Do You Need an MBA to Become a Management Consultant?

Do you have your heart set on becoming a management consultant? You may be wondering if you need an MBA to make it happen. The short answer is no, you don't need an MBA to join a major management consulting firm. Several years of work experience in your field are usually enough to demonstrate your experience as a consultant. At Management Practically, we've met candidates and even trained some who received offers at McKinsey without an MBA.

Some of them had just finished their bachelor's degree, while others had advanced professional degrees (JD, MD, etc.). Our general feeling is that if you're sponsored by a company, there's a lot to gain from getting an MBA and very few drawbacks. If you don't have consulting experience and are thinking about getting your MBA, the more divergent your consulting background is, the more powerful and transformative an MBA will be for you. Management consulting firms focus on solving difficult business problems, so it's essential to be familiar with business and basic economics.

Management consulting is not an easy task, so the main stories you share should highlight your ability to take on important challenges and approach problem solving in a very methodical, thoughtful and effective way. With this teaching methodology, an MBA student knows the different business practices and strategies that major companies have adopted over the years. Competition in management consulting is extremely intense, and top-tier companies tend to set a high standard of task completion. Therefore, having an MBA from leading consulting-focused programs such as Kellogg, Insead, Harvard, MIT, and Stanford can help you stand out during the application review process.

The most prestigious management consulting firms have been a top destination for MBAs for more than 75 years. My consulting offer has helped nearly 85% of the people we've worked with get a job in management consulting. In conclusion, while an MBA is not a requirement for entering the consulting field, it can be beneficial in helping you stand out during the application process. If you're sponsored by a company, there's a lot to gain from getting an MBA and very few drawbacks.

Léo Poitevin
Léo Poitevin

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