How long to prepare for MBB interview (1st round)

FredTheShark's picture
Rank: Chimp | 7

Not sure if this is the right forum or if it should go into "job search advice", but anyway:

Rather as a surprise I got an invitation by one of MBB in Germany to a job interview.

They asked me if I was available next week and my first reaction was to say "sure", so we fixed a date for what would have been this week.

Then I realized that I'd need some time to prepare and I moved the data by around a week.

Now I am thinking that this might still be too little time prepare (since I can only start to prepare for the cases tomorrow).

How long do you think it takes to prepare oneself for a 1st round interview at MBB? I have a business background, but so far I am not an expert in case studies.

Would it make sense to move the date again?

Thx for your input

Comments (6)

Mar 6, 2012

I think it would definitely look bad to reschedule your interview twice... would probably hurt more than it could help.

Mar 6, 2012

Congrats on the interview. Is this for a full-time position or internship? Contrary to the US, the bar is usually a bit lower for interns.

From my interview experience, usually I would suggest to take more than a week to prepare. That is, unless you are a very quick learner, will focus hard (exclusively) on preparation and will also get consistent sparring from someone to practice with.
Next to understanding/learning how to structure a case, practicing them and polishing your interview questions is crucial.

The fact that you already moved the date gives me an awkward feeling for a good recommendation... I'm not familiar enough with the internals of these firms and how your "lack of planning skills" might affect your application. Maybe someone with longer experience in the field could comment on that.

Mar 6, 2012

Thanks for both of your posts. The interview is for a full time position.
I agree, it certainly won't look very good to move the date again, especially since the new interview date is already outside of the regular schedule, so, it's basically a date just for me. I have some interview experience with firms from the IT consulting sector. Those interviews all went very well, but of course MBB is a different story. I am kind of hoping that the case studies aren't that hard in the first round, since it's Germany and in Germany the whole case study thing is not as common as in the US, for example. Not sure if I am right on that one, tho.

Mar 6, 2012

On their own, the case studies are not particularly hard. What most applicants (including myself back then) find harder is to structure the case, manage their time, ask the right questions and frame their ideas/solutions nicely.

They are usually not very technical as such.

I'm still a bit confused about your "first round" since MBB usually do only one round + partner interview. Hence, the second round can involve a case study but most of the work is done. It's a great opportunity to interview for any of these firms - I hope it works out for you!

Mar 6, 2012

Thanks again for your post. Apparently it's different here. The first round is case studies and some kind of a math test. The second round is more case studies (this time with partners) and some case with "real" situations from consultant life (whatever that might be, exactly)

Mar 10, 2012