Starting a Case with the Right Questions

Question:

I have been following your email newsletters and have read them all carefully since I joined your club.  I thank you again for all your effort in making the videos and in having lots of good information available to us.

After going through your training videos and framework guide, I recently started practicing case interviews by myself (I haven't found any partners yet) using Case in Point for different case problems.

Many situations in Case in Point fall into your simple four different frames. Usually, I read the question, identify the problem and think about a frame that fits best to the problem among those four. So far, so good. But, then I am not sure how and what to do next.

Once you ask the right question in the beginning after identifying the problem, the rest of the stories follow with a logical thinking. However, the starting question is always the hardest thing for me.

When I see a case problem, I rephrase it, identify the objective, pick a frame to work with, but then I get lost...

What would you suggest in asking the right first questions that would lead me to the right track?

 

My Reply:

If you have a strong hypothesis, use your intuition to intelligently guess which of the multiple factors in your issue tree or framework would be most important.

It is important that what you pick is relevant to the hypothesis. It is less critical that what you pick is the most relevant.

As long as you are in the top 3 of key issues, it's generally acceptable. If you pick an issue that would, from a common sense perspective, be a #50 issue, then you basically have the wrong issue tree or you're using the framework in a way that's overly broad and not specific enough to the situation (e.g., you included everything in the framework instead of only the elements of the framework that are most relevant).

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