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How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"?

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How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 14 Aug 2010, 06:08
But for the outlier, extremely focussed applicant, everyone else must rack their brains, face down their demons and arrive at an honest to god (cross your heart) answer which forms the basis of your application strategy.
The deal however is, the more people's views I get to know about it, the more convinced I am that honest truth is not enough to get you through.
If god forbid, your stated reason to do an MBA is that you are a generalist, or looking for a classy career improvement training, your slot will in all probability go to someone who claims to have a passion for derivatives trading and is looking to become a director of a european union's pensioners fund over the next 5 years, a George Soros over the decade.
Seems alright to me - why not give the limited slot to someone who knows where he is going, instead of to someone whose career planning is still very vague.
The point is, "Why MBA" needs its share of selling (again alright in my view - you must know how to sell before you can claim to be ready for business), and so, a lot of polish. The god honest truth needs to be propped up by thorough research and a commitment to some kind of a career position - short and long term.
Firstly - I want to get a consensus if such is indeed the case.
Secondly - I think there is a possible flip around for people who are grappling with the question. Flip the situation around and ask "If you got an MBA, what would be your dream job then?" from the options choose the best one which requires experiences similar to the ones you've had. I speak of it with caveats, without having applied it myself - but from where I am ( a generalist seeking ways to solve high level problems) I see no other useful tool.
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 15 Aug 2010, 05:28
I am sorry but i could pick practically all 5 answers. They don't contradict to each other. The first answer covers timing, the third purpose etc, the fourth choice of program, etc. If the question is "why?" I would think that the following answers are appropriate: to change career, to change geography, to push my career upwards in the same industry, general knowledge and probably to improve my resume with a better school rank than my undergrad

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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 15 Aug 2010, 10:20
#1 but #2 helps to refine your answers.
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 15 Aug 2010, 11:49
Good question why an MBA

I've been thinking almost a year about it and realised that it's the best way for me to challenge myself how well I can influence people..
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 17 Aug 2010, 09:41
It appears like a consensus that for most people, MBA is the aim-and the career position follows?

Just wanted to find out if i was alone in not having the career, but the MBA at the center of my quest.
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 17 Aug 2010, 10:55
i dont think there's a wrong reason. Let's face it, not every applicant is gonna have the vision of being a saint in helping people. I know some people who gets it to advance in career which is a perfectly fine reason but one probably need to embellish it on the essays. Some people want to make more money in a post mba type job which again is fine imo but saying that in essay might not be a good idea. Most people who does mba probably want a better paying job/career or else it makes little sense to be unemployed with ~100k debt. Some might not admit it and might say something different in their essays - i guess you gotta play the admission's game.

for me personally I had the idea all along although it was not as specific as now. I started thinking about MBA after undergrad but i noticed the WE required so i laid low and focused on Master degree etc. I always had the idea of switch careers or at least make the management ladder on my field - i certainly DID NOT want to write software for the rest of my life!
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 18 Aug 2010, 17:17
Someone should do a study on the success rate of MBA career goal essays. I was just reading an LBS' student's blog and she got in to LBS with the goal of moving from ibanking to non-profit work. Lo and behold post graduation she's back in ibanking. Honestly, I'm not sure why so much emphasis is given on career goals. I mean why does someone go to law school? Why do you go to med school? Do med school applicants need to know that their dream is to be a pediatrician? Isn't is enough to know that you want to be a doctor?

Maybe explains why Wharton trimmed their goals essay from 1000 words to 300. They want applicants to get to the point and give a concise summary of their professional objectives rather than blabber on how the MBA is going to lead them to their dream job.

My guess is not more than 20% of successful applicants live up to their short term goals in their applications. And probably less than 10% with long term goals. I know 3 people who have graduated from Kellogg, LBS and Booth recently and none of them envisioned they'd be doing what they are doing right now prior to starting their MBA.
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 19 Aug 2010, 05:03
staind wrote:
Someone should do a study on the success rate of MBA career goal essays. I was just reading an LBS' student's blog and she got in to LBS with the goal of moving from ibanking to non-profit work. Lo and behold post graduation she's back in ibanking. Honestly, I'm not sure why so much emphasis is given on career goals. I mean why does someone go to law school? Why do you go to med school? Do med school applicants need to know that their dream is to be a pediatrician? Isn't is enough to know that you want to be a doctor?

Maybe explains why Wharton trimmed their goals essay from 1000 words to 300. They want applicants to get to the point and give a concise summary of their professional objectives rather than blabber on how the MBA is going to lead them to their dream job.

My guess is not more than 20% of successful applicants live up to their short term goals in their applications. And probably less than 10% with long term goals. I know 3 people who have graduated from Kellogg, LBS and Booth recently and none of them envisioned they'd be doing what they are doing right now prior to starting their MBA.



i agree. That's also the part of my head thinking people just tried to "get by" the essay and make a convincing story. And they will probably say they have "many goals" and they just wrote a very convincing goal that they will less likely to implement which doesnt make them liars.
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 19 Aug 2010, 06:10
staind wrote:
Maybe explains why Wharton trimmed their goals essay from 1000 words to 300. They want applicants to get to the point and give a concise summary of their professional objectives rather than blabber on how the MBA is going to lead them to their dream job.


You might look at the career goal essay with a different angle. It s a very good tool to see if a candidate is able to position himself in the job market.
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2010, 16:43
staind wrote:
My guess is not more than 20% of successful applicants live up to their short term goals in their applications. And probably less than 10% with long term goals. I know 3 people who have graduated from Kellogg, LBS and Booth recently and none of them envisioned they'd be doing what they are doing right now prior to starting their MBA.


I think a lot of people simply write what they think adcom wants to hear. For the genuine people out their, their aspirations may change or the money is just too good in banking, consulting, etc. I think less than 10% of people in general - MBA or not - end up following their long-term goals.
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Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"? [#permalink] New post 26 Sep 2010, 18:11
There's nothing wrong with not knowing for sure, but I'm not sure that's the point. Business schools want to know that you're able to at least articulate ONE career path. The fact that you'll probably choose something else isn't that big a deal to them. If you're able to research it, connect it back to your previous experience, and make it sound plausible, they at least know a good deal about you.

In addition, it kind of makes sure that every student at least has some idea when they go to business school of a path they could potentially take. With recruitment starting very quickly in business school, you don't actually have that much time to figure things out. Going in with some idea will help with that.

To my mind, I'd rather have someone who is able to talk specifically about whta they want to do, even though they're not really sure about it in their heart of hearts than someone who hasn't done the work to figure out one possibility.

Remember that essays are simply TOOLS for the adcomms. They serve no further purpose than to help sort people into admit and deny piles (or, if you want, "invite to interview, don't invite to interview" piles)
Re: How to sell your "Why do you want to do an MBA"?   [#permalink] 26 Sep 2010, 18:11
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