Meet McKinsey’s MBA Class of 2020: Kavya Jacob

Kavya Jacob

McKinsey Office: Singapore

Hometown: Muscat , Oman

MBA Program, Concentration: London Business School, MBA 2020

Undergraduate School, Major: National University of Singapore, Chemical Engineering

Focus of Current Engagement: Identifying opportunities for efficiency and effectiveness across corporate functions of a transport provider in South East Asia

Why did you choose McKinsey? One of my main reasons to go to business school was to gain exposure to a variety of industries and functions and what better place to find that than at McKinsey. Working on high impact projects with people who would constantly challenge me is definitely what drew me to McKinsey

What did you love about the business school you attended? The diversity of the cohort at London Business School is definitely what I loved most. Meeting people from so many different backgrounds professionally and personally and being able to come together as a strong community supporting each other was something truly special about LBS.

What lesson or skill did you learn from training (formal or informal) at McKinsey and how has it helped in your role? McKinsey has a strong feedback culture which I learnt of during training. Proactively asking for feedback as a new consultant has definitely helped me consistently improve myself in my role

Tell us about an “only at McKinsey” moment you’ve had so far. I think it definitely has to be about how truly global the firm is. In my first engagement, I was amazed at the wealth of resources and knowledge experts available to us globally. I can be sure I can find the right resources through our global network to guide and inform my recommendations to my client.

Tell us something you’ve learned about yourself or something that brought you closer to teammates or clients during the COVID-19 pandemic? I met my EMBARK cohort, as part of the McKinsey’s new consultant training, for the first time on Zoom and we all had the same apprehensions of getting to know people without in-person interactions due to COVID-19. This definitely brought us closer together to support each other during our first few months at the firm and we continue to have regular catch ups which has been great.

What advice would you give someone interviewing at McKinsey? Apart from the usual case and interview prep, my advice would be to let your personality shine through as every person has their own personal strengths to bring to a firm like McKinsey that helps build stronger client relationships.

Who has had the biggest impact on you at McKinsey and how has she/he helped you? The person who has had the biggest impact on me was a fellow associate during my first study. She went above-and-beyond to help me get up to speed on the project and was always there to answer all my rookie questions. I would have definitely had a much harder time in my first engagement if it wasn’t for her guidance and feedback.

My most meaningful achievement (professional or personal) and how it made a difference is…My most meaningful achievement so far has been mentoring a group of foreign domestic workers at a non-profit in Singapore. It definitely taught me patience and gratitude for the opportunities that have come my way and to be able to impart knowledge wherever I can.

A fun fact about me is…I am a third culture kid. Although ethnically Indian, I grew up in the Middle East (Muscat) until the age of 17 and then moved to University in Singapore and went on to get my MBA in the UK and currently working in Singapore. It has made me appreciative of different cultures and I am always open to new experiences.





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