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Profile Evaluation Much Appreciated [#permalink]
20 Jun 2010, 17:35
Basics: Male / 24 / USA
Undergrad: Purdue University / Selling & Sales Management / GPA: 3.58 Not a heavy quant major; however, among the match courses I did take (trig, statistics, finance, accounting) I received A's.
GMAT: 690 (43Q, 41V) [taken ~4 times] I would feel much more comfortable with a higher GMAT score (esp a higher quant score). However, on my last attempt my score dropped by 10 points to a 680 (Q44, V38). Therefore, unless I spend another month or two to studying, I’m not sure if I can make an improvement—and to be honest, I’m so frustrated that I'm leaning towards calling it finished and keeping my 690. BUT, if it turns out that 10-20 points is what's holding me back from my target schools then I'll force myself to continue the pursuit (but after a decent break). Also, in regards to having taken the GMAT 4 times now, it's worthy to note that during my first attempt I experienced a significant administrative error and was given a chance to take the test again free of charge by the GMAC-however, despite my request, I'm not sure if my first official score (620) was cancelled (though I'm not sure if this even matters).
Work Experience: Sales & Purchasing (1 year ago-current): B2B sales & purchasing for a small business that designs, manufacturers, and sells industrial equipment and specialized heavy-duty automotive fleets (think car haulers, severe service vehicles, waste/recycling vehicles). Responsible for managing several significant government and commercial accounts. – Without going into a lot of detail, due to the fact that we’re such a small business (<20 employees), I’ve been given quite a lot of freedom & responsibility with my position. This has subsequently provided me with increasing amounts of managerial responsibilities and some leadership opportunities. I'm hoping that I can use the small size of this company to my advantage as so many applicants to top schools seem to come from large organizations.
President (6mo ago-current): Start-up company - we have the exclusive distribution rights to an energy conservation unit designed for industrial and commercial lighting systems. Unit is manufactured and guaranteed by General Electric. It's still a relatively new product and venture, however, we have a handful of prospects lined up that are willing to give it/us a try. We’re just waiting on a few items to materialize over the next 2 months before I’m comfortable with moving forward. At this early stage I'm constantly involved with on-going negotiations with the manufacturer and patent holders (per product & price), handling all clerical & marketing objectives, meeting with prospects, and managing 3 sales people and 2 electrical contractors. At the very least, I hope that I can leverage my leadership role in this position to make up for any lack of it in the rest of my profile.
I graduated last year and therefore only have one year of full time post-grad work experience. However, my game plan is to hold off on applying to B-School for another 2 years (so that I'll have 3 years of solid experience at matriculation).
Community Involvement (post grad): 1.) Instructor of a weekly literacy class at the main jail in my city. Instructing classes consisting of 20-30 inmates per session who want to improve their reading and writing or work towards a GED. 2.) GED tutor at a half-way house for women transitioning from prison back to society while they raise their young children. I tutor groups of 1-3 individuals at a time, helping with homework, answering questions, and explaining difficult topics. 3.) Micro Mentor – Business mentor for two entrepreneurs that are starting their own business. I speak twice per month over phone/e-mail with two separate entrepreneurs—facilitating brainstorming and providing feedback for their marketing, networking, and other general business ideas. I make sure, going into the relationship, that these entrepreneurs don’t think of me as an expert and instead as an outside evaluator. Because, as I have learned from my own entrepreneurship ventures—it's always helpful have someone to bounce your ideas off of.
My Future MBA Plan: To keep it brief, my reasoning for obtaining an MBA is three fold: 1.) Gain the knowledge necessary to Improve my chances for success as an entrepreneur, 2.) Develop managerial & strategic consulting and analysis skills, 3.) Fulfill my passion for academics (esp in regards to business subjects).
My target schools are: 1. Northwestern (Kellogg) 2. NYU (Stern) 3. Duke (Fuqua) 4. Yale 5. Cornell (Johnson)
Given my undergrad history, my somewhat untraditional work experience (~3 years at matriculation), my community involvement, combined with my mediocre GMAT score—what would be my chances for admittance at the aforementioned schools?
Truly any advice would be very helpful... And a big thanks in advance to anyone that is willing to read & comment!
Re: Profile Evaluation Much Appreciated [#permalink]
02 Jul 2010, 13:55
Overall, I think you're thinking about things the right way. Yes, still too early for you to apply now, but in another 2-3 years you should be in the "sweet spot" in terms of years of full-time work experience.
Re: the GMAT, don't worry about looking like you took it too many times. I know you're frustrated, but think about it this way: All the things in your past and can’t be changed: your undergraduate transcript, your work experience to date, your community involvement to date, etc. From today going forward, the only things you still control are: your GMAT, your essays, your letters of recommendation, your additional work experience (which is obviously very important), maybe additional college coursework, and your interview, if you get to that point.
So, it’s in your interest to devote everything you can to getting that score to where you want it to be, since it’s one of the few things you can still control! A 680 or 690 isn't bad at all, but if you have a couple of more years before you apply, wouldn't you rather apply to Kellogg and Stern with a 720 than a 690? I'd rather that you had a 720, although you certainly can get in with a 690. But, if you want it that badly, and you have the time, why wouldn't you try again?