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Am I taking GMAT much earlier?

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Manager
Manager
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Status: Preparing myself to break the sound( 700 )-barrier!
Affiliations: IFC - Business Edge, Bangladesh Enterprise Institute
Joined: 15 Feb 2011
Posts: 209
Location: Dhaka, Bangladesh
Schools: Texas A&M - Mays; PennState - Smeal; Purdue - Krannert; JohnsHopkins - Carey; Vanderbilt - Owen; WakeForest - Babcock; UBC - Sauder
WE 1: Financial Analyst/Financial Management Trainer - BRAC Afghanistan - 13 months
WE 2: Business Proposal Coordinator - MiDS, Inc. (in Kabul, Afghanistan) - 4 Months (did quit the job bcoz of security concerns)
WE 3: Readers For Readers (A Social Impact Generating Organization) - Co-Founder
Followers: 7

Kudos [?]: 32 [0], given: 136

Am I taking GMAT much earlier? [#permalink] New post 18 Jan 2012, 10:06
Hi! Not being sure where to post this query, I thought I might put this post here!

I am an MBA aspirant and was prepping for GMAT regularly until very recently. I used to work in Afghanistan for around 1.5+ years in an INGO and a US Govt Contracting Farm as an expat. In early December 2011, there was a suicidal attack in a religious gathering of Shi'a people in Kabul that hit a death toll of 54 lives. The place where the bomb blasted was just 200-300 meters away from my office compound. After this incident my psychological/mental health was very adversely affected. Soon after that I left my job in Afghanistan and came back to my country 25 days ago.

Coming back home, when I visited my psychologist/counselor, I was advised to take a recreational time-out with my family and friends for a while as I was (according to my psychologist) going thru" severe mental trauma". Since then, I am staying around without joining any job, and passing quality times with my family and friends.

These days, I am feeling much better mentally, and am not feeling I am having anymore "severe mental trauma". However my psychologist still wants me to pass most (!!!) of my time with my family for "some" reasons. But she (the psychologist) nodded that I may resume my study in full-fledge if I want. Good to mention here, I was preparing for my GMAT to enroll myself in a top-ranked B-School since May 2011 with some minor breaks. And, I am planning to getting into an MBA school in 2013 or 2014.

Now I have decided that I will not join any jobs in next few months! During this time, I want to pursue one of my long cherished dreams: Establishing Book Exchange Clubs for the children [we DON'T HAVE ANY formal book exchange clubs in our country; all we have are the book shops] in the close around localities (not for business purpose, at all). I assume that this will keep me engaged for next 3-4 months. Side-by-side, I will get children's company what will help me heal my "mental trauma". While running after all these, I hope I can manage some quality time for my GMAT prepping as well.

Having told the backgrounds, may I request you to put your opinions regarding the following issues:

1. If I don't join a job for next 3-4 months while establishing Book Exchange Clubs for the children, will it adversely affect my chance of getting into a good MBA school.

2. Will doing a complete different (entrepreneurial) task/function other than Finance (I have around 3 years of experience in Finance function) hurt my professional experience stream?

3. Given that I am planning to enroll myself into a B-school around 2/3 years later, do you think am I sitting for GMAT much early?

You response is highly appreciated!

Thanks!
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Re: Am I taking GMAT much earlier? [#permalink] New post 19 Jan 2012, 01:37
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Schawjibb wrote:
Hi! Not being sure where to post this query, I thought I might put this post here!

I am an MBA aspirant and was prepping for GMAT regularly until very recently. I used to work in Afghanistan for around 1.5+ years in an INGO and a US Govt Contracting Farm as an expat. In early December 2011, there was a suicidal attack in a religious gathering of Shi'a people in Kabul that hit a death toll of 54 lives. The place where the bomb blasted was just 200-300 meters away from my office compound. After this incident my psychological/mental health was very adversely affected. Soon after that I left my job in Afghanistan and came back to my country 25 days ago.

Coming back home, when I visited my psychologist/counselor, I was advised to take a recreational time-out with my family and friends for a while as I was (according to my psychologist) going thru" severe mental trauma". Since then, I am staying around without joining any job, and passing quality times with my family and friends.

These days, I am feeling much better mentally, and am not feeling I am having anymore "severe mental trauma". However my psychologist still wants me to pass most (!!!) of my time with my family for "some" reasons. But she (the psychologist) nodded that I may resume my study in full-fledge if I want. Good to mention here, I was preparing for my GMAT to enroll myself in a top-ranked B-School since May 2011 with some minor breaks. And, I am planning to getting into an MBA school in 2013 or 2014.

Now I have decided that I will not join any jobs in next few months! During this time, I want to pursue one of my long cherished dreams: Establishing Book Exchange Clubs for the children [we DON'T HAVE ANY formal book exchange clubs in our country; all we have are the book shops] in the close around localities (not for business purpose, at all). I assume that this will keep me engaged for next 3-4 months. Side-by-side, I will get children's company what will help me heal my "mental trauma". While running after all these, I hope I can manage some quality time for my GMAT prepping as well.

Having told the backgrounds, may I request you to put your opinions regarding the following issues:

1. If I don't join a job for next 3-4 months while establishing Book Exchange Clubs for the children, will it adversely affect my chance of getting into a good MBA school.

2. Will doing a complete different (entrepreneurial) task/function other than Finance (I have around 3 years of experience in Finance function) hurt my professional experience stream?

3. Given that I am planning to enroll myself into a B-school around 2/3 years later, do you think am I sitting for GMAT much early?

You response is highly appreciated!

Thanks!


These are my thoughts:

1. If I don't join a job for next 3-4 months while establishing Book Exchange Clubs for the children, will it adversely affect my chance of getting into a good MBA school.

A break of less than 6 months is not a big deal. But ensure that you are occupied with something. If you are doing something entrepreneurial, besides satisfaction, you will get a great story to put in your application! Also, if you do start something, don't leave it in the lurch after 3-4 months. Keep yourself engaged with it after you take up a regular job too.

2. Will doing a complete different (entrepreneurial) task/function other than Finance (I have around 3 years of experience in Finance function) hurt my professional experience stream?

As I said, less than 6 months break is not a big deal but don't extend it after that until and unless you want to give up finance and go with your entrepreneurial ideas only. No one will question you on a 3-4 months break in your professional life. But make these 3-4 months count. Also, study during this time for GMAT.

3. Given that I am planning to enroll myself into a B-school around 2/3 years later, do you think am I sitting for GMAT much early?

You can start passive preparation if you like. I think your Verbal needs quite a bit of work. Start working on that. Start reading English national dailies and some good books (you have plenty of links on this forum so I will not list them out here). You will passively pick up the right usage. You can also start going through some GMAT prep books. You can sit for GMAT whenever you feel fully prepared. Your score will be valid for 5 yrs.
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Manager
Manager
User avatar
Status: Preparing myself to break the sound( 700 )-barrier!
Affiliations: IFC - Business Edge, Bangladesh Enterprise Institute
Joined: 15 Feb 2011
Posts: 209
Location: Dhaka, Bangladesh
Schools: Texas A&M - Mays; PennState - Smeal; Purdue - Krannert; JohnsHopkins - Carey; Vanderbilt - Owen; WakeForest - Babcock; UBC - Sauder
WE 1: Financial Analyst/Financial Management Trainer - BRAC Afghanistan - 13 months
WE 2: Business Proposal Coordinator - MiDS, Inc. (in Kabul, Afghanistan) - 4 Months (did quit the job bcoz of security concerns)
WE 3: Readers For Readers (A Social Impact Generating Organization) - Co-Founder
Followers: 7

Kudos [?]: 32 [0], given: 136

Re: Am I taking GMAT much earlier? [#permalink] New post 19 Jan 2012, 11:33
Thanks a ton, Karishma! I appreciate your comments/replies. :-)
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Re: Am I taking GMAT much earlier? [#permalink] New post 20 Jan 2012, 13:03
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Schawjibb,

I wanted to say that I find your story interesting and very unique. Studying for the GMAT while a bomb is exploding next to you? This will certainly catch the admission officer's attention.

As karishma mentioned, 6 months is a valid break to take time off from finance for GMAT/entrepreneurial endeavor. In fact, that would "round you out" and make you stand apart from your competition. This is the optimal time to take the GMAT - and budget time in case you are not happy with your score and need to retake. The exam lasts 5 years. Keep in mind the new GMAT Integrated Reasoning Section (on top of the current Quant and Verbal) will come out in June 2012 so if you wish to take the test before then, do schedule soon. You can read more details here: http://www.gmatpill.com/gmat-prep-about ... ly-better/


Most important I must emphasize is what your intention of going to bschool is. Is it to continue down the path of finance? Is it combining some business experience and Afghanistan and war and politics together in a new pursuit? Having an MBA does not automatically let you do things such as starting a business - you actually need some progress/connections already in the place where you will be. Are you planning on going back to Bangladesh? If so, did your entrepreneurial pursuit in Bangladesh bring you networking contacts and business experience there? Are you planning to be at the forefront of helping developing countries grow into the next decade?

You already stand out as an applicant. The question now is what direction are you taking? Top bschool programs want international applicants that are positioned to change their countries upon going back. Talk about that story.
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Manager
Manager
User avatar
Status: Preparing myself to break the sound( 700 )-barrier!
Affiliations: IFC - Business Edge, Bangladesh Enterprise Institute
Joined: 15 Feb 2011
Posts: 209
Location: Dhaka, Bangladesh
Schools: Texas A&M - Mays; PennState - Smeal; Purdue - Krannert; JohnsHopkins - Carey; Vanderbilt - Owen; WakeForest - Babcock; UBC - Sauder
WE 1: Financial Analyst/Financial Management Trainer - BRAC Afghanistan - 13 months
WE 2: Business Proposal Coordinator - MiDS, Inc. (in Kabul, Afghanistan) - 4 Months (did quit the job bcoz of security concerns)
WE 3: Readers For Readers (A Social Impact Generating Organization) - Co-Founder
Followers: 7

Kudos [?]: 32 [0], given: 136

Re: Am I taking GMAT much earlier? [#permalink] New post 09 Apr 2012, 01:40
First of all, I am really sorry, Zeke, as I took crazy+long time in replying to your fantastic reply. I don't know, but somehow I lost this post's update. Add to that I was infrequent in the forum for last two months....

Thanks a ton for your reply, Zeke. It really brings back my confidence.

gmatpill wrote:
You already stand out as an applicant. The question now is what direction are you taking? Top bschool programs want international applicants that are positioned to change their countries upon going back. Talk about that story.

This is really an invaluable advice!
Re: Am I taking GMAT much earlier?   [#permalink] 09 Apr 2012, 01:40
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