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Joined: 14 Oct 2009
Status:Current Student
Posts: 353
Own Kudos [?]: 250 [4]
Given Kudos: 53
Concentration: CPG Marketing
Schools:Chicago Booth 2013, Ross, Duke , Kellogg , Stanford, Haas
Q41  V42
GPA: 3.8
Joined: 17 Nov 2009
Posts: 158
Own Kudos [?]: 19 [0]
Given Kudos: 8
Schools:Booth R1 (WL), NYU R1 (WL), Kellogg JD/MBA R2, Tepper R2, Ross R2 (admit)
GPA: 3.4
WE 1: Mortgage
Joined: 14 Oct 2009
Status:Current Student
Posts: 353
Own Kudos [?]: 250 [6]
Given Kudos: 53
Concentration: CPG Marketing
Schools:Chicago Booth 2013, Ross, Duke , Kellogg , Stanford, Haas
Q41  V42
GPA: 3.8
BSchool Forum Moderator
Joined: 06 Dec 2009
Status:Enjoying Class
Posts: 231
Own Kudos [?]: 88 [1]
Given Kudos: 23
Concentration: Consulting, Strategy
Schools:Booth
GPA: 3.4
1
Bookmarks
Great write-ups & feedback everyone, keep them coming!!
Joined: 23 Jul 2009
Status:Berkeley Haas 2013
Posts: 168
Own Kudos [?]: 61 [0]
Given Kudos: 16
Concentration: Consulting, Entrepreneurship
m7
The purpose of boards like this is to help each other with honest opinions about any subject. Many people use consultants so why so few replies?? I am looking for a good consultant also and really do not know what to do as I cant just rely on raving reviews on their own sites. I contacted few firms but of course they "are the best in the industry" and so on. Consultant's fee is not only a considerable investment, it will be detrimental if the wrong one is hired. Negative results plus waste of money, opportunity g o n e. Or ruined....
C'mon, people! Just few sentences-who did you use and what do you think-would be nice, to say the least. And pleeease, stop with this "I am not here to ruin anybodys busines"..You should be outspoken and warn others so please don't hesitate to name names, thats the purpose of this blog! Many of you went through the same hassle during your own research, so be a hero now, share with other humans! Please.

Remember - consultants are also here to make a living, and I am not here to interfere with anyone's business. If you want to know more, you should PM people to know about their specific experiences. This being a forum (not a blog) makes me think that I should still share my experiences with my colleagues here, but privately. You can always PM people to get their perspectives. Just a simple click of a button!

Good luck!
BSchool Forum Moderator
Joined: 06 Dec 2009
Status:Enjoying Class
Posts: 231
Own Kudos [?]: 88 [0]
Given Kudos: 23
Concentration: Consulting, Strategy
Schools:Booth
GPA: 3.4
goldgoldandgold
Remember - consultants are also here to make a living, and I am not here to interfere with anyone's business. If you want to know more, you should PM people to know about their specific experiences. This being a forum (not a blog) makes me think that I should still share my experiences with my colleagues here, but privately. You can always PM people to get their perspectives. Just a simple click of a button!

Good luck!

I agree with you mostly. Unlike the previous poster, I've been here awhile but do not actually know who is using a consultant. I've heard rumors that about 50% of B-school applicants are doing so these days and I even heard an AdCom member say "to the detriment of other applicants" which is why I posted here.

I do appreciate your feedback and I was hoping to hear from more than just 3 applicants this cycle (all using the same company). Needless to say I do share some of the concerns of that poster (on a separate note - showing up w/out building credibility and demanding such info is distasteful and rude) and I'm trying to get some good quality feedback from others I respect on this board early for next cycle.
Joined: 23 Jul 2009
Status:Berkeley Haas 2013
Posts: 168
Own Kudos [?]: 61 [0]
Given Kudos: 16
Concentration: Consulting, Entrepreneurship
jb88
goldgoldandgold
Remember - consultants are also here to make a living, and I am not here to interfere with anyone's business. If you want to know more, you should PM people to know about their specific experiences. This being a forum (not a blog) makes me think that I should still share my experiences with my colleagues here, but privately. You can always PM people to get their perspectives. Just a simple click of a button!

Good luck!

I agree with you mostly. Unlike the previous poster, I've been here awhile but do not actually know who is using a consultant. I've heard rumors that about 50% of B-school applicants are doing so these days and I even heard an AdCom member say "to the detriment of other applicants" which is why I posted here.

I do appreciate your feedback and I was hoping to hear from more than just 3 applicants this cycle (all using the same company). Needless to say I do share some of the concerns of that poster (on a separate note - showing up w/out building credibility and demanding such info is distasteful and rude) and I'm trying to get some good quality feedback from others I respect on this board early for next cycle.

Yes I agree - more posters can definitely share. Hopefully they will share their experiences with other companies. PM me if you want to know more about a few more I spoke with....I have some perspective on them
Joined: 23 Jul 2009
Status:Berkeley Haas 2013
Posts: 168
Own Kudos [?]: 61 [0]
Given Kudos: 16
Concentration: Consulting, Entrepreneurship
m7
"Making a living", integrity and professionalism should not be separated and if anyone had a bad experience with some consultant, why not share it here? Otherwise others will suffer as "nameless" consultant will remain anonymous, continue to florish and adding to reapplicants pool. Who benefits from this sugar coating? Only the same unprofessional. (oh, and maybe that "polite" fan of so called "taste".. I just dont see how anyway

Did you have a bad experience with some one? No sugar coating my friend - just respect for someone's profession. That is all
Joined: 14 Oct 2009
Status:Current Student
Posts: 353
Own Kudos [?]: 250 [2]
Given Kudos: 53
Concentration: CPG Marketing
Schools:Chicago Booth 2013, Ross, Duke , Kellogg , Stanford, Haas
Q41  V42
GPA: 3.8
2
Kudos
m7
No, I did not have a bad experience and hopefully I won't, with the help of fellows here. Just read some bad reviews, some good reviews and then (in the same blog) accusations that certain good ones are fake... So I do not know what to believe and just asking for honest opinions (bashing someone for the sole reason of not getting into top school is NOT an honest post.)

I think the moderators of this forum are doing a good job of labeling the posts that come from people who have not yet proven themselves as trustworthy, contributing members. That's not to say they are fake, it's just a heads up to take the review with a grain of salt. I will add to that I think any review, even those from long-time trusted members, should be taken with a grain of salt, because one person's experience may not be the same for all. Most of the companies offer a free consultation, try calling a few and see which ones you feel comfortable with.
Current Student
Joined: 02 Sep 2010
Posts: 97
Own Kudos [?]: 27 [6]
Given Kudos: 12
Concentration: Social Enterprise
Schools:R1: Berkeley, Stanford, Yale, Michigan, Kellogg, Duke
GPA: 3.3
5
Kudos
1
Bookmarks
m7
The purpose of boards like this is to help each other with honest opinions about any subject. Many people use consultants so why so few replies?? I am looking for a good consultant also and really do not know what to do as I cant just rely on raving reviews on their own sites. I contacted few firms but of course they "are the best in the industry" and so on. Consultant's fee is not only a considerable investment, it will be detrimental if the wrong one is hired. Negative results plus waste of money, opportunity g o n e. Or ruined....
C'mon, people! Just few sentences-who did you use and what do you think-would be nice, to say the least. And pleeease, stop with this "I am not here to ruin anybodys busines"..You should be outspoken and warn others so please don't hesitate to name names, thats the purpose of this blog! Many of you went through the same hassle during your own research, so be a hero now, share with other humans! Please.

while i agree with what you're saying, i found your first post rude, especially since you haven't given anything to this community. nevertheless, i would like to help people like jb88 so i will share my experience.

i decided to check out admissions consultants late in the game for R1 - around the end of september. i really didn't think i would ever get a consultant since they're so expensive, but i was starting to panic with my essays as i was hitting a wall with them.

i contacted a few of the 1 person consultants, but they turned me down because it was so close to R1 deadlines, which definitely worried me. i got a free consultation from stacy blackman, which went ok. she gave me some good tips but i decided not to go with her cause i didn't really feel like we connected and i was a little worried about all the negative reviews of them online. also, i was really only looking for essay help. most consulting companies offer essay services "a la carte" which mainly entails spending an hour on the phone talking about 1 or 2 essays. i wanted to see the edits on paper and didn't want to pay someone by the hour.

once i realized that, i started to focus my search on essay editing companies (and with quick turnaround). most of these companies (including the services that SB offers) only edit for grammar while i wanted someone to edit my content and flow. i received a free essay edit from precision essay and found it very well done and even entertaining. i decided that night that i would get their services (based on their packages and turnaround). i ultimately got edits for 3 schools (2 edits for stanford and berkeley, 1 for kellogg), but used those essays for the other schools i applied to as well.

i found PE to be really helpful and extremely fast in getting back my essays. having a consultant also gave me mini-deadlines which helped a lot. i got A LOT done in a very short time period. i had gone through so many revisions with friends and family (but none with bschool experience) with my essays before getting a consultant, but i ended up changing some of them drastically afterwards. PE really knew how to help me structure my essays, how to better clarify and emphasize aspects, and how to focus them. also, they were always available to answer my questions. my essays really would not have reached the level they did without that help. well maybe if i had time to thoroughly go through those MBA application books, they would have, but i didn't start applying until late in the game.

in summary, if you're only looking for essay help on your apps and want to see your edits on paper and delivered quickly back to you, i would look into precision essay (ask for a free essay edit or read their thread in the admissions consultants thread). their prices, although high, are worth it because you pay by the school and not by the word count or hour. i personally only really knew 1 person who was familiar with the business school process, so working with a consultant really helped me. as you can see by my profile, i got into 3 of the 6 schools i applied to round 1, including kellogg, one of my top choices and where i'll be going in the fall.

feel free to PM me with more info. i looked into several consulting companies before i settled on PE, everyone from the big companies to the small, cheaper essay editing services.
Joined: 02 Jul 2009
Status:mission completed!
Posts: 1139
Own Kudos [?]: 2148 [1]
Given Kudos: 622
GPA: 3.77
1
Bookmarks
bpengage,
thank you a lot for detailedfeedback.

+1 from my side!
Joined: 28 Jun 2010
Posts: 130
Own Kudos [?]: 6 [0]
Given Kudos: 0
i am trying to decide on a consultant for next year. can you please help me chooose one. i am from europe so I will be doing most of the communication via email or skype

I have been hearing very good feedback on Amerisia and to be honest he has been very helpful on the questions I have asked so far on the forum...

please PM me any positive / negative comments I have 7/0 this year so I will start very early this year and preferably with a consultant.
Current Student
Joined: 10 Dec 2010
Posts: 239
Own Kudos [?]: 62 [6]
Given Kudos: 15
Schools:<strong>Ross '13</strong>
Q46  V40
GPA: 3.3
WE 1: Business Development / Sales
6
Kudos
Thought I would briefly share my consultant experience with the GC community:
• Last year I applied to only 1 school (outside of top 30). My stats were: 3.3 GPA/650 GMAT/4Yrs WE/Extensive EC. Result: Dinged w/o interview
• This year, I raised my GMAT to 700 and got a consultant through MBAmission. Result: Admitted to 4/8 Top-15 programs (possibly 5 depending on how the Wharton WL goes)
• My thoughts on why my consultant helped so much:
1. She knew where the land mines are in the application
2. Helped me NOT say stupid, arrogant, offensive, or other app-killing things. Believe it or not, this is SO VERY easy to do if you don't have proper guidance
3. Helped my story stand out and not be cliché.
4. Helped me recall stories that I had not even thought of using.
5. Assisted me in framing my stories in a concise and powerful way (She literally showed me how to take a 200 word paragraph and condense that down to about 30 words without losing any of the impact, incredible really).
6. Aided me in tying the entire application together (essays, resume, LOR's)
7. Provided this same kind of feedback to my recommenders (who thankfully took her advice)

Occasionally, the issue of the ethics of using a consultant to aid in the app process emerges. My thought is that if professional writers use professional editors, why would someone applying to b-school, not use the resource of a consultant? Baffling to me why more people don't use them (and why I didn't use one sooner!).
That said, those that are going to invest in a consultant need to know a couple things from the outset:

As far as recommending a specific company, I really can't comment on anyone other than the company I have used, MBAmission.com. I have been EXTREMELY pleased with their services, results and promptness in responding to all of my inquiries. I would highly recommend them to anyone who is serious about breaking into a top tier school.

Hope that helps, Good Luck!
Joined: 25 Jul 2010
Posts: 110
Own Kudos [?]: 44 [2]
Given Kudos: 10
Location: United States
2
Kudos
I think one of the better things you can do is go ahead and take advantage of their free consulting sessions to get a general feel for them and then use that as one data point to compare against what people are saying here.

I have a free talk with Paul Lanzillotti tonight. mbamission came to my MGMAT class over the weekend (they are business partners) and gave a short talk about their approach. I reached out to Sandy (HBS Guru) to see what he had to say. The bigger companies kind of worry me as the customer. I'd prefer a more intiamate, boutique approach, but I realize that these people have mouths to feed also.
Joined: 10 Mar 2011
Posts: 24
Own Kudos [?]: 13 [0]
Given Kudos: 12
GMAT 1: 710 Q51 V34
Guys anyone have a review or info on Bill Chionis from Stacey Blackman Consultant Group ??

You can either reply here or PM me..
Joined: 28 Jun 2010
Posts: 130
Own Kudos [?]: 6 [0]
Given Kudos: 0
if anyone used MBAmission can you please comment on that..
Joined: 02 Jul 2009
Status:mission completed!
Posts: 1139
Own Kudos [?]: 2148 [0]
Given Kudos: 622
GPA: 3.77
ua87
if anyone used MBAmission can you please comment on that..

I am sorry, but are you blind?!

Joined: 25 Jan 2011
Posts: 17
Own Kudos [?]: 7 [4]
Given Kudos: 0
4
Kudos
I did work with Bill at Stacy Blackman - excellent experience. Also worked with Sherri, Amy and Lisa for different aspects of the app (flight test etc) All excellent. Will send more info in PM.

I really was happy with my experience so will try to give a more detailed overview here. I have worked with two firms in the past and so I have some persoective. My experience with Stacy Blackman was great. I was burnt from prior experiences so when I signed up I wanted to work with two consultants not one. Which is what I did - I actually purchased 2 different packages and worked with two consultants who were pretty different from each other but both very strong (Bill as mentioned above and also Sherri). Both had a lot of experience, adcomm experience, and really took time with me. During the time close to deadlines I felt like I was in constant communication with them. they have something called a flight test which I thought was really helpful. A totally separate consultant reviewed my entire file and gave feedback in a different way from an admissions committee perspective. I had a client liaison named Amy who was very nice and helpful though I have to admit I did not use her as much as I could have (that was my choice). She did review a couple of essays near the end, but by then everything was prettty complete so not a ton of feedback.

I felt very supported and I knew I was in good hands. I have been admitted to USC and LBS and my dream reach school Wharton. That is half of my schools. I was reapplying to Wharton and also HBS and Haas. I did not get into HBS or Haas.

The feedback was very timely, response times were good. I felt that they were detail oriented as well as helped with my strategy up front. We did some things that were very different from my approach first time around and it paid off. I was very overwhelmed in the beginning and Bill especially had a way of breaking it down and making things simpler and more digestable. I also used the online center for reference - it was a nice tool.

Finally, my interview prep was awesome. I cannot tell you how much of a difference that made for me. They definoitely knew what the schools were looking for and gave me great prep sessions.

Kind of all over the map here but just trying to think of details to add...I think that's it - hope it helps. If you have specifc questions I can answer but you might want to PM me so I am sure to see it.
Joined: 23 Jul 2009
Status:Berkeley Haas 2013
Posts: 168
Own Kudos [?]: 61 [1]
Given Kudos: 16
Concentration: Consulting, Entrepreneurship
1
Kudos
I also tried EssayCom - you won't find them advertise anywhere. My friend here on GC forum recommended me.

He charged me 120 bucks per essay (any school), unlimited edits and reviews, 2 day return

I would recommend trying him if you know your story and profile (as he won't do much in that level). He also only communicates via email which I thought was okay. He did turn around in 2 days and I was pleased with his edits on one essay and was average on the other one. I think he also charges 420 bucks for the whole school unlimited package too.

Based on my experience, I would rate him a 3.5 - 3.75 out of 5. So maybe he would fit in with your needs. 120 bucks? Worth a shot IMO. Nothing to lose. Better than spending 5k and realizing that some big brand company did not fit your needs.

I will have a couple more in coming days as I am out of country. PM me if you need more info.
Joined: 23 Jul 2009
Status:Berkeley Haas 2013
Posts: 168
Own Kudos [?]: 61 [2]
Given Kudos: 16
Concentration: Consulting, Entrepreneurship
2
Kudos
One more ....

mbastudio

Pluses-
Great book, helpful blogs, decent edits, 2 day return, to the point (no BS), great interview prep (Wharton), great guy to talk to for advise.

Minuses-
Paying for profiling may not be much value if you buy the book and do it yourself; not as flexible in editing terms and number of edits as other companies(my experience only), little pricey compared to other so called "boutique shops", not much ideas about stories or better way of putting things together (felt like mine was only pure edits)

Overall comment - I think you should do your profiling on your own and save on full package cost. Chose the 3 X edit package per school for edits (similar pricing to PE - maybe Avi will fit your needs better). Definitely worth every penny for interview prep (though I was dinged after W interview )