How can a Minority Tier 1 Indian B-School graduate without a job or any hard skill prepare to get their CV qualified for McKinse

ClarkofKrypton's picture
Rank: Chimp | 2

Hi, I'm a graduate from the best B-School in India (figures in top 15 to top 25 in global list depending on which ranking you look at) and I am looking to work at McKinsey and then eventually double it with higher degree at Harvard, Stanford, CMU (still confused between economics, psychology, Artificial Intelligence). That aside I need some opinions on how I could prepare for McKinsey (not the interviews, but the CV and profile in general).

A bit about myself:
Honestly speaking, I was admitted because I'm a minority and probably dont possess the lightening fast brains of some of the peers I benchmark myself with. Not only that, a lot of these guys were bred for success and had been collecting CV points from school and had planned things out. While I just kinda sorta stumbled into it and before I could really come to grasp it, 2 years passed by and graduation was over. Additionally, I was never hardworking or the study guy, so my grades in under-graduation & in B-school are below average (around ~50%). That said, I'm honestly not dumb either, I can hold my own very well against these guys when I am prepared or in the groove and probably might've scored as high as toppers if I had worked genuinely for ti. But I've been clinically depressed my whole life and have lost a tonne of opportunities due to what I think were silly issues (I'm more mature now, willing to work hard, put as much of that depression stuff behind me & start afresh). Honestly, I could've easily gotten the top 10% of the jobs while graduating but I basically threw it away paralyzed in depression (it was absolutely pathetic how I BARELY prepared when my "smarter more qualified more experienced" batch-mates were preparing their ass off). Further, I have a bunch of other traits that make me suitable to be a CEO (like creativity, humility, give team guys more credit, sacrifice my shine to not intimidate others, etc) but none of the hard skills that can get me to the top. I barely studied in my under-graduation and in MBA as well. Like I don't know coding, analysis, finance, etc. - I entered the B school without any work-experience. So, I got some random job that paid ok but didn't let me learn any hard skills to speak of, so I quit that and since then I'm finding it unexpectedly difficult to find employment (probably because I dont have any hard skills which sucks because I need to pick those up and it feels like I am going backwards). So, last 8 months I've spent at home in a semi-depressed state and working in my friend's startup which he runs half-heartedly. I'm trying to learn programming as a hard skill and trying to find formal employment as an programmer so I can really get good at some hard skill apart from my general B-School problem-solving & leader stuff.

That said, it's December 2016 now. I want to be successfully hired and work at Mckinsey by end of 2017. That's 12 months!! I mentioned before, when I am motivated I can work well but currently I dont have a direction. I'm asking here because due to my depression, I barely made any friends during my 2 years there. I can still reach out to people and they will be happy to talk, but that will remain as an acquaintance level conversation. So, if any one could kindly give me some genuine guidance, it would be highly appreciated!!!

I'm 24 now and would like to do Mckinsey, probably HBS, with some entrepreneurship mixed in before 35. What can I do in a 12 months or so timescale that would get me a Mckinsey interview. What can I do in terms of any awards I can aim for (some young leader type thing?), competitive exams (GMAT or GRE perhaps?- else anything else?) or certifications (CFA maybe? - just for an edge; if so till what level? Any other certifications or courses?)? I am planning to do a programming day job and a parallel startup (something simple like personal real estate portfolio or web development or digital marketing company or a chain of restaurants - something just to make myself financially independent). What level of growth must my venture see to make my CV eligible for getting an interview call? Anything else I can try to do (volunteering/initiative taking at some local events, charities, NGOs; or something on the personal side - earn a black belt in martial arts - this might compensate for my zero involvement in sports of any kind all my life)? In a Mckinsey video on YouTube, their managing director said they are looking for entrepreneurial energy, leaders, people who are a disruptive presence in their environments. How can I get qualified for this in 12 months?? I'm looking for advice only in building my profile as I will spend the last few months just before applying, to prep for interviews - once my profile becomes interview worthy- I am planning to apply to Bain, BCG, ATK, etc. so I will be able to join one of them at least if McK fails. Please provide numeric info, or be as specific as possible. Because If you mention, get "X" price, I can visit that website, see their requirements and attempt for it. If you mention, start-up, from 0, needs to see a series a of >1Mn $ or valuation of >10,00,00,000 Rs or hit some Y Rs/year or Rs/ month revenues, etc - I can operationalize myself to try and hit those numbers and build my CV accordingly. If you tell me stuff like - improve math skills or work hard at your job or something- it will not help me much. If 1 year seems too short for you, please tell me why and a more realistic time-frame as well.

So, how may I build a profile? Please share (and apologies for the long post, I need tailored advice not general purpose stuff).

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Dec 7, 2016