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3 Exercises to Help MBA Applicants Develop a Personal Brand [#permalink] New post 07 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: 3 Exercises to Help MBA Applicants Develop a Personal Brand
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com
Some b-school applicants balk at thinking of themselves as a “product” or “brand.” However, by taking the time to really examine your personal qualities, values and aspirations, you’ll ultimately be able to find out which MBA programs provide the best match for your unique profile.

Think of it this way: If you had to create a marketing campaign for a new car, and you decided to focus on the vehicle’s seat warmers and sound system – when these days, potential customers are all about fuel economy – then your marketing messages would miss the mark.

The pitfalls in formulating your MBA application brand messages are similar. I recommend clients start the process with three exercises that can help them think like a marketing strategist, identify strengths and develop a personal brand.

[Find out what to do to sell yourself to an MBA admissions committee.]

Exercise 1: Create a “Brag Sheet”

In the real world, the practice of bragging is generally frowned upon. But when it comes to effectively brainstorming a set of messages you will ultimately want to convey to the admissions committee, a great way to begin is by jotting down every possible unique, exciting, wonderful, dazzling thing you can think of about yourself. Think of it as ”brag-storming.”

Don’t worry about anyone seeing your list, and don’t try to do this exercise in one sitting. Keep a notebook handy or start a memo in your smartphone?, and write down ideas whenever inspiration strikes. This list not only serves to jog your memory, but also helps you realize that your hobbies, travels, volunteering and personal or family life experiences can provide raw material for brand messages and eventually essays.

Admissions committees seek out well-rounded candidates who have experienced life, pursued their passions and achieved as much outside of the professional setting as within it. We came up with the idea of the brag sheet after I spent three months working with a client who insisted he had nothing interesting going on besides work.

Just days before the application was due, he casually revealed he had a deep, lifelong interest in martial arts, which he felt was not appropriate for a b-school application. Weaving in this aspect was a great way to balance out a work-heavy application and added a lot of color and interest to his profile.

Now we always have clients do a brain dump of everything under the sun so that these types of stories don’t slip through the cracks.

Exercise 2: Generate Stories

In our work with applicants, we’ve learned that it’s better to sift through an array of life experiences and see what emerges as a core strength, rather than lead off with what clients perceive as their strengths and then try to find example stories that back those up.

You don’t need to actually write the stories at this time. Scratching out a few notes, like “how I overcame a speech impediment,” “the time I backpacked through Asia for six months on $2,000″ or “Have worked in the family business since I was 14 years old,” is fine.

To get the wheels turning, consider personal achievements, leadership achievements in and outside of work, times when your actions made an impact on a person or group, instances when you motivated others or a time you solved a problem with ingenuity. Don’t be afraid to touch upon setbacks or failures, as your strategies for overcoming them may be the best indicator of your future success in the business world.

To determine whether a story is worth fleshing out, see if you can list the concrete actions you took and the results you achieved. The actions you took reveal your approach to a particular problem and provide some clues about your strengths, capabilities and character. The results indicate that your actions made a difference.

[Find out how a learning agenda can help your MBA application.]

Exercise 3: Mine Stories for Strengths

Once you’ve winnowed? down your list of stories, it’s time to figure out precisely which aspects of your skills, talents, strengths and character contributed to your accomplishments.

Ask yourself how this experience shaped your life and made you stronger, or which strengths, talents or attributes helped you make a difference. The answers you come up with will add to the pool of potential brand messages that you might highlight in your application and essays.

I had a client applying to Harvard Business School who wanted to write about his organizational skills as a core strength. Instead, we advised him to write about his ability to lead and inspire others. After all, he had written on his brag sheet about developing a program to provide vaccinations to the poor in underdeveloped countries – an enormous undertaking he developed from scratch. I’m sure his organizational skills helped, but the latter strength was more compelling, and it rose to the surface after viewing his stories.

As with a traditional marketing plan, the goal is to launch a product thoughtfully and effectively. In this case, the product is you. The goal is self-awareness, and combing through your list of accomplishments can be an enormous help. Once these elements have been clarified, you can effectively put your best MBA strategy into action.

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MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Kellogg School Takes 1st Place in Sustainable Investing Cha [#permalink] New post 08 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Kellogg School Takes 1st Place in Sustainable Investing Challenge
A team of students from the Kellogg School of Management has taken first place in the 2014 Morgan Stanley Sustainable Investing Challenge with their proposed investment vehicle that would remediate contaminated land in the U.S. through reforestation.

This preeminent global competition is geared for students to develop investment vehicles aiming at delivering positive social and environmental impact and competitive financial returns.

Last week at Morgan Stanley’s New York City headquarters, Kellogg’s Nicole Chavas, Nathen Holub, Laura Kimes and April Mendez presented their winning idea for the Fresh Coast Forest Fund, which would lease 25,000 acres of contaminated municipal land to plant poplar tree farms on contaminated urban and industrial sites. Poplars naturally clean and restore soil by absorbing toxins, and could be harvested for use as biomass or wood product.

As a collaboration among the Kellogg School of Management, INSEAD, and the Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing, the competition seeks to identify the next generation of sustainable investing practitioners, connect emerging leaders with industry professionals, and foster even greater emphasis on sustainability at graduate schools around the world.

At last week’s event, ten finalist teams proposed investment vehicles addressing issues including agriculture, solar energy and sanitation. In February, more than 220 students from 39 schools in 10 different countries submitted prospectuses for the competition.

A team from the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business won second place for their proposal, myCatch, a lending vehicle that would provide loans to organizations on behalf of small-scale sustainable fisheries.

“It is exciting to see today’s students—tomorrow’s financial professionals—pushing the frontiers of financial innovation to achieve positive social or environmental impact,” says Jamie Jones, Director of Social Entrepreneurship at the Kellogg School of Management. “The young leaders who participated in the competition will be a driving force for the conversation about sustainable investing at their academic institutions.”

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UMD Smith School to Offer Blended Part-Time MBA [#permalink] New post 10 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: UMD Smith School to Offer Blended Part-Time MBA
Part-time MBA students in the nation’s capital no longer have to choose between online and classroom delivery. Starting in fall 2014, the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business will offer the region’s first blended program for working professionals at its Washington campus.

The more flexible format will require participants in the school’s D.C. weekend program to meet on two Saturdays per month instead of three for traditional classroom instruction. Web-based learning modules designed by Smith faculty will provide the remainder of the content, allowing Smith students more latitude to structure their schedules. Participants in the pioneering program can complete their degree in two years.

“This eliminates 30 percent of the classroom time, giving students a huge amount of flexibility with their own lives,” Edward Lavino, Smith’s director of admissions for part-time MBA programs, said in a news release. “That three-Saturday-per month commitment takes away from an already small amount of free time from the program’s typical student — a 27- to 28-year-old professional.”

He said the blended format also allows assigned reading and skills practice to be designated for off-site engagement.

“About one-third of classroom time is currently consumed by students practicing skills via laptops or through other teacher-led exercises, and case studies sometimes are read in class prior to group discussion,” Lavino explained. “Now students will be able to engage in the same work at a quicker pace — off-site and on their own.”

Ken White, Smith’s associate dean of MBA and Master of Science programs, said flexibility is a major element of the program, but so is rigor.

“Students in the blended program will have the same classes and same professors available as in our full-time MBA program,” he said. “This is a high-quality program created for busy working professionals.”

The response among working professionals in the region has been positive. “Every applicant and current D.C. weekend student is on board,” Lavino said.

Upcoming application deadlines for the program are April 14 and June 2.

You may also be interested in:

Smith School Appoints New Dean with Global Outlook

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New Georgetown MBA Course Focuses on Women Leaders [#permalink] New post 10 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: New Georgetown MBA Course Focuses on Women Leaders
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Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business has further expanded its efforts to groom young female leaders through a new MBA course titled Developing Women Leaders: Cultivating your Human and Social Capital, the school recently announced.

Professor Catherine Tinsley, who has been instrumental in building the Georgetown University Women’s Leadership Initiative (GUWLI), created the six-week course. The GUWLI is a program that aims to cultivate young female leaders and connect them with already established female leaders out in the world.

A series of conferences, networking events, and panels inspired Tinsley to create a course based on the three activities that she has found helpful in advancing and empowering women: rigorous research documenting gender dynamics, active workshops targeting specific practical skills women need to build their human and social capital, and listening to other women.

Tinsley notes that with all the technical skills and experience students bring from their previous modules, “This course is designed not to help them get a job, but to help them advance once they have a job.”

The second-year MBA course, which began in March, will be structured around the six human and social capital skills that Tinsley believes everyone needs to advance in their careers.

The course title might seem to indicate it is intended solely for women, but Tinsley says the examined skill set is one from which women and men both would benefit. As Tinsley comments, “There’s no skill that women need to have that men don’t need to have, so this course is about advancement and building your own capital.”

Though there is a great deal of advice about career advancement readily available to women today, very little of it is based on organized research. Similar courses on female leadership that exist at other institutions are generally based on specific case studies and focus on where real women have succeed and where they have faltered.

Developing Women Leaders differs in that it is fundamentally research-based course, drawing on results from large sample sizes.  Guest speakers will offer students context for these results and insights gleaned from years of experience in the business world.

In the first class, 30 women have enrolled from the full female cohort of 81, but no male students have yet enrolled, the Financial Times notes in a profile piece on Tinsley.

The  professor hopes they will eventually choose to join the course, telling Financial Times that men need to be open to discuss gender issues and what those issues mean to them. “It would be interesting and challenging to include them – it is a dialogue that needs to take place,” she says.

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Getting Accepted to Grad School (Again): Tips for Applicants [#permalink] New post 14 Apr 2014, 08:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Getting Accepted to Grad School (Again): Tips for Applicants Who Already Have a Degree (or Three)
Guest post by admissions expert Ryan Hickey

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For some students, college is just the first step on a lengthy higher education journey that includes multiple stops and sometimes-abrupt changes in direction. This may be part of a planned education path that requires a terminal degree like a Ph.D. in addition to a bachelor’s and master’s. In other cases, however, returning to graduate school is necessary to completely change fields or open new job opportunities.

If you have been in school for most of your adult life, the term “career student” and its often-negative connotation can become a burden as you think about pursuing any degree after a bachelor’s. This can be baffling to applicants. Why would someone undertake the time, work and financial commitment required to earn a degree without good reason? Why should educating yourself further in a discipline or making the difficult choice to change careers be considered a negative thing?

While most know full well that setting out toward a second, third or fourth degree shouldn’t be a knock against an applicant, the myth of the aimless lifelong student persists in some corners of the higher-education world. If this isn’t your first time applying to graduate school, consider these four tips to avoid falling victim to that characterization.

1. Change Happens

Things don’t always go the way you originally or ideally plan. That’s life. What you considered your dream career in your twenties may no longer be fulfilling when you hit your thirties. Just because you start down a particular path does not mean that you must remain on it for the rest of your life.

In both essays and interviews, be honest if your interests and priorities have shifted. You were not wasting time in your previous degree program or career. It was simply the right focus for you at that time, even though it isn’t today. Don’t be ashamed of or try to hide those experiences. Instead, emphasize how you will apply the skills they helped you build to your next academic undertaking.

2. Dig Deep

With myriad education and career experiences, applicants who already have a graduate degree often make the mistake of trying to pack too much into their essays. By covering everything in brief to cram it all in, they never get to the deeper, more intimate content that resonates with admissions officers.

Instead of taking that shotgun approach, identify the experiences most relevant to your current target program and dive deep. You’ll be much better off if you can draw meaning out of several carefully selected stories rather than generally stating many more. By doing this, you can show the reader your applied passion and sense of purpose in applying to this particular program.

3. Non-traditional? No problem!

Non-traditional: this term doesn’t solely refer to applicants with distinctive demographic details. Instead, take it as meaning that you have the ability to bring a unique set of experiences or skills to a program.

For example, lack of maturity is often a major complaint voiced by both admissions officers and professors. They value applicants who will take the program seriously and behave professionally from the get-go, rather than those who require time to adjust or “find themselves.”

Demonstrate how your background, both academic and professional, has helped you build experience working as part of a team, moderating interpersonal disagreements diplomatically, effectively managing your time and balancing diverse aspects of your life. In other words, let admissions officers know that your prior academic endeavors have helped you learn how best to succeed from the start in a new university setting.

4. Career Focused

Why are you going back to school? Admissions officers always want to know, so be prepared with a clear and thorough answer.

Here’s a hint: there’s only one right response, particularly if this isn’t your first trip to graduate school. Given your current career aspirations, there are gaps in your knowledge and experience that can only be filled with further education. While details will vary from applicant to applicant, that basic theme should hold true for you if you’re seeking another graduate degree.

Make direct connections between what each specific program offers and your career goals. Ideally, show that you have short, mid and long-term career plans that can only be accomplished with the help of this particular degree from this particular program.

Knowledge, maturity and professionalism are essential when it comes to getting things done in the real world. As you complete your application, don’t apologize for prior education and work experiences, whether you’re now changing paths or diving even deeper into your chosen field. Previous success as a graduate student is a tangible demonstration of your ability to complete high-level academic work and should help, not hurt, your chance of admission.

***

Ryan Hickey is the Managing Editor of Peterson’s and is an expert in many aspects of college, graduate, and professional admissions. A graduate of Yale University, Ryan has worked in various admissions capacities for nearly a decade, including writing test-prep material for the SAT, AP exams, and TOEFL, editing essays and personal statements, and consulting directly with applicants.

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Round 3 Update from Harvard Business School [#permalink] New post 15 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Round 3 Update from Harvard Business School
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Just two more days, Round 3 applicants to Harvard Business School. That’s right, your fate will be known at noon Boston time, when the admissions team sends out both interview invitations and release notifications.

According to the latest update by admissions director Dee Leopold, all Round 3 applicants will hear something on Thursday, April 17th. Interviews will take place via Skype, or on campus on April 28th and May 2nd. Decisions on all interviewed Round 3 candidates will go out at noon on May 14th.

Leopold also says the Class of 2017 application will go live in mid-June, but we can expect to see the essay and recommender questions in advance.

Good luck to all the Round 3 applicants out there, as well as those on the HBS waitlist.

You may also be interested in:

Round 3 Myth-Busting by Harvard Business School

Harvard Business School Enters Online Learning

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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MBA Students on Classroom Diversity [#permalink] New post 16 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: MBA Students on Classroom Diversity
Earlier this week, Bloomberg Businessweek launched a new series called One Question, which will attempt to take the pulse of MBA students here and abroad to suss out what Next Gen business leaders are thinking.

This week’s subject was classroom diversity, and students from Duke Fuqua, Cornell’s Johnson School, Simon Graduate School of Business, and UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School weighed in on the following question:

Does the curriculum at your business school expose you to a diverse array of leaders and other professionals? (Diversity could mean gender, ethnicity, class, or other characteristics.) What would you like to see more of?

It was interesting to read the comments of current students, many of whom expressed a desire for greater diversity when it comes to issues of gender and sexuality in the workplace, as well as extending the concept of diversity to include a broader socioeconomic range.

All but one of the interviewed students felt their school could improve its efforts in this area. Simon Moore-Crouch, a student at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, commends his MBA program’s strong diversity efforts, which he says are supported by cases, speakers, and projects that typically have an international component.

Check out the original post for a more complete picture of the areas where these students would like to see broader representation. This One Question series sounds like it will be a lot of fun, and we look forward to seeing how Businessweek plans to pick the brains of MBA students on a regular basis!

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Answer Our MBA Survey for a Shot at $100 Amazon Gift Card [#permalink] New post 16 Apr 2014, 10:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Answer Our MBA Survey for a Shot at $100 Amazon Gift Card
2014 could be a life-changing year for you. You may already know that you’ll be headed to business school in the fall, or you might be planning to start your MBA journey in the coming months. Either way, exciting things lie ahead.

All of us here at Stacy Blackman Consulting want to help make your dreams come true by giving you a shot at a top program. Or at the very least, by putting a $100 Amazon gift card in your pocket!

So, here’s the deal. We’re asking for a favor: please fill out our one-minute survey. We know how precious your time is—you’ll only have to “check the box” in response to nine simple MBA-related questions.

Click now to fill it out for a shot at the $100 Amazon gift card—the survey will close on Thursday, April 24.

Thanks for your participation,

The team at Stacy Blackman Consulting

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Stanford, Synonymous with Satisfaction [#permalink] New post 16 Apr 2014, 21:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stanford, Synonymous with Satisfaction
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Super salary doesn’t equal satisfaction, Forbes reveals in its latest ranking of the most satisfied MBA graduates. While Tuck School of Business, the Wharton School, and Chicago Booth alumni typically receive paychecks in the $200,000 range,  Forbes says these graduates gave middling marks on job satisfaction. Stanford Graduate School of Business meanwhile takes the number-one spot for the third year running, and also topped Forbes‘s ROI ranking in 2013.

Forbes surveyed 17,000 grads from the Class of 2008 and heard back from 4,600 last year for its biennial b-school ranking. Their methodology considers satisfaction five years after graduation, when students have had time to reflect on their educational experience and how they compare to other MBAs in the workforce.

Ten 10 Schools with the Most Satisfied Graduates
  • Stanford Graduate School of Business
  • UC Berkeley Haas School of Business
  • Carnegie Mellon Tepper School of Business
  • Michigan State Eli Broad College of Business
  • Indiana University Kelley School of Business
  • Dartmouth Tuck School of Business
  • Duke University Fuqua School of Business
  • Rice Jones Graduate School of Business
  • Wisconsin School of Business
  • Chicago Booth School of Business
Both Stanford and second-place UC Berkeley Haas’s top employers are heavy on consulting and tech led by Google, eBay, McKinsey, BCG and Deloitte. Survey respondents appreciated how their schools helped prepare them for entrepreneurship and form global networks they will leverage throughout their careers.

This story appears in the May 5th issue of Forbes, but you can preview the MBA satisfaction rankings by following the link above.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Should You Hire an MBA Admissions Consultant? [#permalink] New post 21 Apr 2014, 09:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Should You Hire an MBA Admissions Consultant?
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com
With acceptance rates at the most elite business schools ranging from 6.8 to 21.6 percent, a growing number of MBA hopefuls are relying on the services of admissions consultants to help them market their candidacy and stand out amid a sea of equally amazing applicants.

The Graduate Management Admission Council, which administers the GMAT exam, reports that one in five applicants worldwide uses consultants—but a 2013 survey by the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants reports that 57 percent of prospective MBAs used an admissions consultant. The majority sought assistance with their essays, resume evaluation and interview preparation. But it is important to recognize some of the pros and cons of working with an MBA admissions consultant, as it might not be the right move for everyone.

[Avoid these three surprising mistakes MBA applicants make.]

I believe a consultant can nearly always help, whether you are a first-time or a repeat business school applicant, whether you are in the dark or more knowledgeable about the admissions process. After all, both beginning athletes and Olympians have coaches.

The one caveat to this situation would be if the admissions committee at the school to which you are applying is heavily focused on numbers, in which case you may not need a consultant to help flesh out things like your essays or interviews.

On the pro side, a consultant offers a trained second pair of eyes to review your material, help steer strategy and provide a sanity check. Many admissions consultants have years of MBA admissions and marketing experience.

Working with a respected consulting team gives you the ability to leverage the database of knowledge of a collected group of experts who together have experience with thousands of clients in programs across the globe. Input from one friend who applied, or even someone who attended the school, provides only a limited snapshot.

A firm with years in the business has perspective on what has worked – and what hasn’t – over time. Any questions or concerns you have about a particular program can be answered in-house, saving you tons of time researching online or trolling business school forums.

There is a lot of information about the MBA admissions process readily available online for free. Blogs like mine offer application advice, school-specific essay tips, and more.

While you can and should take advantage of free online information about the MBA admissions process, some people feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount out there, and the information is not always correct. I believe applicants can do their own research and still benefit from personalized guidance and coaching.

Detractors might argue that if you’re a strong MBA candidate, consulting services will provide little added value because your stats and profile speak for themselves. I disagree, and have seen many cases of stellar candidates who were shocked when they were denied admission to programs that seemed like sure things.

For example, we worked with one Cornell University graduate who had three years of experience in a top investment bank, a high GPA, a high GMAT score, phenomenal extracurriculars and competent writing skills. However, when he came to us he had zero introspection and was unable to look inward to mine his unique and interesting strengths. He definitely belonged in a top program, but the guidance he gained in how to market himself took his application package from generic to compelling.

Cost is the obvious potential drawback of working with an MBA admissions consultant. Fees run anywhere from a few hundred dollars for a la carte editing services to several thousand dollars for comprehensive packages targeting multiple schools.

If you’re not committed to completing the process, it is a huge waste of money. Make sure you’re ready to follow through, and find out if the firm offers any type of financial guarantees if you’re not successful.

One danger of hiring a consultant is that you might rely too much on their expertise, losing your voice and story in the process. Make certain that you’re prepared to partner with the consultant while not letting them take on the whole journey.

[Try these exercises to help MBA applicants develop a personal brand.]

Another complaint of applicants is that their consultant doesn’t devote enough time to them. Before you hire a consultant, ask about usual turnaround times and how many clients get taken on at once. A full-time consultant may be juggling you with 20 other clients, all vying for the same deadline, so ask these questions before you commit.

Some potential clients think hiring a business school consultant means they don’t have to do any work. A good consultant is not an essay-writing service, won’t do the work for you and is not there to agree with whatever the client says.

This type of relationship won’t work for personality types that have difficulty accepting criticism, coaching and input from others. Only invest in a consultant if you’re ready for a true partnership – not if you want a ghostwriter.

Consultants can push you, point out errors and opportunities and help you submit your very best application. But they still need you on the team.

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Yale SOM Deepens Commitment to Entrepreneurship [#permalink] New post 22 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Yale SOM Deepens Commitment to Entrepreneurship
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Yale School of Management will now be better equipped to meet the needs of entrepreneurially-minded students with the launch of a formal Entrepreneurship Program, announced late last week.

Dr. Kyle Jensen has been appointed as the inaugural Shanna and Eric Bass ’05 Director of Entrepreneurial Programs. Jensen, who will design and teach courses in entrepreneurship, as well as coordinate and advance a slate of activities in this area, begins his official duties on July 1st.

Yale SOM has also created two new scholarships for students in each entering MBA class. The merit-based awards will be granted on the basis of demonstrated interest in entrepreneurship and future potential as an entrepreneur. In addition, each year Yale SOM will name up to five Entrepreneurial Fellows who, after graduation, will receive two years of loan deferral to enable them to work full-time on a startup.

In the announcement, Yale SOM Dean Edward A. Snyder stressed that the entrepreneurial program build-out will have global dimensions, and said the school is deeply grateful to the donors who have contributed over $7 million to the threshold goal of $12 million for the program build-out.

Snyder says Jensen has exactly the right background for the role, given his experience in tech, healthcare and social sectors, as well as significant academic experience.  Jensen has been working actively with Yale entrepreneurs since 2012, when he joined Yale Entrepreneurial Institute (YEI) as a mentor and entrepreneur-in-residence.

James Boyle, YEI’s managing director, adds,“Kyle is an extraordinary person to lead SOM’s entrepreneurial expansion. His unique combination of operating skills and willingness to roll up his sleeves and build the curriculum and the program will greatly augment Yale’s innovation ecosystem.”

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Free GMAT Flashcards from Magoosh [#permalink] New post 22 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Free GMAT Flashcards from Magoosh
Studying for the GMAT is no easy feat! It’s a laborious, time-intensive test, and it can be very expensive to prepare for. Ever wish you had affordable and high-quality resources that’d help you along the way? Say hello to our friends at Magoosh! They’ve released free flashcards that’ll help you build skills in GMAT math and grammar. You can download them onto your Android or iOS phone, or you can practice them right on your computer.

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So, if you’re ready to dominate the GMAT, now’s the time to study. Take your pick of free GMAT math flashcards or GMAT idiom flashcards (or both!), and begin!

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Answer Our MBA Survey for a Shot at $100 Amazon Gift Card [#permalink] New post 22 Apr 2014, 18:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Answer Our MBA Survey for a Shot at $100 Amazon Gift Card
2014 could be a life-changing year for you. You may already know that you’ll be headed to business school in the fall, or you might be planning to start your MBA journey in the coming months. Either way, exciting things lie ahead.

All of us here at Stacy Blackman Consulting want to help make your dreams come true by giving you a shot at a top program. Or at the very least, by putting a $100 Amazon gift card in your pocket!

So, here’s the deal. We’re asking for a favor: please fill out our one-minute survey. We know how precious your time is—you’ll only have to “check the box” in response to nine simple MBA-related questions.

Click now to fill it out for a shot at the $100 Amazon gift card—the survey will close on Thursday, April 24.

Thanks for your participation,

The team at Stacy Blackman Consulting

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Stanford to Award Africa MBA Fellowships [#permalink] New post 23 Apr 2014, 03:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stanford to Award Africa MBA Fellowships
The Stanford Africa MBA Fellowship application is now live, and the deadline to apply is June 13, 2014. The Fellowship enables talented African citizens with a passion for making an impact on the continent’s future to pursue an MBA at Stanford Graduate School of Business.

What is the Stanford Africa MBA Fellowship Program?

The Fellowship pays for tuition and associated fees for citizens of African countries with financial need. The Fellowship was created to reduce the financial barrier for African citizens to pursue an MBA at Stanford GSB.

Stanford GSB will award up to eight fellowships annually. Within two years of graduation, Stanford Africa MBA Fellows are required to return to Africa to work for at least two years in a role that contributes to the continent’s development.

Promising candidates are encouraged to apply now for the Fellowship. Applicants can find details about the new two-stage application process and timeline on the Stanford GSB website. In the first stage, applicants complete the free Stanford Africa MBA Fellowship pre-application.

Up to 50 finalists will be selected by mid-July 2014 based on financial need, as well as Stanford’s admission criteria of intellectual vitality, demonstrated leadership potential, and personal qualities and contributions.

Finalists then apply for MBA admission (the application will be waived for finalists) to the GSB in Round 1, October 2014. The school plans to enroll up to eight exemplary Stanford Africa Fellows in the MBA Class of 2016.

Why is Stanford GSB providing this fellowship? Africa is at the forefront of significant global economic growth and opportunity. African students provide direct insight into an emerging global economy that will be increasingly powerful in business.

The school hopes that the Stanford Africa MBA Fellowship will encourage talented Africans to leverage the Stanford MBA experience to make a big impact in Africa, executing the GSB’s mission to change lives, change organizations, and change the world.

For More Details:

Stanford Africa MBA Fellowship Webpage 

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MBA Survey, Chance at $100 Amazon Gift Card Closes Today [#permalink] New post 24 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: MBA Survey, Chance at $100 Amazon Gift Card Closes Today
2014 could be a life-changing year for you. You may already know that you’ll be headed to business school in the fall, or you might be planning to start your MBA journey in the coming months. Either way, exciting things lie ahead.

All of us here at Stacy Blackman Consulting want to help make your dreams come true by giving you a shot at a top program. Or at the very least, by putting a $100 Amazon gift card in your pocket!

So, here’s the deal. We’re asking for a favor: please fill out our one-minute survey. We know how precious your time is—you’ll only have to “check the box” in response to nine simple MBA-related questions.

Click now to fill it out for a shot at the $100 Amazon gift card—the survey will close today, Thursday, April 24.

Thanks for your participation,

The team at Stacy Blackman Consulting

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GMAC Debuts Integrated Reasoning Prep Tool [#permalink] New post 24 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: GMAC Debuts Integrated Reasoning Prep Tool
The Graduate Management Admission Council has announced the debut of a new web-based resource to help applicants prepare for the Integrated Reasoning section of the GMAT.

The Official GMAT Integrated Reasoning Prep Tool is a set of 48 items and answer explanations, and it’s the only dedicated Integrated Reasoning prep tool available that contains retired IR items.

Users may customize question sets by difficulty and type of question, easy to hard or random, and may choose exam or study modes. The tool contains timers that track time spent per question as well as total time.

It also provides multiple reporting options, which focus on time management, session history, and question history. Benchmarking features show what percentage of GMAT examinees, by IR score, got each individual item correct.

“We developed Integrated Reasoning as a way to measure ‘big data’ skills, the ability to evaluate and synthesize information presented in multiple formats,” says Ashok Sarathy, GMAC’s vice president for product management.

“The Official GMAT Integrated Reasoning Prep Tool offers a valuable opportunity for test takers to prepare to do their best on the GMAT exam to showcase important skills that business schools and global employers are seeking today,” Sarathy adds.

The Official GMAT Integrated Reasoning Prep Tool is priced at $19.99 and is available at mba.com. Purchasers will have access to the web-based tool for six months for unlimited practice sessions, and the option of purchasing an additional three months for $9.99.

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Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz
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Hello, and welcome to the latest edition of Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz, our periodic check-in with some of the MBA blogosphere’s applicant and student contributors. In this edition, Buzz bloggers share recruiting advice, admit weekend updates, and tips that may help others currently experiencing waitlist woes.

Exhausted yet energizedDefying Gravity recounts some of the details from last week’s Admitted Students Welcome Weekend at Harvard Business School. Though she has yet to make a final acceptance decision, her initial feeling is that the next two years could be pretty amazing if the experiences during this two-day visit are any indication.

Surviving the recruiting gameDuke Fuqua’s [b]Canadian Champ [/b] finally sees the light at the end of the recruiting tunnel and has a few tips for anyone struggling through the process now or in the future. Believe it, he says, when people say every step is tougher than the last.

In the final stretchCCatcher has just a couple of weeks left to her Tepper MBA and is caught up in a whirlwind of final assignments, events, and lunches and dinners with friends. Despite the fun and excitement, she says she cannot wait to be done with the MBA and start working!

Putting off to prep better—When an invitation to interview from London Business School arrived in the mail, Knight MBA had some thinking to do. Rather than rush into an early interview date allowing just a few days to prepare, he has opted instead to wait until the end of May despite the increased competition from R3 applicants.

The wait is overMBA My Way may have surprised her 2013 self with the decision to forgo admission to her once-dream school Yale SOM to go with her “dark horse candidate” Cornell’s Johnson School. In this post, she shares what she did while on the Yale SOM waitlist which may have led to her eventual acceptance.

Do you have an MBA-centric blog? Want it featured in an upcoming B-School Buzz post? If so, email me at buzz@StacyBlackman.com.

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HBS Launches Campaign to Raise $1 Billion [#permalink] New post 28 Apr 2014, 04:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: HBS Launches Campaign to Raise $1 Billion
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Harvard Business School plans to raise $1 billion over the next five years, and has launched an alumni outreach program to increase engagement with and among alumni well in to the future, the school announced at its public capital campaign launch on Friday.

HBS has already raised more than $600 million in gifts and pledges since 2012 as part of the campaign’s “quiet phase.” The overall goal is part of Harvard University’s $6.5 billion campaign announced last September.

This is the fourth campaign since the school’s founding in 1908. Funds raised will support priorities such as student financial aid, faculty research, globalization, and curricular innovation, as well as enhancements to the school’s residential campus.

“What truly distinguishes Harvard Business School is our capacity to continually innovate,” says Dean Nitin Nohria in a press statement announcing the news. “In short, we have been unafraid to anticipate and respond to changes in the world around us. Our vision is to continue to embrace these two capacities: to hold fast to the characteristics we most cherish, and to be bold— even relentless—in innovating for a better future.”

To have an impact on complex global issues, Harvard Business School will actively engage its 80,000 alumni around the world, many of whom are positioned to make change happen in established companies, new ventures, and social enterprises.

“People often associate this School’s graduates with industries like finance and consulting,” says Campaign Chair John Hess. “But HBS graduates are essential in leading every type of organization, including hospitals, schools, and social enterprises. Good leadership exerts a multiplier effect, and the alumni that I speak with are eager to put their management knowledge to work in taking on some of most complex issues faced by society today.”

new website enables HBS alumni to connect with one other based on a wide range of personal and professional interests. The website includes hundreds of stories that highlight the impact alumni and faculty have in organizations and communities around the world.

Professor Robert Steven Kaplan, the School’s Senior Associate Dean for External Relations, spearheaded the effort to bring the voice of alumni into the campaign by enlisting several hundred alumni in committees, each of which explored topics that ultimately shaped the campaign themes and direction.

The effort to engage alumni began in Boston on April 26th and will extend around the world over the next 18 months.

“The world turns to Harvard Business School for leadership not only because it is core to our mission,” says Kaplan, “but because our alumni are setting the example of true leadership by the impact they are making in large and small ways every day. They are the key to our future.”

You may also be interested in:

Harvard Business School Enters Online Learning

Harvard Business School Admitted Student Profile

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Big Curriculum Changes at Cornell’s Johnson School [#permalink] New post 29 Apr 2014, 05:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Big Curriculum Changes at Cornell’s Johnson School
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For the first time in ten years, Cornell University’s Johnson School of Management has completely revamped the core MBA curriculum in order to better prepare students for the challenges of today’s business landscape.

According to a recent article in the Cornell Business Journal, a three-year survey of students, alumni, and employers has lead to the development of a new core that will place greater emphasis on leadership, modeling and analytics, and better preparation for internship interviews. The program will also adjust the timing of certain courses to help alleviate the load on students during the intense recruiting period.

Starting this fall, the way Johnson teaches leadership will change significantly. The school will now have a solid two-year plan for leadership development that begins with Leading Teams in August prior to the first year, Critical and Strategic Thinking in the second half of fall semester, and Principled Leadership in the first half of fall in each student’s second year at Johnson, the school reveals.

Meanwhile, professor Bill Schmidt will led a course tentatively titled Data Analytics and Modeling, which emphasizes the modeling skills that alumni and recruiters consistently ask for.

Students and alumni surveyed complained about the course load during the heavy internship recruiting season, the Cornell Business Journal reports, and many recruiters noted that Johnson students were under-prepared for their interviews.

Because business school recruiting has changed quite a bit over the last decade, and now takes place much closer to the beginning of the year, Johnson “acknowledges that the core has to work alongside recruiting,” says executive director of student services Amanda Shaw.

Credit hours in the fall semester will therefore drop from 7.5 to 6.5, and the Critical and Strategic Thinking course will take place in the fall semester so that students have the qualitative thinking skills they need for interviews.

Meanwhile, the length of core courses in the spring semester will shorten, and core classes won’t take place the first two or last two weeks of the semester to provide more time for recruiting and end of semester projects, Johnson explains.

On the admissions front, director of admissions and financial aid Christine Sneva promises a new experience with this year’s application for the two-year and one-year Ithaca MBA program. The new application, Sneva says, will focus on your professional profile with capability to sync to your LinkedIn account, and allow more innovation in telling your own story. The launch date is a few months out, but we’ll share the details here as soon as they become available.

You may also be interested in:

$50M Innovation Challenge at Cornell’s Johnson School

Family Business Gets $10M Boost at Cornell’s Johnson School

Cornell’s Johnson School Launches One-Year Tech MBA in NYC

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Darden’s Dean Bruner Plans Return to Faculty Position [#permalink] New post 30 Apr 2014, 18:00
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Darden’s Dean Bruner Plans Return to Faculty Position
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Earlier this month, the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business announced Dean Robert Bruner‘s intention to return to a faculty position and take a traditional one-year leave of absence when his second term as dean ends in July 2015.

Bruner and his leadership team have propelled Darden to phenomenal success, particularly in the areas of technology, diversity, globalization, and entrepreneurship and innovation. The dean is a huge proponent of social media, an active blogger, and frequent tweeter, and has also lent his full support to the school’s dive into Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).

As part of the Campaign for the University of Virginia, Bruner and team raised $150 million for Darden and established new research “centers of excellence,” including the Darden Center for Asset Management and the Darden Institute for Business in Society. Financial aid for students has also increased, and the academic potential, diversity and geographic reach of students have reached new heights. The Class of 2015 boasts record-breaking GMAT scores and grade-point averages and represents 37 countries.

On his blog, Bruner gives various personal reasons for his decision, which include getting back to his first love—teaching—and having accomplished much of what he had hoped to achieve when assuming the deanship in 2005.

Executive Vice President and Provost John Simon said a committee would soon conduct a global search for the ninth dean of the Darden School. “Bob has laid a strong foundation for Darden to continue to make its mark on the world stage.”

You may also be interested in:

UV Darden School Launches New Business Knowledge Website

Darden’s Dean on the Value of International Students

Darden Dean’s Advice for Summer MBA Interns

 

UV Darden School Launches New Business Knowledge Website – See more at: http://www.stacyblackman.com/2014/03/21 ... 6yJRS.dpuf

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