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Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA)

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Joined: 04 Apr 2017
Posts: 9
Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA)  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Apr 2017, 11:20
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. Advisor to a tech startup in my spare time


Goals: To move into a hedge fund and one day start my own hedge fund/fintech company.

Assuming i get decent recommendations, essays etc. What would you say my chances are?
Vantage Point Admissions Consultant
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Joined: 20 Apr 2016
Posts: 158
Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA)  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Apr 2017, 10:32
Hi there - nice stats! I'd say that your overall stats and experience put you in the running (good GMAT, nice academic background, nice company brand etc). Here's what I would advise you to focus on:

- Distinguish yourself from other finance folks (there are a ton). If you are a guy, this is even more important. Focus on aspects of your career / experience that may be different from others coming from finance (for goodness sake, don't write any essays that center on financial analysis).
- Focus on leadership / teamwork. I've heard adcom say that they are often concerned about those coming from trading because of how autonomous the job can be. I technically worked on a sales and trading platform before b-school and my group was highly team-oriented, so just make sure that's clear to the adcom if the same is true for you - don't let the adcom get hung-up on the semantics / assumptions. Highlight times when you've led a team / mentored / worked out a situation with a tough client, etc.
- HBS is all about "who you are" vs. just "what you are". Be sure to highlight what drives you, what has driven your decisions thus far in life and what is motivating you towards the future. I always have my clients focus their HBS applications on demonstrating their personalities and how that's clearly the personality / character of someone who is going to do something big - then give evidence (eg. big projects you've managed, change you've incited, ways that you've challenged the status quo, etc). You really need to dig deep for the HBS essay.

Honestly, I'd say that for you it will come down to the essays and how compelling of a case you can make. You're starting at a perfect time! I'd recommend that you get your resume in good order (b-school format; should be quite different from applying for a job format), start preparing your recommenders, get your story / brand straight and make sure you're solid on it (this will be the foundation for your whole app), and take care of any other little things over the coming months so that you can hunker down with the essay and give it the time and attention that it needs. Of my clients last year who got into HBS, most of them had over 20 versions of their essays and we made sure that they had feedback from several different perspectives. So plan on a big process, but all of that hard work can certainly pay off!

Best of luck! I'm happy to chat further if you like -

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Re: Profile Evaluation (for Harvard MBA) &nbs [#permalink] 07 Apr 2017, 10:32
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