Founded in 1926, the consulting monolith that is McKinsey didn’t take long to expand into Europe, experiencing rapid growth in the region as early as the 50’s. McKinsey has since become a dominant player in virtually every major market throughout Europe and the Middle East. Wherever you seek an “in” at the most prominent consultancy, you’ll find the world suddenly becomes a more connected and accessible place than you could’ve imagined.

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Firsthand Findings

As firm insiders point out, if any consulting outfit is likely to come out of the pandemic stronger than it went in, it’s McKinsey. It’s not the world’s most prestigious shop for nothing, and all signs point to an uptick in demand for its strategic advice during these unpredictable times.

For consultants, that has translated to some long hours (as ever), but also the opportunity to get even closer to clients as they work on truly reshaping their businesses to meet this moment. And if that isn’t the most compelling reason to be doing consulting for the most sought-after firm on the planet, then the chances are that it’s the industry—not the firm—that isn’t for you.

With all of that in mind, there’s little left to say other than this: McKinsey mak...

About the Company

McKinsey & Company is a privately owned management consulting firm. Roundly considered the most prestigious company of its kind, it has achieved a near-universal level of renown, despite a decades-long commitment to confidentiality that shrouds details of McKinsey’s work-and its client list-in secrecy. In its practice areas, it addresses strategic, organizational, operational and technological issues, always with a focus of doing what is right for the client's business, not what is best for McKinsey's bottom line.

The range of those specialties encompasses everything from commodities and natural resources to media, entertainment, and high tech. While it doesn't share the names of its clients, the firm does claim to serve roughly 90 of the top-100 corporations worldwide and more than 80 of the 100 largest U.S.-ba...

Employee Reviews

  • “Come with a vision of what you want to get out of McKinsey - the skills you want to acquire, the clients you want to serve, the geographies you want to experience, the people you want to help develop as leaders. The opportunities afforded by the firm are effectively limitless, so having that 'north star' will help you (a) test how McKinsey can help you get there and (b) navigate the firm in a way that excites your passions and reaches your goals.”
  • “Fantastic learning opportunities with excellent colleagues while working with industry's most interesting clients.”
  • “If you get the chance, there is no other firm in the industry to choose from. And if you don’t like it here, you will ALWAYS be able to change (can’t say the same about other way around).”
  • “McKinsey is extremely value-driven. All our actions and decisions are evaluated based on and guided by our values.”
  • “Satisfaction about your work and professional achievements must be a key element for you, so that you will be able to accept some sacrifice in terms of private life when necessary and be happy with your overall life at the same time.”
  • “The prestige and reputation of the firm that people are aware of is nothing compared to the caring community spirit of colleagues that are now friends.”
  • “Access to supported physical and mental wellness support - everything from massage therapist in the office to fully-paid-for psychologists / psychiatrists on call for any personal mental health needs.”
  • “Extremely accommodating - flexible approach to when we take it, generous number of days per year plus days off for other special circumstances e.g. moving house, getting married. Firm encourages us to take our full allocation and does not expect us to be available during it.”
  • “Hours are long (60-75 hours / week); typical travel [pre-Covid-19] is 3-4 days / week. However, time is very easy to take off and recharge. The time needed is compensated by people really respecting time off and family time - and by great colleagues and the most interesting work you can do in any industry. Firm is actively working to improve work culture - particularly with Covid, most work now done remotely.”
  • “Online material for workouts and mindset/ resilience, tips and stories from other colleagues, financial support for team sport, sport challenges, newsletter, dedicated initiative to promote mediation, nutrition, and exercise with presentations, talks, and workshops.”
  • “Superiors pay attention to the overall workload of the team and do their best to balance working hours during the week. I always received support and flexibility from my superiors and colleagues when I asked for some time off (e.g. training, personal reasons). Overall is not common to work on the weekend and the Firm is supporting a policy of emails reduction during the weekend.”
  • “We have the opportunity to take unpaid leave of up to 2 months per year. I have never had problems getting the vacation time I wanted to get when I wanted to get it. Leadership are very flexible when it comes to time off.”
  • “Base pay at entry-level is not grand - especially considering hours. Secondary benefits are extensive (pension scheme, mobility compensation, bonus, MBA opportunities, etc.).”
  • “Best - gender and diversity pay equality, standardized merit-based system of compensation progression pegged to role. Strong and continuous yearly salary progression. Profit sharing at higher roles.”
  • “Heavily weighted toward variable [compensation] once at Senior level.”
  • “I am paid very well and when you adjust for tenure; men and women are paid the same.”
  • “Salary ramp is steep, and compensation at the higher levels is very favourable. Currency swings have meant US pay is significantly higher than UK at the moment. Pay is fully meritocratic and transparent, which is consistent with strong pay equality.”
  • “Very competitive compensation which increases steadily over time.”
  • “Best aspect is the firm is truly a ‘make your own adventure’ that is fully supported by a network of people. You can choose what industry you work on, what function you support, etc. and you can switch between easily if needed. Additionally, you receive some of the best training and mentorship from incredible people.”
  • “Great network / very nice and smart colleagues, top management access and great learning opportunity.”
  • “Highly supportive development culture - active apprenticeship and formal training. Feedback in a way I have never seen anywhere else.”
  • “Outstanding formal and informal career development opportunities. This is one of the areas that McKinsey is rightfully known for externally, and they exceed even that high expectation.”
  • “Personal mobility is incredibly easy and exciting. I've decided to take some ‘risks’ at McKinsey (i.e., major changes in industry focus and location), and McKinsey has great programs in place to facilitate these experiences without punishing consultants who take advantage of them.”
  • “Promotions are quite clear in terms of criteria, early line of sight on what is working and not to avoid surprises and relies heavily on both peer views as well as leadership views based on experience of working together.”
  • “The career development opportunities are very transparent and well communicated. Moreover, I have many different options internally and externally.”
  • “Diversity and Inclusion is one of the firm’s top priorities at all levels and is implemented very effectively.”
  • “Diversity is a key focus areas for the firm.”
  • “I have the feeling that the firm takes a lot of effort to create opportunities for women, LGBT etc. and actively fosters this.”
  • “Men and women are paid and have the same opportunities, I am sure. The problem is that our heavy business hours mean that a career maker at McKinsey will struggle being the main ‘manager’ at home, which due to cultural characteristics, is usually the woman. So given equal opportunities will not be enough to guarantee an equal outcome, unless we severely address the work life balance issues - which I don't think we are willing to do to the extent needed.”
  • “Strong focus in organization to ensure women have all the tools they need to be successful and progress / make partner - from enhanced roll on / roll off maternity programs, challenge in reviews to limit ‘unconscious bias’, active role of Managing Partner to highlight and support women leaders.”
  • “We actually take an extra look at women or non-traditional profiles to ensure bias is not creeping in. We also have 'values listeners' in the review rooms to ensure gendered or otherwise biased language does not colour assessment and we have robust calibration at the end of each session to ensure we really agree with our views in committee to avoid group think.”
  • “Has the size and positioning to thrive in a crisis environment like the one we are in.”
  • “Innovating and developing new solutions to help clients at an unprecedented pace. The McKinsey of today is entirely different than the McKinsey I joined 10 years ago (from Business Strategy and Operations to Digital and AI innovators), and I have every confidence will not be the same McKinsey in 5 years.”
  • “On the forefront when it comes to changes; proactive, innovative.”
  • “Strong increase in projects, proved by a strong increase in new hires.”
  • “Well positioned in the current pandemic/recession context relative to other firms given size, diversity, and reputation.”

Why Work Here

At McKinsey, you’ll put your skills, experience, and knowledge to work tackling challenges that matter – like digital transformations, new product/service development, diversity & inclusion, sustainability, global public health, supply chain management, leadership development, mental health and more – across industries, functions, sectors and geographies. You’ll be part of some of the best, most diverse, inclusive, and supportive teams, surrounded by colleagues who care about your growth and will help you to succeed. You’ll have the flexibility you need to create a career that evolves with you over time. If you are looking for a way to contribute to positive, lasting change; continually learn new things; and expand your network, consider McKinsey. Regardless of your background or years of experience, there’s a role for you.

Getting Hired Here


  • “Candidates for a permanent position will have up to five interviews in a single day, and will receive in-person feedback the same day. Candidates for an intern position have three interviews in a single day, and will receive feedback via phone the same day.”
  • “Entrepreneur, well structured, great problem solver, good in teams and with clients.”
  • “Interview process is quite fast (all interviews conducted within a couple of weeks, faster than any main competitor in Milan). The ideal candidate is one moved by sincere curiosity, passion and proving strong analytical skills.”
  • “Super sharp, with great analytical skills, very empathic, a good leader and a lot of drive.”
  • “Very fast and fair - some candidates get through within 48 hours. Max time from interview to callback is 3 days (because of weekends).”
  • “Case interviews and brain teasers, either classical or extravagant.”
  • “Case studies at every interview (Cosentino/Cheng style).”
  • “Company X has seen a profitability decrease in recent years. Investigate potential reasons for the decrease in profitability and find potential solutions to solve the problem.”
  • “Questions related to previous experiences on for example leadership or personal impact.”
  • “Structure fit questions about challenging moments, entrepreneur moments and teamwork moments.”
  • “The typical interview includes both motivational questions and business case questions. The motivational questions aim at understanding why you are willing to pursue a career in consulting and specifically in McKinsey, and which are your personal traits that would make you perfectly fit with the firm. The business case is designed to be a short version of a real project situation, to evaluate your analytical skills (qualitative and quantitative) as well as your communication and synthesis skills.”