GradFUTURES Structured Problem Solving like Consultants: Part 1/4

Feb 11, 2023, 10:00 am3:00 pm
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Event Description
In partnership with Graduate Consulting Club  (PUGCC), GradFUTURES is offering a 4-part series called Structured problem-solving like consultants on Feb 11, Feb 12, Feb 23 and March 2. 
Lunch and refreshments will be served
Learning Objectives: 
  • Familiarize students with what consultants do in practic
  • Demystify the networking and case interview process 
  • Give students experience with hypothesis-driven problem-solving approaches
  • Provide students with tactical skills necessary for consulting success
  • Help students avoid the most common pitfalls of new consultants
  • Individually improve students’ core skills in data analytics using Excel and data-driven storytelling using PowerPoint for consulting
  • Give students a sense of the roles and responsibilities of members of a consulting team
  • Have fun and take chances in a risk-free environment!
Schedule for Day 1: Feb 11 

Session 1: 10 am

Case Interviewing 101: Case interviews are becoming an increasingly prevalent part of the interview process. Once strictly a practice of management consulting firms, in recent years case interviews have been more broadly used at firms like 3M, Google, Chevron, Microsoft, T-Rowe Price and Procter & Gamble. This session will introduce structured problem-

solving and case interviewing using the FOCUS1analytical problem-solving framework leveraging interactive videos to model case interviewing best practices:

  • Framing the Problem
  •  Organizing an Analysis
  • Collecting Data
  •  Understanding the Data
  • Synthesizing a Recommendation
Session 2: 1 pm
Practice Case Interview #2: This session will start with a lesson on communicating like a consultant using a technique known as the Pyramid Principle. We will also build on some of the core concepts discussed during the case interviewing 101 session by walking through another case. We will link some of the core concepts from the pyramid principle to case interviewing and demonstrate the importance of designing MECE (Mutually Exclusive Collectively Exhaustive) structures.

Guest Speaker: Brendan Boler, PhD is Assistant Professor at the University of Virginia's School of Leadership and Public Policy. He previously spent seven years as an award-winning professor at UVa’s School of Commerce. He has extensive experience in management consulting and banking, having worked at Accenture, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley. Throughout his career, he has been heavily involved in recruiting and has leveraged his experience to conduct research on decision-making, talent assessment and selection, and high-performance coaching.
doctoral dissertation, Boler and a colleague travelled to six top MBA programs where they recorded and analyzed over 230 case and behavioral mock interviews with candidates who had been invited to interview at top consulting firms. More about the project can be found here. At UVA School of Commerce and Business, he has taught courses in management consulting and strategic thinking. Given his teaching and research interests, he also is passionate about coaching students to achieve peak performance in high stakes employment assessments including behavioral interviews, case interviews, and case competitions. He coached thousands of MBA candidates preparing for case and behavioral interviews and helped them gain offers from firms including McKinsey, Bain, BCG, Deloitte, Accenture, and Kearney.


To request accommodations for this or any event, please contact the organizer or James M. Van Wyck at least 3 working days prior to the event.