What MBAs Need To Know For A Google Interview

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Insider Tips For A Google Interview

In recent years, Google has upped its hiring of MBAs.

In fact, in just one year, Google tripled its MBA hiring rate. With over three million applications a year and an offer rate of 0.2%, the company is highly valued by MBAs. So, what exactly does it take to ace the Google interview and get hired?

Claire Howlett-Thorne, a class of 2009 MBA of HEC Paris and Business Transformation Lead at Google, recently offered three tips for doing well in the Google interview.


Experts stress the importance of reading over job descriptions to ensure you’re a good match.

“Our job descriptions are usually quite clear, with sections on ‘minimum qualifications’ and ‘preferred qualifications,’” Howlett-Thorne writes. “If ‘minimum qualifications’ mentions ‘min 3 years in a business consulting role,’ you MUST have 3 years in this role and not 3 years of experience as a whole.”


Howlett-Thorne highlights the notoriously difficult General Cognitive Ability (GCA) interview at Google, which asks applicants to respond to questions such as: “Google is considering launching the GShoe, a pair of sneakers expected to redefine the walking experience. If you were driving this initiative, how would you tackle it? ”

Applicants should approach questions like this with an analytical mindset, according to Howlett-Thorne.

“When interviewing at Google and facing the GCA, start with the basics. Make sure you understand the problem and its implications. What are we trying to solve? Why does it matter? Then search for additional information or check your assumptions with the interviewer. What business are we referring to? What geography?” Howlett-Thorne writes. “Then, and only then, can you start developing your thought process towards a solution. You would be surprised by the number of candidates who jump directly into problem solving without getting the big picture first.”


Google is well known for its highly valued company culture with its mission to “organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”

And recruiters will specifically seek out applicants who they think are a good fit for Google’s culture.

“Know the company’s mission,” Howlett-Thorne writes. “Be ready to explain what it means to you on a personal level, and what actions you have taken in the past to contribute to it. Be also ready to articulate how the company’s mission relates to the job you are applying for.”

Sources: HEC Paris, P&Q, Wired

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