A Structure To Prepare Answers That Will Resonate With Your Interviewer Tell Stories
The best way to answer consulting behavioral interview questions is to tell stories. Stories are great because they stick in your interviewers mind even after a day of meeting a dozen candidates. That gives you a leg up when decisions are being made.
Look for instances from your past that demonstrate your impact in a work environment, volunteer/ extracurricular activity, or just in every-day life. These will make great stories.
Here, we introduced the A STAR structure for telling stories. To recap, A STAR stands for:
A Answer Start with a 1-sentence answer to the interviewers question.
S Situation Describe the situation. When and where did the events in the story happen? Who was involved?
T Tension What was the conflict
A Action What actions did you take to resolve the tension?
R Result What were the results of your action?
Effect What did you learn from the situation and the events that followed it?
or Effect is in parentheses because it will not be essential to every story.
Lets illustrate the A STARE structure with a story from Davis, Founder of My Consulting Offer.
Question: Tell me about a failure.
Here is an example of how Davis Nguyen, our founder, answered one of his behavioral interview questions with Bain and McKinsey.
A Answer I was rejected by close to 200 scholarships but kept applying and eventually won full scholarships to Harvard and Yale.
Tell Me About A Time When You Failed What Did You Learn From This Experience
Mistakes and failures happen in the workplace, so employers want to evaluate how you handle such situations. They also want to see how you manage disappointments at work and adapt your abilities to succeed in the future.
Provide an example of when you set a goal for yourself but did not achieve it. Explain how you took responsibility and learned from the failure, such as realizing what you would do differently the next time you are in that situation.
Example:”Eager to impress my supervisor during my first consulting job, I agreed to manage a client campaign. However, I did not consider my other responsibilities and found myself struggling to complete the project by its expected deadline. I told my supervisor about my challenge, and she had to ask the client for an extension.
She then brought in extra support from other consultants, and we were able to meet the second deadline. While the clients were pleased with the results, I felt disappointed in myself for not meeting the initial expectations. Moving forward, I now consider my existing responsibilities before taking on additional work and use time management strategies to keep me on schedule.”
What Inspired You To Become A Franchise Business Consultant
There are a few reasons why an interviewer might ask this question. They could be trying to get a sense of your motivations for becoming a franchise business consultant, or they might be interested in hearing about your professional journey and how you ended up in this field. Additionally, they might be curious about what you believe makes a successful franchise business consultant, and what qualities you bring to the table in this role. Ultimately, this question can help the interviewer get a better understanding of who you are as a professional and what you can offer as a franchise business consultant.
Example: I have always been interested in business and helping others achieve their goals. When I learned about franchising and the potential it had to help people grow their businesses, I knew I wanted to become a franchise business consultant. I enjoy working with clients to help them identify the best franchise opportunities and then guiding them through the process of starting and growing their businesses. It is very gratifying to see my clients succeed and knowing that I played a part in their success.
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Question : What Do You Know About The Company
Purposefully vague, this management consultancy job interview question will draw on both your research and analysis skills. Merely repeating the companys About Us page will show youve failed to interpret the question. You do not need to have read all their news articles or remember the Annual Report verbatim but you will need to recall key industry sectors and service lines, areas of current focus, future strategy/growth and the firms values and ethos. You should summarise your findings into a couple of pithy sentences and explain their appeal to you as a potential employee.
How Would You Plan And Manage A New Service
You could answer this question, and other similar ones, along these lines: When planning the new service I would assess how it fits into the trust both physically and financially. I would approach senior managers to assess its sustainability, as well as gathering feedback from patients, service users, and colleagues. I would appraise the options in terms of benefits and risks.
I would then identify the level and type of resources needed to deliver a safe and effective service. I would also minimise waste by using resources efficiently and effectively. Ensuring that my team is onside would be paramount. I would use their skills to ensure that outcomes are met and support my team to develop their roles. I would finally analyse performance using a range of sources. I would take responsibility for tackling difficult issues and build on my experience for future developments.
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How Do I Prepare For A Behavioural Interview
Even though you wont know exactly which questions you’ll be asked, it’s easy to work out what the recruiter ultimately wants to see. They want to see how you behaved in situations where you used key consulting skills and qualities. This gives you the opportunity to prepare examples from your life that can then be adapted during your interview.
Two ways to prepare for this are:
To complete the first step, have a closer look at the role description you are applying for. It will often state exactly what skills the firm wants to see. Its also worth checking out the firms website in case it states further qualities that are central to their vision. Lastly, look over the skills and qualities weve compiled here. Then youll be ready to think of interesting real-life examples where you utilised these.
If youd prefer to prepare with mock interview questions, there are a wealth of books and websites out there that can help you. If youd like to create your own questions, we suggest completing the first step above and then weaving your list of consulting skills into your mock questions.
Examples might be:
Types Of Questions In Consulting Interviews
In consulting interviews, there are 4 common types of questions:
For each type, well have an example and instructions for answers. Keep in mind that these cannot cover all possible questions in consulting interviews be it the job interview or networking interview. Some of these categories are quite generic , and senior/experienced consultants are more likely to ask unpredictable questions.
How Do You Present Your Solution To The Client Ceo In 30 Seconds
Its called the elevator pitch the hypothetical situation is that you must deliver the most important answer within an elevator ride with the client.
For your pitch to pass, it must be solution-oriented the client CEO is busy, so he/she has no time for a full presentation. Just throw out the most important conclusions first, any questions can wait.
Mr CEO, its been a pleasure to work with you on this interesting project of . Through rigorous research we have identified the root causes of to be: 1 , 2 here are the solutions we recommend to address that problem: 1 , 2 . We would be more than happy to continue with you in future projects to implement those solutions.
What Consulting Behavioral Questions Assess
Consulting behavioral interview questions assess three different things.
Future performance or success: Behavioral questions use past behavior to determine future performance or success. Since the candidate draws upon previous experiences and actions they have taken, interviewers can get a sense of how the candidate would perform on the job.
Communication skills: Behavioral questions assess how well candidates can communicate. Does the candidate explain their experiences clearly and articulately? Does the candidate keep their stories concise?
Personality and cultural fit: Fit questions can reveal a candidates personality and cultural fit with the firm. In answering behavioral questions, candidates show characteristics, such as being confident, humble, friendly, or collaborative. Candidates can also reveal the values and morals that they believe in.
Taking these three things into account, you should focus on demonstrating the following three qualities:
- Show evidence of impressive, tangible accomplishments
- Communicate clearly, concisely, and confidently
- Demonstrate your personality and values
You can show evidence of impressive, tangible accomplishments by quantifying your accomplishments and explaining the impact of your work.
Dont just explain what you did and how you did it. Explain the impact and effect you had on the organization. What was the magnitude of the impact? How many people were affected? How did this impact annual revenues or costs?
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Questions For The Interviewer
In addition to interacting and asking questions about the Case Study during an interview, you should attempt to ask the interviewer about his or her own experiences in Consulting. Management Consultants tend to like talking about their own experiences, and we believe that you will benefit if you prompt the interviewer to talk a lot about their experiences. It will teach you more about the firm and the industry, and convey the feeling that you are interested in the interviewerâs life and work. Some potential questions to ask the interviewer, or ideas for generating smart questions to ask, include the following:
How To Show Your Motivations
There are a few key ways that you can show your motivation:
- Demonstrate detailed knowledge of the role: Having a detailed knowledge of consulting shows that youve spent the time researching the role and industry. A willingness to spend time and effort on research demonstrates that becoming a consultant is something thats very important to you.
- Show a strong interest in the firm: As an extension of the previous point, detailed knowledge of the firm shows your enthusiasm. And if your interviewers had two candidates but only one showed a strong interest in the specific firm, which candidate do you think theyd choose?
- Display genuine enthusiasm in your demeanor and mannerisms: You clearly have an enthusiasm for consulting, why else would you be reading this article? So simply make sure that your enthusiasm comes through in your tone of voice and body language.
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Common Questions And How To Answer Them
An interview will not be purely focused on clinical experience. Remember, senior managers, and possibly a lay person, will be on the panel and they will be interested in different parts of your CV, such as your management experience or ability to improve the quality of services, says Tom Bourke, a consultant paediatrician at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.
Areas you are likely to be asked about will include your experience of teaching and research, and activities outside work, says Bolton.
Olivier Picard is managing director of ISC Medical, which provides interview training for consultants at all medical grades and CV writing and application form services. He says that a typical mistake interviewees make is to reel off their CV, giving standard rather than specific answers. For example, when asked the question how do you know youre fit to be a consultant? rather than responding I am well trained, you need to demonstrate that you have the clinical confidence to work independently and can take charge of a team.
He recommends having a strong structure to your answers, making three or four points at most and giving personal examples. For responses to have the maximum impact he suggests using power words that demonstrate your experience and describe the impact of your actions. Use led and introduced, rather than was involved with and exposed to.
What doctors would do differently at interview
Business Development Consultant Interview Questions
Business development consultants analyze company operations to detect procedures that impede the actualization of stated goals. Business development consultants subsequently devise measures aimed at removing such obstructions and work towards securing additional opportunities.
When interviewing business development consultants, preferred candidates should demonstrate the ability to thrive under pressure. Avoid uncommunicative candidates who insist on working in isolation.
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What Are The Most Important Skills For A Business Consultant
The interviewer is asking this question to gain insight into what the consultant believes are the most important skills for success in the role. This information can help the interviewer to gauge whether the consultant has the right skillset for the job and whether they would be a good fit for the company.
Some of the most important skills for business consultants include:
– Strong analytical and problem-solving skills
– The ability to think strategically and develop creative solutions
– Excellent communication and presentation skills
– The ability to build relationships and work effectively with clients
– A high level of commercial awareness
These skills are important because they enable consultants to understand complex business issues, identify opportunities and potential solutions, and communicate these effectively to clients. Strong analytical and problem-solving skills are essential for understanding client needs and developing tailored solutions that meet their objectives. The ability to think strategically is important for identifying creative solutions that deliver value for clients. Excellent communication and presentation skills are crucial for building relationships with clients and communicating proposals clearly and persuasively. A high level of commercial awareness is essential for understanding the client’s business and identifying opportunities to add value.
How Many Cups Of Coffee Did People Drink In New York City Last Week
Start your response by outlining any assumptions that affect the estimate, such as population size. Then provide the logical steps and calculations you would take to create an estimate. You can also impress the interview by asking clarifying questions that might impact your estimation.
Example:”First, I will assume New York City has about 10 million residents. Then I need to estimate how many of those residents drink coffeeâexcluding children and people who do not like coffee, I will assume that number is 40% of the population or four million people. Next, I will assume that the average number of cups consumed in a day by an individual is two.
Finally, I would multiply four million people by two, which equals 8 million cups consumed each day, then multiply that by seven. My final estimate is that people drank 56 million cups of coffee last week in New York City. This estimation treats each day of the week equally, so it does not account for the idea that individuals may drink less coffee on the weekends when they are not working, for example.”
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Question : What Are Your Greatest Strengths
This question might be a cliché but they are very good management consulting job interview questions, which can reveal quite a bit about an applicant. You need to be prepared for them .
The following points might help to focus your answers: once again think professional, not personal.
- What are your key skills?
- How are these relevant to this particular consultancy job?
- Consider specific examples to showcase these strengths.
What Has Been Your Biggest Failure
In the same way that you would like to know what a consultants biggest success is, you would also like to know what he considers his biggest failure you get to know more about the consultants strengths and even weaknesses.
You should be interested to know how the consultant was able to turn things around.
This is a tricky question because you could either see if a consultant is resilient enough to bounce back right away or if he is able to assess every situation with enough objectivity to always have a takeaway.
The question is often followed by how did you deal with it?.
The answers to these questions will help provide hindsights into what challenges took place and if you ever face the same business challenges, you could tell if a consultant has learned the lessons necessary for you to avoid or solve a problem.
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How Would You Deal With A Drunk Doctor
Any question about difficult doctors requires a set answer that addresses the problem as well as the consequences for patients and the trust. You could answer along the following lines: I would talk to my colleague and try to ascertain what the underlying problem was. I also would investigate any complaints. My primary concern would be patient safety and I would arrange cover for the doctor so that the trusts commitments are met. Either I or a senior colleague would check the doctors decisions to ensure safety was not compromised. I would escalate the matter within the trust, using trust guidelines. I would ask for advice from senior colleagues, the clinical director, or the medical director, human resources, or the General Medical Council. I would ensure that support was provided for the doctor.
How Many Units More Does The Client Have To Sell To Break Even
These are math problems not as complicated as the ones back in school, but they do require you to be quick and accurate with mental math, familiar with large numbers as well as basic business concepts. You also have the pressure of a high-stake interview .
Also try to calculate out-loud these math questions can take quite long and its bad to leave long periods of silence.