In graduate school I browsed many books on consulting case interview preparation. Developed by Marc P. Cosentino, author of Case in Point: Complete Case. PDF Drive is your search engine for PDF files. As of today we have 78,, CASE IN point omplete Case Interview Preparation. MARC P. COSENTINO. Edited by Joan Oleck and Kelly Andersson ISBN Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data: Case in Point: .

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Editorial Reviews. Review. When in Doubt, MBAs Turn to the MBA 'Bible.' Case in Point is the. Read Cosentino's “Case in Point” and these extras. • Cosentino AT Kearney's cases. – Case in Point - Free ebook download as PDF File .pdf) or read book online for free. Complete Case Interview Preparation by Marc P. Cosentino.

The book presents in a very readable way what to expect in an inter- view and how to create your best strategy. I'm usually very skeptical about these kinds of books, but must say that Cosentino is able to attract the reader and through anecdotes and concrete examples, to keep the reader's interest tll the last page. Definitely a must. Documents Similar To Case in Point. Bitokov Alim.

Pavel Tsarevsky. Alan Rozenberg. Prateek Janardhan. Dmytro Kaganovskyi. For example, if you have ten years' experience in the health-care industry, some firms might be reluctant to hire you for your industry experience because you come with certain prejudices or beliefs about an industry.

The firms worry that if you see a problem with a client, you are going to solve it the same way you solved it when you worked in health care. They like people who can look at a problem objectively, with no preconceived notions. They will, however, draw on your industry knowledge when building industry files.

So don't be surprised if you are assigned to new industries at first. The interview process is somewhat the same. If you are applying to McKinsey, you'll probably be asked to take the written exercise that most non-MBAs have to take.

The first round might consist of three one-hour interviews, which will have both a personal experience component as well as a case. I'd be surprised if the cases you get touch on your old industry. They want to test your thought structure, not your industry knowledge.

They will expect you to be more confident than a university candidate, and more professional in your demeanor. Another thing to remember is that you will enter the firm at the same level as a newly minted MBA unless you bring a host of clients with you.

You may be reporting to someone who is years younger than you. Keep in mind that these firms are meritocracies and you can move up as quickly as your talents allow. In fact, you do want to enter at that level; it will give you time to get your sea legs and establish yourself.

They don't ask case questions to see you sweat and squirm although some might consider it a side perk. They do ask case questions They work in small teams and are sometimes in charge of groups of the client's employees.

Often, consultants work under great pressure in turbulent environments while dealing with seemingly unmanageable problems. It takes a certain type of personality to remain cool under pressure, to influence the client without being condescending, and to be both articulate and analytical at the same time. The business of consulting is really the renting of brains, packaged and delivered with an engaging and confident personality.

So as you work through the case, the interviewer is asking whether you are: I never like to equate an interview with a test, but they are similar in that the more you prepare, the better you'll do.

Maybe you've experienced the feeling of being so prepared for an exam that you can't wait for the professor to hand it out so you can rip right through it.

Case in Point PDF Needed for Interview Preparation

Case questions are the same way. Firms look to see if you have that "rip right through it" look in your eyes. It's confidence. Some of my students, even after they got the job, would come into my office and ask me to give them a case.

They loved doing cases. To them it was no different from working a crossword puzzle. They loved the intellectual challenge, and they learned something new every time they did one.

Before we look at some cases, it is best to understand The Case Commandments. Follow these rules and your case interviewing life will become much easier.

Listen to the Question. The case isn't about you or the consultant; it's about the client. What are they really asking for? Pay particular attention to the last sentence — one word can change the entire case.

Take Notes. As someone once said, "The palest ink is stronger than the best memory. Summarize the Question. Verify the Objectives. Even if the objective seems starkly obvious, there could be an additional underlying objective. When the objective seems apparent, phrase the question differently: Are there any other objectives I should know about? Ask Clarifying Questions. In the beginning of the case, you have more latitude in your questioning. You should ask basic questions about the company, the industry, the competition, external market factors, and the product.

The further you get into the case, the more your questions should switch from open-ended questions to closed-ended questions. You start to get into trouble when you ask broad, sweeping questions that are hard for the interviewer to answer. This kind of question gives the impression that you're trying to get the interviewer to answer the case for you.

You'll know that you crossed that line when the interviewer says to you, "What do you think? Organize Your Answer. This is the hardest part of a case, and it's the most crucial. It drives your case and is often the major reason behind whether you are called back. We will spend more time on this in Chapter 4. Hold That Thought for "One Alligator. If you make a statement that is way off base in an interview, the recruiter will wonder if he can trust you in front of a client.

If he thinks he can't trust you, the interview is over. Manage Your Time. Don't get bogged down in the details. Answer from a macro level and move the answer forward. It's easy to lose your way by going off on a tangent. Stay focused on the original question asked. Finally, don't lose track of the question, the objective, or the framework.

Go back during the case to the original question and objectives to make sure you haven't lost your way. Work the Numbers. Demonstrate that you think quantitatively and that you are comfortable with numbers.

When doing calculations, explain what you are thinking and how you are going to do it. Take your time. Better to get it right than to rush and make a careless mistake. Be Coachable. Is she trying to guide you back on track? Pay attention to her body language. Are you boring her? Is she about to nod off? Is she enthralled? Being coachable also means asking for help when you need it. If you run into a wall, lose your train of thought, or are just in over your head, ask for help.

There is no shame in asking for help; it's a sign of maturity. Look at it from the interviewer's point of view. If you were working on an actual project and got stuck, she would much rather you ask for help than waste time spinning your wheels. Be Creative and Brainstorm. Brainstorming without commitment, as consultants call it, allows you to toss around uninhibited ideas without being married to them.

It gives you the opportunity to review all the options and eliminate inappropriate options. Consulting firms like liberal arts candidates with intellectual curiosity who can "think outside the box" and offer up a new and interesting perspective.

Exude Enthusiasm and a Positive Attitude. It's not enough to do well on the case; you have to thrive on the challenge of the case. Recruiters want people who are excited by problem-solving and can carry that enthusiasm through the entire interview. Bring Closure and Summarize. Review your findings, restate your suggestions, and make a recommendation.

You don't need to sum up the whole answer; pick two or three key points and focus on those. Students are often afraid to make a recommendation, thinking that their analysis was faulty and so their answers will be wrong. There are no wrong answers. Just make sure your answer makes good business sense and common sense.

Some are broken down into analytics structure, quant acumen, and good use of data , communication eye contact, articulation, listening, asking probing questions, and note layout and personal enthusiasm, self-confidence, teamwork, original thought, and intellectual curiosity.

You are rated 1 to 5 in several categories under these areas, 5 being the highest score. Is this person interested in Bain? Would you have this person on your team? The Pittsburgh Airport test. And would you pass on this person or make them an offer? Summary Finally you get an overall interview rating.

It's quite common to find a market-sizing question enclosed within a larger business case question. Whether fun or frustrating, all case questions are valuable learning experiences. Brainteasers are basically the same riddles and conundrums that we've all been struggling to solve since fourth grade.

Some brainteasers have a definite answer; others are more flexible in their solutions. Interviewers are looking to see not only whether you can come up with a good answer, but also whether you can handle the pressure. Do you get frustrated, stressed, and upset? The key is to keep your cool and try to break the problem down logically. Just give it your best shot and don't be afraid to laugh at your mistakes or be a bit self-deprecating.

It makes you human and more fun to be with. Here is an example of a brainteaser with a definite answer. The Bags of Gold You can find numerous puzzle and brainteaser books at your local bookstore. If you are worried about this type of question, go pick up one of these books. Q1 There are three bags of gold. One of the bags contains fake gold. All the bags and all the coins look exactly alike.

Each bag contains the same number of coins. The real gold coins weigh one ounce each, the fake coins weigh 1. You have a one-pan penny scale and one penny, which means you can weigh something just once. You load the scale and insert the penny, and the scale spits out a piece of paper with the weight.

How can you tell which bag has the fake gold? A1 You take one coin from the first bag of gold, two coins from the second bag, and three coins from the third bag.

Place them all on the scale, insert your penny, and get the weight. If the coins together weigh 6. If they weigh 6. If the coins weigh 6. Sometimes they're a stand-alone question, or they can be embedded in a larger case. When I hear a market-sizing question I like to label it. Regardless of the type of market-sizing question, your answer should be based on logic and assumptions.

In some instances your assumptions are wrong. Sometimes the interviewer will correct you; other times she will let it go. The interviewer is more interested in your logic and thought process than whether your assumptions are spot-on. If you are still concerned, you can always say, "I'm not that familiar with this market, so if my assumptions are off, please correct me. However, everything you say has the potential to be questioned — be ready to defend your assumptions, as they should be based on some type of logic.

If you just pull them out of the air, you're risking the interviewer's aggressive challenge of your assumptions and your credibility. During a market-sizing case you don't get a chance to ask questions. You can ask questions only if you don't understand something.

If they rattle off a string of initials, industry jargon, or slang, and you're not sure what they mean, ask. You don't lose any points for asking clarifying questions. These questions are tough enough to answer even when you do understand all the information.

When I go into a market-sizing question, I've already memorized several key facts and numbers. I don't want to be caught flatfooted, and I don't want to pull numbers out of the air that will be difficult to work with. Here are some key numbers you should memorize.

We know that this is not true, but in a case like this, it's fine to assume, thus 4 million people per age group. Also, don't use your friends as a sample population. Chances are you're at an elite university and your friends are unlikely to represent the general population. And remember to use easy numbers, numbers you can divide and multiply without much problem. As they give you the question, write everything down.

Determine and label the question: Is it a population-based, household, or preposterous question? Next, ask questions only if you don't understand the question or terminology. Finally, lay out your structure, then go back through it and fill in the numbers. That way you get a second bite at the apple as you work through the problem again.

Base your assumptions on some sort of logic; otherwise the interviewer might press you on how you drew that conclusion. And take advantage of grouping assumptions together. You can say something like, "The 20 percent takes into account X, Y and Z. It also makes it easier for the interviewer to follow your thought process. I'm going to divide it into generations, , , and That means 80 million people per generation. Kids 52 million American children don't own cell phones.

Of the remaining 28 million kids I'll assume that 20 million have cell phones. Of that 20 million I'll assume that 10 million have a smartphone. These are older kids and they're technology driven.

Reason through your numbers for each generation and fill in the chart as you go along. We came up with million smartphones in the U. However, the question called for the number of smartphones sold in the U. The average cell phone contract is two years, and new models come out every 18 months. I'll assume 80 percent will upgrade to a new model. That means 50 million are eligible for the upgrade and 80 percent of the 50 million 40 million will download a new smartphone.

I'll also assume that 20 percent of the 50 million regular cell phone users eligible for an upgrade will switch to a smartphone, which equals 10 million. Thus, 50 million smartphones were sold last year. Now you may not agree with all my assumptions, but as long as you can follow my logic, I'm fine. I live in a town with a population of 30, There are six gas stations in our town not really, but six divides nicely into Therefore, I'll assume that each gas station serves about 5, customers.

If the population of the U. If you had tried to answer this question as a household question, you would quickly find yourself mired in numerous and unnecessary calculations.

You always want to work with million U. So, we have 70 million U. Taking all that into consideration, I'll assume that 50 million out of the 70 million households with access to the Internet will download movies. Now some households with teenagers or a road warrior might download several movies a week, while I think most households might download one movie a month. So I'll assume that on average those households download 20 movies a year. That means 50 million households downloading 20 movies a year equals 1 billion downloads a year.

I'm going to estimate that 50 percent of the households are either suburban or rural. That makes 50 million households. I'll assume that 20 percent of those homes are apartments or condos. That narrows us down to 40 million houses that most likely use a garden hose. Garden hoses are relatively inexpensive, so people are likely to have two hoses, a hose in the front yard and a hose in the back yard.

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That makes 80 million hoses. To that number I'd like to add another 10 million hoses, which can be found in nurseries, zoos, and other outdoor facilities. Most of those businesses have at least two hoses. We are now up to 90 million garden hoses. Hoses aren't replaced every year. I'd say that they are replaced every three years unless they run into the business end of a dog's teeth.

So we take 90 million hoses, divide that number by 3 and come up with 30 million garden hoses sold each year. Worldwide market-sizing Suppose someone asked you to determine the market-size for the worldwide bulletproof auto glass bpag industry. That's a daunting task. You might start off with a list of people and organizations that use bulletproof auto glass, such as the military, Fortune corporations, governments, and various others such as the mob, drug lords, celebrities, and armored trucks.

But then you would need to figure how many government vehicles use bulletproof glass for every country in the world! There is an easy and logical way to attack a problem like this.

You pick one country, determine its market size, and extrapolate out. Then determine the U.


The U. The biggest users of bulletproof auto glass would be militaries, Fortune companies, governments, the mob, drug lords, celebrities. I'm going to break the U. I'll assume that the high-income households make up 10 percent of the total U. That makes 30 million cars. I think the middle-income households make up 60 percent and they average two cars; maybe both spouses work or they have teenagers of driving age.

That leaves the low-income households at 30 million. Many of the low-income population live in cities and don't need cars. I'm going to estimate. That gives us a total of million cars. To that total I'm going to add 35 million cars representing government cars, military vehicles, taxicabs, limos, university-owned cars, and rental cars. We now have a grand total of million cars on the road. If 2 percent of U. If 4 million is 10 percent of the worldwide market then the total worldwide market is 40 million cars.

Preposterous cases Preposterous market-sizing questions are usually stand-alone questions. These are asked not only to test your math skills, but also to see how you handle the absurd. The best advice is to roll with the punches, do the best you can, and have fun with it. These are questions like how many jelly doughnuts fit into the leaning Tower of Pisa?

Or how many slices of pizza does it take to reach the moon? How much does a weigh? Your guess is as good as mine. Ask questions, then break down the elements and make assumptions. Are there passengers on board? Any baggage? Are the fuel tanks full or empty? Any food or beverages on board? Now just go ahead and calculate the weight of each part of the plane.

I'll assume the plane can fly 6, miles and uses 10 gallons to the mile. So that's 60, gallons at 2 pounds a gallon equals , pounds. I'll assume that the tires weigh pounds each — that's 3, pounds. I'll assume 2, pounds each adds another 10, pounds.

I assume that the average weight per foot is 10 pounds, which equals 4, pounds. They number, say, , and weigh 10 pounds each, so that's 5, pounds.

It's captured air, so we need to add one ton for the air in the cabin — 2, pounds. It's pretty thin and lightweight. If the plane is feet long by 25 feet high, then about 10, exterior square feet at 1 pound per foot equals 10, pounds.

The tail, overhead bins, carpet, stairs, and bathroom fixtures add on, say, another 2, pounds. Now you add up the pieces: It's a little scary to think, after this many years of school, that your job comes down to a question like this — welcome to consulting! Factor questions Factor questions usually start with "What factors influence Factor questions may also pop up in place of stand-alone market-sizing questions during first-round interviews.

Think in broad terms; try not to get too detailed. First, I'd want to know something about the film, particularly who its target market is. You would have a different marketing strategy for a Baby Boomer film then you would for a Millennial film. Because most films are geared toward Millennials, I'll use that example. Millennials spend a lot of time online. Digital marketing agencies develop social media APIs called "widgets," which often feature a sweepstakes or some call to action and are virally spread across Facebook, Meebo, and other social media platforms.

Similarly a great trailer, sometimes "unauthorized" or seemingly user-generated on YouTube, is often seen by more people than the official trailer, which is placed on traditional TV and shown at theaters before current movies.

Second, I'd want to know, is this a studio film with big-name stars or an independent film?

Is it a branded title, like American Pie, or a new indie film without any brand recognition? This will determine the number of screens on which it is shown.

If it is a studio movie showing on 3, screens the first week, then most of the marketing budget will be spent in the two weeks prior to the film's release. Ads will be placed on network TV during shows like American Idol. Billboards will be displayed as well as signs on the sides of buses — the more traditional movie marketing efforts.

If it is an indie film shown on 50 screens, then the limited budget has to be allocated toward the more viral online environment. If the film does well and builds a buzz, then the distributor may kick in additional marketing funds as the number of screens increases — think Slumdog Millionaire or The King's Speech.

Pan-media "takeovers" are becoming more commonplace, as a film's stars and creative team blitz multiple outlets in hopes of achieving a massive opening weekend. In one day, for example, actress Olivia Wilde might appear on Good Morning America, cut a ribbon in a ceremony in Central Park with local TV crews, attend a charity luncheon photographed for the tabloids and in the evening hit Letterman and Jon Stewart's The Daily Show — all while the studio is running multiple display ads across Yahoo!

The idea is that "media ubiquity" will grab the attention of an audience whose consumption habits are becoming increasingly fragmented. In sum, like anything, you need to analyze the market as well as your product and figure where you'll get the best return on investment ROI.

And because technology is changing so quickly, you need to constantly research new ways to get the word out. Business case questions Business case questions come in all shapes and sizes, but they usually fall into two categories: There are pure number cases that are really just math problems you are expected to do in your head. There are also "case-like" numbers cases, which seem like strategy cases but are not.

Case-like number cases are about numbers. They sound simple, but most people get them wrong because they don't listen to the question and instead try to turn it into a strategy case. What percentage of the market share do we hold? With that we can make 39, units. What is our approximate cost per unit? Labor costs make up 25 percent of the total costs.

How much are our labor costs? Today it jumped 6 percent.

Case In Point

How much is your stock worth? Your commission is 2.

What's your commission in dollars? F What's 7 x 45? Institutional investors hold 25,, shares. What is the approximate percentage of shares held by institutions? And what is the percentage change for each of the prices and changes below? What are BR's sales? By , the population is expected to drop to million. What percentage change is that? Go figure: Try to estimate some of the percentages in your head, and then work out the others without a calculator.

Round off the answers as you would during a case question. Worth noting: Every three minutes an American woman is diagnosed with breast cancer. How many American women will be diagnosed this year? One woman every three minutes equals 20 women per hour. Twenty women diagnosed per hour times 24 hours in a day equals woman per day, women per day times days equals , American women diagnosed with breast cancer each year.

In Brazil, each airline is allocated a certain number of landing spots: Airline C goes out of business and its landing spots are distributed proportionally to the other airlines. How many spots does each airline get? You find the percentage of landing spots each airline has without C.

Airline A has 65 percent of 3, spots, B has 32 percent, and Airline D has 3 percent. Next you figure out what percentage of the spots C used to have. Thus, A has 65 percent of , which equals ; B has 32 percent of , which equals ; and C has 3 percent, which equals Add them up and they total This is a popular case and one that has often turned up in interviews.

Nine out of 10 students think this case is about competition. They focus their answer on strategy and alternatives to dropping the fee.

The first part of this question, though, is not relevant. Amex has 10 million card members. Amex Revenues: Would card members spend more money if they didn't have to pay the annual fee?

Case In Point

Amex card members would have to more than double their downloads to make up for the loss in fee revenues. Even a modest bump in new members couldn't make up the difference.

Amex would have to more than double its card members from 10 million to about 25 million in a short period — say, two years. Is that feasible? It took Amex 25 years to reach the 10 million customer base it currently has.

So doubling it in two years seems unrealistic. My advice to Amex is to keep its fee in place. That's it. That's the answer. This is a straightforward question. Listen to the question. Some business strategy and operations cases should be answered in less than 15 minutes. These are referred to as mini-cases. An example: It could burn for more than years and never blink.

The director of marketing calls you in to her office and asks, "How would you price this? A regular case question, like the DuPont case below, could take anywhere from 25 to 35 minutes to answer.

It could be a market-sizing question and a strategy question all rolled into one, such as: Estimate the size of the diaper market and tell me if DuPont should enter this market and if so, how? Monitor was the first to pioneer the written case. Since then firms have added a few new twists to the process. The interview can go something like this: Scenario 1: You arrive for the interview and are handed a written case usually about five pages, three pages of text and two charts.

You are given 20 to 30 minutes to read and take notes. When your time is up, a consultant comes into the room and you are expected to "present" the case, much as you would in a business school class. Business Case Presentation - oe. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde ; 4 The Strange Case of Dr. Hyde undemonstrative at the best, and even his friendship seemed to be founded in a similar catholicity of good-nature.

In the worst-case, Fuzzy C-Means Clustering is a soft version of k-means, where each data point has a fuzzy degree of belonging to each cluster. Case Questions — ; Video Vault. Learn by watching. You have access to fifteen videos, ten case starts and five full-length interviews with Marc Cosentino, author of Case in Point and Microsoft Word - 5-point scale paper.

Version 5. PDF files. Version By teaming with customers, Case IH offers equipment for producers Case Interview Frameworks Keywords: case interview; mckinsey; Windows Platform GDPro 5. It is written as follows: Where version is the Home American College of Radiology ; Desert Medical Imaging uses our patient information website in consultations with patients.

Commentary on Article 5 and paragraphs 6. A case in point is the exclusion of dividends from double taxation, which could be of A company in Stage V has the staff and financial resources to engage in Compute the estimated number of hours.

Sample Case Study. In the sections that This article provides an introduction to the Use Case Points method that employs a project's use cases to Anda, Bente, et Also, the part may be pin-strapped for a 5-V, 3-V, It must be properly installed into a Eurorack format modular synthesizer system case.

PDF 1. Details of the software products used to create this PDF file can be found in theThe best advice is to roll with the punches, do the best you can, and have fun with it. This was the only book read. You'll be exposed to many industries. Finally, don't lose track of the question, the objective, or the framework. It's confidence. Label the case and lay out your structure. Price and volume are interdependent. Next you figure out what percentage of the spots C used to have.

Would you have this person on your team? Always ask for trends, three years is good.

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