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Applying for inspiring work

For new business analyst, Nuno, the firm offers the variety he loves and challenging work that enables him to solve real problems that impact lives in Africa.

Right after finishing my bachelor's in management, I went to work. I thought I wanted a career in sales, but when I got into the role, it took me about a month to realize it wasn’t a good fit. I decided to go back to school for my master's in business analytics with the goal of becoming a consultant. I wanted work that was different every day, and I felt consulting would offer that.

I first heard of McKinsey during one of my master’s classes. Then I participated in a virtual event hosted by the Luanda team to learn more about the firm. While I was searching for business analyst positions, I hadn’t yet started interviewing at other companies. When McKinsey invited me to interview after the event, I jumped at the opportunity. McKinsey appealed to me because the firm serves all industries, across the globe, so I’d get the variety I sought. I joined a little over a month ago as a business analyst.

Interviewing at McKinsey

Nuno Madeira
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I was a little surprised to learn the interview process could take a couple of months, and I would need to study for it. Having just gone through the process myself, I understand why it could be intimidating to people.

However, I can honestly say the interview process is incredibly beneficial. I am new to consulting, and during the process, I had the chance to work through actual cases. I got a true sense of the work I’d be doing and what my days would be like. I actually enjoyed studying for the interview, completing the exercises, and learning McKinsey’s problem-solving processes.

As a bonus, I met colleagues from different offices, so I already had a small network of people I could connect with if I had questions after I joined. During my interviews, I got a real sense of the work and the people here. I felt like I was already preparing for the job, which makes your first day less overwhelming.

The business analyst role at McKinsey is ideal for me

Nuno Madeira
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At McKinsey, the work can change every hour, and my role offers the variety and challenge I want. My job is all about problem solving through research and analysis. I collaborate with clients and McKinsey stakeholders to understand the clients’ problems and figure out the best course of action.

What I love most about my work is that I am solving real problems for clients. At McKinsey, we are focused on doing what’s right for the client first and foremost.

Here in Africa, we’re solving issues that matter for people and could even change their lives. For my very first project, I traveled to East Africa and was there for a month. It was an amazing experience. Africa can be different to other locations, such as Europe or America, where you often have all the data you need at your fingertips. In Africa, we need to go to the streets, so to speak, to meet with people and conduct interviews and surveys. It’s rewarding for someone like me who loves to travel and experience new cultures.

Preparing for my consulting role

I think imposter syndrome is a real thing at McKinsey because the amount of brain power here can feel overwhelming. There are so many incredibly smart people in one place. However, by the time you start, you are well prepared for the role.

It starts during the interview and continues through onboarding. When I started, I had two weeks of learning—almost like a mini-MBA. I learned how to break problems down, prioritize elements of them, and establish and test hypotheses using McKinsey’s well-established frameworks. I learned how to connect all the dots, beyond just financials, to produce solutions which help clients. I also practiced interacting with clients and supporting them through engagements.

My best advice for people considering interviewing or even new colleagues, is to come prepared to ask questions. You aren’t going to have all the answers—ever—but the beauty of the firm is you can almost always find someone who does. The people here are willing to share what they know with you.

More about me

I love to travel, which is another reason McKinsey is such a good fit for me. I also love hanging out with my friends, having discussions about random topics, like comedians and pop stars. Most of all, I love taking walks with my dog, Marvin.

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