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Personal MBA Coach Founder
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post Updated on: 27 Jun 2018, 10:16
FROM Personal MBA Coach: University of Michigan's Ross School of Business 2018-2019 Application Deadlines and Essay Question Analysis
University of Michigan's Ross School of Business has released its application deadlines and essays for this season! Read below for Personal MBA Coach Founder Scott Edinburgh’s tips on tackling this year’s questions.


Image


Ross has made some minor changes this year to the school’s MBA application essays. While the three short answer prompts remain, Ross has narrowed the choices and altered the career goals essay.


Part 1: Short Answer Questions

Select one prompt from each group of the three groups below. Respond to your selected prompt in 100 words or fewer (<100 words each; 300 words total).
Group 1
· I want people to know that I:
· I made a difference when I:

Group 2
· I was humbled when:
· I am out of my comfort zone when:

Group 3
· I was aware that I am different when:
· I find it challenging when people:

Part 2: Essay

Michigan Ross is a place where people from all backgrounds with different career goals can thrive. Please share your short-term career goal. Why is this the right choice for you? (300 words).


Below is what the school released about its changes, which gives some additional insight into what the admission committee members are looking for.
One of the things we heard from this year’s applicants was that they loved having the option to choose which essay prompt to respond to. So we’re keeping that feature but providing two options per short answer group rather than three. We kept the ones that seemed to provide the best platform for sharing something meaningful and unique about yourselves. We also made a minor tweak to the career goal essay to make it more straightforward, because that’s what we’re looking for — straightforward.


Here is Personal MBA Coach’s advice on the short answer prompts.

With a more traditional career focused essay to follow, make sure you think about your personal background for these short questions. Pick the prompt that resonates best with you as there is no preferred option.

· I want people to know that I:
· I made a difference when I:

For this first group, think about your most unique attribute or accomplishment. What sets you apart from other applicants? Given the guidance, in most cases a personal accomplishment or story is preferred here. If you have a unique skill or talent, group 1 would be a good place to share it. If you did something amazing that is not on your resume or that you want to call more attention to, that would also work well for this prompt. Other options for this prompt include examples of volunteer work, passions or values.

· I was humbled when:
· I am out of my comfort zone when:

For the second group, show the reader a bit about your character. What would working and studying with you be like? This is not the time to sing your praises but instead the time to show you are human. Show what you have gained from this experience and let the reader see that you are someone students would want to be around.

· I was aware that I am different when:
· I find it challenging when people:

This final group gives you yet another chance to show the reader how you are unique from your peers. Remember, MBA admissions directors aspire to bring a well rounded group of students to campus each year. This is your chance to share something about your upbringing or personality that will position you to add another perspective to class discussions. Write from your heart here.

For the short career goals essays, there is a lot to cover in a small amount of space. As advised, be straightforward here. If you need help thinking through your goals, we have published a blog with our general tips. Once you have clearly stated your short-term career goal, you need to explain both why an MBA is right for you at this time and more specifically, why Ross. Be sure to spend some time thinking about the skills necessary to succeed, how you have these skills and how you will continue to perfect them. Be specific in terms of what you hope to take advantage of on campus and why Ross is a good fit. As always, do your research and avoid vague statements and generalities. No copy and pasting here, sorry!

If you would like individual and personal support while applying to Ross, please find information about Personal MBA Coach
https://www.personalmbacoach.com/comprehensive-packages’s comprehensive packages or contact meto discuss your profile as well as how I can help! As a Wharton graduate, I regularly help many applicants navigate Ross and other applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former top 10 interviewers on our team.

Email me at: scott@personalmbacoach.com or call +1 617-645-2424 today.
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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 07 Jun 2018, 08:01.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 27 Jun 2018, 10:16, edited 1 time in total.
Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post Updated on: 27 Jun 2018, 10:19
FROM Personal MBA Coach: London Business School 2018-2019 Application Deadlines and Essay Question Analysis
Image
London Business School has released its essays for this season. Read below for Personal MBA Coach® Founder Scott Edinburgh’s tips on tackling this year’s questions.


Image

*Note: While the new deadlines have not been formally released, rough deadlines were announced.


Essay 1: What are your post-MBA goals and how will your prior experience and the London Business School programme contribute towards these? (500-word limit)

The first essay is a straightforward career goals essay. Candidates will be best served thinking about it in three distinct parts, all of similar weight.

1. Explain your goals: If you need help thinking through your goals, we have published this blog with our general tips. Be sure to include both your short-term and long-term goals.

2. Succinctly discuss your career to date: Give the reader the context as to why you are suited for this career, including the skills you have developed. With under 200 words to do so, you must be brief and focus on the transferable skills. There is no need to recount your resume here.

3. Why LBS: In this final "section" write about the skills you hope to develop during your MBA and why LBS is uniquely suited to help you develop these skills. As always, be specific in terms of what you hope to take advantage of on campus and why LBS is a good fit. Do your research and avoid vague statements and generalities. No copy and pasting here, sorry!

Essay 2 (optional): Is there any other information you believe the Admissions Committee should know about you and your application to London Business School? (500-word limit)

While I normally do not advise most candidates to complete optional essays, for LBS you should consider answering essay 2. This is the chance to tell LBS a bit more about you, who you are and what makes you unique. Everyone will have a different approach to this optional question and there is no one right topic. Instead, think about your best selling point(s) and cover them here.

If you would like individual and personal support while applying to LBS, please find information about Personal MBA Coach
’s comprehensive packages or contact meto discuss your profile as well as how I can help! As a Wharton and MIT graduate, I regularly help many applicants navigate LBS and other applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former top 10 interviewers on our team.

Email me at: scott@personalmbacoach.com or call +1 617-645-2424 today.

Unsure How To Craft An MBA Resume?

Curious About Wharton’s Question This Year?
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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scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 08 Jun 2018, 11:01.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 27 Jun 2018, 10:19, edited 1 time in total.
Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post Updated on: 27 Jun 2018, 12:34
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Compilation of 2018-2019 MBA Deadlines and Essay Question Analyses
Image

The 2018-2019 MBA application season is well under way. Most schools have released this year’s deadlines and many have released or confirmed the application essays. Here is a round up from Personal MBA Coach along with our tips for tackling the released essay questions.
HBS, Yale SOM, LBS, Kellogg and Stanford have all chosen to leave their questions unchanged this year. Others, including Wharton, Booth, Columbia, Stern and Ross have changed things up for this year’s group of hopefuls.


2018-2019 Application Deadline & Essay Summary
Image

Read below for Personal MBA Coach® Founder Scott Edinburgh’s tips on tackling this year’s questions!

Harvard

Harvard Business School first kicked off the application season with an announcement that the application question will remain the same for class of 2021 hopefuls.

“As we review your application, what more would you like us to know as we consider your candidacy for the Harvard Business School MBA Program?”

This is an open invitation to tell HBS what is truly interesting about your profile. This question allows you to hone in on what is important and unique, without feeling the need to discuss every aspect of your profile. While we recommend that most applicants show their professional accomplishments, make sure to share enough so that the admissions committee can learn more about you on a personal level.
Successful essays have included some sort of personal anecdote at a minimum and often a much more detailed personal story. Check out our tips on how to handle HBS's essay question here!

Chicago Booth

Chicago Booth has made some major changes this year by replacing the Booth Moments with two new essay questions. Stay tuned for Personal MBA Coach's complete analysis on these questions!

"How will the Booth MBA help you achieve your immediate and long-term post-MBA career goals?"

"Chicago Booth immerses you in a choice-rich environment. How have your interests, leadership experiences, and other passions influenced the choices in your life? "


Wharton

For the first time in 3 years, Wharton has changed the second essay question, while keeping the first question unchanged.

Essay 1: What do you hope to gain professionally from the Wharton MBA? (500 words)

Essay 2: Describe an impactful experience or accomplishment that is not reflected elsewhere in your application. How will you use what you learned through that experience to contribute to the Wharton community? (400 words)


I like the new question because it gives you a chance to cover three things. I advise that all candidates consider each of these three areas as they draft the essay.
First, you can share additional information about yourself that will further illuminate your unique strengths. In case you missed our recent blog – MBA Applications - How To Stand Out, this is a great essay for leveraging those recommendations.

Second, by sharing your learnings from this experience, you will be able to show a bit about your character as well as how you are able to adapt to and grow from situations.

Finally, it gives you a chance to tell admissions committee members specifically how you will add value on campus.
Read below for our tips on tackling this year’s questions for Wharton in one of our most recent blog posts.

Stanford

Stanford, as expected, did not change the essay questions this year.

1. What matters most to you, and why? (750 words suggested )

2. Why Stanford? (400 words suggested )


This challenging first question requires candidates to speak from the heart. As Stanford advises, think more about your values here and WHY you made the choices you have made than WHAT you have done.

The best way to begin here is to do some serious soul searching! Focus on being yourself vs. writing what you think the admissions committee wants to hear. Check-out Stanford’s complete tips on this question and stay tuned for a more detailed analysis from Personal MBA Coach.

Yale SOM

Yale School of Management has released its essay for the 2018-2019 application year, leaving the question unchanged for the third year in a row.

Essay 1: “Describe the biggest commitment you have ever made (500 words)”

As you craft your essay, keep in mind that Yale strives to “educate leaders for business and society.”
With a passionate and committed student body, Yale takes pride in the small group learning teams and close-knit community. This question gives candidates a chance to provide admissions committee members with a glimpse of who they are and what matters to them, confirming they can and will live up to the school’s lofty mission. Check out this blog post that goes in depth on Yale’s question for tips on how to show your unique story.

Michigan Ross

Ross has made some minor changes this year to the school’s MBA application essays. While the three short answer prompts remain, Ross has narrowed the choices and altered the career goals essay.

Part 1: Short Answer Questions: Select a prompt from each group of the three groups. Respond to your selected prompt in 100 words or fewer (<100 words each; 300 words total)

Group 1 · I want people to know that I: · I made a difference when I:

Group 2 · I was humbled when: · I am out of my comfort zone when:

Group 3 · I was aware that I am different when: · I find it challenging when people:

Part 2: Essay

Michigan Ross is a place where people from all backgrounds with different career goals can thrive. Please share your short-term career goal. Why is this the right choice for you? (300 words).


For the short career goals essays, there is a lot to cover in a small amount of space. As advised, be straightforward here. If you need help thinking through your goals, we have published a blog with our general tips.
Check out this postto go more in depth on how to tackle Ross’s changes!

Columbia

This year, Columbia has updated questions two and three, while leaving the first question unchanged.

Essay 1: Through your resume and recommendations, we have a clear sense of your professional path to date. What are your career goals over the next 3 - 5 years and what, in your imagination, would be your long-term dream job? (500 words)

Columbia again specifically asks that candidates not repeat their resumes in this career goals question. While some mention of your past is still expected, it should be brief and used as context to further elaborate on why your goals are attainable. This question explicitly asks for both a short-term goal and a long-term dream job so be sure to include both.

Essay 2: How will you take advantage of being “at the very center of business”? Please watch this short video featuring Dean Glenn Hubbard (250 Words)

This question was asked two years ago, but with a longer word limit. With only 250 words and a lot to potentially cover, it is important to be focused and specific.
Essay 3: Please provide an example of a team failure of which you have been a part. If given a second chance, what would you do differently? (250 Words)
Unlike in past years, essay 3 does not ask about your personal interests. Instead, by asking about a team failure and what you would change, Columbia is probing into both your teamwork and leadership skills. It is important to show how you are and can be a team player while remaining humble and willing to grow.
Be sure not to repeat yourself across the essays and try to have the three all work together to paint an accurate and consistent picture of your candidacy. See our advice on how to blend together your story for Columbia here.

London Business School

The first essay is a straightforward career goals essay. Candidates will be best served thinking about it in three distinct parts, all of similar weight. The second is optional.

Essay 1: What are your post-MBA goals and how will your prior experience and the London Business School program contribute towards these? (500-word limit)
Explain your goals: If you need help thinking through your goals, we have published this blog with our general tips. Be sure to include both your short-term and long-term goals. Succinctly discuss your career to date, and explain why LBS!

Essay 2 (optional): Is there any other information you believe the Admissions Committee should know about you and your application to London Business School? (500-word limit)

Everyone will have a different approach to this optional question and there is no one right topic. Instead, think about your best selling point(s) and cover them here. This is the chance to tell LBS a bit more about you, who you are and what makes you unique. See our in depth analysis here.

NYU Stern

This year Stern has cut back to two questions, both of which were asked last year. The career goals question and the school's unique "Pick Six" have remained.

Essay 1: Professional Aspirations (500 word maximum, double-spaced, 12-point font)
• What are your short and long-term career goals? • How will the MBA help you achieve them?

Essay 2: Personal Expression (a.k.a. "Pick Six")
Describe yourself to the Admissions Committee and to your future classmates using six images and corresponding captions. Your uploaded PDF should contain all of the following elements:

• A brief introduction or overview of your "Pick Six" (no more than 3 sentences). • Six images that help illustrate who you are. • A one-sentence caption for each of the six images that helps explain why they were selected and are significant to you.


Check-out this blog from last year which includes our thoughts for addressing each of these questions.

Kellogg

Kellogg’s questions also remain unchanged this year.

Essay 1: Kellogg’s purpose is to educate, equip & inspire brave leaders who create lasting value. Tell us about a time you have demonstrated leadership and created lasting value. What challenges did you face, and what did you learn? (450 words)

Most candidates are likely to share a professional story with this first essay. However, strong leadership examples in your extra-curricular activities could also work well here. Be sure to think of a significant undertaking where you can clearly demonstrate the value you added.

Essay 2: Pursuing an MBA is a catalyst for personal and professional growth. How have you grown in the past? How do you intend to grow at Kellogg? (450 words)

This essay is fairly straightforward and is a great opportunity to talk about unique and impressive aspects of both your personal and professional background. There is a lot to discuss here and a short word limit so choose your words very carefully. Think about projects at work that stretched you, required you to tackle a fear or particular area of weakness or demanded that you learn a new skill.

If you would like individual and personal support while applying to any of these programs and more, please find information about Personal MBA Coach’s comprehensive packages or contact me to discuss your profile as well as how I can help! As a Wharton and MIT graduate, I regularly help many applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former top 10 interviewers on our team. Email me at: scott@personalmbacoach.com or call +1 617-645-2424 today.Unsure How To Craft An MBA Resume?
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 14 Jun 2018, 13:01.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 27 Jun 2018, 12:34, edited 1 time in total.
Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post Updated on: 27 Jun 2018, 12:42
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach’s Takeaways from 2018 AIGAC MBA Applicant Survey
Image


This is a very exciting time of year for me, for Personal MBA Coach, and for the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC). This week, as the chair of the survey committee, I presented the results of our comprehensive 2018 survey to admissions directors of 25+ top MBA programs including HBS, Stanford, Booth, Kellogg, Wharton, Ross, Yale, and others at our annual conference. A special thank you to Kellogg, Chicago Booth, Michigan Ross, McCombs, and Rotmanfor hosting this year!


Each year, AIGAC conducts a survey of over 2,000 current and previous MBA applicants in order to better understand the MBA application process. In so doing, we collect advice for students, schools, and consultants on how to improve the admissions process.

While both MBA admissions consultants and admissions directors took away valuable information for improving their work, such as the message that applicants have high expectations, the survey also yielded information that will be of great interest for applicants, as well.

Check out this year’s highlights and find some important tips for getting to know prospective schools throughout the application process.

How Applicants Research Business Schools

As we shared in our recent blog, courting your target schools and getting to know their programs, offerings, and extracurricular opportunities is a crucial part of the admissions process!

This year, we again asked candidates what sources they use to research their target programs. While it is no surprise that nearly all applicants used school websites and other online resources, many applicants went above and beyond this step.

Over 50% of applicants spoke to current students, over 40% spoke to alumni, and over 40% communicated directly with admissions staff. Furthermore, over 40% attended an MBA fair or off-campus information session.

Keep in mind that while you do not have to do all of these things, it is crucial to leverage multiple avenues for getting to know your target programs. This also helps the schools get to know you, which is a very important part of the process, too!

How Consultants Can Help

When asked how consultants helped during the application process, survey respondents said the top two benefits of working with admissions consultants were: the advice they received to apply to more schools, and the guidance they got to retake the GMAT. Applicants also valued consultants’ advice to consider schools they otherwise would not have considered. Having this “reality check” to make sure that you target the right programs for you is really important (often this means reaching for a school you may not have considered previously).
Check out the full survey results here for complete details!

Stay tuned for a more detailed analysis of the AIGAC conference next week!

If you would like individual and personal application support, please find information about Personal MBA Coach’s comprehensive packages or contact me to discuss your profile as well as how I can help! As a Wharton and MIT graduate, I regularly help many applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews and have former top 10 interviewers on our team.
Email me at: scott@personalmbacoach.com or call +1 617-645-2424 today.
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 15 Jun 2018, 13:02.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 27 Jun 2018, 12:42, edited 1 time in total.
Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post Updated on: 27 Jun 2018, 13:11
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Articulating Your Personal Story
Image

If I think about the area in which my candidates often need the most help, crafting a winning personal story comes to mind first. Defining the story may be the hardest and the most important part of the application. I advise my candidates to start this process months, if not years, in advance! The good news? Everyone has a personal story, you may just need help figuring out how to make it shine.

So, what should you include in your personal story? This will differ for every candidate but across the board I can tell you, NOT EVERYTHING!
No one wants to read a long explanation detailing a chronological flow of your life. Instead, you must be focused, logical and unique.
This is also not the time to tell the admissions committee what you think they want to hear.

I have just returned from the 2018 Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC) conference with Admissions Directors from 25+ top MBA programs including HBS, Stanford, Booth, Kellogg, Wharton, Ross, Sloan, Yale, Darden, Fuqua and many others and this was a key point of discussion.
The most successful candidates do not always write essays about overcoming a horrible tragedy or solving world hunger. Sure, if you have done something impressive or triumphed over a difficult situation, include it if it fits with your story. But you can also write compelling essays without this.
When I meet with a new candidate, I start by asking a lot of questions. We talk about everything the applicant has done, often starting from childhood. I advise you to start with a similar process.

Make a list of everything you have done in your life and take the time to write it all down. Think carefully about the decisions you have made, activities you enjoy and most importantly, why you made those choices.Think about your future goals. What do you want to do after you earn your MBA and again, why?Next, look for a theme! What single idea connects these together? This is the hard part, so give it time.

Here is an example: I had a candidate (accepted to an M7 school last year) whose passion for education began as a result of a family tragedy. Instead of centering his essay on his misfortunes, however, he barely mentioned the tragedy in his essay as frankly it did not really say anything about him. Instead, he focused on what he did in the face of this situation. He shared his penchant for education starting at a young age. All of his extracurricular activities, past career choices, and future aspirations laddered up to this. Sharing these highlights led to a compelling statement. His application strength didn’t come from his career successes but from how his essays were focused, his personal and professional moves were logical, and his career path was somewhat unique.

Business schools want to know how you will make the business world (and the world more broadly) better when you leave their campuses. They also want to know how you will leave a unique mark.

Past behavior is the best predictor of the future and we have all left a mark somehow or another. No candidate is ever perfect; instead, we chart the best course we can with the hand we are dealt. The best personal statements show this. Crafting a personal statement is not easy and Personal MBA Coach is here to help!
If you would like individual and personal application support, please find information about Personal MBA Coach’s comprehensive packages or contact me to discuss your profile as well as how I can help! As a Wharton and MIT graduate, I regularly help many applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews and have former top 10 interviewers on our team.

Email me at: scott@personalmbacoach.com or call +1 617-645-2424 today.
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 21 Jun 2018, 08:02.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 27 Jun 2018, 13:11, edited 1 time in total.
Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post 27 Jun 2018, 11:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: How To Approach A Career Goals Essay
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Most business school applications will require you to articulate your career goals. After all, your ambitions for advancing your career are likely what is motivating you to apply to business school.

Career goals are a critical component of your application (granted, they are more important for some schools than for others). Business schools want to know how you will make the world better when you leave their campuses and what your unique mark will be.

The best career goals essay will do five things:

1) Connect your past career to your future goals: Whether you plan to take your career in a completely different direction, make a small career pivot or return to the same job post-MBA, it is important to connect your past accomplishments to your future goals. This does NOT mean that your essay should include a chronological history of your career to date. You will submit your resume to cover all of the details. Instead, you want to think about a few highlights from your career and link them to your future. What are your strengths? When did you truly shine at work? For some essays, you will have the space to spell out a few leadership accomplishments in detail; for others, you will only be able to share a sentence or two. Either way, making this link is important.

2) Be specific: Your goals essay should generally include both a short-term and long-term goal (though for some schools, there will not be space for both). These goals should be specific. I generally do not recommend using OR in your essay. Pick a set of goals and run with them. That said, if you do have multiple ideas in mind, some schools are comfortable with understanding your thought process and decision-making criteria, while many others will want that very clear plan laid out before you arrive on campus. Your goals may very well change while you are in school and this is expected - no one will hold you to what you put in your essays. However, you should put a stake in the ground and be specific for your applications.

3) Communicate passion: A strong career goals essay will communicate passion for your future field. This does not mean that you need a long explanation for why you selected your career, but as you provide the context and discuss your future, it should be clear to the reader that this is a profession you are excited about.

4) Share how you will be unique: Even if you have a very common career goal, such as becoming a management consultant, you want to share with the reader how you will make your unique mark. You must go beyond simply stating what position you are hoping to achieve. Think deeper and show what change you hope to drive in your chosen field and how specifically you plan to do so.

5) Discuss an attainable yet ambitious goal: Your career goal should also be attainable. As valuable as an MBA is, you likely will not be running a department on the first day out of business school. Do your research and figure out what jobs are realistic for you. This does not mean you should not be ambitious, of course! This is part of why I tell clients to have two goals in most essays, short-term and long-term.

If you would like individual and personal application support, please find information about Personal MBA Coach’s comprehensive packages or contact me to discuss your profile as well as how I can help! As a Wharton and MIT graduate, I regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Email me at: or call +1 617-645-2424 today.

Read about the recent presentation at the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants!

Read our analysis of the latest essay questions
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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New post Updated on: 09 Aug 2018, 13:39
FROM Personal MBA Coach: MBA Application Pitfalls
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As you may recall in our recent blog post, “Courting Your Target Business Schools,” we stressed the importance of showing interest in your target schools during the MBA application process. One common way that candidates do this is by attending MBA Fairs. These (typically free) events present candidates with the opportunity to meet with admissions directors from top business schools and also to listen to presentations from leading MBA admissions experts.

This summer, Personal MBA Coach Founder Scott Edinburgh will be traveling to The MBA Tour events across the US, including in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Washington DC and Boston, to present “Top 10 MBA Application Pitfalls.”

Whether you are able to make one of these presentations or not, check out a sneak preview of 5 of the most common application pitfalls below and our advice on how to avoid them.

#1: Stating a vague reason for wanting an MBA

Although an MBA may be viewed as a “check the box” degree in some professions, this is NOT a message that should come across in your MBA applications. You should have a clear reason for wanting an MBA. While facilitating a career shift or career progression can be part of this reason, your essays should include the specific skills and experiences you will gain during the MBA process. Stating that you need to gain “business acumen” or “management education” is vague. Instead, do some careful thinking both about what your skill gaps are and WHY those skills are needed. This means going beyond saying, “I need to gain finance knowledge.” You should tell the reader why you want these skills and how they will help in your future roles.

#2: Not including school specifics

If you have many applications to complete (my average candidate applies to 5 schools) and a busy full-time job, it can be temping to copy and paste across essays. This is generally not recommended. Not only does each school have a unique culture that values specific skills and experiences, but they all have different program offerings. So, take the time to do your research (MBA fairs are one easy way!) on the courses, professors and programs that are the best match for your future aspirations and include these details in your essays.

#3: Using too many industry buzzwords

Many candidates will use too many technical terms in resumes, essays, or even during interviews, potentially confusing or even putting off the audience. In some cases, the terms are so common in your industry that you may not even realize you are doing this. In other cases, candidates mistakenly believe that including these technical details will make them sound impressive or convey their knowledge. However, if the readers cannot follow what you are saying, you are not going to be able to show how you excelled in your role and how you were a visionary leader. Even though many admissions directors understand these terms, they are not evaluating you for your specific industry skills. Keep the language simple so that your accomplishments do not get lost in technical terms.

#4: Not answering the question

This may seem obvious, but I have read countless essays that do not answer the question. Business schools look for different qualities and characteristics. They ask specific questions to understand how well you will fit in on their campus. So instead of telling them what you think is most impressive, answer the question. If the question says: “Do not repeat your resume,” then do not write 300 words on your accomplishments. While including some details may be needed for context, keep this limited. In addition, take the time to think about the reasons behind the questions. The best answer will consider not just the WHAT but the WHY.

#5: Too much repetition

Business school candidates are well rounded and have excelled in multiple areas. Be sure that your application portrays this. While you may have a very impressive role or accomplishments, this does not mean you need to mention them in every essay and in your LORs. Instead, think about your entire story and everything you have to offer. Include different aspects of your profile. Of course, they should all work together to paint a clear story.

Be sure to check out the complete presentation including all 10 application pitfalls at this summer’s MBA Tour. Sign up here!
New York 7/21
Los Angeles 7/14
San Francisco 7/15
Chicago 7/23
Washington DC 7/25
Boston 7/26

If you would like individual and personal application support, please find information about Personal MBA Coach’s comprehensive packages or contact me to discuss your profile as well as how I can help! As a Wharton and MIT graduate, I regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.
Email me at: or call +1 617-645-2424 today.

Read about the recent presentation at the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants!
Read our analysis of the latest essay questions
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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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 05 Jul 2018, 13:02.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 09 Aug 2018, 13:39, edited 1 time in total.
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New post Updated on: 09 Aug 2018, 13:41
FROM Personal MBA Coach: 8 Weeks Until Fall MBA Application Deadlines - How To Best Use This Time
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It may be hard to believe but we are less than eight weeks from the first MBA application deadline. To keep you on track, Personal MBA Coach has included a round up of application deadlines below, along with our advice on how to best use the next two months!

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If you followed our earlier 4 month plan, let me remind you where you should be for July and August:

July:

Edit, edit, edit: This is the time to ensure your essays are perfected! Most essays will require multiple drafts so plan accordingly.
Attend The MBA Tour: The MBA Tour is a great way to meet with multiple admissions representatives simultaneously. Plus, Personal MBA Coach will be presenting: Top 10 MBA Application Pitfalls in

Los Angeles (July 14),San Francisco (July 15),New York(July 21),Chicago (July 23),Washington DC (July 25), and Boston (July 26).Check out our latest blog with more info on the tour as well as common MBA pitfalls to avoid!

Network with alumni and current students: Look for alumni and current students in your networks and schedule time for quick chats. The more you know about a school, the easier it will be to target your applications. Of course, there can be too much of a good thing so do not go overboard here.

August:

Fill out your applications: Allow time for these short answer questions. The applications themselves can be quite detailed so do not save these extra questions for the last minute.
Proof: We do not recommend doing any major work in the last few weeks before submission. Substantial last-minute changes can often be rushed and lead to mistakes. Instead, take the time to carefully proof all of your application materials. Be sure to enlist a second or third reader as it is difficult to spot errors in something you have read many times.
Ensure your LORs are all set: Check-in with your recommenders and make sure they have all of the information they need. Gently remind them of the upcoming dates to avoid any last-minute crunches.

However, if you are just getting started, read below for our advice on how to get back on track:
Your first step should be to finalize your school list and your testing plans. If you have not yet taken the GMAT/GRE or have yet to achieve your target score, you should schedule your test ASAP. Similarly, now that essentially all schools have released their deadlines and essays for 2018-2019 hopefuls, you want to be in a position to start drafting as soon as you can. If you have not finalized your school lists, that should be priority number 1.
Do online research, speak to current students or alumni within your networks and attend any school events or tours near you. There may not be adequate time to plan a campus visit before you apply, but do not let this deter you from applying this year if the time is right for you.
Next, you should be selecting your recommenders, immediately. I have written extensively on selecting and preparingyour recommenders in case you need help deciding who to ask or what information to provide them. Remember, well thought out letters take time and your recommenders are busy; do not wait any longer to ask them.

Finally, WRITE, WRITE, WRITE. First, get your thoughts on paper. Think through your career goals, why you want an MBA, what you hope to learn from the program and what makes you unique. Also, all applicants will need an MBA resume (more on this here) which can often be a great place to start this process. It will force you to take stock of everything you have accomplished and get you to start thinking of possible things to include throughout your applications.
Remember, most accomplishments from your resume will not fit into your essays and this is to be expected. Then begin drafting one question at a time. I advise you to begin with the easiest schools or questions as your writing will improve throughout the process. However, if your timing is very tight, start with the application that is due the soonest!

Do not forget to leave plenty of time to answer the short answer questions in the application and to proof read. Whenever possible, avoid writing during the last week or two and get someone unfamiliar with your work to proof your application.
If you would like individual and personal application support, please find information about Personal MBA Coach’s comprehensive packages or contact me to discuss your profile as well as how I can help!
As a Wharton and MIT graduate, I regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Email me at: scott@personalmbacoach.com or call +1 617-645-2424 today.
Read about the recent presentation at the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants!
Read our analysis of the latest essay questions
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 11 Jul 2018, 11:02.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 09 Aug 2018, 13:41, edited 1 time in total.
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New post Updated on: 09 Aug 2018, 13:43
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Should You Get an MBA? Now? Find Out.
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Round 1 application deadlines are just around the corner and some of you contemplating an MBA have not yet pulled the trigger. You may think you are not ready. Here are some key indicators to help you decide if now is the right time to apply. If you have taken the GMAT/GRE (or think you could do so in time) and some or all of the following ring true, consider kickstarting your application process

1. You are ready to switch careers. Switching careers and writing your business school applications at the same time can be tricky. While it works for some to change industries or functions pre-MBA, post-MBA is a great time to switch careers for most applicants. In many ways, an MBA is the great equalizer and post-MBA students often start at a similar level to each other. If you want to switch careers, an MBA is a great place to start!

2. Now is a good time to become a student. Going back to school full-time is a major lifestyle change. Your own circumstance can be a big factor in this decision. Is your partner going back to school and it will be easier to study together? Perhaps personally you are looking to make a big move or change. If you saved up enough money and think that you will want a break in mid-2019, consider that applying now means you would start a year from now.

3. You have plateaued at work. Do you feel stuck at your current level? Do you need an MBA or advanced degree to reach the next step in your career? If you feel that you have learned all you can in your current role, not only will additional experience be less likely to help you, but it may limit your options. If you feel you are close to plateauing, it might be the time to apply.

4. You have 4-5 years of pre-MBA experience. The average applicant has approximately 5 years of pre-MBA experience. After 6+ years, your chances of admission begin to decrease slightly each year. However, do not worry if you are already there as we have many more experienced applicants who also get in. We can craft a story to explain your roles to date. That said, the longer you wait, the more likely it is that you will run out of time to give your dream school your best shot. So consider shooting for the stars, now!

Need help? We know it’s a daunting process and Personal MBA Coach is here to help you! Founded by a Whartonand MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email at for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!
Read about the recent presentation at the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants!
Read our analysis of the latest essay questions
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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Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 24 Jul 2018, 10:02.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 09 Aug 2018, 13:43, edited 1 time in total.
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New post Updated on: 09 Aug 2018, 13:45
FROM Personal MBA Coach: What Reapplicants Should Change
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If you were rejected from business school last year, it may be tempting to scrap your applications, essays, and letters of recommendation and start from scratch. However, by doing so, you may be doing yourself a disservice. Here are some tips on what you should improve upon, what you should tweak, and what should remain consistent on your business school applications the second (or third) time around.

What You Should Consider Improving:

Letters of recommendation: If you are not confident that you had the best LORs, consider asking someone else to write a new one for you this year. Some schools may require you to submit at least one new LOR regardless.

Interview skills/preparation plan: It takes practice and training to master the art of an impressive interview. If you were rejected after receiving an interview, re-visit your preparation plan. Consider a mock interview with a consultant or an experienced coworker to discover your weaknesses and improve your skills.
Evidence of analytical skills: This is particularly true if you are compensating for a low GPA. Look for options to prove your analytical abilities such as taking local or online math classes. Earning a top grade in a class such as Math for Management at Berkeley is a great way to prove that you have what it takes to keep up in business school. Finally (and most obviously) consider whether you can improve your GMAT/GRE score this time around.

What You Should Tweak:

Extracurricular activities: Have you added any new activities since the last time you applied? More importantly, do your activities align with your long-term goals? Have you demonstrated initiative and leadership in your extracurriculars? If not, consider how you can improve upon the activities you have or which activities you can add now.
Work experience: Highlight new projects you have tackled at work that demonstrate your leadership, analytical, or risk-taking skills. If you felt your last application was weak in a certain area, what have you done to strengthen it for this round? Consider what new responsibilities you can take on at work that will improve your resume, but still allow you the time and energy to apply for Round 2.

What You Should Generally Not Change:

Goals: In almost all cases, your goals should remain the same. You want to demonstrate to the admissions committee that you are focused and consistent. Instead, re-examine how you laid out your vision. Ensure that you demonstrate that you understand the skills you need to achieve your goals.
Of course, sometimes goals change because of life or work circumstances. If this is the case, make sure you carefully explain how your goals have evolved so that you do not appear indecisive.

Your story: As with goals, you want to demonstrate to the admissions committee that you have a clear sense of self and purpose. Therefore, your overall story should not change. However, you may find it necessary to address any large holes or weaknesses in your resume, such as a dramatic career shift without an accompanying explanation.
Need help? We know it’s a daunting process and Personal MBA Coach is here to help you! Founded by a Whartonand MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email at for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!
Read about the recent presentation at the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants!
Read our analysis of the latest essay questions
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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Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 02 Aug 2018, 12:02.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 09 Aug 2018, 13:45, edited 1 time in total.
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New post 09 Aug 2018, 13:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: 4 Common MBA Application Misconceptions
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Curious about some MBA application myths or misconceptions? Read below for four things that are actually NOT TRUE!

1) Schools want you to tell them how wonderful they are. Far too often I read about how an applicant will leverage Wharton’s “unmatched” alumni network or grow through Booth’s “renowned” curriculum. While all business schools want to know that you are truly interested in their programs, using over-the-top praise is not an effective way to articulate this message. Instead, do your research and share thoughtful elements of their programs that you are looking to take advantage of. Ensure that these elements are specific to you and make sense relative to your background and goals.

2)You need to fit in everything you have accomplished. Many candidates are tempted to throw in everything but the kitchen sink into their essays. There is a concern that they will hurt their chances of success if they do not tell admissions committee members about everything they have done. However, this is not the case. A few well-told stories that clearly demonstrate what makes you unique will be far more compelling. Show your passions and leadership by sharing how you did a few things exceptionally well.

3) There is a “right” career goal. You may be tempted to mention a career goal you think admissions committee members want to hear. Just because it is common for applicants to pursue consulting or investment banking does not mean this is the career path you should aspire for. Admissions committee members want passionate students and well-rounded classes. So write about what you really want to do, provided it is logical and attainable, and articulate it well. (Check out our blog on articulating your career goals here).

4) You should only apply to a few schools. Years ago, applicants may have only targeted a few business schools. However, today my average applicant applies to 5 schools. The number of strong MBA programs is increasing. As more and more universities are investing in their business schools, candidates have numerous good options to consider. Simultaneously (and unsurprisingly), the applicant pool is becoming even more competitive, meaning that countless extremely qualified candidates are rejected each year. While it is true that MBA applications are time-consuming and each application is unique, successful applicants make the investment by applying to additional schools. This strategy ensures they are ultimately successful getting into the best possible school.

Need help? We know it is a daunting process and Personal MBA Coach is here to help you! Founded by a Whartonand MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email at for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!
Read our analysis of the latest essay questions
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
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New post 17 Aug 2018, 08:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Are Your Applications Ready?
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With the first round 1 deadline in less than 3 weeks, it is time to check on your progress and make sure your applications are solid. For some, waiting until round 2 may be the way to go if you are not quite ready.

Unsure if your applications are ready? Here are 5 questions to ask yourself.

Do you have a well-articulated personal story?

Is your story clear? Does the reader walk away knowing who you are and what matters to you? Are the stories consistent throughout all of the application components? Your resume, essays, short answer questions and letters of recommendation should all include the same general message. Any inconsistencies are an instant red flag!

Is it clear WHY you want an MBA?

Have you thought out and articulated why you want an MBA? To get promoted or to gain “business skills” are NOT good reasons.While not all schools ask this question directly, all candidates should be able to explain (either in the essay or in the interview – if given the chance) the skills and experiences they hope to gain from an MBA and how they will help them attain their career goals.

Does your application include specific information about the target school?

Make sure that your essays include school specifics where appropriate, such as unique classes, programs, professors, etc. that you are interested in.Admissions committee members read thousands of essays every year and it is easy for them to determine who is genuinely interested in a school and who crafted a generic essay. Try to connect your background and interests to the things you would like to do on campus so there is a bit of personality.

Are your letters of recommendation strong enough?

One of the most overlooked areas of the application is the LOR section. Even if your recommenders are not comfortable sharing their letters, there are steps you should take to ensure quality.It is important to ensure your recommenders know your complete story and can write letters that help to corroborate that story.If your goals or story have changed as you went through the application phase, make sure to update your recommenders.

Are your essays strong enough?

Do you find yourself re-reading paragraphs because you do not see how they fit into the essay?It is a good idea to have someone else read your essays. Ask someone who is not extremely familiar with what you do on a daily basis. This will help to ensure you are talking about your experiences with the right level of detail for someone outside of your industry.Is each essay telling the reader something about you? While a story can often add to or even make a great essay, the goal of every essay is to convince the admissions committee that you will add value on campus (and beyond). Make sure every essay sends a message about what you have to add and think about how they all connect with each other.
Remember, if you have any doubts about your applications reading these tips, Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide.

Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

[url=https://www.personalmbacoach.com/\]Personal MBA Coach[/url] has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email scott@personalmbacoach.com for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!

4 Common Application Misconceptions

Personal MBA Coach’s Takeaways from 2018 AIGAC MBA Applicant Survey
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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User avatar
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
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Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post Updated on: 07 Sep 2018, 12:38
FROM Personal MBA Coach: The Clock Is Ticking
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As round one deadlines rapidly approach, Personal MBA Coach is here to help keep you on track. For some schools, such as HBS, you have less than 2 weeks to go. For others, there is still a bit of time to perfect your essays. However, that window is quickly closing.

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* Denotes early decision deadline
Most candidates will fall into one of three categories. If one of these describes you, check out these tips on your best action plan.

“My applications are nearly ready to go!”

If you read last week’s post, “Are my applications really ready?” and answered yes to all of the questions, then Congratulations! If you are lucky enough to be in this category, now is the time to dot your I’s and cross your T’s. Read through the requirements for each school you are applying to once again. Pay attention to smaller items such as short career goal statements, added videos and specific resume formatting requirements. Then, be sure to check off each element for EACH school. It is easy for something to fall through the crack. Check in with your recommenders to see if they have submitted and offer to provide them with any necessary additional information. Naturally, start with the school with the earliest deadline and take each school one at a time so you can look at the application as a whole.

“My applications are done but I have concerns.”

If instead you have doubts after reading our last blog, your ideal action plan is less straight forward and will differ by school. You may consider applying across two different rounds.
For some schools, particularly those with early September deadlines, you likely do not have time to make any major changes. Plus, rushed last minute changes often lead to mistakes. For most schools, there is little disadvantage to waiting until round 2. In fact, if this gives you more time to settle into a new job, finish off a major project, re-take the GMAT/GRE or secure a promotion, waiting could work in your favor.

However, there are some schools where your odds of success are considerably higher during round 1 or the early decisions round. For those schools, particularly if the deadlines are in October, you should consider whether you can make the necessary improvements in time. Plus, by narrowing down your round 1 list and focusing on fewer schools, your odds of success will improve. Then you can take extra time to perfect your other applications in round 2.
Personal MBA Coach Offers gut check packages and comprehensive packages to help.

"I am really behind on my applications"

Finally, if despite your best intentions, you have not started writing your essays, you may have missed the round 1 window. With few exceptions, if you have not made a considerable dent in your applications yet, you should consider waiting until round 2. When asked when to apply, I nearly always say when your application will be the strongest. An application thrown together in two weeks is not likely to fit the bill. In fact, I tell my clients that we should be doing little to no editing with the last 2 weeks. This is the time to proof and ensure your story flows together.

The packages may be your friend for round 2.

Need Help?Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide. Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email scott@personalmbacoach.com for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!

Check out other application tips!

Should You Get An MBA Now?

Personal MBA Coach's Essay Analyses
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 26 Aug 2018, 17:01.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 07 Sep 2018, 12:38, edited 1 time in total.
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New post Updated on: 07 Sep 2018, 12:40
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Kicking Off Round 2
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With summer coming to an end (though for those of us on the east coast it does not feel that way weather wise) and round two deadlines for most schools that fall in January, it is easy to put your MBA applications on the back burner. Don’t make this mistake! Whether you aren’t quite ready for round one or have always been in the round two camp, it is time to get started NOW!

Here are 5 steps you should be taking today!

1) Think about your personal story

We spend considerable time with candidates crafting a winning personal story. This is the most important part of the application and it can also be the hardest. I advise my candidates to start this process months, if not years, in advance! The good news? Everyone has a personal story.
So, what should you include in your personal story? This will differ for every candidate but across the board I can tell you, not everything! No one wants to read 1,000+ words with a chronological flow of your life. Instead, you must be focused, logical and unique.

This is also not the time to tell the admissions committee what you think they want to hear. Instead, think about what is most important to you, what drove your career and personal decisions and what single idea connects these all together. This is the hard part, so give it time.
No candidate is ever perfect, instead, we chart the best course we can with the hand we were dealt, and the best essays show this.

2) Fine tune and articulate your career goals

Most business school applications will ask you to think about your career goals. This is a very important question. Admissions directors want to know how you will make the business world better when you leave their campuses and they want to know what your unique mark will be. The best career essay will do two things:

· Connect your past career to your future goals. Whether you plan to take your career in a completely different direction, make a small career pivot or return to the same company post-MBA in a higher role, it is important to connect your past to your future.

· Include career goals that are focused and attainable. Your career essay should generally include both a short-term and long-term goal, though of course pay attention to the specific question wording. These goals should be specific. No one is going to hold you to what you put in your essay, but it is important to think through and convey your plan.

For more on drafting your career goals essay, read our blog post!

3) Finalize your school choice and schedule campus visits

Research the programs that best fit with your long-term goals and ideal learning environments. Pay careful attention to each school’s culture and the industries where its graduates are most often placed. Make sure that you have some “reach” schools, some “more likely” schools and some “safer” schools, especially if you want to ensure you get in this time around.

Next, schedule campus visits! If it is realistic based on your location and work schedule, you should try to visit the campus before applying. There is no better way to get to know a school and the admissions committee wants to see you are truly interested. Whether you visit or not, look for current students or alumni in your immediate or extended networks and take the time to talk to them now! Learn about their experiences, what sets their programs apart, etc.

4) Select and prepare your recommenders

Selecting the right recommenders is a very important part of the application process. It can be tempting to select the person with the most prestigious resume or the person easiest to discuss your business school plans with. I encourage you instead to carefully weigh your options and choose recommenders who know you best, can write great letters and can compare you to other applicants. For more on this, read our top five tips for selecting your recommenders.

Once you have selected the right person, you also have to prepare them carefully. We often hear of candidates who ask someone to write the letter, ensure it gets submitted and call it a day. This can be a big mistake! Your role in the LOR process should be much more involved than this. See our tips on arming your recommenders to write the best letters possible.

5) Customize your resume

A business school resume differs from a professional one. These resumes accomplish two different goals. For a professional resume, you want to show potential employers that you have the specific skills and experiences they are looking for. You are selling your ability to do the job. For an MBA resume, on the other hand, you want to show how you have been successful and demonstrated leadership. You are selling your future potential. Get more details on developing your MBA resume here.

Need Help?Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide. Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email scott@personalmbacoach.com for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!

Check out other application tips!

Should You Get An MBA Now?

Personal MBA Coach's Essay Analyses
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Originally posted by PersonalMBACoach on 30 Aug 2018, 12:03.
Last edited by PersonalMBACoach on 07 Sep 2018, 12:40, edited 1 time in total.
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New post 07 Sep 2018, 12:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: A Guide to MBA Rankings
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As you narrow down your round 2 school lists, you might be wondering how much emphasis you should place on business school rankings. These rankings are often a subject of much debate, especially since there are many and they differ widely. US News and World Reports and Bloomberg Business Week are just two available. Rankings drive a lot of revenue for publishers because they are such an important tool for business school applicants.

However, please keep in mind they are just one of many tools and not the be all end all! Below is Personal MBA Coach’s view on these guides: why they matter, how to use them and some important things to keep in mind!

Here are 5 steps you should be taking today!

Why MBA Rankings Matter:

By applying to business school, you are making a large investment in your future, with the hopes of improving your job prospects post-MBA. Naturally, many prospective employers and investors will look closely at where you went to school to evaluate your skills and potential. Right or wrong, these rankings can influence a school’s perceived education quality.

How To Use Them:

Get the lay of the land: MBA rankings provide a great overview of the business school landscape: what schools exist, where they are located and how they generally stack up against each other.

Gather statistics: Statistics such as average GPA, GMAT (in some cases GRE), years of experience, acceptance rate and starting salary provide good benchmarking data. Use the rankings to get a high-level idea of which schools could be potential options for you. However, keep in mind these statistics are averages across all students. Schools will evaluate your entire profile when deciding whether to accept you.

Find out unique areas of expertise: There is more than one “top” school. While you will get a strong general business education from many programs, schools have specific areas of strength. Rankings, particularly specialty rankings, can show you which schools send more students to investment banking or produce successful entrepreneurs, for example.

Keep in Mind:

Average ranking over time is much more important than year to year fluctuation. When you are courting that investor 10 years from now, she will not know what your school was ranked when you applied; pay closer attention to general trends.
While there are some schools that will be at the top of nearly all rankings, every ranking scale will give different results. As with historical data, the general trend is most important.

Rankings are not the only way you should evaluate a school. There are many other factors to consider when selecting your ideal schools including location and which companies recruit on campus. Attending a school near your target firms or one where your dream company recruits on campus could be more important to your career success than the school’s ranking.

Personal MBA Coach is a full-service admissions consulting firm that can help you design your overall strategy. School selection is a crucial part of the process!

Need Help?Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide. Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email scott@personalmbacoach.com for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!

Check out other application tips!

4 Common MBA Application Misconceptions

What Reapplicants Should Change
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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New post 14 Sep 2018, 07:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach’s 4-Month Round 2 Application Plan
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It is time to focus on your round 2 MBA applications! Most programs’ deadlines will be in January, which allows you ~ four months to perfect your applications. Many of our clients are well into the process, but we can help you develop an organized application strategy to avoid a last-minute rush.

Stay on track with this 4-month plan and save yourself from added stress in the future.

Need a more customized timeline? Personal MBA Coach has a strong track record of guiding clients through their individual circumstances.

Month 1 (September):

Finalize your list of schools: If you have a long list and want to narrow down, read Personal MBA Coach’s free MBA Decision Making Guide! This first step will allow you to maximize your research and demonstrate interest through networking and campus visits.

Schedule campus visits: Getting a feel for the campus that you could potentially be at for two years is always a good idea, if you can make it work. Schedule those visits now if your geographic position allows but don’t worry about traveling across the country / world as you do not have to visit every school.
Need to improve your GMAT/GRE score? The clock is ticking, so finalize those plans now to get where you want to be for your target schools. We offer customized tutoring to help you!

Did you know that your business school resume differs from your professional one? If not, now is the time to make the necessary customizations to be MBA ready. For more resume help, check out these tips!

Month 2 (October):

Start your essays. Having trouble getting started? Ask yourself: What is my story and how can I articulate my goals? A clear personal story and well-articulated career goals serve as a basis for a strong essay. Once you emphasize what makes you unique, you can construct a stronger narrative for why an MBA is essential for reaching career success.

Finalize strong recommenders. If you need help finding people that will best communicate your strengths, you can you read our blog on selecting your recommenders.
Draft your essays: The sooner you start writing, the more you will be able to perfect them later! We always advise starting essays well ahead of deadlines and finishing at least a few weeks ahead.

Month 3 (November):

Edit your essays: You will have to go through multiple drafts before you submit, so make sure you have enough time to focus on this step!
Schedule time to network: Alumni and current students are great resources to learn more about the schools you are applying to. Talking with them will make it easier to craft targeted applications that stand out. While more information about a school is good, make sure to not go overboard with this!

Month 4 (December):

Fill out your applications: Do not overlook the short answers questions. Make sure to allocate enough time to craft precise and focused answers.
Check for errors: If you have followed this timeline, you should not have to do any major work in the last weeks before submission.

Having a second or third reader can be helpful in catching last minute typos and other small mistakes that you may have missed.

Need Help? Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide. Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email scott@personalmbacoach.com for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!

Check out our tips for tackling these essay questions!

Harvard Business School

Wharton

Columbia Business School
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
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http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
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Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
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New post 26 Sep 2018, 09:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Your GMAT/GRE Questions Answered
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Testing, testing, testing! For better or for worse, GMAT/GRE is a key topic of conversation throughout the application process.

Below are the 5 questions I am asked most often about the GMAT/GRE.

Q. How important is the GMAT/GRE?

A. While these tests are not the be all and end all and are just one part of the application, they are very important. Further, they will play a more important role for some candidates than for others. If you are applying with a weaker academic record or from a field of study that is less analytically intensive, your score (particularly your quantitative scores) will be key to showing that you can handle the academic rigor of an MBA program. In addition, if you are applying from an overrepresented applicant pool, differentiating yourself with a strong GRE/GMAT will be even more important.

Q. What score do I need to get?

A. While naturally this varies from school to school, it is becoming less and less common to see students earn admission to top 10-20 schools with a GMAT score below 700. As Booth just published, the average GMAT score for the class of 2020 rose to 731 while Wharton’s average was 732 (the average GRE was 163 V/ 162 Q).
When determining your target score, researching average scores is a great way to start. While those with a very strong profile, a unique background or from an underrepresented applicant pool could enjoy success with a below average score, it is becoming less and less common to see large numbers of applicants with scores more than 20-30 points below average succeed.

In addition, in some cases such as the ones discussed in the previous questions you may need to score 20-30 points above the average to even be on the same playing field as other applicants.

Q. What should I take, the GMAT or the GRE?

A. This question is much easier to answer; candidates should take whichever test they can score better on. Schools do not have a preference between the two tests and the GRE is becoming more common and average data is becoming easier to find. My advice is to take a practice test for each and see which one comes more naturally to you. Generally, if quant is a strength the GMAT may be your friend while those stronger in verbal tend to prefer the GRE.
Further, if you have taken one test many times and have not been successful, considering changing gears and trying the other test. Of course, you will need additional preparation for this new test, but this may be worth the effort!

Q. How many times should I take the test?

A. GMAT scores are valid for 5 years AND you can take the exam up to 5 times during a 12-month period. There is also a lifetime max of 8 tests and you can only take the test once every 16 calendar days.

Further, you can cancel your score and the report does not go to the school if you are not happy with the result. This change has led to candidates taking the exam multiple times. Our average candidate now sits for the exam 2 - 4 times (with some giving the test as many as 6 or 7 shots.) While this policy may seem great, it has caused average GMAT scores to rise, as more and more candidates cancel low attempts.

Q. How should I prepare?

A. Think about how you learn best and use this to inform your study plan. Do you thrive with personal one-on-one support? Do you learn best from a book or an online course? There are countless support options available for the GMAT so think about what would be best for you and plan accordingly. Personal MBA Coach feels that most applicants do best with one-on-one tutoring so that you can get targeted support in the areas where you struggle most. For this reason, we offer a variety of one-on-one tutoring packages. Check out our offerings here.

If you have other testing questions that were not covered here or need help with any aspect of the MBA application process, Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide. Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at 617-645-2424 or email scott@personalmbacoach.com for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your career dreams a reality!
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
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New post 03 Oct 2018, 08:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: 10 Sample MBA Interview Questions
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Invited to interview at your dream school? Congrats!


But remember, this is only the beginning! All of your hard work on the applications, essays and GMAT/GRE may have gotten you this far, but do not rest on your laurels! The interview is one of the most important parts of the process and one that I have seen far too many under estimate and under prepare for.

Practicing sample questions is the number one way you should be preparing for your interviews. Set up mock interviews with colleagues, friends, family and our team of former top 10 MBA interviewers for help!

To get you started, Personal MBA Coach would like to share 10 common MBA interview questions. These questions are taken from Personal MBA Coach’s custom interview guides and are based on actual questions our clients have received and our interviewers have asked during interviews with HBS, Columbia, Wharton, MIT Sloan, Stanford and more.

1. What do you think makes a good leader?

2. What inspires you?

3. What accomplishment are your most proud of?

4. What do you like to do outside of work?

5. What will you do if you do not achieve your target career goal?

6. Tell me about a time when you helped a co-worker.

7. Tell me about your career path.

8. How would your friends describe you?

9. Tell me about a time you had an innovative idea.

10. What did you think of X school when you visited?

In addition to practicing, be sure to research each school in detail, know your resume from top to bottom and prepare to clearly explain your goals and why you want an MBA!

Need help? Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide. Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.

Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
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Posts: 1421
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
How To Articulate Your Post-MBA Goals  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Oct 2018, 09:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: How To Articulate Your Post-MBA Goals
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With a few exceptions, articulating your post-MBA goals is a crucial part of the application process. Most business schools want to know how you will make the world better when you leave their campuses and what your unique mark will be.
As you begin to reflect upon and articulate your goals, consider these four key pieces of advice.
1) Be decisive.
While no one will hold you to what you write in your business school essays, you should generally be decisive when discussing your career goals. Pick a set of goals and run with them. Candidates should not expect to “find themselves” in business school. If you do have multiple ideas in mind, some schools are comfortable with understanding your thought process and decision-making criteria (we discuss this with our clients on a case-by-case basis). Most schools, however, will want candidates to have clear plans laid out before they arrive on campus.
You should generally include both a short-term and a long-term goal (though for some schools, there will not be space for both). These goals should be specific, naming potential companies and roles you hope to fill.
Your goals may very well change while you are in school and this is expected; put a stake in the ground for your applications.
2) Your career goals should be ambitious, yet attainable.
As valuable as an MBA is, you likely will not be running a department on the first day out of business school. Do your research and figure out what jobs are realistic for you. You can start by looking at career postings from companies in your target industry. Pay close attention to required industry experience, particularly if you are considering changing careers. This will give you a good idea of what role you might be qualified for immediately post-MBA. Then, with that role as a launching point, set out an ambitious path and long-term goal for yourself. This long-term goal is your opportunity to dream big and show how you will drive change in your future industry.
3) Share how you will be unique.
Even if you have a very common career goal, such as becoming a management consultant, you want to share with the reader how you will make your unique mark. Perhaps there is a specific area of expertise you intend to develop within the consulting industry or a sector you will focus on. You must go beyond simply stating what position you are hoping to achieve. Think deeper and share your vision for improving your chosen field or company.
4) Articulate passion.
A strong career goals essay will communicate passion for your future field. This does not mean that you need a long explanation for why you selected this career path, but as you provide the context and discuss your future it should be clear to the reader that this is a profession you are excited about. Sharing what drove you to this field and current innovations you are particularly intrigued by is one way to show such passion.
Remember, while there are some overused career goals, there is generally no right or wrong goal. Instead, career essays fail by not hitting on these four points.
Need help? Personal MBA Coach is willing to be your guide. Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, we regularly help applicants navigate their applications each year. We also conduct mock interviews with former M7 and top 10 interviewers on our team.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 10 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
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

_________________

Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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How To Articulate Your Post-MBA Goals &nbs [#permalink] 11 Oct 2018, 09:02

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