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Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA)

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Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 12:04
Hi everyone, my first post so bear with me. I'm planning on applying to the Harvard MBA admissions cycle in September 2017. I know its a bit early, but i want some time to organise myself especially because my job is so busy etc. etc.

so here is my profile:

Country: Australian citizen (although i am of Korean descent)

Education: BSc Mathematics and Economics at London School of Economics (UK) graduated with First Class Honours (ranked in top 10% of my year group).
MPhil in Economics at Cambridge University (ranked quite average in cohort).

Work Experience: Spent my last 3 years working in the Sales and Trading division of a mid tier American bulge bracket in London. Before that, internships in Big Four consulting, a major British bank and a small accounting firm (all in Korea).

GMAT: 730. Decent quant score, less good in verbal.

Extracurriculars:: President of a medium sized society during undergrad. Decent amount of community service as well as volunteer work with my company as well as in my personal life.

Age:27

Assuming i get decent recommendations, essays etc. What would you say my chances are?

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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 12:42
aphalleon,
Assuming your Verbal GMAT score is at or near the 80th percentile, I see nothing in your profile that would disqualify you for HBS and on the plus side, good 'branding' and a potentially distinctive diversity story (Korean Australian). Possible concerns are: Sales & Trading might mean no leadership and relatively less analytical exposure; community service without leadership is good but it won't differentiate you vis-a-vis the top applicants to HBS (their extracurrciculars will have leadership baked in). I would need to know more to tell you if you have the potential for a distinctive/compelling story that would turn HBS's head. I'd be happy to review your resume if you'd like to share it: paul@admitify.com.
--Paul Bodine, Great Applications for Business School, www.admitify.com/testimonials

aphalleon wrote:
Hi everyone, my first post so bear with me. I'm planning on applying to the Harvard MBA admissions cycle in September 2017. I know its a bit early, but i want some time to organise myself especially because my job is so busy etc. etc.

so here is my profile:

Country: Australian citizen (although i am of Korean descent)

Education: BSc Mathematics and Economics at London School of Economics (UK) graduated with First Class Honours (ranked in top 10% of my year group).
MPhil in Economics at Cambridge University (ranked quite average in cohort).

Work Experience: Spent my last 3 years working in the Sales and Trading division of a mid tier American bulge bracket in London. Before that, internships in Big Four consulting, a major British bank and a small accounting firm (all in Korea).

GMAT: 730. Decent quant score, less good in verbal.

Extracurriculars:: President of a medium sized society during undergrad. Decent amount of community service as well as volunteer work with my company as well as in my personal life.

Age:27

Assuming i get decent recommendations, essays etc. What would you say my chances are?

Kudos [?]: 184 [0], given: 0

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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 19:59
Hi there,

For HBS, you'll need to think about what kind of impact you've had in leadership roles (both professionally and through your extracurricular activities) and what your story is. You have a pretty standard finance background - what differentiates you from all those other finance applicants? That's really what you need to ask yourself. By way of background, I'm an HBS grad - I would be happy to discuss further if you like (feel free to sign up for a free consultation at https://www.ivygroupe.com/contact).

Best,
Shaifali
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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) [#permalink]

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New post 06 Apr 2017, 03:56
aphalleon wrote:
Hi everyone, my first post so bear with me. I'm planning on applying to the Harvard MBA admissions cycle in September 2017. I know its a bit early, but i want some time to organise myself especially because my job is so busy etc. etc.

so here is my profile:

Country: Australian citizen (although i am of Korean descent)

Education: BSc Mathematics and Economics at London School of Economics (UK) graduated with First Class Honours (ranked in top 10% of my year group).
MPhil in Economics at Cambridge University (ranked quite average in cohort).

Work Experience: Spent my last 3 years working in the Sales and Trading division of a mid tier American bulge bracket in London. Before that, internships in Big Four consulting, a major British bank and a small accounting firm (all in Korea).

GMAT: 730. Decent quant score, less good in verbal.

Extracurriculars:: President of a medium sized society during undergrad. Decent amount of community service as well as volunteer work with my company as well as in my personal life.

Age:27

Assuming i get decent recommendations, essays etc. What would you say my chances are?


Thank you for the detailed profile information. This is absolutely not too early to begin so it's great to be posting here.

I will compare you to other applicants I have worked with both in London (I just held an event there recently actually so I'll have to invite you next time) and from Australia.

Your stats are pretty good overall. What was your raw quant score?

The reality is sales and trading is not the best pre-MBA experience and even less so at HBS, not to burst your bubble. I still work with a lot of traders and place them into top M7 schools every year, but HBS would require your story to have something else to beat out the others applying. The average GMAT is 730 after all and for an Asian male trader that number is higher.

I would love to explore it further and give you straightforward feedback. Email your resume and test score breakdown to scott@personalmbacoach.com and we can schedule time to chat.

www.personalmbacoach.com

Best,
Scott
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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) [#permalink]

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New post 11 Apr 2017, 00:56
By no means is it too early to post here, there's a great deal that can be done at this stage. Sales and trading is not optimal preparation, but think about maybe how you have demonstrated leadership within that context. The way I have approached it in the past is think about what you have led in terms of process improvement, training, etc. What is the medium sized society that you were president of? Would be good to know what else you have going in terms of leadership. But I think the most important thing you need to dial in on is what your *unique contribution* would be. What makes you irreplaceable? Could be the unique perspective that you bring as a Korean Australian, or something else about your background or perspective. Would be even better if this unique contribution was something that has helped you add value in previous group settings.

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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) [#permalink]

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New post 11 Apr 2017, 19:14
Now's actually the perfect time to get started with the application process! It's a marathon, not a sprint! So there's a lot to like about your profile - international experience, great undergrad stats, solid GMAT, etc. - but I think that HBS may be tough for you, based on the information you provided, for many of the same reasons echoed above. Are you a trader or sales guy or do you have another function within the sales & trading division at your bank? What your actual role and experience have been could move the needle quite a bit.

All that's not to say that you shouldn't apply to HBS (it's a reach for most applicants after all), but it shouldn't be the only school you apply to if you're committed to getting an MBA. Above all else, HBS looks for a track record of leadership, both at work and outside of work. That can come in many shapes and sizes but it needs to be a consistent theme throughout your application. So as you continue to evaluate your application strategy, I would encourage you to think about what that narrative is for you (i.e. what drives you, how have you led teams/projects/initiatives in the past, etc.) In my experience, applicants with those compelling stories are the ones who break through the clutter of 9,000+ applications that the HBS adcom reviews every year.

So for you, my advice would be to re-take the GMAT and see if you can eek another 20 points or so out of it (it sounds like you have upside in your verbal anyways), see what you can do to build out your extra-curricular profile with some tangible leadership experience, and then start looking into some other great MBA programs that could help you hedge your bets on HBS.

I'm happy to chat further about all of this if you'd like! You can sign up for a free consultation here. I know the application process can seem daunting but starting early is a great way to make it all more manageable. Best of luck to you!

Kindly,
Melody
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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) [#permalink]

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New post 23 Apr 2017, 17:47
You have a nice profile with a few standouts, so you will be in play at HBS. But to get over the top you will probably need to really come correct in your application. Think of ways in your profile you can stand out particularly those that revolve around leadership, which is always a major key for admissions at HBS
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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA)   [#permalink] 23 Apr 2017, 17:47
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