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McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice

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McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2009, 22:01
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McKinsey PST is a preliminary test before 1st round which they use to determine a candidate's analytical/quantitative ability (I think only North American offices do not require it, I know people taking it for European/Asian offices)

You are compared to peers taking the same test

From my experience at least, if say 50 people take this, only 10 people get invited to first round, then 5 people continue to second round, and 3 people to 3rd round, and 1~2 offers are made (this is a wild guesstimate from me and friends going through the interviews and it depends on the office)

http://www.scribd.com/doc/12508404/McKi ... ctice-Test

http://www.mckinsey.com/locations/telav ... sample.pdf

Its impossible (almost) to get 100% on it, but on the real one I probably got around 3-4 wrong, and its harder than the practice
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 29 Oct 2009, 09:52
Hi prince,
Are you still up for PST practice? I would like to also practice cases on Skype or phone if anyone is up for it. I have an interview coming up this Tuesday, so am looking for practice this weekend. I am flexible with respect to time.
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 01 Aug 2010, 16:18
Hey, how does it go?

nirvana wrote:
Hi prince,
Are you still up for PST practice? I would like to also practice cases on Skype or phone if anyone is up for it. I have an interview coming up this Tuesday, so am looking for practice this weekend. I am flexible with respect to time.
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 29 Sep 2011, 15:24
Hello, I'm applying for a Junior Reaserch analyst position at Mckinsey Costa Rica and would like to get some test samples to practice. I already have their Kosher Franks test, so if you have any other info, please let me know!
Thanks
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 02 Oct 2011, 04:08
Hello, has anyone tried the Practce McKinsey problem solving test from January 2001? I think the answer to problem 9 may be incorrect but question whether I am simply doing the maths wrong as it seems unlikely McKinsey would make an error or their exam.
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 02 Oct 2011, 04:12
rsegura84 wrote:
Hello, I'm applying for a Junior Reaserch analyst position at Mckinsey Costa Rica and would like to get some test samples to practice. I already have their Kosher Franks test, so if you have any other info, please let me know!
Thanks


Hello, you can find another practice test from McKinsey on their website. It is from 2001 and much easier than the newer version, but still useful to check out.
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 02 Oct 2011, 10:26
You should practice all the available sample PST tests or mock PST tests, since they are reflective of the real test. The PST questions are not that hard, but time is very tight. Other than that, there is not much you need to do to prep for IWIA. If you are told it is business casual, then it is business casual. They are not trying to trick you. So far, there are six McKinsey PST sample tests available out there for candidates to practice that can be downloaded from here:
http://www.consultingcase101.com/mckins ... ving-test/
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 11 Nov 2011, 01:39
Hi guys,

I am interested in practicing PST Tests, as last time this type of test was the only barier ot pass to Round 2 at BCG.

Do you know useful books or any other resources, which might help my preparation for such kind of test. All top MC's seem to have them recently.

Thanks!
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 29 Dec 2011, 15:20
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Hi all, I stumbled upon this forum since I'm preparing for case interviews as well. Since I'm considering McKinsey, I also scourged the web for practice material and found a site that I can't link at this point in time (though I understand why restrictions are in place), but the site can be found when searching for "caseinterviewhq" on google.

It has some practice tests for the McKinsey PST. Good luck!
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 18 Jan 2012, 15:09
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I did a Google search, and found there are some very good PST sample tests that you could practice.

I purchased their membership and found it actually very helpful in my PST preparation,
leave your email if you need to get a copy of their PST practice tests.

rsegura84 wrote:
Hello, I'm applying for a Junior Reaserch analyst position at Mckinsey Costa Rica and would like to get some test samples to practice. I already have their Kosher Franks test, so if you have any other info, please let me know!
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 18 Jan 2012, 15:30
Based on the name of the files, I would think they are selling old PST documents instead of original materials, could you confirm?
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 30 Jan 2012, 12:58
Same here, I also found the resources provided by their website very helpful, not just for McKinsey PST, but also for consulting case interviews in general. They have created a highly-structured cross-referenced database of case questions and answers. I can see their way of categorizing case types is probably influenced by Cosentino, author of case in point, and they further expand Cosentino's 12 case types into 18 or 19, although there are certainly some overlap between the 18 different case types:
add capacity & growth
business competition
business turnaround
estimate/guesstimate
finance & economics
improve profitability
increase sale/revenue
industry analysis
market entry
market sizing
math problem
merger & acquisition
new business
new product
operations strategy
organizational behavior
PE & investment
pricing & valuation
reduce cost

consultantJim wrote:
I did a Google search, and found there are some very good PST sample tests that you could practice.

I purchased their membership and found it actually very helpful in my PST preparation,
leave your email if you need to get a copy of their PST practice tests.

rsegura84 wrote:
Hello, I'm applying for a Junior Reaserch analyst position at Mckinsey Costa Rica and would like to get some test samples to practice. I already have their Kosher Franks test, so if you have any other info, please let me know!
Thanks
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2012, 19:53
Do MBA recruits have to take this PST to interview with them?

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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2012, 13:11
as far as i know, only APD (PhDs, MDs, JDs) candidates are invited to take the PST test.

MDF wrote:
Do MBA recruits have to take this PST to interview with them?

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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 06 Apr 2012, 12:50
Hi all, I'm currently a US sector Healthcare Analyst with McKinsey, and have worked out of the New Delhi India office for 2 years before moving here to our new Costa Rican center as we're building new teams here. Note. the procedure, test, and number of rounds differ considerably based on the position you are applying for.

I can share my interview experience with you:
1) They called 15 of us in for the joint Problem Solving Test at 8am, we all wrote in one room.
2) Based on the result, 5 out of the group were asked to leave right after the test.
3) The rest of us went on to individual cases.

Note, I don't have a traditional consulting background, so this was a big challenge for me. I managed to get ahold of some older Harvard Business Case Study manuals from a friend (who himself was an Engagement Manager with KPMG, from a top Indian B-school). These basically gave general overview tips on cases, how to build assumptions etc. I interviewed with Booz prior to this and BOMBED that interview, it was positively awful, they grilled me to death and I was not mentally prepared for it.

I can share some of the cases thrown at me by McK, note, these will vary GREATLY based on the role you apply for, but they all test your ability to analyze, develop a concise thought process, and provide reasonable assumptions for your calculations.
1) Easier one: What kind of fast food do you like? Ok, estimate the average daily sales for the KFC outlet down the road.
2) Tougher one: Estimate the average annual health insurance premiums generated for all commercial health insurance companies in India, for 2010 (this was tough and i dont think the interviewer, who subsequently became my boss, like my answer). A friend of mine who applied for the full blown consultant (Associate) position in San Francisco was asked to estimate the probability of him meeting a celebrity at an airport on a Saturday etc. He was a Haas grad.

A few points to keep in mind:
- Domain knowledge is not necessary, you can answer the above without knowing jack-all about the industry.
- In between, if you get a particularly tough interviewer, they will cut you off in mid calculation and say "ok you just entered the elevator with the CEO, give me your pitch in 2 minutes flat". That tactic is more applied to Associate and above roles. Most of my colleagues did not have this happen to them for the Analyst position, but my interviewer did throw this at me, he told me I had 20 minutes to solve the tough case with full listed assumption, but came back in about 7 minutes and asked for the summary.


If you feel its useful, I can share overview steps on how I anwered my case interview questions, though would like to inform you that they are definitely not the best way to do it, and there are always multiple approaches. They are basically testing how you think on your feet and what assumptions you come up with.

Feel free to throw questions at me. I can also share the questions the Booz consultant threw at me for the Associate, I was TOTALLY unprepared for that but can at least share the question types.

Cheers
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice [#permalink] New post 06 Apr 2012, 13:05
ASSUMPTION TECHNIQUE
Some of you messaged me about this separately, after my 2nd round, I thought I had bombed the case and it was over. The interviewer (my subsequent boss) told me to erase what I was doing on the board mid-way and just sit down (After I got hired I found out he was a notoriously brutal interviewer and was testing my stress response). I asked him if he could give me one tip on what I could have done differently before I left, here's what he said:
"When stuck on a problem solving phase of your answer, particularly when you don't have enough knowledge or data to get to the next step, base your assumption on your own observations."

Sounds like common sense I guess, and for the rest of you seasoned interviewers these are probably redundant tips, but it helped me clear the next 2 rounds really well.

Also, I tend to disagree with the extent to which you should do that, but then again the interviewer is now almost a Partner with Bain so go figure!
Cheers
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Re: McKinsey PST Problem Solving Test Practice   [#permalink] 06 Apr 2012, 13:05
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