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Of the 3 MBB firms, how would you rank them 1-3 (1 being the worst, 3 being best) on the relentless nature of up or out culture? Like which place is the most cut throat work environment? Anyone much worse or much better than the pack?

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Don’t know about Bain, but as someone that was at McKinsey and joined BCG. BCG is the most cutthroat out of those two.

Caveat here. This is just my experience and this is a big firm, but here unless you are viewed in good eyes by leadership from the specific office your days are numbered.

Going back to McKinsey at the end of the month bc life is too short and we already work too hard for me to have to deal with that.

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How has been more cut throat im curious

I have a friend who was just axed from BCG at principal level. Crushed her. Nuts to see how fast you pivot from "rising star" to "dead man walking" after one or two bad cases.

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SM - it’s totally a political construct devised due to scarcity and that not everyone can make partner. They have to make cuts every year and it’s probably hard to do it. A business can bounce back from 1-2 unhappy clients. I feel it’s 90% political and maybe 10% performance. These are still large organizations and it’s still hard to get into the clubs at the top.

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I’m a little surprised by this - not at all my experience of BCG (only know other firms through friends so I won’t comment). Involuntary attrition is low - the real number is probably less than 1/5 of everyone who actually leaves. As someone who sits on a career development committee for As and Cs in a large office there are maybe 2-3 people a year who are counseled out - out of more than a hundred staff. It does tighten from PL to Principal (but not by much). The only real point where a fair amount of involuntary happens is Partner to MDP - but that is to be expected and is likely similar at other firms. We have extended timelines to help give people a shot to develop, no one gets counseled out in one bad project, we invest people to help them recover after challenging situations etc.

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Global Director 1 - that hasn’t been my experience, in my system, BCG helps you land on the best job available to keep the prestige around BCG rocket-launching your career

I have experienced no cutthroat or competitive aspects of this Firm. None of the arrogance or coldness that I heard about either.

Insecure people? Hell yeah. But they're mostly competing with themselves.

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Yeah this was my biggest surprise when I joined

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1) BCG 2) McK 3) Bain. BCG, according to colleagues, has begun to really sour across a lot of these dimensions whereas McK has tangibly improved. (Source: close friends at BCG)

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1) bcg 2)mck 3)b

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Agreed (I’m not MBB though)

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Bain definitely the best. Trade off is slightly longer timelines to promotion.

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Very complicated question. The philosophy is roughly that BCG pays junior partners more, so the variance by seniority is less. The average for Bain partners is a little higher, and Bain senior partners make more.

1st year partner at Bain is ~700k cash. 1st yr BCG MDP can be ~1M, but people tend to include deferred comp and long term equity growth in that figure, so cash wise it’s also ~700k

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1. Mck > 2. BCG >> 3. Bain

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Fully agree if you're using OP's scale of 1 is worst, 3 is best.

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As an incoming BCGer, this thread is making me slightly nervous lol

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All the negativity you see on here is not a representation of reality

1) BCG
2) McK
3) Bain

McK/BCG were probably fairly similar previously, but McK has slightly relaxed up or out recently. BCG seems pretty cut throat

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This has been good conversation. I have to say, not entirely clear where the value in working for these firms comes from when you lay it out against the career risks. Getting counseled out 1 year in, 2 years in. What’s the value in having that short of a tenure in MBB vs building your career up steadily in a big 4 for example? Especially if your primary driver is compensation, there are many ways to make a lot of money that don’t come with the same amount of career risk, sacrifices in your personal life, and stress it seems like MBB produces.

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This is nonsense lol

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Mckinsey felt very cutthroat when I was there a few years back. Bain doesn’t seem to emphasize “meeting the bar” as much and is more concerned with positive employee experience.

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Let’s try to be data driven here. I think turnover is probably the best way to measure. If I am not mistaken, BCG is around 20% in the US.

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