Meet McKinsey’s MBA Class Of 2018

Andrew Tingley

McKinsey Office: Pittsburgh

Hometown: Rockville, MD

MBA Program, Concentration: Harvard Business School

Undergraduate School, Major: United States Naval Academy, Electrical Engineering

Focus of current engagement: Digital Transformation, Oil & Gas

Why did you choose McKinsey? I respected it as a place that draws out the best in its people and raises the level of thinking more than many other organizations I’ve seen. As an example, I remember sitting in class my first semester, and a classmate from McKinsey began ticking off one insight after another from a case that initially seemed just straightforward to me. His thoughts were structured, his insights were valid, and it truly was an ‘aha’ moment for me. I realized his analytical ability was a common thread among many of my McKinsey classmates. As someone who loves learning, I wanted to hone this ability in myself and so I decided to pursue consulting at McKinsey.

What did you love about the business school you attended? HBS really is a melding of some of the greatest talents and most diverse perspectives I’ve ever come across… and kindest people, which is something you might not expect before experiencing HBS. Some of the most meaningful conversations I’ve ever had occurred with classmates on warm, sunny days while eating lunch on Spangler lawn, and I’ll always be grateful for that.

What lesson from business school best prepared you for your career in consulting at McKinsey? One of my most cherished professors at HBS was Clay Christensen, who taught us that “management could be one of the noblest of professions if it’s practiced well.” I took that to heart when I joined McKinsey, and I use it to frame my work every day in the sense of, “How can I improve the lives of my clients today?” Even if the day isn’t a sweeping victory, I use that lesson to remember that small improvements in management can positively touch the lives of many people.

Tell us about an “only at McKinsey” moment you’ve had so far. Our client was stressed by looming deadlines, and it was the night before we all shut down for the holidays. We had one final presentation in the morning that would set the tone of client interactions for weeks to follow, and we wanted to deliver to reassure them we were one team that could help ensure their success. That night was an “all hands on deck” moment that ran like controlled chaos. Our small team came together beautifully, blending all our talents and weeks’ worth of work into a presentation that demonstrated our commitment to our clients. That evening was intense and it led to a great shared sense of camaraderie and purpose.

What advice would you give to someone interviewing at McKinsey? Don’t overprepare. This is tough advice to follow, but you know you’ve reached that happy medium in case interview preparation when cases begin to feel fun (in a dorky kind of way), not daunting, rote or rehearsed. Fresh perspectives and excitement go a long way in interviews, so get your preparation in, but then trust you have the mindset to handle any type of question.

Who has had the biggest impact on you at McKinsey and how has she/he helped you? Now that is a tough question. I’d say my development group leader, Matt Gentzel. He was an associate partner during my summer internship, and now he’s a sounding board and mentor I turn to frequently.

My greatest personal or professional accomplishment is…Jack Kennedy had it right when he said, “And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction: ‘I served in the United States Navy.’”

In other words, my greatest accomplishment is serving in the Navy with some of the finest people this country has to offer.

A fun fact about me is…I once camped across the country from Washington to Florida. One of my favorite memories was sitting out under the stars in the middle of the Badlands in South Dakota, sipping a cup of coffee while watching a herd of buffalo graze by my tent at 2 a.m. Very surreal.

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