As part of the Inside Careers series of graduate Employer Q&As in November 2012, L.E.K. Consulting answered your questions.

Find out more about opportunities at L.E.K. Consulting.

The Questions


What tips do you have for succeeding at case interviews?

How does L.E.K. differentiate itself from other consulting firms? 

I’ve noticed that you have offices in North America an Asia – how common is it to get the opportunity to travel between offices? 

I’m from the UK but would like to work in the US – would you advise that I apply directly to the US office, or apply to the UK office and get a transfer? 

I’ve already graduated – can I apply for L.E.K.’s summer internships? 

I’m still studying for my MBA, but I have several years of industry experience – should I apply for ‘MBA’ or ‘Experienced Hire’ vacancies? When should I embark upon the application process? 

Do your recent graduates specialise in one particular industry that you operate in, or do they move between them? As a graduate entering the firm, would you be able to choose between particular industries? 

Do you offer support towards professional qualifications, and if so, which ones? 

Do you have any opportunities for students to start before September 2013? 

What other things can I get involved in, whilst working at the London office? 

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The Answers

What tips do you have for succeeding at case interviews?
George, University of Oxford

Hi George,
A case study question will assess a number of things. To name a few:

  • Analytical skills, business reasoning and commercial awareness
  • Logical thinking and communication skills
  • The ability to make reasoned assumptions
  • Basic arithmetic skills.

I have asked some current L.E.K. Associates, who have recently been through the recruitment process, to pass on some top tips when tackling case study questions:

‘When answering case study style questions, make sure you communicate your thought process clearly so your interviewer can understand how you got to your answer.’  – L.E.K. Associate, Durham Alumni.

‘Find a case study partner to practise with. Real-life interviews are a rather different experience to what you read in interview guides!’ – L.E.K. Associate, LSE Alumni.

‘Practice, practice, practice. Get comfortable doing cases and with multiplying and dividing.’ – L.E.K. Associate, Imperial Alumni.

‘Be ready to be confronted with questions about industries you have probably never heard about. It is all about asking relevant questions, showing good reasoning and being confident.’ – L.E.K. Associate, Stockholm School of Economics Alumni.

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How does L.E.K. differentiate itself from other consulting firms?
Randy, Imperial College and Moujawaz, LSE

Hi Randy, Moujawaz,
There are number of things that make L.E.K. stand out. I have provided a summary for a selection of these below:

L.E.K. is a strategy specialist with nearly 30 years’ experience: L.E.K. was founded in the UK as a specialist global strategy consultancy and has built a reputation as one of the most highly respected brands in this field. We work with FTSE 100, Fortune 500 and Eurotop 300 companies, as well as over 100 private equity firms and leading specialist firms.

We can offer you varied case experience across multiple industries: L.E.K. believes that exposure to a varied case load builds a more rounded, more capable and more valued strategy consultant. For you, this means a fast-changing and exciting workload, a steep learning curve and the opportunity to be constantly challenged with new business problems.

The majority of our projects are office-based: Due to our office-based strategy work, there are minimal hours spent travelling, meaning staff do not have the added burden of travelling long distances or being away from home for extended periods. This leads to an office with a strong community spirit, and with welcoming, helpful and supportive colleagues, creating an enjoyable working environment – an important consideration for your working day.

We have a structured training programme with clear career progression: L.E.K. is committed to career development and has a renowned professional development programme. Rigorous training is enriched by case responsibility from day one and a collaborative approach facilitates knowledge sharing amongst team members, who have regular interaction with Partners.

You have the opportunity to gain international experience: With 20 offices around the world, L.E.K. offers an international working experience. Projects frequently involve multi-office case teams, which require extensive cross office interaction and provide exposure to multinational business dynamics. A swap programme gives all Associates the opportunity to spend six months in one of our overseas offices.

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I’ve noticed that you have offices in North America and Asia – how common is it to get the opportunity to travel between offices?
Jessica, Durham University

Hi Jessica,
The majority of our projects are conducted from our offices, eliminating time-hungry travel and avoiding ‘living out of a suitcase’ Monday to Thursday. This leads to an office with an active community spirit, strong team ethos and a healthy sense of fun!

If your question relates to the opportunity to gain international work experience then we can certainly offer this. Casework often involves working with colleagues from a number of our offices, providing exposure to multinational business dynamics.

In addition, an international swap programme gives all Associates the opportunity to spend six months in one of L.E.K.’s 20 offices across the globe. This is a fantastic way to experience different business environments and cultures whilst also gaining exposure to new industries and specialisms.

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I’m from the UK but would like to work in the US – would you advise that I apply directly to the US office, or apply to the UK office and get a transfer?
Roheed, Cass Business School

Hi Roheed,
You are able to submit one application to L.E.K. and this will need to go directly to the office of interest. L.E.K.’s careers website is split by regions, so you can view the appropriate recruitment deadlines and processes.

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I’ve already graduated – can I apply for L.E.K’s summer internships?
Elsie, University of Birmingham

Hi Elsie,
Our eight week summer internship programme is open to penultimate year students who are interested in gaining an insight into a consulting career. If you have graduated, the most suitable position for you to apply to is our full time, entry level ‘Associate’ role.

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I’m still studying for my MBA, but I have several years of industry experience – should I apply for ‘MBA’ or ‘Experience Hire’ vacancies? When should I embark upon the application process?
Matthew, University of Manchester and Anthony, University of Leicester

Hi Matthew, Anthony,
At the moment we have two open vacancies: our entry level Associate position and the Consultant level position.

The Associate vacancy is open to BSc, MSc or PhD students and also graduates with up to two years of work experience. The application deadline for this is 11 November 2012.

To be eligible for our Consultant position you will need an MBA plus 3-5 years of relevant work experience. The application deadline for this vacancy is 25 November 2012.

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Do you recent graduates specialise in one particular industry that you operate in, or do they move between them? As a graduate entering the firm, would you be able to choose between particular industries?
Ling, City University

Would you recommend joining a specialised consulting role, for exmaple customer consulting, or joing a roatation between different areas? What factors should be taken into consideration when choosing between the two?
Alice, University of Birmingham

Hi Ling, Alice,
To join L.E.K. as a recent graduate you will need to apply for our ‘Associate position’. This is an entry level role where on the job learning is underpinned by a structured 3 year training programme.

As an Associate you are exposed to multiple industries and will work on a wide variety of commercial challenge, enabling you to develop a broad range of business and commercial skills. This varied workload means no two days are the same, and the dynamic businesses you are exposed to mean your skills and knowledge are constantly developed though new intellectually challenging case problems.

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Do you offer support towards professional qualifications, and if so, which ones?
Natassja, UCL

Hi Natassja,
The professional development programme at L.E.K. provides rapid training in all aspects of commercial strategy.

On joining L.E.K., the course begins with a two week full time orientation programme, which gives the initial grounding needed to start in the Associate role. The core subjects on the programme extend over three years and are comprised of 30 half day classroom-taught training sessions and three two-day workshops, including a full day of self-taught technical material.

In addition to this well renowned training programme, there is also an opportunity to undertake additional qualifications such as the CFA qualification, which a number of L.E.K. Associates are currently pursuing.

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Do you have any opportunities for students to start before September 2013?
Charlotte, University of Durham 

Hi Charlotte,

Our spring 2013 intake is currently full as we completed the recruitment process for this last year. The earliest date to join L.E.K. as an Associate is therefore September 2013.

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What other things can I get involved in, whilst working at the London office?

L.E.K. has a number of opportunities for employees to learn, gain, experience and advance professionally. There are also numerous personal development opportunities, community service events and social activities for our employees to get involved in, a few of these are highlighted below:

SpeakUp!

Launched in Spring 2012, SpeakUp! is a public speaking club offering the opportunity for Associates and Consultants to develop their communication and presentation skills among peers in a friendly and open environment. SpeakUp! is based on the well-regarded Toastmasters International programme.

Community Service Committee

The recently established Community Service Committee was founded with a view to giving the whole office an opportunity to participate in community service activities, and to offer new ideas for community support and fundraising whilst also continuing L.E.K.’s existing community work. The first three events (a fun run, a charity auction and a bake sale) ran very successfully, thanks to the support and generosity of the London office.

Entshed

Entshed is a social committee at L.E.K., run by Associates, that organises monthly social activities in which the whole office can participate. Previous activities have included: ice skating at Somerset House, open air theatre, bowling and karaoke, croquet and BBQ night, pub quiz, ‘the dogs’, paintballing, and the renowned annual sailing trip. These social events are a great way to get to know colleagues better and explore the great city of London and beyond!

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