Sanda is a brilliant commerce graduate from South-East Asia. She is the first person in her entire family to attend university. She taught herself English at university by watching “Friends” and “The Good Wife” among other shows, especially in-depth business media, and is the very first person from her university to ever join MBB. In this extensive interview, Sanda describes her tough background and experiences as well as her smart strategy for joining the elite consulting firms.

Sanda was the very first Firmsconsulting Emerging Fellow. These are outstanding young students from developing economies who are awarded a fellowship to be mentored and groomed into McKinsey and BCG by ex-senior partners of these firms.

Sanda is one of the most impressive alums of our program. She is young, talented and highly ambitious, yet strongly centered around a set of core values. We have personally known her for about 2 years and believe this young lady will make a significant contribution to business.

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11 responses to Sanda on Joining McKinsey, BCG et al

  1. Wonderful.

  2. Very true.

    And Sanda has done well so far. She is now the country leader for a US tech giant and married to a McKinsey consultant. So she left consulting but partially stayed in consulting. The tech role is better for her though.


  3. Adversity is the birthplace of creativity. Weldone, Sanda!

  4. Hello Mahmoud,

    You can read more about the program here: or by searching for “emerging fellows” on the site.

    Anyone may apply but we look for those with limited financial means and who have had particularly difficult lives. Provided they have the innate skills to mold, we will select them.

    FC never ever engages firms directly. We always operate in the background and we find this works well to place applicants.

    Keep me in mind we encourage everyone to apply but this is a very competitive program. Your background would need to be similar to Sanda, Sveta’s, Irina’s etc., as a rule of thumb. So consider this similarity before going ahead and applying.


  5. Hi Michael,

    Can anybody regardless of his educational background, work experience social and economic circumstances join the FC Emerging Leaders program? Are there any admission requirements or perquisite for entry? And do you offer trainees any networking opportunities to join elite strategy consulting firms like MBB? Please clarify.

    Thanks in advance.


  6. You are most welcome Ali.

    Persistence and Perseverance are more important than raw intellect.


  7. As a person who is in a similar situation as Sanda, I found this podcast highly inspiring. Kudos to you Sanda as well as Michael & FirmsConsulting team for this interview!

  8. Hi Hannah,

    Thanks for the comments.

    As an update, Sanda as gone on to work at one of the most coveted technology firms so she is certainly doing very well.


  9. Hi Michael,

    A very inspirational podcast!

    Coming from a Southeast-Asian country, I understand fully well how challenging it is to have big dreams but no resources. I strongly believe that people from emerging economies are highly successful because they have unparalleled drive and motivation. They know how it feels to be poor and struggling with no resources, so they work extremely hard to succeed.

    Sanda’s story is very inspirational because it defied many expectations: 1st from her country to join MBB, self-taught English in 2 years, finished case training after 3 sessions.

    This is the biggest take-away lesson for me: do not fall into the norms, be exceptional and be highly driven.

    I know there are many highly ambitious and capable people out there who are waiting for their opportunities, so I look forward to hearing more about these fellows.

    Thank you.



  10. Hi Ming,

    Yes, Sanda is an impressive young woman. Even today, we remain in touch and I continue to learn from her. Thank you for visiting the site and I hope you found it useful.


  11. This is the most inspiring thing I have heard all year. Congratulations Sandra, you’re amazing!

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