That being said, a basic-to-moderate understanding of the Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Statement of Cash Flows, and how they work together, is very relevant to many interviews.
(You might even be provided with a basic Income Statement or Balance Sheet of a company as part of a Case Study interview question.) Rather than reinventing the wheel and writing content on Finance and Accounting in this guide, we recommend you review any standard, basic Financial Accounting textbook to familiarize yourself with the components of basic Financial Statements: We also recommend that you familiarize yourself with some basic core Finance concepts (Net Income, EBIT (Operating Profit), EBITDA, Free Cash Flow, Internal Rate of Return, Net Present Value, and Enterprise Value are good places to start) and core Valuation techniques (Cost of Capital, Comparable Company Analysis, Precedent Transaction Analysis, Discounted Cash Flow analysis, and Leverage Buyout analysis).
For example, a classic SWOT analysis might entail benchmarking Delta Airlines with the airline industry as a whole; an extension could entail benchmarking the entire airline industry against the broad transportation sector.
You should be very familiar with the well-known frameworks already discussed in this chapter, although it is unlikely that an interviewer would ask you to use a particular framework in your analysis.
Case studies offer a method to evaluate who the firm believes will be the best Consultants among many qualified and talented candidates.
In other words: it doesn’t matter how much “raw talent” you have—if you cannot succeed in the Case Studies portion of Consulting interviews, there is a good chance that Consulting may not be the right field for you. Microsoft, Google, etc.) and financial industry firms (such as hedge funds and private equity firms) have followed the Consulting industry’s lead by developing Case Study interview methodologies of their own.Although these concepts will not be tested and do not form a major part of general Consulting Case Study interviews, these topics can appear in a general discussion about a particular business situation and you should be able to discuss them at least on a basic level.If you are applying for a job in Business Development, or for a Consulting position in a Corporate Finance group or at a firm that does a lot of Corporate Finance Consulting work, then you should definitely study up and be prepared for these core Finance and Accounting concepts, because they will likely be tested on in detail in your interviews.However an interviewer could potentially ask you for a SWOT analysis, and you should be prepared to apply it in that case.SWOT is effectively a quick, high-level market landscape/competitive dynamics analysis arranged using the following terminology: to other, related industries or sub-industries within the economy.These techniques tend to be numerical, and occur frequently, although none are comprehensive or broad enough to fall into the category of a “Framework”: Unlike Investment Banking interviews, which can be detailed and highly technical in terms of Finance and Accounting, Consulting interviews and the Consulting job itself revolve much more around estimation and exercising business judgment and “what-if” analysis.Rarely would a Consultant be called upon to develop and maintain a detailed, precise financial model for Discounted Cash Flow valuation, for example.Here are the Five Forces in detail: This simple framework has been around for a long time as a way to think about any industry or company, and applies broadly to a wide range of Case Study questions.If you compare the description below to that of Porter’s Five Forces above, you will see that there is substantial overlap.It does not hurt, however, to be familiar with them.Therefore, we include these example frameworks for your reference and encourage you to at least familiarize yourself with the basics of them: There are additional, relatively simple analytical techniques that you should be prepared for in Consulting Case Study interviews.