Meet Bain & Company’s MBA Class of 2022: Dubem Mbeledogu

Dubem Mbeledogu 

Location: San Francisco

Hometown: Evansville, IN

MBA program: MIT Sloan School of Management

Undergraduate school, major: Purdue University, B.S. Chemical Engineering

Focus of current case: Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

What word best describes Bain and why?
Together. Most people who are familiar with consulting already know this, but the culture at Bain is friendly, or even familial. There is deep focus on ensuring that you are close to your team, you enjoy your time with your team, and you feel intellectually safe around your team. Given this focus, it means that the relationship is much more than just having fun with your teammates. If you’re struggling to understand concepts, your teammates are there to teach you. If you have a higher workload case, your teammates will find where they can pitch in and make your experience more sustainable. If you’re solving a problem, your teammates will be right there with you at the whiteboard brainstorming and creating interesting solutions with you. We’re in this together and that makes the experience that much better.

Why did you choose to work at Bain? 

1. I have an interest in the use of applied mathematics and computing in business. Not only do I enjoy doing the work myself as a practitioner, but I also enjoy teaching the concepts too. I would like to end up as a sort of liaison between those implementing the advanced analytics and clients who may or may not know how useful it can be for their business. Bain is quickly making moves to become a leader in the advanced analytics space. I feel like I’ve had the opportunity to help shape the firm’s vision on advanced analytics, rather than be a cog in a machine. The possibility of being an early mover in the hybrid role of consultant with deep advanced analytical knowledge at Bain was very interesting to me.

2. It’s a cliché, but the culture. Before my summer associate term, I had questions about where consulting fit into the long-term vision of my career. That summer helped me to realize that no matter whether consulting was a perfect fit for my long-term goals, I would at the very least enjoy my time at Bain. Under those circumstances, you can’t really lose.

What did you love about the business school you attended? 
I loved the analytical culture surrounding Sloan. It wasn’t forced on you if you didn’t want it. If you did, it was ever-present. From economics to marketing, the MBA program had an analytical offering. The operations research center is housed by Sloan, so you could take as many graduate level operations research classes as you’d like. We were even allowed to take graduate engineering and science courses outside of Sloan for credit. The analytical culture manifested itself outside of class as well, inscribed by the school’s motto “mens et manus” which means mind and hand – use what you learn. If you wanted to, you could be involved in any number of hackathons, ranging in analytical rigor, to hone your skills, which made the experience that much more fun for me as well.

What’s the most valuable thing you’ve learned so far at Bain? 
The most valuable thing I’ve learned so far is storylining. In my past job as an engineer, our solutions were typically communicated to senior engineering leaders who didn’t ask or often didn’t want a storyline to the solution. Just tell them how you did it and present the data and they will determine the efficacy of the solution for themselves. The stakeholders on a Bain case have a much more diverse set of backgrounds and have varying objectives. Developing the ability to communicate to that audience is directly helping me in my goal of communicating advanced analytical concepts to business leaders who may not be familiar with the concepts and who have differing objectives.

Which manager or peer has had the biggest impact on you at Bain, and how has he or she made you a better consultant?
It was Grace Mbazima, who was the senior manager on the first case that I was staffed to. She was the person that stressed to me the power of packaging and story lining results and solutions. She challenged me to think critically about the stakeholders, what’s important to them, and how they digest information best. Over my time on that case, she was extremely patient with me and attentive to me even through her busy schedule. She deeply practices our operating principle: “A Bainie never lets another Bainie fail.” I’m grateful for her time on my first case.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to work for Bain? 
If someone is looking to work for Bain and wants to maximize their chances of joining, you need to exude these two qualities during your interviews: curiosity and passion. Case interviews are a moment for you to solve a hard problem. It’s difficult to have someone there watching you do it, but it’s meant to feel no different than solving a puzzle with your friends. If you perceive the case interviews that way, you may be more inclined to think of interesting, unique solutions with genuine enthusiasm, which is the way that Bainies typically work on a real case.

What has been your most meaningful career achievement and how did it make a difference?
This achievement did not occur during my “day job”. However, I got to use concepts that I’ve learned at Bain and concepts that I hope to use in the future in my career as well. Recently, I was awarded first place in the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference Research Papers Competition, which is put on by the largest sports analytics conference in the world. My work was on daily fantasy football, and it potentially reduces the amount of time to solve difficult computational problems in daily fantasy sports by orders of magnitude. Not only does this work have an impact on daily fantasy sports, but the overall technical concepts can be applied to other aspects of sports to make models quicker and more interactive. That way, the coaching staff can be more involved in the analytics. The achievement was also important to me because I got to see some of the skills that I used at Bain pay off. The other research papers that made it to the finals were excellent, and I truly believe mine wasn’t any better than anyone else’s. What set my work apart was how I story lined the solution and delivered it, which I learned how to do at Bain.

A fun fact about me people would be surprised to know is…
I play the flute! I’ve been classically trained since I was about 10 years old. I played in the all-state band in high school and played on scholarship in undergrad. Living in an apartment complex makes it hard to play as I try to respect my neighbors’ quiet time, but I try to play when I can!


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