The management consulting industry is very competitive. Each year, thousands of people apply to various top consulting firms such as Bain, McKinsey, and BCG. Historically, only around 1% of these individuals get offers. One of the most challenging aspects of the recruiting process is getting an interview. While many candidates dread the case interview, getting an interview is the most competitive part of the process.
In order to maximize your chances of getting an interview, it’s important that you have a strong networking presence. This article will give you a comprehensive guide on how to build a strong network and get an interview.
Know It’s a Process
For most people, networking for a consulting job is like running a sales process. However, instead of selling a product, you’re promoting yourself. This article will talk about the process that’s involved in getting an interview.
The concept of a funnel is often used by salespeople to describe the process they use in order to reach their goals. For instance, if they send an email to 10 people, five of them will reply, two will give the required budget, and only one will actually buy the product.
Don’t expect to get an overwhelming response from everyone you contact. Although it’s important to try to reach out to as many people as possible, it’s also important to remember that networking is a numbers game. If you only reach out to a couple of people, it’s very unlikely that you’ll be successful.
A funnel is a process that will help you build a network of potential contacts. It will allow you to connect with various partners and consultants at the consulting firms that you’re targeting. These conversations will eventually lead to job offers and interviews.
Connect With Consultants You Know
One of the most effective networking strategies is to reach out to the people that you already know. This will allow you to build a stronger relationship with the consultants who are already familiar with you. If you’re close friends with a consultant, they might be able to recommend you to the company.
You should also send an email to the consultants. Make sure to include a well-written resume that explains why you’re a great fit for the company and how you’d be a great addition to the team. If you’re not comfortable asking for a referral, then reach out to them and schedule a follow-up call. In addition to describing why you’re interested in the company, you should also include a statement that explains how you’d be a great addition to the team.
Attend Networking Events
Most people don’t have a consultant who they can contact to ask for a referral. There are still various ways that you can get a recommendation or a referral from a consultant, but it’s usually a bit more work. One of the most effective ways to network is by attending networking events. If you’re a student who’s recruiting for a consulting job, then attend every event that the company hosts.
Since most of the time, the consultants at networking events are there to help recruit new employees, they’ll be more likely to recommend and refer people that they’ve met. However, it’s important to remember that it’s not always possible to ask for a referral. Instead, focus on making a memorable impression and making a positive first impression.
If they like you enough, they’ll put in good words about you. Having a positive first impression will help you build a stronger relationship with the consultants, and if they’re willing to recommend you, then you’ll have a good chance of getting a job offer.
Connect on LinkedIn
If you’ve already exhausted these two methods, then you might want to consider investing some time in cold-contacting the consultants on LinkedIn. This strategy can be very effective if you’re looking to build a stronger relationship with the consultants. However, it’s important to remember that this method is usually very busy.
Before you start cold-contacting the consultants, make sure that you’re focused on people who share the same interests. For instance, if you’re from the same city, but have the same university, then you’ll be more likely to get a response from someone from the same area.
Be Prepared for Interview Questions
If you’re at a networking event with a group of senior consultants, then they might be able to interview you on the spot. Partners are usually involved in the hiring process, so they’ll likely give you a short case question to see how you perform. After the interview, they’ll likely introduce you to other colleagues in the firm’s office.
Although it’s very rare for a case interview to happen, it’s a good idea to practice interviewing before you go to a partner’s lunch or coffee. This will allow you to learn how the consultants think and how to respond to certain situations.