McKinsey perks have a reputation for being among the best in management consulting. This is quite the accomplishment, considering McKinsey employs over 27,000 people worldwide. But the generally positive reputation of McKinsey benefits doesn’t quite do the topic justice. McKinsey perks include both the financial kind (salary, bonus, profit share, 401K, etc.) as well as some of the prestige and lifestyle related benefits of working at McKinsey. In this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at the real benefits of working at McKinsey – beyond just the impressive salary.
What It’s Like to Work at McKinsey
Why work at McKinsey? If you only focused on the financial compensation, you’d have a strong argument for pursuing a career at McKinsey. Salaries and bonuses are well above consulting averages. It’s an elite firm that seeks elite talent and pays accordingly.
However, working at McKinsey is known for being a consistently challenging experience, with new opportunities for growth every single day. Interestingly, this is one of the benefits of working at McKinsey. This is because the challenges are worthwhile: McKinsey consultants help organizations solve some of the most difficult problems they face. And in so doing, consultants build their analytical skillset, problem-solving capability, and leadership skills. Employees specifically mention the diversity of experiences as being one of the most important benefits of working at McKinsey.
There are Drawbacks…
However, some employees occasionally find the challenges to be too much. While traveling to new cities and amassing hundreds of thousands of airline, hotel, and credit card points are examples of McKinsey perks, the hours are extremely long and the nearly constant travel taxing. The travel may seem like one of the most appealing McKinsey benefits until you find yourself living the consultant lifestyle, wishing for more time at home and better work-life balance.
But if you can acclimate yourself to the difficulties of the McKinsey lifestyle, you’ll find that other McKinsey perks will be available on a regular basis. Some even stay with you throughout your career. Employees highlight McKinsey’s friendliness to professional ambition, as well as the many opportunities to excel. Career development is definitely one of the foremost McKinsey benefits, with regular feedback, counseling, and opportunities for specialization & advancement. All of the different experiences and skills you’re likely to accumulate while working at McKinsey make for an unparalleled training program in every facet of business leadership. In other words, one of the biggest McKinsey perks is that it will benefit you at just about every stage of your career.
Why Work at McKinsey?
If you’re just looking at McKinsey because everyone else is, you might want to stop and consider the question: Why work at McKinsey? Many of the McKinsey perks listed above—compensation, career development—can be found in other industries and at other consulting firms. What makes McKinsey so special?
As one of the most trusted names in the consulting industry, working at McKinsey gives you the chance to work with globally recognizable brands on exciting and important challenges. Plus, the variety of different projects you’ll work on will offer you exposure to virtually every industry.
This breadth of industry exposure leads to fantastic exit opportunities for two reasons:
- You get to know leadership teams at multiple Fortune 2000 companies
- Your breadth of problem-solving experience across industries makes you an attractive target for strategy and other leadership roles
In addition, the collection of talent McKinsey employs, and has employed, is itself one of the biggest McKinsey perks. One of the benefits of working at McKinsey is the immediate access to current McKinsey employees as well as McKinsey alum. These are some of the most influential people (or future influencers) in the business world. In sum, one of the key McKinsey benefits is the prestigious brand that all McKinsey employees can associate themselves with for the rest of their careers. Across all McKinsey perks, this may be the most valuable.
What McKinsey Looks for in a Resume
If you’re compelled by this description of what it’s like to work at McKinsey, you’ll have to go through the rigorous application process. Building the right resume is crucial, as over half of all applicants are eliminated at McKinsey based on resume alone.
Like other top consulting firms, McKinsey looks for applicants who display traits & experiences that signal a fit for the role of consultant. This includes a demonstration of leadership & communications skills, as well as an aptitude for business. McKinsey loves to see a high GPA and high test scores (especially on quant sections). The firm also wants to see evidence of your ability to work well in teams.
Be sure, as you list your accomplishments in different project and work capacities, that you use action verbs and quantify the results/impact you achieved. In addition, as you fill out your McKinsey resume, make sure to use industry-standard formatting, following conventions used in the Harvard Resume, Stanford Resume, etc. And don’t be afraid to name drop—consulting firms don’t always admit it, but working for well-known brand names goes a long way. If you’re looking for help crafting the perfect McKinsey resume, Management Consulted can help.
How to Prepare for the McKinsey Case Interview
After you craft a winning resume, the next thing you’ll have to focus on is the infamous McKinsey case interview. On average, less than 3% of candidates pass the case interview.
The case interview consists of simulated consulting-project scenarios based on real-world cases. You are assigned a particular situation and a set of data, and have to design & present a strategy for responding to the assigned scenario. The case interview rewards an education in business, economics, and related quantitative fields. But it also draws from a general sense of business acumen, problem solving, systems thinking, and communications skills.
Many people dread the case interview, but with Management Consulted’s expert prep services, you can learn skills and techniques that will help you analyze any scenario, design a response, and present your recommendations with confidence that can land you an offer.
McKinsey is highly desirable for myriad reasons – an important one being the generous compensation. But beyond dollars and cents, there are many other McKinsey perks that make this a stimulating and rewarding place to work. The variety of the different projects McKinsey consultants work on is second to none. And there is no shortage of opportunities for growth and development. The benefits of working with McKinsey are unparalleled in launching a career in business leadership.
- McKinsey Careers
- McKinsey: Firm Profile
- Leadership Development: The Ultimate Consulting Soft Skill
- Case Interview: Complete Prep Guide