The right way to read a graph in a case interview and a set of graphics, is not to look for each insight, but to extract the overall message. Most candidates take enormous pride in reading every insight they can find and proudly highlighting them in no particular order – and the waiting for instructions. While there is nothing wrong with this, it is not the way consultants read cases and requires someone, usually the interviewer, to guide the prioritization of the information and generation of the next steps in the case. You can impress the interviewer by weaving together the one most important message, relevant to the case, from all the data.

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3 responses to Reading Data Exhibits in 4 Simple Steps

  1. Hi Michael, great podcast as usual, even being new here I appreciate the whole and the specific. Back to the topic, actually I do believe the best way to look at graphs is to try identifying the general trends and identifying the off trend points, this works better for operations graphs as production which are generally stable trends, the same won’t apply for stock market for instance or even oil price versus time, season or maeket demand. Volatility is a silent killer when it turns to identify trends in unstable or hectic graphics. I guess when we fall short of an idea, better to split the plot in small parts and try to see whether there is a repetitive phenomenon or a clear trend to use as a driver for an initial hypothesis.

  2. Thank you Shweta.

  3. Very informative podcast.

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