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Hanna Selvaag

Associate

When first interviewing with McKinsey, I was surprised by how strongly I felt the interviewers wanted me to succeed.

Choosing McKinsey

Upon finishing my degree in industrial economics, I was looking for opportunities to pursue my interest in business and technology. After talking to several consultancies, McKinsey ended up as my first choice due to the notion of (as cheesy as it may sound) “things you can't do anywhere else.” I find that McKinsey offers unparalleled opportunities to work with exceptional people and inspiring clients on their most important problems in a truly global context. Additionally, through Digital McKinsey, I get the opportunity to specialize in business and technology by applying strategy consulting to digital problems.

Expectations for working at McKinsey

When first interviewing with McKinsey, I was surprised by how strongly I felt the interviewers wanted me to succeed. I was expecting to be drilled on details so that they could convey my weak spots, but on the contrary, I was invited into a thought-provoking discussion on how we could solve a complex business problem. I find that my experience from interviewing reflects how we work on developing our people: we are not about drilling people on their weaknesses, but building on strengths to grow and develop professionally. This can be illustrated by the engagement manager who asked me how they can support me in meeting my development goals, the partner who offered coaching on how I can expand my network to find new opportunities, and the DGL (similar to a mentor or career coach) who helped me create and pursue my own path at McKinsey.

Rewarding and meaningful experiences

What I enjoy the most about working at McKinsey is that we, together with our clients, help shape tomorrow's business agenda in Norway and globally. We solve current-day issues across a number of industries and functions. To achieve this, McKinsey has built up a global knowledge network of experts and institutions. The engagements I’ve been involved in so far have, to a large extent, been about navigating and leveraging this network. We use the insights we gather to solve the challenges that our clients face. In other words, what we do is about solving problems and learning new things in a very collaborative fashion.

Developing Professionally

What I find unique about working at McKinsey—and I say this with great humbleness—is that I believe my role and responsibilities allow me to have greater impact than I could have elsewhere during the same tenure. Not only am I allowed to voice my opinions and offer my perspectives in meetings with clients who are far more senior and experienced than myself, but I am encouraged to. This is of course made possible by the fact that I'm backed by my team and a global knowledge network that allows me to accelerate the perspectives and insights we bring to our clients.

Advice for applying to McKinsey

Be curious, and don't be shy to ask questions! Our recruiters can help you more than you think, and they can set you up to talk directly to some of our consultants. Don’t be afraid to ask the “stupid” questions, such as how the application and interview processes work (and even the type of questions to expect!).

Education

Norwegian University of Science and Technology
MSc, industrial economics