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Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!!

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Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2015, 09:11
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Status of Round 2 Interview Invitations

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2015, 09:39
Exciting times! Good luck to all!

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2015, 10:59
Nice to see all the excitement and the anticipation. Good luck - prospective class of 2018 :) Feel free to ask me any questions that you may have at any point.
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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2015, 15:06
Yep I am going to try my hand!

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2015, 18:38
Mee too, good luck all!

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jun 2015, 17:07
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By Adam Hoff, Amerasia Consulting Group

When it comes to recommendations, the first thing that any applicant needs to understand is how they work and, therefore, how they should handle them as part of the process.  We sum up this analysis with something we call “The Rule of 10%”: they count for about 10% of a decision, they should be about 10% of your focus during application season, and you should contribute about 10% of the work that goes into their outcome.  Obviously, these are all gross estimates and generalizations, but it shakes out to about right and its easier to use 10% than “a percentage that is a LOT less than you think it is.”  The bottom line is that most applicants assume a much higher level of importance, they spend far more time thinking and worrying about them, and they get far too involved in their production (the biggest issue of all).  Let’s work through all three:

 

1. Letters of Rec Make up About 10% of the Decision.

There are basically two ways to analyze how recommendations work within an admissions decision – one is to think of it from a process standpoint and the other is to consider the “weight” they carry, more or less, and using the former can help us understand why the answer to the latter is “more or less about 10%.”

Within the process, the typical way in which a letter of recommendation is utilized by an admissions officer is as a verification tool.  A reader will sit down to review a file (in much less time than you think, by the way) and typically work through the “one sheet” (name, biographical data, test scores, undergrad, major, GPA, age, etc.) so they can get the basics.  This frames the expectation going in and is why some of these data points become obsessed over.  A low GMAT tells the reader “long shot” (and that’s the best case scenario).  An extreme age makes them extra sensitive to the appropriateness of the degree.  There are a lot of ways the perception can be framed at this very initial stage, and while nobody’s mind is made up yet, there is definitely an influence on the way the file is read.

Next, it’s the application itself (transcripts are usually skipped or skimmed unless there is something to investigate, like a really low GPA next to a monster GMAT score), which is very quick.  The resume brings to life work experience in a snapshot, which is why you must always construct your resume as a sales tool.  Now, the reader has a much better sense of how qualified this applicant is, how well this person has done professionally, and so forth – the reader can probably prognosticate admissions chances with about 60% accuracy at this point.  The essays are where the variance kicks in.  Some who look good on paper will blow it, by either failing to articulate proper reasons for the degree, or writing bland content that they think is what someone wants to read, or for failing to really connect to the school in question.  Others will rise far above the initial impression with “great” essays (that do accomplish the things above).

Once the essays are completed, the reader is about 90% of the way there and more or less has decided.  The only thing left is to check the recommendation letters to make sure that other people – people who know the applicant better – concur with the assessment.  Again, we want to stress that this is about validating an already-formed opinion.  If you were an experienced professional who prided yourself on bringing in a great class of students every year and you know what works and what doesn’t, are you going to cede the power of making the decision to someone writing a letter?  Of course not, so unless it is an extreme case (like Stanford, where far more stated importance is put on letters of recommendation), you can assume that your letters will account for about 10% of the ultimate decision.  Good letters will help affirm a reader’s decision to “admit” (note: this just means you will get an interview invite at this point, but within admissions offices they flag people as admits until they are demoted down to wait list or deny), is basically what it comes down to.

 

2.  You Should Spend About 10% of Your Time on Letters of Rec.

The second Rule of 10% is how much time you should be spending on the letter of recommendation – and 10% might be generous.  This is a letter written by someone else, after all.  How much time should it really take you?  Not much!  Note though that we did not say 0% of your time.  You do need to take some steps to set your recommender up for success rather than failure.
  • First, you should indeed sit down with the person writing your letter and talk to that individual.  Thank them for taking the time, solicit their advice on schools and even whether now is the right time (even if you are just doing it to make them feel valued), buy them a cup of coffee – whatever you do, make it personal and don’t just email them a one-liner asking them to write you a letter of recommendation.
  • You should also state clearly what you are asking them to do, which is recommend you.  This is not a performance evaluation.  Ask the person in question whether he or she is comfortable recommending you wholeheartedly to business school.  Avoid anyone who caveats the answer or who seems intent on performing a rigorous exercise just to prove how smart they are.  You want someone who is excited to help your chances by extolling your virtues.
  • Finally, you should provide your recommender with some ammunition.  This is admittedly a tricky area, because you neither want to influence the letter too much, nor do you want to overwhelm the recommender with reams of documents that they have to sort through.  Our advice is to give them three items: your resume, a “query letter” that formally asks them for this favor and details some of your key accomplishments and interests (2-3 pages, max), and a sample (if they would like to see one) of a good letter.  From there, your work is done.  Get out of the way and don’t mess with the process.

 

3. You Should Do About 10% of the Work on Your Letters.

This leads us to our third 10% Rule, which is how big your role should be in the production of the letter.  That 10% is already accounted for above – in the prep work to set that person up to succeed.  Any other involvement is not only unethical (some schools will ding you for leaving your fingerprints on the letter), but also counterproductive.  Remember what these are used for: to verify the findings of an experienced admissions professional.  They don’t want to read more essays!  They don’t want to see you embedding more statements about how awesome you are in another part of the application (commonly referred to as “synching the letters”).  All they want is an authentic, positive letter that says, “yes, I vouch that this person is great – if you liked the application, you will like the actual applicant.”

Now, just to make it clear that we’re not in some utopian society where all recommendation letter writers are created equal, let’s discuss quality.  Is there a disparity between a good letter and a great one?  Yes, absolutely.  A great letter is well written, provides specific examples of discussed traits, offers context for its remarks, and – best of all – establishes a baseline from which to assess this one person (“in all my years on Wall Street, during which I have encountered hundreds of MBA candidates, Timmy is the best…”).  However (and this is a key point!), the same disparity does not exist between the value of a great letter versus a good one.  Great letters don’t pull victory from the jaws of defeat and magically make your ding an admit, so the marginal utility of a “great” letter is somewhere between zero and “not much.”  Sure, there are cases of amazing letters playing a big role, but that is unpredictable and rare, meaning you don’t build your application strategy around it.  More to the point, the downside of a manipulated letter is that you can get denied – either on ethical grounds or because the reader simply has no way to validate previous findings (which is their entire objective in reviewing them).

Remember: if the role you play in your own letters of recommendation is greater than 10%, you will not only fail to gain an advantage, you create a great possibility that you will shoot yourself in the foot.  Engaging in this process beyond 10% of the work is basically minimal upside, big downside.

If you can take this tip to heart, you will create less stress for everyone involved and allow the letters of recommendation to serve the very basic function they are intended for.

 

For an overview of Amerasia MBA Admissions Consulting services, please visit http://www.amerasiaconsulting.com/mba_admissions_consulting_services/

If you are interested in the MBA Admissions Consulting services offered by Amerasia, please email mba@amerasiaconsulting.com to inquire about setting up a free consultation.

 

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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By Paul Lanzillotti, Amerasia Consulting Group

If you read the latest editions of our “How to Apply to Harvard Business School” and "How to Apply to Stanford GSB[/b]" guides, you already know that cultivating a real reason for applying to an elite MBA goes week beyond the school's name, rank, and prestige.  But more than any other MBA program in the world (yes, even HBS), GSB looks beyond having a great GMAT score, a summa cum laude GPA and a blue chip name as your employer.  While these are respectable measures of a person’s perceived worth, they are not good enough reasons to apply to GSB.

Why is this?  Simply put, you could someone with a mis-calibrated moral compass or worse, what your colleagues might call an "asshole" (more on the asshole test here and the true cost of being an asshole here).  That's right - more than any other school in the world, Stanford has a visceral aversion to those who define themselves by their accomplishments, as opposed to the innate values and beliefs that drive those accolades. Apparently, Stanford has their pick of the litterand they can afford to stand absolutely resolute in their aversion to those whose moral compass points true south.

Take a look at GSB’s first essay question “What matters most (to you and why)?”  Not only is this prompt require you to be introspective, but it also requires you to hit on 750 or so words that overwhelmingly attest to non-professional content.  And that is just where the fun begins.  For those of you who define yourself (in this essay) by laying out a series of professional and personal professional accomplishments, you will most likely run out of meaningful things to say. When I read misguided Stanford essays, I see it all the time. The essay either becomes some type of "super resume" (AKA "shit the adcom already knows or can assume") or a meandering narrative filled with clichés and pipe dreams. Stanford admissions has often said that no one can tell your story is genuinely as you can. I suppose writing it is another matter altogether.

What Stanford wants to see is a person who genuinely discusses (maturity and thus authenticity is key here) why they did something, and what they learned from it.  As opposed to simply how accomplished some feat or what they did to earn some type of employee of the month/year/century award.  It is not as simple as Stanford wanting "nice" people.  You certainly have to be successful, as successful as anybody applying to Harvard, for example.  It is just that Stanford really focuses on applicants who are actually successful because they are guided by an unwavering moral compass.  They want people who are successful professionally as a subset of being successful as a person. Ultimately, I believe that this is the key differentiator between what Stanford GSB wants and what HBS seeks.

Do not get me wrong, HBS definitely vets the character of the people that they are admitting.  But I would say that HBS believes the ultimate proof (of what you bring to their table and future tables) is in the pudding - what have you led, what have you accomplished, and it better be good, better than the rest. Whereas Stanford GSB focuses first on the moral fabric of a person. They believe it should never tear, and the truest test of that moral fiber is by overcoming obstacles that threaten to tear apart a person's values and beliefs.
Now not everybody with excellent moral character will be eligible for a seat at Stanford GSB.  I do not want to oversimplify this. But I believe that GSB would argue "how can anybody really be successful in life, if their values are suspect?  You cannot fake your values over the long-term, and that is who we are looking for." And why are they looking for this person?  Because you may have the brains and intellectual horsepower to achieve the type of goal that ultimately changes the world in a positive way. But do you actually want to do that?  Or are you just writing some bullshit in your essays, trying to convince the reader you are the second coming of Mother Teresa?

I believe that any applicant who thinks that they can pull this off (trickery) as rather unsophisticated.  I say this because I have seen a lot of Stanford essays.  People who think they are too smart (for their own good) still try.  I've been doing admissions consulting work since 2007 and I still see it all the time.  It is really hard to fake your way through 750 words that require you to connect what you have achieved, to what you have learned, to a sense of purpose - among all the other things that GSB wants to see from you in writing.

So what are some things you should think about when deciding to apply to Stanford?

Do you believe that your current professional path is the result of who you are as a person?  Who you are as a person (and thus what “matters most” in the end) is not necessarily a product of your professional experiences.[/*]
What about your future goals?  Are they big, hairy and audacious goals? Can you state that you want to create change that has a significant impact in the world. Ya, holy shit is right.[/*]
Okay, I will give you that your ultimate goals may be "aspirational" enough on paper. I mean anyone can state that they want to jump over the moon and solve world hunger. Right? But are your goals rooted in your truest values and beliefs?  Not only must they be rooted in your truest values and beliefs, but you have to explain how those values and beliefs were formulated. I mean, you can show a long history of these goals developing, right?  I hope so.[/*]
Do you have a long history of professional and personal involvement that clearly displays what you purport to be your beliefs, which are the product of your moral compass?  If you have not really been doing anything that demonstrates this, I recommend not applying.[/*]
[*]If you think you are going to manufacture experiences by recently signed up for something or just showing up once a month for 10 years (for some community volunteerism), you are either a Johnny-Come-Lately or a Cathy-Cursory, and well, I recommend not applying.[/*]
[*]Have you even been challenged in your life?  I mean really challenged.  I'm not talking about growing up poor or growing up with parents who did not love you enough. What I am talking about is this – have you ever had to make a freaking decision that cost you personally because you believed it was the right thing to do? I am sure many of you reading this have lost sleep over a tough decision. (That is not good enough BTW.) But have you lost friends, even family because you stuck to your moral compass?  Have you had to give up your dream job to do the "right thing"? I am not talking about being self-righteous, I am talking about having the right moral compass and sticking to that when shit hits the fan, and hits hard.[/*]
And of course, by sticking to your moral compass, did you ultimately achieve a greater result? Of course this could be greater self-awareness, but it also has to be something tangible. Yes, Stanford GSB has to see real results - something significant enough that most people would define it as an accomplishment.[/*]
[/list]
I've helped a lot of clients get into Stanford and what I have learned is the product of this. I will get off my soapbox now, but this is what I believe that Stanford wants to see in its applicants because I have seen what works. They are not handing out Stanford MBA degrees like its bat day at Shea Stadium. They need to know you are going to use it in a meaningful way. So take this seriously - "Change people. Change organizations. Change the World." (That's Stanford motto BTW and if you don't know that ... well.) You should have already done the first two before applying.  The Stanford MBA will help you achieve the third, but only if you're not an asshole. Ha.

If you would like to discuss whether or not Stanford GSB is the right school for you – email us at mba@amerasiaconsulting.com or contact us at www.amerasiaconsulting.com/contact.

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2015, 23:14
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By Adam Hoff, Amerasia Consulting Group[/b]

This is a quick one, but a worthy one.  "Leadership" might very well be the most "cussed and discussed" (hat tip, Harry Truman) word in the MBA landscape, given the prominence given to the concept by schools and candidates alike.  But what I find surprising is that the word - which can be viewed so many ways - often takes on this strange meaning in b-school contexts, which is sort of a stand in for "accomplished."  The idea of leadership has become titles and roles and responsibilities and kudos.  Sort of a "he who has the most ribbons is the leader" kind of a dynamic.  And while I will be the first to admit that leadership can indeed sometimes be about accolades (often leadership qualities get people recognized and/or recognition can give someone a platform from which to lead), it sort of misses the point.  And nothing hammers that home like the Golden State Warriors, who were recently crowned NBA champs.

Now, in one way, the Warriors actually solidify the very perception of leadership I was just talking about, in the form of NBA MVP Steph Curry.  He's the best player on the team and you often hear that he "sets the example" and he's a "great leader."  And I actually believe that he is - both because of his talent (and therefore his platform), but also because he seems to have innate leadership gifts like servanthood, empathy, compassion, listening, consensus building and so forth.  So in a way, the Warriors don't tell us anything new.  Except that it appears, from many accounts, that one of the most crucial leaders on that team is NOT the best player Steph Curry, or the most veteran player or the most tenured player or the highest paid player ... but rather just A player.  That player is Draymond Green, a guy who stepped up and started leading the minute he got there, as a rookie who was a second-round pick (i.e, barely expected to make the roster), and who hasn't stopped leading.  Why?  Because he has innate leadership qualities.  Put another way: he is a born leader.

Consider these quotes from a recent piece by Zach Lowe of Grantland:

- They knew the team had a leadership void. “You don’t get appointed that role,” Myers says. “It’s an innate thing. It has to be authentic and genuine, and it is with him.”

- “You could tell right then he had something in him. It was impressive."
- “There are people who simply have the propensity within their being to be special,” says Ron Adams, one of Golden State’s lead assistants. “The person that has some talent, maximizes that talent, and shapes it into something that contributes to winning. That’s what we all look for in players. That’s who Draymond is.”

Ladies and gents, when schools say they are looking for leaders, THIS is often what they are talking about.  Not leading a team of five and beating a project deadline.  Not giving a great speech.  Not being appointed or awarded a title.  They are talking about innate abilities, things inside of you, and that make you special ... and that maximize success ("winning").

So when you examine your strengths and weaknesses, don't just think "yeah, I've had leadership roles, people have looked to me, I'm good" - dig deeper and ask yourself if you have innate, special qualities.  And then advertise those.  And if you don't?  That's okay too, because not everyone is a born leader and even the most "leadership" of schools like HBS would say that the world needs a blend of Draymond Greens and other types of players.  Some people are implementers or connectors.  You don't have to base your entire story on leadership if that's not who you are.
But if you DO go all-in on leadership, make sure to consider just what that might mean.  And then be honest with yourself, read those quotes, and ask: could someone say that about me?

If you are looking for help with your MBA application or your story, please shoot us an email at mba@amerasiaconsulting.com or visit us at www.amerasiaconsulting.com/contact.

 

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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By Adam Hoff | Amerasia Consulting Group | MBA Admissions Consultants |

Originally published at www.amerasiaconsulting.com
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Time to go full PSA here.  I'm talking all alarms ringing, sirens, whatever it takes to get your attention.  By "you" I mean: anyone applying to business school.  You need to stop doing something immediately.  Here it is:

STOP TRYING TO "DIFFERENTIATE" YOURSELF.  [/b]
Or at least, stop doing it without a professional by your side.  Let's dive into the 4 Rules of Differentiation before someone gets hurt.

Rule #1 - Do not "differentiate yourself" with a panicked career change.  [/b]Throwing a Hail Mary at the last second is not a good idea.  Trying to scramble to a cooler or sexier or "more noble" company is not going to make you stand out as a candidate - it's going to make you look directionless or (worse) fake.  Now, some people change jobs (even right before applying) and that is fine, as long as there is a logical reason for it - ranging from "I hate my current job and may walk into traffic unless I leave it" to "this is a unique opportunity that I have to take."  However, don't change just to change under some faulty logic that they are going to see "Adam Hoff, SpaceX" rather than "Adam Hoff, J.P. Morgan" and start doing backflips.  If there is no logical reason to go work at SpaceX, then don't go work there.  They look at your whole resume - and mainly to see what skills you have, not what brands you racked up - so it's not like changing the "current employer" line is going to change the formula for who you are. This is all risk, no reward.  Would you do anything else in your life that is "all risk, no reward"?  I am guessing not.

Rule #2 - Listing a hard job to get as your short-term goal is not "differentiating."  If you only read one rule, read this one.  Please!  Read it again. Done?  Read it again.  Okay, you get the point.  I have heard many, many times this year the idea from candidates that they want to pick post-MBA job X or Y because it will help "differentiate" them.  In basically every case, the job in question is somewhere between "insanely hard" and "impossible" to get after graduating from business school.  I'm talking hedge funds, VC, luxury retail, etc.  I've even heard the quote, "What I really want to do is work in management consulting so I can really see what works and what doesn't and build towards my dream of starting company Z - but I feel like everyone puts management consulting so I want to find something else."  Well, yeah, everyone puts it because management consulting firms hire lots of MBA grads.  And they do that because they need talent and energy to feed an "up or out" machine - and the reason that grads take those jobs is because they can indeed learn what works and what doesn't as they make some good money and build towards the next step.  It's a win for both parties ... so if that is what you want to do and it makes sense, why fight it?  Either way, the worst thing to do is list a job you pretty much can't get, all in some misguided attempt to stand out.  You will stand out alright -for your cratering effect on their employment stats.  Insta-ding.

Rule #3 - The "quick and easy" place to differentiate is in the WHY of your long-term career goal.  I have probably written more about MBA career goals than any subject on earth, so I won't belabor the point now, except to say that you can use your long-term goal to share parts of yourself that are deeply held, introspective, and unique.  That's how you differentiate yourself.  Not "hey, look at how I left Goldman to go work at an oil company for no reason" and not "all these other guys may want to take the slam dunk of management consulting, but I want a c-suite job at Prada!" - no, it's "what I want to do for the rest of my life is X, and the reason is [something that is unique and specific to you.]  That is how you do it.  If you need a mental shifting device, try this: most admissions officers would much rather read a great novel or watch a great TV show than hear a business pitch or dial up a TED Talk.  Don't try to stand out ("differentiate") with your ambition, win them with your humanity.

Rule #4 - The real, pure way to differentiate yourself is to do the app right.  Do you know how many people submit truly great apps?  No joke, my guess from what I've seen is about 1% of the applicant pool.  I'm talking about: 1) a strong baseline profile (3.3 and above, 700 and above, solid impact in the workplace), 2) a really good resume (a sales document that advertises that impact in different contexts), 3) essays that are easy to read, 4) essays that are structured correctly, 5) essays with thesis statements, 6) essays that are introspective (see Rule #3), and 7) essays that nail the DNA of the school in question.  If you check all seven boxes, you just differentiated yourself.  Rather than searching for some magic bullet, just do a really good job.  If you had to read dozens of files each day and only a few were really good, you'd be pumped when you read the handful that were.  I know, it's boring, but there you have it.
If you need help differentiating yourself in a way that does good rather than harm to your app, email us at mba@amerasiaconsulting.com.  You aren't going to hear buzz words or lame gimmicks, just a breakdown of the hard, steady work required for a great app.

Originally published at www.amerasiaconsulting.com.

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 22 Jun 2015, 12:56
let's goooooooooooooooo!!
in for round 1!!!

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jun 2015, 00:48
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Who is Garth Saloner?
If you are going to apply to the most selective MBA program in the world, you should recognize the impact that Professor-turned-Dean Garth Saloner has had at GSB.  Even though he took over the reins as Dean in September 2009, Saloner is no stranger to the program, having joined GSB in 1990.  In fact, he can be considered one of the major influences on the “Stanford Dynamic[1]” and the school’s ethos, “Change lives. Change organizations. Change the world.”

In Saloner’s own words:

"The Stanford GSB has the opportunity to prepare future generations of principled critical analytical thinkers whose actions can change the world. Through our research, we will continue to develop the intellectual underpinnings of management and we will embody that knowledge in our teaching. From our sustainable new management center on the Stanford campus we will promote the free-flow of students, faculty and ideas across disciplines and schools as we develop management knowledge and business leaders for the 21st century."

[1] https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/stanford-gsb-experience

Who is Derek Bolton?
Stanford’s gatekeeper is long-time Dean of Admissions and GSB graduate Derek Bolton.  In our opinion, his intimate knowledge of the Stanford Dynamic, along with his high-level of emotional intelligence has granted Bolton a better bullshit detector than any other admissions director in the business.  Bolton and his admissions committee have crafted an application process that solicits the type of reflection applicants rarely seek out – what are my innate motivations, guiding values and enduring beliefs - REALLY?   As the vast majority of applicants cobble together an answer to Stanford’s “What Matters Most to You and Why?” essay, Bolton and company prepare for dirty diaper duty.  Benefiting from years of vetting lackluster responses to a tried and true weeder essay (“What matters most?”), Bolton has kept this essay in the number one slot and at 750 words.  If you can’t pass this smell test, don’t worry about how great your goals are in essay 2 because you’re done at essay 1.
"Based on our experiences as admissions consultants, we wanted to emphasize a few points that Bolton emphases. We find that quite a few applicants gloss over this information, which can be found on GSB’s website. Simply put, we call it Bolton’s essay philosophy and he states:

"Regardless of the outcome of the admission process, I believe strongly that you will benefit from the opportunity for structured reflection that the business school application provides. I hope that you will approach the application process as a way to learn about yourself—that's the goal—with the byproduct being the application that you submit to us.

Rarely during our lives are we asked to think deeply about what is most important to us. Stanford professor Bill Damon’s book, The Moral Advantage: How to Succeed in Business by Doing the Right Thing, contained the following passages that might help you maintain the larger context as you delve into the essay writing process.”

"We are not always aware of the forces that ultimately move us. While focusing on the "how" questions—how to survive, how to get ahead, how to make a name for ourselves—often we forget the "why" questions that are more essential for finding and staying on the best course: Why pursue this objective? Why behave in this manner? Why aspire to this kind of life? Why become this type of person?

These "why" questions help us realize our highest aspirations and our truest interests. To answer these questions well, we must decide what matters most to us, what we will be able to contribute to in our careers, what are the right (as opposed to the wrong) ways of behaving as we aim toward this end, and, ultimately, what kind of persons we want to become. Because everyone, everywhere, wants to live an admirable life, a life of consequence, the "why" questions cannot be ignored for long without great peril to one’s personal stability and enduring success. It is like ignoring the rudder on a ship—no matter how much you look after all the boat’s other moving parts, you may end up lost at sea."

See the following for a bit more on “Moral Advantage”.  We strongly recommend reading the preface for The Moral Advantage -- available on Google Books: http://goo.gl/g8qlz

The above is an excerpt adapted from our recently released "How to Apply to Stanford GSB" school guide.  You can download a complimentary copy of this guide here > http://www.amerasiaconsulting.com/stanford-gsb-guide-download/

 

If you are looking for help with your MBA applications, email us at mba@amerasiaconsulting.com or visit us at www.amerasiaconsulting.com/contact.

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A beautiful campus in the heart of Silicon Valley. An entrepreneurial mindset. Gorgeous Northern California weather. All the cultural offerings of the SF Bay Area. And…you?

Will you be at Stanford GSB next year?

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If you’re preparing to apply, don’t miss our upcoming webinar, Get Accepted to Stanford GSB!

Accepted.com’s founder and CEO, Linda Abraham, will teach you how to:
• Master the 4 key strategies for showing that you belong at Stanford.

• Apply those strategies in the different elements in Stanford’s 2015-2016 application.

…and much more!

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The details:
Who: Anyone applying to Stanford GSB

When: Tuesday, July 21st at 10 AM PT/1:00 PM ET

Presented by: Linda Abraham, Accepted.com Founder & CEO

Register for Get Accepted to Stanford GSB now to boost your chances of joining the 7% of students who will be accepted at Stanford GSB!

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This article originally appeared on blog.accepted.com.

Accepted.com's experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages, or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resumeconstructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! Accepted.com has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!! [#permalink]

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New post 08 Jul 2015, 06:32
Folks,

In this article we focus on how everything from the blend of teaching methods, to the larger Stanford and Silicon Valley support system contribute to Stanford being one of the best places to go to if you want to focus on entrepreneurship - especially of the technology based variety.

http://mbaadmissions.augustacademy.in/school-profile-stanford-gsb/

Feel free to comment either on the blog post or in this forum, and contribute to the discussion.

Regards,
Karthik
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August Academy.

We are an India based MBA admissions consulting firm. We've been helping Indian MBA applicants (students belonging to the most competitive MBA admissions pool) since 2013. Several of our students study at top 20 schools in the US including Kellogg, MIT, Yale, Ross and Darden, top European schools including London Business School and Oxford, top Canadian schools like Rotman and top Asian schools like ISB and NUS. Our students have won over USD 2.1 Million in scholarships over the last 3 admissions years.

Schedule a free consultation with us.

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I am following. Good luck everyone!
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New post 09 Jul 2015, 11:33
[caption id="attachment_12480" align="alignright" width="225"]Image
Do you have the smarts SGSB is looking for?[/caption]What are the qualities that Stanford GSB is looking for as they build their class? How do successful applicants stand out from the crowd? At a school as competitive as Stanford, it’s a fact that many smart, accomplished applicants won’t get in—so how can you demonstrate that you have that “it” factor? Let us walk you through Stanford’s evaluation criteria and give you some advice.

Criteria #1: Intellectual Vitality

You’re smart. But this isn’t about smart. Most of the people Stanford GSB rejects are smart (often very smart). A person of average IQ may have enormous intellectual vitality, while a person with a stratospheric IQ may have scant intellectual vitality. Pretty much everyone uses their raw intellect, whatever its degree, in practical application – to get things done. People with intellectual vitality do that and more – they nurture and refine their raw intellect to make it a force in itself, one that draws them into new and challenging territory. No wonder Stanford wants it.

So what does intellectual vitality consist of? Here are 5 key components (separated for discussion purposes only, as they’re interconnected).
1. Zest for ideas. When you encounter a new or challenging idea, you’re tantalized. You have to find out more. What does it mean? Where did it come from? And how, and why? You relish ideas for their inherent meaning; they’re alive to you. You value them as a new lens to see through.

2. Dynamic, engaged mind. You’re always mentally comparing and contrasting, probing limits and boundaries, seeing overlaps between disparate points and differences between similar ones. To you, an event is not static, but rather part of a continuum, with a history to explore and future ramifications to consider. And you never take things at face value!

3. But why…? When you were a child, you probably were told you’re too curious. But curiosity underpins intellectual vitality. It drives you to learn more and more and more about something, to set off on thrilling learning journeys. (And you sometimes snag other people along for the ride!)

4. There’s a reason for what you believe and for what you do. Back to ideas – they animate you. Whether you’re politically conservative, moderate, or liberal, you’re not that way because your family or friends are, but because you’re interested in and think about the issues – from multiple angles. Your thought process informs your decisions, beliefs, actions.

5. Open, as in unafraid. So, you have your beliefs, your ideas. But you don’t hide behind them. You welcome them being challenged – it’s actually … fun. Intellectual fun. And you challenge back thoughtfully. You’re a skillful devil’s advocate, able to argue from multiple perspectives, even ones you personally disagree with. You relish learning what drives and underlies opposing ideas and beliefs (there’s that curiosity again…).

Hopefully the above points make clear that intellectual vitality is not something ponderous – it’s a thrill! Yes, it engages matters of seriousness and gravity. But it’s fundamentally invigorating. It fuels you. And it scintillates others.

Now, how do you let Stanford know you have it? The application essays are the perfect venue for showcasing this quality – integrate it into anecdotes, details, and reflections. If you are invited to interview, that’s an ideal place to demonstrate intellectual vitality.

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By Cindy Tokumitsu, author and co-author of numerous ebooks, articles, and special reports, including Why MBA and Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One. Cindy has advised hundreds of successful applicants in her fifteen years with Accepted.com.

 

Related Resources:
Stanford School of Business Zone Page
Stanford GSB 2016 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
• Valentine’s Day, Economics, and Stanford GSB

This article originally appeared on blog.accepted.com.

Accepted.com's experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages, or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resumeconstructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! Accepted.com has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!

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New post 13 Jul 2015, 02:12
[caption id="attachment_11957" align="alignright" width="179"]Image
Naturally you’ve got leadership, or you wouldn’t be applying to Stanford.[/caption]

What are the qualities that Stanford GSB is looking for as they build their class? How do successful applicants stand out from the crowd? At a school as competitive as Stanford, it’s a fact that many smart, accomplished applicants won’t get in—so how can you demonstrate that you have that “it” factor? Let us walk you through Stanford’s evaluation criteria and give you some advice.

Criteria #2: Demonstrated Leadership Potential

Of course Stanford GSB seeks demonstrated leadership potential – don’t all b-schools? And naturally you’ve got leadership, or you wouldn’t be applying to Stanford.

Wait. There are some unique nuances to Stanford’s conception of leadership that are essential to understand in order to portray it effectively in your application. Let’s break the phrase down word by word, starting with the core principle.
Leadership. Principle? Yes, not just a quality or an activity in Stanford’s eyes, but an actual principle. Whatever change you’re guiding the client to achieve, or whatever vision you’re advocating, or whatever project you’re driving the team through Hades to complete on time – it should be constructive and beneficial according to your own values and ideals. In GSB’s view, leadership isn’t just rallying the troops to achieve a given end – it’s having an end worth achieving (and, conversely, declining to pursue an inappropriate end). Therefore, if you are to provide such leadership, you must have core values or ideals and be guided by them as you lead, both how you lead and where you lead. GSB’s preferred leadership is essentially value- and ideal-driven, what it calls “directed idealism.”

Potential. Even if you are already a leader per the above definition, you’re not satisfied. You know that improving will only enable you to achieve more of what you value – therefore you actively seek growth as a leader. You are open to critique and feedback, you are resourceful, you are humble, and you are hungry to learn.

Demonstrated. Concrete evidence that allows the adcom to conclude that you will grow as a leader and provide leadership in the future. You must demonstrate both leadership and potential to grow as a leader. For the former, provide this evidence by portraying experiences in your application boxes, essays, resume, and recommendations that reflect your leadership to date. For the latter, in these same application components frankly reflect on where you are in your leadership development – you understand what parts are innate to you, and where you need to improve.

So “demonstrated leadership potential” is actually rather complex, at least per GSB’s perspective of leadership. Plan to spend some time and effort on a strategy to integrate these points into your entire application.

Check out the first post in this series, Understanding Stanford GSB’s Core Value Of Intellectual Vitality.

Image

//

By Cindy Tokumitsu, author of numerous ebooks, articles, and special reports. Cindy has advised hundreds of successful applicants in her fifteen years with Accepted. She can help you assess your strengths and weaknesses and develop a winning MBA admissions strategy. She is a member of the Association of International Graduate Application ConsultantsStanford School of Business Zone
• Stanford GSB 2016 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
• What Stanford is Looking for: Personal Qualities and Contributions

This article originally appeared on blog.accepted.com.

Accepted.com's experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages, or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resumeconstructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! Accepted.com has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!

Accepted.com    ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy

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New post 15 Jul 2015, 00:37
A quick reminder that our  webinar, Get Accepted to Stanford GSB, is happening next Tuesday, July 21 at 10am PT/1pm ET.Image

There’s still time to sign up. If you’re  applying to Stanford, you won’t want to miss this!

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The webinar is free, but registration is required. Sign up today and Get Accepted to Stanford GSB!

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This article originally appeared on blog.accepted.com.

Accepted.com's experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages, or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resumeconstructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! Accepted.com has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!

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New post 16 Jul 2015, 01:55
[caption id="attachment_11015" align="alignright" width="220"]Image
Stanford[/caption]

What are the qualities that Stanford GSB is looking for as they build their class? How do successful applicants stand out from the crowd? At a school as competitive as Stanford, it’s a fact that many smart, accomplished applicants won’t get in—so how can you demonstrate that you have that “it” factor? Let us walk you through Stanford’s evaluation criteria and give you some advice.

Criteria #3: Personal Qualities and Contributions


In an MBA essay on a meaningful personal experience:
• Applicant A describes his ascent of Machu Picchu; we learn that it was awe-inspiring, challenging, required excellent teamwork, and that he was moved on a deep level.

• Applicant B takes us on a walk around her block. We learn about the struggles of her neighbors in the face of gentrification and how she feels as one of the gentrifiers; how she informally refereed an argument among residents about the stop-and-frisk policy; the diversity of canine life on the block and the particular friendship between her pug and a neighbor’s Rottweiler.

We conclude from these essays that Applicant A spends a lot of money on personal fulfillment, lacks imagination, relies on banalities, and relishes physical challenges; and that Applicant B is alive to the richness of daily life, has humor, is compassionate, is attentive and alert, and cares about meaningful issues. Point: our personal qualities flow from and mirror our character. And when it comes to personal qualities, be assured, Stanford will prefer those of Applicant B – even though Applicant A’s topic is superficially more dramatic – because of the quality of character they reflect. There’s not anything different or mind-blowing about Applicant B’s personal qualities – they simply represent an engaged, thoughtful person. And there’s nothing wrong with climbing Machu Picchu – but it’s not the fact of doing it that will impress; rather, what you have to say about it, arising from your personal qualities and reflecting your unique perspective that will catch the thoughtful admissions reader’s eye. Lesson:
• Don’t struggle and strain for “unique” things to say.

• Rather, for Stanford, share your life. Open it up, let it dance or swagger or sashay or skip or march or cartwheel, whatever your style is.

Now the contribution part. Because Applicant B is attentive to and cares about her surroundings, she can respond and contribute to the daily life of her neighborhood. Again, nothing particularly dramatic or unique; mainly interactions with neighbors. But they’re quality interactions. She cares. She has specific questions and concerns and feelings and insights – which become her offering. She can bring this abundance, this world, this humanity “to the table.” You just know this person will be a big contributor wherever she is. She doesn’t have to explain that fact – it’s obvious! Follow her example. Let your personal qualities come alive by sharing what’s meaningful to you in your essays (and elsewhere if/as possible in the application). Don’t explain that you will contribute; show that you do contribute, as a result of these qualities. It’s simply who you are.

Check out the rest of the What Stanford GSB is Looking For series!

Image
By Cindy Tokumitsu, author of numerous ebooks, articles, and special reports. Cindy has advised hundreds of successful applicants in her fifteen years with Accepted. She can help you assess your strengths and weaknesses and develop a winning MBA admissions strategy. She is a member of the Association of International Graduate Application Consultants.

Related Resources:
Stanford School of Business Zone
Stanford GSB 2016 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
4 Ways to Show How You’ll Contribute in the Future

This article originally appeared on blog.accepted.com.

Accepted.com's experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages, or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resumeconstructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! Accepted.com has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!

Accepted.com    ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy

 

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Hey guys!

I'm a second year MBA student and i'd like to share with you a free resource that was very helpful to me and my peers this past year.

It's called pymetrics. pymetrics is a really cool neuroscience game-based assessment test. Once you complete 12 (2min) games you receive a full profile that reveals your top cognitive and social traits. Then, based on these traits, pymetrics matches you with different industries and companies where you have perfect fit for.

First, its a great way to get to know some companies, and second you can actually find our internship or full time offer here! That's wha thappend to me. I was matched, I expressed my interest and then the company reached out for an internship. Voila! Here I am.

http://bit.ly/1JxEviS

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New post 19 Jul 2015, 01:04
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Episode 3 in our Big Brand Theory Series for MBA applicants: Stanford GSB's motto.

Who wouldn’t want to change lives, change organizations, and change the world?  Right? For Episode 3 in our Big Brand Theory series, I set out to prove that Stanford GSB admits, transforms and graduates students who accomplish great feats.  I wanted to demonstrate that Stanford GSB students, faculty and graduates lived GSB’s brand.

I’ve always been a big proponent of Stanford GSB (even when they had classrooms and desks that reminded me of my high school).  Regardless of their old environs, the Knight Center makes their facility live up to their students and their program.

I love the vibe when I walk onto Stanford’s campus.  I love the fact that their students have infinite access to Silicon Valley.  I love that the faculty turns their electives over so frequently that the course catalogue reads like a fresh new book each year.  I love the questions Derrick Bolton asks on his application.  In fact, I love Derrick (don’t tell my husband).  I do believe Derrick has done a great job in selecting some of the smartest people I know.  My clients who have gained admission to Stanford surprise me with their intelligence, talent, accomplishments and ideas.  They are futurists who can see beyond the horizon, but they still need me to plant the seed for their ideas to grow into great essays and interviews.  Regardless, I love my clients too (my husband already knows that fact).

Stanford GSB Alumni: Famous and Infamous

However, when I looked at Stanford GSB’s list of “notable” alumni, I only saw a handful of game changers.   The list is similar to those I see at other schools with notable founders, CEOs and investors like GM’s first female CEO, Mary Barra, Acumen Founder Jacqueline Novogratz, Charles Schwab of Charles Schwab, Nike’s Phil Knight, Ultra-investor Vinod Kosla, Atari’s Nolan Bushnell, KPCB’s Brook Byers; notable authors like Tom Peters and Jim Collins; and “famous celebrities” like Alex Michel (Alex Michel, really?  Do “reality” TV participants count as celebrities? More importantly, does anyone really watch The Bachelor?).

Stanford has also has its share of CEOs and a handful of leaders who have been heavily criticized like former BP CEO, Lord John Browne who was forced to resign, not because BP’s Texas City, Texas plant exploded under his watch or because he commissioned Deepwater Horizon that also forced his successor’s resignation, but because a newspaper “outed” him when he lied under oath about his boyfriend/male escort. Lord Brown cut costs for financial gains and as a result, he changed BP and also the Gulf of Mexico.

Go Deep and Authentic for What Matters to You Most

So how can you present the fact that you will change the world for the better?  Stanford asks two questions that I know Derrick and his team really take to heart.  My clients typically struggle with “What matters most to you and why?” The latter part of this question being equally, if not more important that the former.  This question requires a tremendous amount of introspection and if done well should show that you have the heart to change the world.

It requires you to know yourself at a very personal level and share that self-awareness with an admissions committee.  It’s not easy, and the best essays I’ve seen on this topic have knocked the wind out of me.  Several have made me cry. It is a dig deep into your soul question.  Derrick is a very smart and authentic individual, and he wants to get to know what drives you.

I begin brainstorming this question with clients by asking them for what they would give their life.  At that point, you already know it will be an intense brainstorm.  Often I hear, “family” or “helping others,” which can fall into the trap of discussing work. I ask my clients to frame this into a one- word value, and then I begin to peel away the layers until we find something deep and raw and revealing. After this digging, my clients also understand why they feel this value is most important to them.

Most of those clients have gained admission to Stanford GSB.  Some have not. The application is a complete picture and while you have revealed something raw to the committee, you may have other flaws in your application.

Why Stanford: Reveal the Capacity to Effect Change

Or you may not demonstrate in your “Why Stanford?” essay that you have already or have the capacity to change lives, change organizations, and yes, change the world.  If the first question is about heart, the second question is about intent and ability.  Do you intend to initiate change and have the talent to make it happen?

You really do need to think beyond the horizon for Stanford and make certain that you know why you need the Stanford MBA for you to create change: Jacqueline Novogratz did it; Vinod Kosla did it; and of course, Phil Knight did it. You just need to “just do it” like them. Swoosh.

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By Natalie Grinblatt Epstein, an accomplished Accepted.com consultant/editor (since 2008) and entrepreneur. Natalie is a former MBA Admissions Dean and Director at Ross, Johnson, and Carey.

Related Resources:
• Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One
• Understanding Stanford GSB’s Take On Demonstrated Leadership Potential
• Stanford GSB 2016 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

This article originally appeared on blog.accepted.com.

Accepted.com's experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages, or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resumeconstructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! Accepted.com has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!

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Re: Calling all Stanford Applicants (2016 Intake) Class of 2018!!   [#permalink] 19 Jul 2015, 01:04

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