MBB Consulting related? Why Harvard, Stanford, and Wharton Might Not Be Your Best Bets


There is no doubt that among the most desirable jobs in an MBA program are consulting at McKinsey, Bain, and BCG, known to all as the MBB. But business school employment reports are notoriously unreliable in providing a full picture of which MBA programs send the most graduates to these elite global consulting firms.

Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, and many other business schools, for example, never reveal their top employers. And some of the schools that do, including Chicago Booth and Northwestern Kellogg, don’t tell you how many of their graduates MBB hired after graduation are actually sponsored students returning to their employers.

Now, for the first time, an in-depth analysis of MBA recruits at MBB, carried out by Menlo Coaching, the premium MBA admissions consultancy, has lifted the curtain on business schools that offer MBA students the best chance to break into the big league board. The Menlo Coaching research team analyzed 51,991 student profiles on LinkedIn to gather valuable information about each MBA program’s investment history in management consulting. Among other things, the company calculated the numbers on new hires versus hires at MBB as well as the total number of students employed by each company as well as a percentage of the promotion.


The big surprise? “The best-placed MBA programs in the management consulting industry are do not HBS, Stanford and Wharton, ”says David White, founding partner of Menlo Coaching. “Several MBA programs that are not traditionally seen as frequent sources of MBBs have rapidly increased their placements in these companies by up to 155% over the past two years. “

In fact, Menlo discovered that Kellogg, Tuck, and Booth are the top three schools in percentage of student body placed in MBB for the first time, far ahead of the competition. “While INSEAD is the global leader in new post-MBA internships in jobs at MBB,” adds White, “in the United States, the University of Chicago booth is # 1 and Northwestern Kellogg is # 2. It’s been a close race, with a tie between the two schools in 2019 and a victory for Kellogg in 2018. Tuck is holding up in total board placements: Despite lower gross totals due to his small class size, he is # 2 among the best MBA programs for sending the highest percentage of students into consulting jobs.

New investments in MBB 2018 2019 2020
Chicago (Stand) 81 98 109
Northwest (Kellogg) 92 98 99


White also found that several MBA programs that were not historically considered target schools for the MBB experienced incredible growth from 2018 to 2020. NYU Stern increased MBB placements by 40%. Cornell’s Johnson Graduate School of Management increased it by 156%, and UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School increased MBB placements by 83%, according to Menlo Coaching data (see table below).

Total number of investments in MBB 2018 2019 2020
NYU (Stern) 25 38 35
Cornell (Johnson) 9 16 23
UNC (Kenan-Flagler) 6 4 11

Harvard, Stanford and Wharton are not lost causes when it comes to McKinsey, Bain and BCG. After all, these schools have long been constant hunting grounds for elite consulting firms, and all are on the MBB’s target recruiting lists (see These 17 B schools are on McKinsey’s target list or These 40 B schools. are on Bain’s target list). A somewhat contrarian finding is the relatively low percentage of MBAs at Stanford who accept jobs with the MBB after graduation. New MBB placements represent less than 5% of the study body (see table below). Kellogg, Booth and Tuck placements are four times higher.

But it’s worth noting that the data also can’t tell you how many students at Harvard, Stanford, and Wharton had no interest in working for an MBB company. This lack of interest would therefore certainly have an impact on these figures. It has long been known that recruiters who went to Stanford to recruit MBAs often left empty-handed due to the attractiveness of startups and start-ups to Stanford or hedge funds and private equity for graduates of. Harvard.

New placements in MBB by school

(See next page for the total MBB internships by school)

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