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Entrepreneurship as a career goal?

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Entrepreneurship as a career goal?  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Jul 2018, 21:17
Some background - Indian, male, 30 yr old, 5.5 years work ex entirely in consulting (3 yrs in big-4 and 3-yrs in a boutique), international experience of living/working in Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Thailand and South Korea, GMAT 750, UG GPA 8.63/10

Target B-schools: INSEAD, Kellogg (1-yr), Cambridge Judge

I am not entirely decided on my post MBA goals. There are two possible paths I am considering . The first s getting into a corporate role in the aerospace sector with firms like Airbus, Boeing, etc. (my consulting experience is predominantly in aerospace).The second is starting my own venture (I have started doing some research about venturing out in a sector). I am still figuring out what to go with for my essays.

I have had initial conversations with a few admissions consultants and am a bit confused because of the advice they have given. There are two broad recommendations I have got:

1. In the essays, go with the corporate role as it aligns more with what I have dine in the past. The startup thing would be a bit risky since I have no formal experience in the sector I am looking to startup in or any experience of working in a startup and also I have not made much progress in terms of having some sort of a business plan. So the startup goal might seem a bit too ambitious to AdComs.

2. The startup goal is what I should go with in the essays. It is okay if it is not at all related to my past experience as long as the passion and drive comes out from the essays.

I am not really sure what would be the best way forward and was hoping if I could get some perspectives from the community here.
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Re: Entrepreneurship as a career goal?  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Jul 2018, 21:34
Hi nishantd88,

why don't you write about both goals? Corporate role as immediate post-MBA goal and own venture as long-term goal.

Are the corporate role and your venture completely unrelated? Is there anything you could leverage on from your corporate role in order to create your venture later on?

If you are able to articulate the "connection" between the two, you should be okay. Typically, the short-term goal should be used as bridge to your long-term goal.

I hope this helps.

If you need further help articulating your goals, feel free to PM me or email directly at alex@arleeconsulting.com.

Good luck!
Alex
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Re: Entrepreneurship as a career goal?  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jul 2018, 21:07
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Hello nishantd88

I believe that a startup/entrepreneurship should be showcased as a long term goal (say 5-10 years).
An MBA should then be shown as a stepping stone to achieve a short-term goal (3-5 years) of a corporate job in a related field where you can learn the ropes of running such a business. In this case you do not have to be ready with a business plan today, just a broad direction of what the startup will do.
Do tie your past skills/experience with your future goals. Then showcase how an MBA will fill in the gaps in those skills.
In short show both, but as an organic journey and how an MBA fits in that journey.

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nishantd88 wrote:
Some background - Indian, male, 30 yr old, 5.5 years work ex entirely in consulting (3 yrs in big-4 and 3-yrs in a boutique), international experience of living/working in Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Thailand and South Korea, GMAT 750, UG GPA 8.63/10

Target B-schools: INSEAD, Kellogg (1-yr), Cambridge Judge

I am not entirely decided on my post MBA goals. There are two possible paths I am considering . The first s getting into a corporate role in the aerospace sector with firms like Airbus, Boeing, etc. (my consulting experience is predominantly in aerospace).The second is starting my own venture (I have started doing some research about venturing out in a sector). I am still figuring out what to go with for my essays.

I have had initial conversations with a few admissions consultants and am a bit confused because of the advice they have given. There are two broad recommendations I have got:

1. In the essays, go with the corporate role as it aligns more with what I have dine in the past. The startup thing would be a bit risky since I have no formal experience in the sector I am looking to startup in or any experience of working in a startup and also I have not made much progress in terms of having some sort of a business plan. So the startup goal might seem a bit too ambitious to AdComs.

2. The startup goal is what I should go with in the essays. It is okay if it is not at all related to my past experience as long as the passion and drive comes out from the essays.

I am not really sure what would be the best way forward and was hoping if I could get some perspectives from the community here.

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info (at) MBAkarma (dot) com

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Re: Entrepreneurship as a career goal?  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Jul 2018, 09:22
Thanks a lot for sharing your perspectives.
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Re: Entrepreneurship as a career goal?  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2018, 02:56
nishantd88 wrote:
Some background - Indian, male, 30 yr old, 5.5 years work ex entirely in consulting (3 yrs in big-4 and 3-yrs in a boutique), international experience of living/working in Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Thailand and South Korea, GMAT 750, UG GPA 8.63/10

Target B-schools: INSEAD, Kellogg (1-yr), Cambridge Judge

I am not entirely decided on my post MBA goals. There are two possible paths I am considering . The first s getting into a corporate role in the aerospace sector with firms like Airbus, Boeing, etc. (my consulting experience is predominantly in aerospace).The second is starting my own venture (I have started doing some research about venturing out in a sector). I am still figuring out what to go with for my essays.

I have had initial conversations with a few admissions consultants and am a bit confused because of the advice they have given. There are two broad recommendations I have got:

1. In the essays, go with the corporate role as it aligns more with what I have dine in the past. The startup thing would be a bit risky since I have no formal experience in the sector I am looking to startup in or any experience of working in a startup and also I have not made much progress in terms of having some sort of a business plan. So the startup goal might seem a bit too ambitious to AdComs.

2. The startup goal is what I should go with in the essays. It is okay if it is not at all related to my past experience as long as the passion and drive comes out from the essays.

I am not really sure what would be the best way forward and was hoping if I could get some perspectives from the community here.


Hi nishantd88,

We quite agree with the suggestions above.

You could show your long-term goal as an entrepreneurial one and a short-term stint as a corporate role, which, along with the expertise gained during the MBA, will help orient you towards the long-term goal. Remember, a close sync among your existing experience, short-term goal, and long-term aspirations is highly desirable and the essays that you craft should well depict the same. Again, while you do not need an exact business plan for your entrepreneurial venture, we suggest that you do have a broad idea of the same :-)

All the best!
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Re: Entrepreneurship as a career goal?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jul 2018, 19:46
Hi Nishant,

As a rule of thumb, the more audacious the career goal, the bigger the leap from what you’re doing at the moment, greater the credibility required (through how you can pull the transition off).

Startup is extremely hard and therefore it requires explanation of higher order. Is there anything that positions you better than others to make this a success? It could be background in the related industry. It could be deep understanding of the users/ customers and hence the gaps in the industry you’re trying to break into. It could be a distribution advantage especially if it’s B2C. Relationships. IP. Or a combination of few. And if the startup happens to be capital intensive, it’ll add another huge layer. Passion and drive are a given for any serious entrant in this space; they aren’t an advantage.

With startup, you also need to think of why MBA carefully. It’s not easy to explain why you need an MBA degree to start a company. BTW, you don’t need experience in a startup or the particular industry (though this one can be a positive) to start your own company. Other points such as few mentioned earlier can be more important.

If entrepreneurship is your long-term goal, think about whether that idea/ industry/ gap can still be exploited after many years. Some industries change fast, become saturated and may be much harder to get a foothold later on. Just apply commonsense here. Some bit of details matter because sometimes people loosely mention entrepreneurship as a long-term goal when they’re indecisive about it. Equally important, try to differentiate from other applicants from the consulting background.
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Re: Entrepreneurship as a career goal?  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jul 2018, 06:02
For a Moment- Let us look at how the schools LISTEN to you when you tell them that you will be an entrepreneur within 48 hours of finishing your MBA Program.


Let us think of the following: You are in May( 2021), your classes are over, other classmates are headed out for a quick vacation before joining their first POST MBA Company.

What would you be doing if your goal is to be an Entrepreneur?

Would you be looking for funding for an idea that you have not validated yet?

Would you be looking for Co-founders to help you across different functions?

Let us look at things realtime- What would your mindset be? How much money do you have to sustain on the RUNWAY before you breakeven in your venture?

Have you thought through – How will you pay for the School Loans after you have graduated?

You have a business plan ready already- and you know how you will impact the world- but have you Validated it yet? I mean- have you struggled to scale a team, trying to market it, running after teams to get the product to market, and DOING ALL THE OTHER EXPERIMENTS where you failed , and realized that the first step to your SUCCESS is MBA.

Schools do not have a problem with you choosing entrepreneurship as a goal. They have a problem in understanding – IF YOU HAVE NOT TRIED ANYTHING YET, How did you get to A CONCLUSION that entrepreneurship gets started with an MBA.

One thought could be that – You are looking for credibility on the resume so as to attract investors too- or to NOT HAVE THEM IGNORE You when you make your pitches- That is a FAIR POINT but this will not independently convince the schools of your reasons to choose an MBA. Why ? Because even FUNDING IS NOT a bottleneck to becoming an entrepreneur. Funding is needed TO SCALE A VENTURE- and before you scale it- you need to go through bloodbath of what it means to be an entrepreneur.


And schools may or may not agree with this but – they DO NOT MAKE ENTREPRENEURS. They can give you solid general management skills, and help you understand how to run a large P&L on an autopilot but – they cannot make you an entrepreneur. They can admit an entrepreneur and teach him HOW TO Be more resourceful but – you will have to take responsibility of telling them that – YOU ALREADY ARE AN ENTREPRENEUR( with past actions, successes and or Major failures).

If you tell them that they are the first step to your entrepreneurship- they will RUN- they will think you will be a liability.
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