insightful scene, Kevin explains how candidates should select stories for a PEI, when they are in the interview, by carefully listening to the interviewers direction.

  • TCO II E5 17. HOW TO SHOW MCKINSEY YOU CAN MANAGE ADVERSITY

    Episode 17

    Kevin makes a vital observation about Michael’s answer. Michael painted a clear picture of the challenging environment but consistently struggled to demonstrate one attribute.

  • TCO II E5 18. HOW TO EXPLAIN, “WHY CONSULTING?”

    Episode 18

    Kevin discusses the importance of sincere answers and how some responses can appear too coached. He wraps up the feedback by pinpointing areas Michael should improve.

  • TCO II E5 19. A STRATEGY FOR A MCKINSEY PEI

    Episode 19

    Kevin discusses the myth of McKinsey, BCG interviewers et al being deliberately difficult on candidates.

  • TCO II E5 20. FULL EPISODE FIVE

    Episode 20

    Kevin tries to get Michael to convert a very scientific resume into language that can demonstrate Michael’s understanding of business. With strong grades and a track record of success in this field, Kevin wants to make sure Michael can extract and explain those lessons, which the consulting inter...