Writing your McKinsey, BCG or Bain resume

Updated: Jul 17

Top management consulting firms are always on the hunt for great candidates. High churn and sustained industry growth over the last few years has exacerbated the need for generalist consultant but also for specialized roles such as data scientists, developers, operations specialists.

But the bar for candidates remain as high as ever, so don’t even think about sending in your run-of-the-mill CV to top consulting firms.

Getting the basics right

One page, consistent font type, size, and colors, no spelling mistakes, no need to get extremely creative (sorry, that is the industry). Glad we got that out the way.

For each position in your professional experience, you need to include example projects you were involved in, using action verbs to describe your role, and don’t forget to quantify as much as possible (how many team members, outcome of the projects). Only pick the most impressive 2-3 projects for each role! Also, remove that 2-month internship at your dad office when you were 16, seriously.

For your education, if you graduated less than 5 years ago, your GPA or grades should appear. PS: high school degree is not relevant anymore I am afraid.

For your extracurriculars, mention all leadership roles within clubs and associations (again, quantify!), and any medals or honors you have won. Recruiters love to see this!

For your languages, only mention the ones where you can carry out business conversations.

Showing leadership experience

Leadership is an important part of the assessment of your CV. Having been in leadership position at work, at school or in extracurricular activities is paramount. Again, don’t forget to quantify: how large was the team, what was your position, what was the impact?

If your leadership experience is weak, try at least to show involvement in team work and make it up with passion and drive (see next paragraph).

Showing passion and drive

Showing that you care about something and that you give yourself the means to pursue your passion is extremely important.

If you are passionate about a topic that is business worthy (data science, energy, consulting, finance etc.), it should transpire in your CV. You should have done a lot and it should be obvious from your work experience, your extracurriculars and education sections.

If you are passionate about non-business topics (charities, sports, etc.), your CV should show significant involvement and possibly recognition such as awards, medals etc.

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