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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great insights into Consulting BUT...
I really enjoyed reading the book and it gave me great insights into the business. However, it is not well suited if one prepares for a case interview at McKinsey. The authors propose a lot of complex frameworks to crack the cases which is on the one hand incredibly useful, on the other hand, however, it is way too much theoretical knowledge. I improved my performance a...
Published 17 months ago by Isabel

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Frameworks are useless; cases are very helpful
You've got to be kidding if you think it's possible to memorize a dozen complex frameworks and think they will be easy to summon in stressful situations.

Much better to learn and adapt the 4 simple frameworks devised by victor cheng. [...]

The practice cases on the other hand are very useful, and should definitely be done with partners whenever...
Published on July 31, 2011 by ilanes


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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great insights into Consulting BUT..., September 4, 2013
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
I really enjoyed reading the book and it gave me great insights into the business. However, it is not well suited if one prepares for a case interview at McKinsey. The authors propose a lot of complex frameworks to crack the cases which is on the one hand incredibly useful, on the other hand, however, it is way too much theoretical knowledge. I improved my performance a lot by practicing on preplounge.com. PrepLounge also made it possible to practice case interviews with experts who were working for McKinsey themselves. As you can imagine, it helped me improve a lot and finally I got into McKinsey. So, theory is fine, but make sure you gain real case interview experience.
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15 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best business book I have ever read. Stay away from Kindle Edition. 4.5 stars., July 25, 2010
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
After reading this book, I have found myself thinking differently about business issues. I had an epiphany on many business issues including:

1)How to increase profitability?
2)How to analyze an industry?
3)How to increase market share and sales?
4)How to think about entering a new market or business?
5)How to analyze Mergers and Acquisitions?
6)How to formulate growth strategies?
7)How to formulate pricing strategies?
8)How to formulate competitive responses?

This book provides a framework in a decision tree format to answer all the above and more. Furthermore, it has 30 case interview questions for sample questions and answers and analysis. Be warned, this book is NOT an easy or breezy read. In order to do well in case interviews typically given by consulting companies (McKinsey, Bain, BCG, Deloitte etc), one would need to master the contents in this book and practice them thoroughly. I would think that would take substantial investment of time and practice (20-50 hours according to many).

Even if you do not want to be a consultant or plan to participate in case interviews, I still recommend this book. If you are running a business, you should understand the basic framework of business. That is, what questions you should be asking and how you should analyze the data you have to formulate an effective strategic business action plan. Contrary to what many believe, running an effective and competitive business takes more than common sense. For example, an effective pricing strategy is often price-based costing (pricing and developing a product and services based on what the consumers are willing to pay) and NOT cost-based pricing (pricing a product based on how much it costs to develop).

I initially purchased the Kindle version of this book. Due to the small print of this book and its many decision trees, the Kindle version of this book (on my Kindle 2) was often illegible, especially the all-important decision trees. So I do NOT recommend the Kindle version of this book. FYI, I am happy with almost all of my Kindle purchases but some books, such as this one, are just better in print.

So I purchased the book and I am very glad I did. I want to give this book 4.5 stars and not full 5 stars mainly because I think much of the concepts are still not completely coherent. Many case interview answers provided, for example, substantially deviated from the IVY system, and that made me question whether the current IVY system is all that complete and exhaustive.
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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Generally useful, be careful with some frameworks, October 31, 2010
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
I used this book as part of the interview process and landed a job at one of the Big 3 firms. That being said, I did most of my practice in groups and only used the book to review the week before the interview.

Here is how I used the book:

I spent a lot of time looking at the Ivy Case System. I think that summary is the most interesting/important part of the book. When you think about a case interview, prep is most important when getting those first few ideas down on paper so that you can start the discussion. For me, once I had done that, the rest of the interview was completed without actively thinking about a single thing from my preparation. The case system is great for just thinking about what large buckets you should be considering so you don't miss something important. I also read a few of the sample cases to get the juices flowing a few days before the interviews. The morning of the interview I carefully read the case system to keep things fresh. This prep worked out well for me.

Note: I'd stay far away from the other frameworks in the book (Porter's 5 forces, etc). I heard that the big consulting firms hate those frameworks because they are never applied properly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well, I got a job!, November 3, 2010
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
This book certainly has good information in it, but I feel that it is almost a little too comprehensive and limiting.

The twelve frameworks offered by Cosentino were all very useful, but under the stress of an interview, I feel that it can be almost confusing. The author states that they are all very similar, so I don't know why he did not create 3 or 4 frameworks and explain how they should be expanded and modified to fit a particular situation.

On the other hand, this book had a wealth of information. The sections on case thinking in general, the "Case Commandments", and the practice cases were all extremely helpful.

I recommend this book to anyone going through the case interview process. The key is to focus on the mindset and not on the specific details. I got a job with a "Big 3" firm, and I owe much of that to this book.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best case interview prep book on the market, December 3, 2009
This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
Marc Cosentino's book should be the foundation of anyone's preparation for consulting interviews. I recently signed with the most prestigious management consulting firm in the industry after 10 case interviews, and this book has been the key to my success. I'm graduating from a top 20 b-school in May 2010, but it's not a core consulting school, so I did all my preparation on my own.

Case in Point has 1) a great overview of consulting interviews, both the case and non-case questions, 2) a great system for approaching any case question, 3) very detailed frameworks and key factors to use during cases, and 4) a HUGE number of practice cases, along with suggested answers.

I met Marc in person during a seminar at my school, and he is great. His presentation was great, and the book and his website are gold. His website [...], especially the subscriber-only section, has GREAT cases and math drills that make for INCREDIBLE practice.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very well suited case guide, May 2, 2010
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
Very well written guide to someone who is looking for a job within management consulting.
Covers some elementary, yet often forgotten, points about how to prepare for your interview outside the case studie itself such as background and personality type questions.

The case guide itself is pretty straight forward. First it shows the 12 different frameworks they use to solve straight-forward cases and then follows a good sample of example cases with solutions as well as some practice cases for the reader to go through with a friend.

The only critique I have on the book is that it could use more comments on different options in the cases and why one way was favored over another as well as a better structured chapter on DIY cases.

Overall a solid read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Prep You Can Get, October 29, 2010
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
This book is outstanding. Cosentino is a confident writer who clearly knows his stuff. To be fair, his book could be somewhat intimidating at times, making you second guess your preparedness/competencies, but it does help jolt you to reality and push you to study hard. The layout of the book is well organized, and the sample cases are extremely helpful. My interview with McKinsey & Co. is coming up, and I am feeling much more prepared after having gone through this book.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Frameworks are useless; cases are very helpful, July 31, 2011
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
You've got to be kidding if you think it's possible to memorize a dozen complex frameworks and think they will be easy to summon in stressful situations.

Much better to learn and adapt the 4 simple frameworks devised by victor cheng. [...]

The practice cases on the other hand are very useful, and should definitely be done with partners whenever possible.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Case Study Bible, April 23, 2010
This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
Case In Point is the case study Bible.

If you have a serious interest in business, consulting or finance, I recommend this book for you. In this book, Marc covers the basics of the interviews, case questions and expectations that a serious interviewer should have in mind. Understanding what is ahead in the interview is a battle itself, but his advice and insight on how to handle these tricky impromptu problem solving tests will allow one to be prepared for what the interviewer is hoping to see.

The writing style in Case In Point is superb. Marc's ability to convey complex material to even the most general audience is fantastic. Examples, analogies and memorization techniques are used as a tool to help one develop a mastery on the subject matter and I have confidence that anyone can do it. It does not matter if you are a novice or an expert on the subject. It is a fun read.

The Ivy Case System is an easy structure which enables the interviewer to deliver a well-formulated response and help one's poise. As this book is a wealth of progressive information, I would not recommend that one skips a page. It is full tips and tricks which incorporate themselves with the rest of the structure. Marc's 12 case structures are simple and logical; however, I must admit, took some time before I felt comfortable regurgitating the information verbally and written, without flaw. The additional frameworks Marc covers, such as the BCG Matrix and Michael Porter's Five Forces, are extremely helpful as well.

The practice consulting cases are important. Real dialogue depicted in this book gives a solid feel for how these cases will be presented and allow one to prepare their responses to questions. Practicing these cases has allowed me to recall examples quickly and easily, adapting my answers to the interview questions I have been presented. Once the reader becomes comfortable with the material, it's a very "plug and play" system, tried, tested and true.

***A very unique addition to this book is "The Roommate's Guide." I very much like as a strong value-added. The simple reading as allowed my non-consulting roommates to practice case interviews with me, giving them a strong idea of what types of questions to ask and how to critique my responses. Overall, I get an additional ten hours each week of practice from them.

Overall, I regard this book as one of my personal favorites. It's a fun read, a wealth of knowledge and, unexpectedly, my best tool for success. I've learned just as much about consulting through reading this book as I have through my years of studying the field. Read it, learn it, apply it. This stuff works.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book, March 28, 2010
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This review is from: Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) (Paperback)
Case in Point is an excellent book for preparing for case studies. The simple step by step approach helps newbies like me. I would recommend this book for anyone serious about cracking case studies & making it to the top consulting firms.
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Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition)
Case in Point: Complete Case Interview Preparation (10th Anniversary Edition) by Marc P. Cosentino (Paperback - November 4, 2009)
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