– The first week in November, several of our colleagues from Asia-Pacific will come to the United States to meet MBA students interested in learning about working with McKinsey in this region. For details, please check out the website for the event nearest you:
Not long ago, Weibo, an associate in our Operations Practice in Beijing, was in your shoes, completing his MBA at MIT Sloan. We sat down to learn about why he came to McKinsey and what some of his most exciting experiences have been.
Interviewer: What brought you to McKinsey?
Weibo: I started my career as a R&D process design engineer in the fast-moving consumer goods industry. I worked in that role for nine years, building my expertise about operations. After I became a team manager, I realized I needed to improve my broader business acumen. I undertook my master’s at MIT Sloan and joined McKinsey upon graduation to get real-world experience solving tough business challenges.
Over the past two years, I’ve spent most of my time working in Asia. I really enjoy my job; it’s challenging, meaningful, and fulfilling. It enables me to act as an entrepreneur, pushes me continually to learn new things, and keeps me energized and satisfied.
Interviewer: Tell us about your most memorable engagement.
Weibo: My first engagement was a challenging one. At first, my client, who was a senior manager in his organization, was skeptical of the approach I took to do an analysis. For two months, our conversations were a bit tense as the client challenged every element of my design. As our pilot project started to show promising results, I won the client’s trust and the respect of his management team. In the end, we were able to reduce manufacturing costs by ~25%.
Interviewer: That sounds like a tough experience. What kind of support did you have?
Weibo: I had lots of support. On that project, and every other one I’ve done, I’ve found everyone at McKinsey very willing to support me – to answer my questions, talk through possible solutions, and support me in front of clients.
Beside knowledge support, I also receive a lot of support to balance my professional and personal life. When I am working in my home city, for example, I’m always encouraged to go home for dinner and bedtime routines with my family. I can always tie up any loose ends at work after I put my kids to bed. I love that flexibility.
Interviewer: What are you passionate about outside of work?
Weibo: I am researching ways to improve the kindergarten educational curriculum. In my spare time, I read books about this topic and talk with entrepreneurs with companies in this field. This meaningful topic will benefit my family and many others.