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The Bigger Picture: Turn Envy into Inspiration [#permalink]

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New post 19 Sep 2017, 04:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: The Bigger Picture: Turn Envy into Inspiration
Envy gets a bad rap. It all began in the Bible, where the tenth commandment reads, “you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife or belongings.” Following that commandment essentially means that you banish all envy from your life. Shakespeare agreed, writing that jealousy is the “green eyed monster.”  We generally don’t feel good when we envy someone and it can be embarrassing to admit that we feel envy. It’s such a powerful emotion that it can make people nasty and hateful.

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It’s hard to completely squash out envy. What are we to do if we really wish we had that person’s car…house…credential…job…spouse…life…? Is it really so terrible to aspire to something different? Is it truly wrong to like what others have, are and do? In my opinion, it’s only a bad thing if we treat it as a negative, and turn that envy into negativity or become a hater.

I choose to transform my envy into inspiration.

If I pay close attention, my feelings of envy are clues into what I really want in life. It’s so critical to define our goals; if we don’t know where we are going, we float along and life just happens. And yet strangely…sometimes it’s hard to identify what we really want. By the way, I discuss how envy ties into going after what we want in my “Get More Done” 21 Day Project.

I often tell clients who are struggling to define career goals to tune into to people they envy. Focus in on that which they are literally jealous of and they will have clues into what they really want to do and be. I have a whole circle of people that I admire for different reasons, and I keep an eye on them because they inspire me to go where I want to. If I feel that itch of not liking someone, I take a closer look and often realize that there is something they are doing that I want to be doing.

It’s quite liberating to view envy as a positive signal and in fact, transform it into a tool that propels me to better.

Next time you feel envy, take a moment to dissect that emotion and consider whether there is something that you can pull out of it to inspire you. And if you are struggling to define what it is that you want in life, reflect on who you envy and why, and you may find clues.

What do you think? Are haters just gonna hate…or can we leverage envy as a positive tool and become something better?

 

 

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Michigan Ross School Receives Another Major Gift from its Namesake [#permalink]

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New post 20 Sep 2017, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Michigan Ross School Receives Another Major Gift from its Namesake
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The University of Michigan’s Stephen M Ross School of Business has $50 million new reasons to celebrate with today’s announcement that real estate developer and namesake alumnus Stephen Ross will make yet another major contribution to the school. The $50 million pledge brings the philanthropist’s total giving to nearly $400 million, and makes him by far the most prolific donor to the university.

According to a statement announcing the news, the bulk of this new gift will support career development programs for students, innovative action-based learning experiences such as student-run investment funds and new business ventures, and resources for attracting and developing junior faculty.

“It gives me enormous joy to continue to give back to the University of Michigan, an institution that had such a profound impact on my life,” says Mr. Ross in the statement. “I am extremely proud of the physical transformation we have achieved at the business school, creating modern, new facilities and places students and faculty and future leaders can thrive.

“It has become a world-class center of innovation and a magnet for attracting the best and the brightest students and faculty, and these new initiatives will even further enhance those efforts.”



The Michigan Ross School reveals that the new gift will create:

  • [b]A $16 million Student Success initiative[/b] that will help students develop career and professional skills, build a robust network of advisers and career advocates, personalize their learning journey, and access internships and career opportunities with leading companies around the globe. The Student Success initiative will help realize the vision of Michigan Ross as the most powerful career accelerator and best source of leadership talent in business education.
  • [b]A $16 million Stephen M. Ross Faculty Support Fund[/b] for faculty who develop academic innovations that advance the school’s commitment to action-based learning, interdisciplinary education and leadership development. The fund also will support expanded mentoring and coaching for junior faculty, prestigious junior faculty professorships and additional research support—all of which will help Michigan Ross attract and retain rising stars in business education.
  • [b]An $8 million Stephen M. Ross Student Investment Fund[/b] for academic programs and learning experiences in asset and investment management, including venture capital, private equity, commercial real estate and publicly traded securities. The fund will enable Michigan Ross to continue developing the world’s most innovative portfolio of student-run investment funds and build academic programs that accelerate student learning and career placement.
  • The rest, $10 million, goes toward completing and maintaining the Ross School campus.
“Now that we have a state-of-the-art, inspiring space for faculty, staff and students, our focus is on attracting great talent and creating the most action-based, transformative student experiences in business education,” says Ross School Dean Scott DeRue. “To help us realize our vision, Stephen Ross is once again directing his generosity to our school.

“Steve’s dedication and his unwavering commitment to excellence have greatly enhanced the reputation of our business school globally, and we are excited for the future of Michigan Ross.”

Mr. Ross signed the Giving Pledge in 2013, committing to give at least half of his wealth to charity. He earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Michigan Business School in 1962. He went on to earn a law degree from Wayne State University in Detroit and a master of law degree in taxation from New York University.

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Round 1 Interview Update from HBS Admissions [#permalink]

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New post 21 Sep 2017, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Round 1 Interview Update from HBS Admissions
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For those of you on pins and needles since submitting your application to Harvard Business School a few weeks ago, Chad Losee, director of MBA admissions and financial aid, has some good news regarding interview notifications: it won’t be long now.

In his latest update to the Director’s Blog, Losee shares that Round 1 invites will go out on October 2nd and 5th.  Whether you’re notified on the first or second day has no bearing on the strength of your application; the staggered notification dates merely spreads out the traffic on the interview sign-up pages, Losee explains.

On October 5th, remaining applicants will hear one of three things:

  • invitation to interview
  • release
  • further consideration
“By ‘releasing’ those of you who we cannot move forward in the process, rather than waiting until December to let you know—we hope to give you time to explore other potential options,” Losee explains, adding that, “For group 3), we would like to ‘further consider’ your applications in Round 2, and more details will be shared directly about next steps.”

In addition to on-campus interviews held between mid-October and mid-November, the HBS admissions team will also conduct interviews across the globe in Shanghai, Tokyo, Dubai, Mumbai, São Paulo, New York City, Bay Area CA, London, and Paris.

“Choose what’s most convenient for you,” says Losee, “If you aren’t able to travel, we will work something out via Skype.”

SBC’s Interview Advice in a Nut Shell
As you prepare for your interview, one of the most important tips to remember is to sound natural—not scripted—during the exchange.  Instead of trying to remember and include every last one of your memorized bullet points, focus on succinctly answering only the question at hand.

If you can get from point A to point B in a clear, logical way; maintain an open, friendly, and professional demeanor; dress appropriately; and have an inquisitive attitude about the school and all it has to offer students, you stand a very good chance of coming out of the interview with flying colors.

Good luck to all R1 applicants awaiting notification!

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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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Prove You Are Ready to Go From College to MBA [#permalink]

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New post 22 Sep 2017, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Prove You Are Ready to Go From College to MBA
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This post originally appeared on Stacy’s ‘Strictly Business’ MBA blog on U.S. News
Over the past decade, business schools have become increasingly open to admitting younger applicants, realizing that such candidates can make significant contributions to the classroom dynamic despite their lack of post-college professional experience.

It’s important to understand, though, that such candidates must demonstrate a high level of talent, academic strength and promise if they hope to persuade a top-tier MBA program to take a chance on them.

If you’re a college junior or senior wondering whether pursuing an MBA degree straight after college is the right move, you need to do some serious introspection. You must convince the MBA admissions committees that you don’t need those two-plus years in the workforce first. You’ll have to show that you come to the program armed with the knowledge, maturity and experience that most people take those extra years to acquire.

Also, know that some schools – such as Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business, Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and the University of California—Berkeley Haas School of Business, among others – have fairly firm work experience preferences, so make sure to check with the schools that interest you before making your decision.

Here are three key qualities you will need to demonstrate to admissions committees as a young business school applicant.

• Maturity: A key way to demonstrate maturity in your applications is to show that you have experience handling adult issues and problems and that you’re not intimidated by older, more senior professionals. Your letters of recommendation can speak to your level of maturity and focus, particularly how you compare to other people your age.

Choose recommenders such as a summer employer, internship supervisor or other individual who can objectively assess your professional promise and comment on your managerial abilities. Some MBA programs, such as Columbia University’s Columbia Business School, will accept a second recommendation letter from a professor.

Remember, maturity isn’t a matter of growing older – it’s a matter of growing wiser. Since you can’t focus on how long you’ve been doing something, instead demonstrate how you’ve grown, from your values to your view of the world.

This should go without saying, but make sure your MBA application process doesn’t include active participation from your parents. At this critical career crossroads, the admissions committee wants to see applicants who have demonstrated leadership and wisdom, both of which are hard to convey with parents chiming in at every step.

• Leadership: This requirement is always daunting for younger applicants, but take comfort in the fact that leadership doesn’t necessarily have to happen in a workplace context.

Can you show that you launched initiatives, programs or ventures of some kind? Were you a teaching assistant? Perhaps you started a small business while in school, led a nonprofit, founded and led a club or spearheaded a major fundraiser.

To stand out in the eyes of the admissions committee, you need to provide hard proof that you made a difference. But it’s not about the scale of your achievements – rather, it’s the fact that you made your mark.

Also, don’t neglect to mention teamwork. Your leadership experience may arise from an extracurricular activity, and sensitivity to teamwork and collaboration in any leadership story demonstrates maturity and people skills.

Make sure the admissions committee can see that you have lots of interesting experiences and insights that would allow you to actively participate in class discussions with stories that will benefit fellow students.

• Confidence: It’s fine to be ready for business school, but are you truly going to benefit from skipping those two years of work experience? Is b-school just a solution to the question of what to do after college, or is it truly a logical next step for your career?

Maybe you’re at a pivotal point in the company you started but desperately need to learn the general management tools to make it succeed. Or perhaps someone wants to recruit you sooner rather than later.

You’ll need to convince the admissions committee that you are ready for an MBA and that you have crystallized professional goals. Show how your background to date has given you a true taste of what you want to do with your career and that you’re confident that this is the best next step for you.

Your job as a younger MBA applicant is to search internally for what you have to offer. Think about what you want to gain from and what you can contribute to an MBA program.

If you can demonstrate maturity, highly focused career goals, leadership skills and enough life experience to contribute to an incoming class, your age or thin amount of work experience becomes far less important to admissions committees.

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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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Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Answering MBA Essay Questions Completely [#permalink]

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New post 25 Sep 2017, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Answering MBA Essay Questions Completely
As admissions consultants, we sometimes review first drafts of a client’s essays and are impressed with what the applicant has accomplished or are moved by a particular story, but we still have to let them know that their response needs to be overhauled. When this happens, our comments are usually along the lines of, “This is great, but . . . you’re not actually answering the essay question.”

Believe it or not, this is one of the most common missteps we see as extraordinarily talented candidates pull their materials together. They might be so intent on positioning themselves in a particular way or highlighting a certain achievement that they fail to directly respond to what their target program has asked, either completely or partially.

For example, Stanford inquires, “What matters most to you, and why?” In our view, the “and why” part is more important than the “what,” but many applicants overlook it when they begin to outline their responses. Kellogg asks, “Tell us about a time you have demonstrated leadership and created lasting value. What challenges did you face, and what did you learn?” We find applicants usually have lots to say about a time they’ve shown leadership, but they forget to mention the setbacks they had to overcome in the process or include a summary of what they learned from the experience.

So as you put the final touches on your Round 1 materials or get ready to buckle down for Round 2, take a step back and make sure you’re actually answering the adcom’s questions.

Remember:

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Until next time,

The team at Stacy Blackman Consulting

***Do you want to stay on top of the application process with timely tips like these? Please subscribe to our weekly newsletter and you’ll receive our expert advice straight in your mailbox before it appears on the blog, plus special offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

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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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Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Tuesday Tips: Emory Goizueta Business School Fall 2018 Essay Tips [#permalink]

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New post 26 Sep 2017, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Emory Goizueta Business School Fall 2018 Essay Tips
ImageThe Emory MBA program in Atlanta offers a variety of programs, including a one-year MBA, a business analytics program and the traditional two-year MBA. The program is designed to give students practical, hands-on experience to be “day one ready” for their careers. Prospective students start working with a personalized career coach before setting foot on campus, and Emory claims high rankings with recruiters.

When approaching the Emory MBA essays, it is important to be focused on your overall application strategy and clearly understand your own unique strengths and weaknesses. You will want to demonstrate your professional skills and personal qualities, along with clearly demonstrating that you are familiar with the Emory MBA program and that it is an appropriate fit for you.

ESSAY ONE

Define your short-term post-MBA career goals. How are your professional strengths, past experience and personal attributes aligned with these goals? (300 word limit)


This career goals essay asks how you will achieve your goals, supported by examples from your past. Rather than reciting your resume, focus on the key moments that have formed your experience, accomplishments and shaped your goals. This essay is most effective if you are able to clearly show the through line between your past experience, the Emory MBA program and ultimately reaching your short-term post-MBA goals.

ESSAY TWO

The business school is named for Roberto C. Goizueta, former Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, who led the organization for 16 years, extending its global reach, quadrupling consumption, building brand responsibility, and creating unprecedented shareholder wealth. Mr. Goizueta’s core values guide us in educating Principled Leaders for Global Enterprise.

Provide an example of your leadership – professional or personal – and explain what you learned about yourself through the experience. (300 word limit)


When you are asked to provide an example, the admissions committee is trying to understand how you think, act and behave in a specific circumstance. The best predictor of your future behavior is your past, and this question asks you to think about how the past has shaped your development as a leader.

Use a specific story as your example and make sure you provide detail about the situation, what you did, and what you accomplished. Think about the lessons you learned and the way you were able to grow as a result of the experience. To be thoroughly convincing, a recent example of a time that you used these learnings would be effective.

Because Emory is asking specifically about a leadership element based on the school’s namesake, this is also a great place to incorporate your research on Goizueta’s leadership programs and values. In researching the program you will want to take advantage of the formal programs available, from school visits to admissions information sessions, as well as informal networking with current and former students.

ESSAY THREE

Complete one of the following statements. (250 word limit)

• I am passionate about…

• The best piece of advice I’ve received is…

• The best day of my life was…

• A personal goal I want to accomplish is…


This essay is open-ended and provides an opportunity to express yourself. Starting with the topic you want to cover and then backing into the question you will answer is a more structured way to approach this essay if you are daunted by the options.

Think about what examples, stories and ideas you have communicated in the prior questions and fill in the gaps with this response. You have covered your career progress thus far and your goals, and you have described your leadership style. Your resume and recommendations will provide more insight along both angles. This essay is an opportunity to add something additional to your application and round out the admissions committee’s view of your profile.

Your passions can be from your personal life, community involvement or career. For example, if you have entrepreneurial plans you are most likely passionate about building a business or your specific business idea. The best day of your life might be when you ran a marathon, earned a promotion, or got married. The question about the best piece of advice you have received is similarly open. The last option, “a personal goal I want to accomplish is…” is the only option that limits you to a personal response.

OPTIONAL ESSAY

If you have additional information or feel there are extenuating circumstances which you would like to share with the MBA Admissions Committee (i.e. unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance issues or areas of weakness in application). Please limit your response to 250 words.

Ideally you have focused on your personal attributes and goals in the prior question, and can use this optional essay purely for anything you need to explain about your profile and application. For example, if you have periods of unemployment and need to describe how you spent your time, this is the place to do it. Other gaps might be a low GPA or GMAT, lack of advancement at work, or a recommender that is not a current supervisor.

To focus on one possible topic, if you do have unexplained gaps in your resume, how do you handle it? The ideal explanation is that you were doing something productive. That something productive could be traveling the world and learning more about yourself. It should not be sitting on the couch watching Netflix. If you were unemployed and still looking for work, perhaps you volunteered, pursued other hobbies, or took time to conduct informational interviews to learn about your career goals. Think about how you can frame your activities to show that you are motivated and responsible.

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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

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Forbes Releases 2017 Biennial MBA Rankings [#permalink]

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New post 27 Sep 2017, 12:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Forbes Releases 2017 Biennial MBA Rankings
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IMD, Wharton School, London Business School

This week, Forbes released its 10th biennial ranking of MBA programs, which are divided into three categories: top U.S. programs; top one-year, non-U.S. programs; and top two-year, non-U.S. programs.

As you’ve probably noticed by now, each major ranking has its own particular emphasis, and the Forbes ranking attempts to answer the question: is an MBA worth it?—based solely on the median returns on investment achieved by the graduates from the class of 2012.

“Our ranking of business schools is based on the return on investment achieved by the class of 2012. We examined more than 100 schools and reached out to 17,500 alumni around the globe. We compared graduates’ earnings in their first five years out of business school to their opportunity cost (two years of forgone compensation, tuition and required fees) to arrive at a five-year MBA gain, which is the basis for the final rank.”

University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School unseated Stanford Graduate School of Business to top the ranking of US-based MBA programs for the first time ever, with a five-year MBA gain of $97,100 (Wharton ranked seventh in 2015). With Stanford GSB now in second, Harvard Business School came in third, Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management and Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business round out the top five.

IMD in Lausanne, Switzerland, takes the top spot this year among the one-year MBA programs, up one spot from 2015. The school had a five-year gain of $194,700. “IMD caps its annual enrollment at 90 students, allowing for a very individual approach regarding career services,” Forbes notes, adding that as many as 70 companies work with the school annually to recruit IMD grads.

INSEAD, which is ten times larger than IMD with a class size of 1,055 in 2017, ranks second among one-year programs. “With a five-year gain of $150,400, the payback period is a brisk 2.7 years thanks to salaries five years of school of nearly $190,000.”

Spain’s IE Business School moved up two spots in the rankings and now comes in third, based on its gain of $145,400. With an annual enrollment of 547 students, Forbes notes that IE is the second-biggest international MBA program behind INSEAD.

The Judge Business School at University of Cambridge ($140,000) and  Italy’s SDA Bocconi School of Management ($138,100) round out the top five one-year MBA programs.

For the fifth consecutive time, London Business School tops the list for two-year international MBA programs. “Alumni of its class of 2012 realized a 5-year gain of $119,100, the highest of any 2-year program in the world, and it took the typical graduate 3.4 years to pay back their investment,” Forbes explains, noting that, “In comparison, alumni of Wharton, the top-ranked MBA program in the U.S., saw a 5-year gain of $97,100 and took 3.8 years to pay back.”

Spain’s IESE Business School takes the second position, also for the fifth time in a row. “With a five-year gain of $97,100, up 15.5% compared to 2015, graduates of the Class of 2012 reported earning $156,140 in salary and bonus, the highest first year compensation among our ranked two-year international programs,” the rankings reveal.

The MBA program at China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) took the third position, with a five-year gain of $95,000, up 32% compared to 2015. ” The main contributing factor is the Class of 2012 reported having less work experience than prior surveyed classes, and as such, lower pre-MBA incomes,” Forbes explains.

Meanwhile, HEC Paris and Spain’s ESADE Business School round out the top-five non-US two-year MBA programs.

For more on this story, read the complete 2017 Forbes MBA rankings.

 

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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

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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INSEAD Fall 2018 MBA Essay Questions [#permalink]

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New post 28 Sep 2017, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: INSEAD Fall 2018 MBA Essay Questions
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INSEAD has posted the following job and motivation essays within the Fall 2018 MBA application.

Job Essays
As the applications instructions state: The job questions are not essays. Hence, the number of words is not so important. People need to be comfortable writing 3 lines or 20. Some applicants work for companies that are well known and only 3 lines are sufficient to describe them; others work for small companies where it is more important to give the full picture.

Job Essay 1: Briefly summarize your current (or most recent) job, including the nature of work, major responsibilities, and where relevant, employees under your supervision, size of budget, clients/products and results achieved. (short answer)

Job Essay 2: What would be your next step in terms of position if you were to remain in the same company? (short answer)

Job Essay 3: Please give a full description of your career since graduating from university. Describe your career path with the rationale behind your choices. (short answer)

Job Essay 4: Discuss your short and long term career aspirations with an MBA from INSEAD. (short answer)

Optional Job Essay: If you are currently not working or if you plan to leave your current employer more than 2 months before the programme starts, please explain your activities and occupations between leaving your job and the start of the programme.

Motivation Essays
Essay 1: Give a candid description of yourself (who are you as a person), stressing the personal characteristics you feel to be your strengths and weaknesses and the main factors which have influenced your personal development, giving examples when necessary. (approximately 500 words)

Essay 2: Describe the achievement of which you are most proud and explain why. In addition, describe a situation where you failed. How did these experiences impact your relationships with others? Comment on what you learned. (approx. 400 words)

Essay 3: Describe all types of extra-professional activities in which you have been or are still involved for a significant amount of time (clubs, sports, music, arts, politics, etc). How are you enriched by these activities? (approx. 300 words)

Optional Essay: Is there anything else that was not covered in your application that you would like to share with the Admissions Committee? (approx. 300 words)

Video Interview Instructions
Shortly after completing your INSEAD MBA online application, you will receive an e-mail notification from Kira Talent with a unique link to complete 4 video interviews. Your link will be also available on your dashboard within the application system.

The video should be seen as a unique opportunity for you to share your passions, your motivations and who you truly are. The Admissions Committee is interested in obtaining an authentic view of you as a person, to see how you think on your feet and how you convey your ideas.

The video interviews do not replace the face-to-face interviews with Alumni.

Your application will be considered as complete and ready to be reviewed only once we have received your answers to the video interviews. Please complete your video interviews at your earliest convenience and no later than 48 hours after the deadline to which you are applying. We strongly recommend however that you complete this step before the final date to allow yourself some time to prepare for this exercise.

The MBA admissions overview link includes detailed advice from INSEAD admissions covering timing, practice, and technical requirements.  Advice direct from INSEAD adcomm:

  • Get ready by practicing. You can practice as much as you want. Practicing will enable you to convey authentic and genuine answers. Practice questions are not shared with the Admissions Committee;
  • Test your camera, your microphone, then forget the technology and look at the camera as if you were talking to the Admissions Committee;
  • Although we ask you to wear business or business casual attire, the Admissions Committee will not judge your look or your background;
  • You may want to prepare a notebook next to you to write down your key ideas; you will have 45 seconds to prepare each answer; you will then have 60 seconds to share each answer with the Admissions Committee.For additional information on applying, please visit the INSEAD admissions website.
For additional information on applying, please visit the INSEAD MBA admissions website.

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London Business School Debuts New Teaching Hub [#permalink]

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New post 29 Sep 2017, 10:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: London Business School Debuts New Teaching Hub
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London Business School, crowned by Forbes earlier this week as the top two year, non-US MBA program, has just announced the official opening of its new, state-of-the-art teaching hub housed within an iconic London building, the Old Marylebone Town Hall.

The new building, named Sammy Ofer Centre in honor of the late Sammy Ofer KBE, a celebrated entrepreneur and philanthropist, will increase the teaching space at LBS by 70% with its 37 seminar rooms, six lecture theaters, library and multiple breakout areas.

London Business School’s significant fundraising campaign, which garnered more than £125 million, made the development of the Sammy Ofer Centre possible. The school’s fundraising program was substantially supported with a £25 million donation from the Idan and Batia Ofer Family Foundation in 2013—the largest gift ever received by the school.

“I am confident that this wonderful new building will ensure the School is fully equipped to serve the next generation of students and to remain at the front rank of business education worldwide,” said Idan Ofer, himself an alumnus of HBS. “My father, who left school when he was only 14, was a great believer in the value of education, and in the duty of each generation of leaders to educate the next. I am sure he would be very proud to have his name associated in this way with the future success of this great institution.”

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UVA Darden Names Dawna Clarke Head of Admissions, Financial Aid [#permalink]

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New post 29 Sep 2017, 10:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: UVA Darden Names Dawna Clarke Head of Admissions, Financial Aid
The University of Virginia Darden School of Business has selected a very familiar face as its new executive director of admissions and financial aid with the appointment of Dawna Clarke, announced earlier this week. From 1990 to 2005, Clarke served in various leadership roles at the Darden School, including five years as admissions director and as director of alumni relations.

Clarke then moved on to serve as director of admissions at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College for 11 years. Clarke returns to Darden from mbaMission, where she recently served as chief MBA strategist and senior consultant.

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“The Darden School community is thrilled that Dawna is rejoining our team,” said Darden Dean Scott Beardsley. “She has an incredible track record of finding and cultivating global talent and a passion for leadership in the field of admissions.”

“I am honored by the opportunity and excited to return to Darden,” said Clarke. “I believe deeply in Darden’s mission and values, and I look forward to bringing my experience and ideas for innovations to find and educate the next generation of business leaders from all over the world.”

“Admissions consulting — and walking side by side with 20 applicants applying to multiple top business schools — has been a formative experience that has provided me with new insights and ideas that I will bring to my new role at Darden, which I hope will positively impact both the selection process and the applicant experience,” said Clarke.

As executive director of admission and financial aid, Clarke will oversee the recruitment strategy for admission to the full-time MBA and the Executive MBA, which offers an intensive global format, the Global Executive MBA, and sections in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the Washington, D.C., area.

She will also oversee Darden’s new Future Year Scholars program, a deferred admissions program for top undergraduate and fifth-year master’s students, and help grow cutting-edge dual degrees such as the MBA/Master of Science in Data Science program with UVA’s Data Science Institute.

Clarke will also drive the strategy to attract diverse demographic groups. During an award-winning stint at Tuck, the percentage of women increased from 25 percent in the class before her arrival to a record 44 percent of the class of 2018 and average GMAT scores reached 717.

“In addition to drawing praise for clear quantitative gains, Clarke was frequently lauded for her customer-centric approach to admissions,” said Ron Wilcox, Darden senior associate dean for degree programs.

Upon her departure from Tuck in 2016, industry publication Poets & Quants referenced three international awards she and her team received for best practices in MBA admissions.

Throughout her career in business education, she has interviewed several thousand business school applicants and reviewed tens of thousands of essays and recommendations. She has traveled frequently throughout Asia, Europe and Latin America, and she has a comprehensive knowledge of various international educational systems and multicultural issues.

Widely known and respected in the world of graduate business education, Clarke has served on multiple committees for the Graduate Management Admissions Council and the Educational Testing Service. She was also a member of the board of directors for the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management for 17 years.

“In my career, I’ve had the opportunity to work for nine business school deans across three institutions,” Clarke said. “I am so impressed with the incredible, positive momentum that Scott Beardsley and his team have brought to Darden. I’m eager to be a part of this remarkable leadership team.”

Clarke will assume the role on October 15th.

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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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SBC Launches a New Series: 21 Day Projects [#permalink]

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New post 02 Oct 2017, 05:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: SBC Launches a New Series: 21 Day Projects
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Have you ever heard the notion that it takes three weeks to form a habit? I’m a firm believer in the cumulative effects of small actions completed each and every day, but I know that lots of us need a little nudge to get them going in the right direction.

In that spirit, we’re launching a new series called 21 Day Projects. Each day for three weeks, you’ll receive an email with actionable tips that put you one step closer to whatever goal you’d like to accomplish.

If you are struggling with the discipline necessary to achieve your goals, take on the Get More Done Project and you’ll be happy to learn that habits of top performers can be replicated.

When hundreds of applicants share the basics of your resume, how do you position yourself in a way that is unique, authentic and personal? The Develop Your Brand Project will show you how.

Whether you are angling for a new job, a promotion, a spot in an MBA program or just looking to broaden opportunities, it’s all about who you know. Our Up Your Networking Game Project is for those who love to network and even more for those who hate it.

A business school resume is different from the one you use for a job search. At the end of three weeks doing the Create Your Resume Project, you’ll have a document that can help to sell you throughout your MBA application process.

Some admissions directors say that the letters of recommendation comprise the single most important aspect of your MBA application. Spend 21 days with SBC, read an email each day from the Letters of Recommendation Project, and learn how to elicit the strongest and most compelling letters from those who write on your behalf.

No matter which area you need help focusing on, subscribe today and you’ll be shocked at how much you can achieve in just 21 days if you truly put your mind to it.

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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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Don’t Compare Yourself with Other MBA Applicants [#permalink]

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New post 02 Oct 2017, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Don’t Compare Yourself with Other MBA Applicants
When you’re working on business school applications, it’s only human to want to compare your qualifications to others you know who’ve already graduated from — or are currently attending — a top program. You might think that their undergraduate schools, GPAs, GMAT scores and career paths may provide insight into what adcoms are looking for, and to some extent that’s true. Alumni of or current students at prestigious business schools do represent what those programs were looking for… in the year they applied.

The problem with comparing yourself to those who applied before you is that it’s truly like comparing apples to oranges. No two years are the same. The candidate pool last year is going to be different from this year’s. And you’ll only be directly competing for a spot against a slice of that pool anyway.

What will ultimately determine whether or not you get acceptance letters or dings is how the adcom views your qualifications versus those of candidates who are in similar demographic and industry/role categories. This year. Right now. Which is something no one has any insight into but the adcoms at each school.

Another problem with comparing yourself to MBA students or fellow MBA hopefuls is that you don’t know what you don’t know. Meaning, there is much more to a person than what school they went to, their past grades, their test scores and the company they work for.

You might not even be aware of their extensive community service involvement over the past several years or the volunteer hours they’ve dedicated to a cause that was deeply personal. They may have never shared the private stories they wrote about in their essays. You’ll also never have any idea what their recommenders said about them.

We know that it would be nice to get a better sense of your “odds of admission” by comparing yourself to others, and we know you might be especially tempted to do this after you’ve submitted your materials and have a lot of anxious time on your hands while waiting for interview invites. But unfortunately it just doesn’t work that way, because no two people are exactly the same.

On the bright side, you shouldn’t let yourself get discouraged if someone with the same “on-paper” qualifications as you didn’t get into their dream school in the past. You’re not them, so their outcome truly has no bearing on what will happen to you!

So when you feel the urge to start lining up your stats against someone else’s, remember this:

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Until next time,

The team at Stacy Blackman Consulting

***Do you want to stay on top of the application process with timely tips like these? Please subscribe to our weekly newsletter and you’ll receive our expert advice straight in your mailbox before it appears on the blog, plus special offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

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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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Tuesday Tips: INSEAD Fall 2018 MBA Essay Tips [#permalink]

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New post 03 Oct 2017, 04:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: INSEAD Fall 2018 MBA Essay Tips
ImageINSEAD, “the business school of the world,” is a dynamic, diverse and highly international MBA option. INSEAD is looking for ability to contribute, academic motivation, leadership potential and international motivation. Along with the basic MBA questions most other schools ask, INSEAD is looking for significant exploration of your career goals and background. Along with career aspirations and leadership experience, an international focus is important to INSEAD.

Along with this set of essays, INSEAD has a required video interview, which has to be completed within 48 hours after your intake deadline. INSEAD admissions tells candidates that “The video should be seen as a unique opportunity for you to share your passions, your motivations and who you truly are. “ Visit the INSEAD admissions overview for detailed instructions on the video essay and other components of the application.

JOB ESSAYS
Job Essay 1: Briefly summarize your current (or most recent) job, including the nature of work, major responsibilities, and where relevant, employees under your supervision, size of budget, clients/products and results achieved. (short answer)

INSEAD advises that the job essays are more short answer than full essay, and that candidates should feel comfortable answering in one line or twenty, depending on the depth of background and information needed to answer the question.

This question focuses on your current (or most recent) work situation. Though you may want to provide relevant context for your current role, make sure you are devoting most of the space to describing the details of your day-to-day responsibilities and oversight. If you are lighter on supervising others or managing a budget, you have the opportunity to highlight some key responsibilities and results.

Job Essay 2: What would be your next step in terms of position if you were to remain in the same company? (short answer)

Once you have described what you do at work currently, INSEAD asks for you to imagine what you will do in the future. Because you are ambitious enough to be applying to an MBA program like INSEAD, you are likely on a serious career track in your current company. If your boss has already talked to you about the next step this is an easy question to answer.

If you have not explicitly discussed promotion at work, what would be the next role you would ideally pursue? If you are pursuing an MBA because you want to make a career change or because the next step at your current company is undesirable for other reasons, this may be a place to describe what that next step would be and why you do not wish to pursue it (with more context provided in the long term goal section).

Job Essay 3: Please give a full description of your career since graduating from university. Describe your career path with the rationale behind your choices. (short answer)

This essay will likely be the longest of the set of job essays. INSEAD is seeking to understand your career trajectory and how you have grown and progressed through your career. Think about the choices you have made in your career, and how your past experiences have combined to provide you with your current skill set.

Even if you have a fairly straightforward career path you can take the opportunity to comment on some of the learnings from each position to create the story of your past, present and future plans and build an overall career narrative.

Job Essay 4: Discuss your short and long term career aspirations with an MBA from INSEAD. (short answer)

By essay four you have covered your current role at work, your hypothetical next step at your company and how you arrived at this place, now you can bring the story together to explain what you are pursuing an MBA from INSEAD.

While the best candidates for an MBA might be able to succeed without one, typically a top tier MBA like INSEAD is an accelerator for your career – introducing you to a broader network than you would otherwise have, expanding your skillset into new functional areas and exposing you to people from around the world.

Think about how you plan to use your MBA to advance your current career (or change paths entirely). If you did not attend INSEAD, how would you achieve your goals otherwise? Think of this essay as a thought experiment to show that you can plan two routes to one goal, while perhaps demonstrating the superiority of the MBA path.

Optional Job Essay: If you are currently not working or if you plan to leave your current employer more than 2 months before the programme starts, please explain your activities and occupations between leaving your job and the start of the programme.

If you are not employed at the moment, you will want to answer this question to show how you are utilizing your time without full time employment. Ideally you are currently involved in an activity that is going to further your career or personal goals at this time. The best answer is one that shows you are self-motivated and do not need paid work to continue developing yourself.

For example, perhaps you are volunteering in a non-profit that is related to your career goals. Maybe you are working with a friend on a start-up. Or you are consulting and building contacts in your industry.

If you are out of work only briefly or planning to take just a few months off before school starts, it’s also perfectly reasonable to be pursuing travel or other activities that develop your international awareness and perspective. However, make sure that your activities can tie back to your long-term goals or other key aspects of your application strategy.

MOTIVATION ESSAYS
Essay 1: Give a candid description of yourself (who are you as a person), stressing the personal characteristics you feel to be your strengths and weaknesses and the main factors which have influenced your personal development, giving examples when necessary. (approximately 500 words)

Strengths and weaknesses are a common topic for MBA applications and seek to reveal your level of maturity and self-awareness. This is an opportunity to highlight some of your skills and attributes that demonstrate leadership, teamwork or other qualities that will drive your future career success.

Examples aren’t explicitly required, but consider that the admissions committee is reading a number of essays and therefore concrete examples can help you stand out and lead to a memorable essay.

When describing weaknesses, you will want to focus on those weaknesses that you have taken concrete steps to address, or that have been a route to learning more about yourself. Often strengths and weaknesses are two sides of the same coin, in which case you can even tie your key weaknesses to your key strengths.

Because it is often difficult to write about one’s weaknesses without sounding overly humble or even as if you are positioning a weakness as a strength inappropriately, this is an especially important essay to share with others to seek feedback on tone and impact.

Essay 2: Describe the achievement of which you are most proud and explain why. In addition, describe a situation where you failed. How did these experiences impact your relationships with others? Comment on what you learned. (approx. 400 words)

This essay is an opportunity to showcase one of your most important achievements. Impressive achievements that stand on their own are great, but you will want to pay equal attention to explaining why these accomplishments are valuable to you. If you concisely explain the accomplishment and how you were able to bring it to fruition, you will have room to provide the context for your personal pride in the accomplishment.

If you don’t have an achievement that you think is incredibly impressive on its face, consider an example that demonstrates the activities you value. Remember, not everyone has sold a company or won an Olympic medal prior to business school!

The flip side of achievement is failure, and INSEAD wants to understand how you view both. When approaching any failure essay it’s important to use a real failure that has emotional resonance for you. An accomplishment framed as a failure will be easy to see through and will not demonstrate anything about your maturity or ability to grow.

Your failure should be real, and also something that led you to grow or learn. If you can describe how you have changed your approach as a result of the failure that is an excellent outcome.

The third part of the essay deals with how these experiences impacted your relationships and what you learned. Whether you were part of a team or the main impact was on a loved one, this part of the essay encourages you to step outside your own narrative of success and failure and think about how other people felt about your actions.

Most obviously a success likely led to happiness from a team or a manager, while a failure was disappointing to those around you. However, your particular achievement or failure could have led to a learning experience for your team, an opportunity for someone else, or a chance for you to be closer to another person through a team challenge. Think creatively about this aspect.

Note that your application to INSEAD ideally covers both the personal and professional. This essay could be an opportunity in this essay set to bring in a new angle on your profile through describing one of your most substantial accomplishments outside of work.

Essay 3: Describe all types of extra-professional activities in which you have been or are still involved for a significant amount of time (clubs, sports, music, arts, politics, etc). How are you enriched by these activities? (approx. 300 words)

Nothing is more personal than what you choose to do outside of school or work. What are the most meaningful pursuits you have spent your time on? You should both describe the main interests you have outside of your professional pursuits and explain why they are meaningful to you and why you spend time on them.

Ideally you can also explain how you will continue your involvement while at INSEAD and cite some specific clubs or groups where you see your interests contributing to the community.

Optional Essay: Is there anything else that was not covered in your application that you would like to share with the Admissions Committee? (approx. 300 words)

This essay is 300 words you can use for anything you would like to showcase and that you were unable to work into the rest of your application. Because INSEAD’s questions are quite thorough you may have covered all aspects of your candidacy and personal qualities in the other essay questions, in which case you can feel comfortable skipping this question (it IS optional). If you did not have a place for an interesting hobby, new aspect of your background to describe, or key accomplishment, it may be appropriate to use this space to tell that story.

It is far better to fully explain any issues in your application than to leave the admissions committee to guess what happened. If you have any challenging aspects to your candidacy like a low GPA or a failing grade in college, this is the correct place to address those concerns. Explain your issue clearly and focus most of the essay on the correction for the issue.

For example, if you had a disciplinary issue in college, spend most of the essay demonstrating that you learned from the experience and have been an ideal citizen ever since rather than focusing on the negative. Avoid blaming anyone else for your issue, and relentlessly show why this one incident is in your past and will stay there.

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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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The Bigger Picture: There is No Try [#permalink]

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New post 03 Oct 2017, 05:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: The Bigger Picture: There is No Try
Yesterday, I was speaking with a business partner who owed me some data. I had been waiting too long for the overdue analysis. As we were wrapping up the call, he said to me, “I will try to get that to you by the end of the week.” I laughed and asked, “But when will you get it to me?” He responded by repeating himself, “I said I’d try to get it to you by end of week.” I explained that I wanted to share the numbers with my team and was going to schedule a meeting to do so. I needed to know when he would actually get me the data, not when he would “try”.

When my sister tells me, “I will try to show up at your party….”

When my daughter says she will try to clean up her room…

When a friend texts saying that she will try to give me a call tomorrow…

I know what this means.

It means that they might try, but they probably won’t, and they definitely will NOT show up, clean up or call me up.

I know that we have all been taught to try our very best, but sometimes trying isn’t enough. Sometimes you need to go the Nike way and just do it.

This became clear to me many years ago when I heard Yoda say, “Do or do not. There is no try.” He really is so wise, isn’t he? He’s my hero.

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With many things in life, you can do it, or not do it. Period. No one cares if you tried. Although I do sometimes call out friends and an occasional business colleague, I am more likely to leverage this wisdom internally. I never say that I will try to do something. I make a decision. Is this something that I want to commit to? Yes or no…and then I commit…or not.

I admit to being a bit of an organizational nerd. I have ongoing lists of professional and personal tasks that need to get done every single day. The title of my to do list? “Do or do not. There is no try.” It’s my to do list, not my try list. So, if I say I am going to do it on that particular day, I do. It’s simple; it takes the decision making out of the equation.

Over the next week, listen to yourself. Do you catch yourself saying that you are going to try? What do you really mean by that? Would it be possible to turn your intention into action by simply omitting the word try and making a commitment to yourself and to others?

Oh, two more things:

  • If you want to see Yoda in action in a video we made, go here and wait until the end of the 30 second video.
  • I have launched a series of “21 Day Projects” to capitalize on the concept that new habits can form in just three weeks. Or, at the very least, you can get a lot done in that time.  If you want to receive tips like these to help you get more done, check out the “Get More Done” 21 Day Project.

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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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Political Climate a Factor Noted in GMAC’s 2017 Application Trends Sur [#permalink]

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New post 04 Oct 2017, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Political Climate a Factor Noted in GMAC’s 2017 Application Trends Survey
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Nearly 3 in 4 (73 percent) graduate business programs with 201 or more class seats report increased application volumes this year compared to 39 percent of the smallest programs (50 or fewer class seats), according to a new application trends survey from the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC). The growth among the larger U.S. programs is driven by a resurgence of domestic applications, offsetting declines in international applicants.

Regardless of class size, a majority of programs in Europe, Canada, East and Southeast Asia, and India report growing volumes in 2017, while fewer than half the programs in the United States are growing — with the exception of part-time lockstep MBA and Master in Data Analytics programs.

“Demand for graduate business education remains strong, especially among the largest programs, which tend also to be the most well-known programs with brand recognition,” said Sangeet Chowfla, GMAC president and CEO. “While non-U.S. programs are thriving, a strong economy and a disruptive political climate are likely contributing to the downward trend in application volumes among smaller U.S. programs this year.”

U.S. Political Climate Impacts International Application Volumes
Recent political events in the U.S. appear to have impacted application volumes from international candidates in 2017. Programs in Europe and Canada are about twice as likely to report growth in international applicants compared with the U.S. Across all program types, just 32 percent of U.S. programs report growing international application volumes in 2017 vs. 49 percent in 2016.

Conversely, seventy-seven percent of Canadian programs report increases in international applications (46 percent in 2016), as well as 67 percent of European programs (65 percent in 2016). Despite the Brexit vote, about two-thirds of programs in the United Kingdom have seen international demand grow.

Overall, the 2017 report findings show that international applicants represent 57 percent of U.S. application volumes, 70 percent of Canadian volume, 89 percent of European volume, 20 percent of East and southeast Asian volume, and less than one percent of Indian volume.

Domestic candidates remain an area of strength for the larger, well known U.S. programs. Sixty-nine percent of programs with class sizes of more than 200 report growth in domestic applications, offsetting the fact that only 38 percent of programs similar in size report growth in international applications.

Women Make Gains in Applicant Pool
The results of the GMAC Application Trends Survey Report 2017 show that women are increasing their representation in the graduate business school pipeline. Today, women represent 42 percent of the total applications received by participating survey programs, up from 37 percent in 2013.

Most program types have experienced an increase in the representation of women in the application pipeline. Specifically, among MBA programs women represent 39 percent of applications, up from 33 percent in 2013. More MBA programs report growth in female applicants (44 percent) compared with business master’s (39 percent), whereas the growth rate is similar for men — 40 percent for MBA and 39 percent for business master’s.

GMAC conducted its 18th annual Application Trends Survey from early June to mid-July 2017. The survey findings are based on a record number of responses from 351 business schools and faculties located in 40 countries representing 965 graduate management programs, including MBA, non-MBA business master’s, and doctoral-level programs.

Participating programs received a combined total of 466,176 applications during the 2017 application cycle. Ninety-two percent of all participating programs report that the applicants this year are similarly or more academically qualified than candidates last year.

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Chicago Booth Announces $75M Alumni Gift [#permalink]

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New post 04 Oct 2017, 12:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Chicago Booth Announces $75M Alumni Gift
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University of Chicago Booth School of Business announced today that alumni Richard and Amy Wallman have made a $75 million gift to the University, building upon their legacy of philanthropic support of students and faculty.

In recognition of this gift, Chicago Booth will name its academic high honors distinction after the Wallmans. This group of top students will be known as the Amy and Richard F. Wallman Scholars at Chicago Booth. The designation will be permanently bestowed upon graduating MBA students who earn high honors at Booth, as well as all alumni who have already achieved this distinction.

The school plans to use the gift to support a number of initiatives, including scholarships for students in the Full-Time, Evening, Weekend, and Executive MBA programs. This will allow Booth to recruit from a broader and more diverse set of students and offer expanded financial assistance.

“We have great affection for the University of Chicago – the Booth School of Business is world class, and we hope our gift makes it even better,” Amy Wallman said.

“The Booth School is very special to us not only because we met there,” Richard Wallman added, “but also because we have sponsored 26 scholarship recipients over the years and are delighted to have had a modest impact on these students’ lives.”

After earning her MBA from Chicago Booth in 1975, Amy Wallman began her career at EY and retired as an audit partner in 2001; most recently, she was director at Omnicare from 2004 to 2015.

Richard Wallman graduated from Booth in 1974 and began his career with the Ford Motor Company. He served as the chief financial officer and senior vice president of Honeywell International Inc., a diversified industrial technology and manufacturing company, and its predecessor AlliedSignal, from 1995 to 2003. Richard Wallman also served in senior financial positions with IBM and Chrysler Corporation.

“The transformative gift from Amy and Richard is a testament to their generosity and the endorsement of Chicago Booth’s enduring strengths, in our programs and our extraordinary faculty,” said Booth Dean Madhav Rajan.

“Maintaining and extending Booth’s prominence in research and enhancing the impact of our ideas on the world by training tomorrow’s leaders is essential for our continued success. The Wallman Scholars will be recognized as preeminent in this cadre of future leaders, modeling the potential and the spirit of their benefactors. I look forward to working with the Wallmans in using their gift to make the greatest impact,” Rajan added.

Funds from the gift also will be used to enhance Booth’s co-curricular programming, faculty research, and emerging priorities at the discretion of the dean.

“Amy and I were so impressed with Dean Rajan’s vision for the school; we hope our gift will help advance that vision,” said Richard Wallman.

“This is a unique opportunity to make a difference in the careers of Chicago Booth students for generations to come and express our gratitude to those who have helped us,” Amy Wallman said. “Our parents were great role models to both of us; they gave us the confidence that we could accomplish anything.”

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UVA Darden to Open Facilities Near Washington, D.C. [#permalink]

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New post 05 Oct 2017, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: UVA Darden to Open Facilities Near Washington, D.C.
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The new Darden School facilities in the Washington, D.C., area will occupy the top two floors of 1100 Wilson Boulevard in Rosslyn, Virginia.

The University of Virginia Darden School of Business has announced that it will open new facilities in the Washington, D.C., area. The new 40,000-square-foot space housed on the top two floors of a 31-story building with expansive views of the capital region and slated to open in spring 2018, was made possible by a $5 million gift from Sands Capital Management Founder and Chairman Frank Sands Sr. (MBA ’63) and CEO and Chief Investment Officer Frank Sands Jr. (MBA ’94). The 31st floor will be named the Sands Family Grounds in their honor.

“The Darden School is a special place and has been enormously influential in my life and the life of my father,” says Frank Sands Jr. “We believe Darden is poised to be an influential and positive force at the intersection of business, public policy and leadership, and our family is thrilled to play a role in helping to establish and grow the School’s presence in this critical region.”

To extend Darden’s educational experience, the space will include two tiered classrooms, flat classroom space, learning team rooms, open-study areas, a boardroom, conference rooms and office space. A large ballroom with views of the National Mall will serve as a food service and conference space. The Darden facilities will also include access to a 5,000-square foot rooftop terrace offering sweeping views of the area.

“The D.C. area has the highest concentration of both Darden and University of Virginia alumni, and we are grateful for the groundswell of support we have received across the region,” says Professor Greg Fairchild, associate dean for Darden’s Washington, D.C., area initiatives. “We’re building on existing relationships and forming new ones as we seek to cement Darden’s role as the preeminent graduate business school at the nexus of business and public policy.”

Head over to the UVA Darden newsroom for more details about this new space.

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3 Signs Your MBA Application Should Wait Until Round 2 [#permalink]

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New post 06 Oct 2017, 06:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: 3 Signs Your MBA Application Should Wait Until Round 2
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This post originally appeared on Stacy’s ‘Strictly Business’ MBA blog on U.S. News
Round one or round two – deciding when to apply for business school can weigh heavily on many applicants’ minds. In the world of b-school admissions, there’s definitely a lot of pressure for candidates to try to submit in the first round, when all the seats in the class are available and applicants are only compared against other early applicants.

You have numerous advantages if you apply in round one and receive an admission offer – from more time to prepare for school to the ability to start networking with your classmates early.

The most prepared applicants generally apply in the first round. If you have a solid application ready to submit in October, this is an excellent time to do so. But don’t expect your admission chances to increase just because you apply early. And don’t rush to apply if you aren’t ready.We advise clients to apply in the round that allows them to put together the best possible application. Here are three possible reasons you may be better off holding your application for round two.

1. You’re not fully convinced of your application’s quality. The admissions committee evaluates all facets of your materials, so make sure every element strongly supports your MBA ambitions.

Cast a critical eye over your admissions essays, making sure they succinctly answer the provided question. So often we review essay drafts in which applicants are so intent on positioning themselves a certain way or highlighting a particular achievement that they fail to adequately respond to what their target program has asked.

Pay close attention to editing errors, and make sure you have utter confidence in your test scores and letters of recommendation. It’s always better to wait than submit with only 90 percent confidence in your application.

A former client, Michael, was deep into his business school applications when, two weeks before round one deadlines, his primary consultant asked me to review his essays. He had great raw material about his distinct family background, impressive work achievements and extensive volunteer activities, but the essays needed more polishing to really shine.

Although Michael strongly preferred to apply in round one, we advised he wait and apply in round two. He took our advice and spent another three weeks editing and honing the focus of his essays. Fortunately, that extra preparation paid off, and Michael received an admission offer from Harvard Business School.

2. You’re considering taking one last shot at the GMAT. Even if all other aspects of your application are solid, a lower-than-average test score will stand out as a red flag at the most competitive programs.

If you’re extremely close to the score that your target schools generally require – say the average is 710 and you got 690 – think carefully before deciding to retake the exam. You may be better off focusing on your essays or coaching your recommenders instead.

However, if you’re not even in the ballpark, it’s time to buckle down and improve those test scores before applying. Applicants looking at ranked programs in the top 20 or 50 should check the average scores of admitted students to determine their personal target GMATscore.

Another case for delaying your application is if you’ve decided to take a college-level calculus or statistics class on the side and you want the grade to come in first to prove you can handle the quantitative component of the curriculum. Or perhaps you’re expecting a promotion to come through any moment and you want to use that in your application.

I always tell clients that great is better than now. Use the extra time to bump everything up and submit when all elements are as strong as possible.

3. You want to first experience the campus. Members of the admissions committee understand that it may be impossible for you to take time off of work – much less afford – to visit a campus that’s in a different time zone.

But if you have the means and opportunity, experiencing the school in person is the single best way to get a real feel for the learning environment and decide if it’s a good fit for you. Not only will the visit solidify your choice, but you’ll also be able to weave tidbits from that experience into your essays to demonstrate your serious interest in the program.

Unfortunately, for round one applicants, most business schools begin offering class visits after the first deadline has already passed – this is to allow new students to settle into the program first.

If you didn’t have a chance to visit in the spring but really want to see the school up close before making that final decision to apply, then holding your application for the second round makes perfect sense.

If any of these reasons fit you, your best strategy is to submit your application as soon as – but not until – you have it completely ready. Make sure all aspects of your application are the strongest they can possibly be, and never sacrifice quality just to get into round one.

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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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Surviving Your First Ding [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2017, 09:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Surviving Your First Ding
Last week, Harvard Business School sent out its Round 1 interview invitations, along with “release” notices to the majority of applicants. That means thousands of MBA hopefuls around the world recently received their first big fat DING.

While some people are able to easily shrug off this unfortunate news, others have a tough time dealing with what they see as “rejection.” If you are one of the applicants who didn’t receive good news last week, we want to remind you why you should keep your chin up.

First off, all of the top MBA programs are notorious for being extremely selective. It may be that out of every 100 people who submit materials, only 7 to 12 are accepted. In other words, it’s very much a numbers game when you’re applying to such competitive programs. There are only so many spots for an overwhelming number of thoroughly talented candidates.

As such, a past dean of HBS used to kick off his speech to new first-year students by stating that the school could’ve easily added an additional 900 candidates to the graduating class who were equally qualified. His point was that while admitted students were certainly accomplished and deserving, a little bit of luck played into their outcomes as well.

That may be hard to accept for people who have always reached every single goal they’ve ever gone after. But it’s the truth. Once you’ve pulled together a strong application and hit “submit,” the process is out of your hands. You will never be able to do anything about who (or how many people) you were truly competing against for a spot, who read your application, or what kind of mood they were in that day.

The good news is that your results for a certain school are only the results for that school. They have absolutely no bearing on what you’ll hear from other programs. So there’s no need to panic or to question your approach. You should remain hopeful that positive news from another school may be right around the corner.

Remember:

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Until next time,

The team at Stacy Blackman Consulting

***Do you want to stay on top of the application process with timely tips like these? Please subscribe to our weekly newsletter and you’ll receive our expert advice straight in your mailbox before it appears on the blog, plus special offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

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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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Duke Fuqua Welcomes Shari Hubert as Assoc Dean of Admissions [#permalink]

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New post 09 Oct 2017, 12:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Duke Fuqua Welcomes Shari Hubert as Assoc Dean of Admissions
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The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University has lured Shari Hubert from the Georgetown McDonough School of Business to serve as its newest associate dean for admissions.

Prior to Hubert’s position at Georgetown, which was her first in higher education, she was director of recruitment for the U.S. Peace Corps and has also worked with GE, Citi, BCG and Merck. Hubert earned her undergraduate degree in French from Dartmouth College in 1992, and her MBA from Harvard Business School in 2000.

“Shari stood out in an incredibly talented and competitive pool of candidates,” said Russ Morgan, senior associate dean for full-time programs, when announcing the news. “Shari is a terrific fit within our culture. She is a demonstrated collaborative leader with a track record of making the people around her better. Her former colleagues at Georgetown describe her as a perennial optimist.”

Morgan added, “I am confident that under Shari’s leadership our world-class admissions function will become even sharper, more focused and more innovative in attracting the very best students who will ultimately use business to change the world for the better.”

According to Fuqua admissions, when a new person joins the admissions team, they share with everyone in the office a list of 25 Random Things About Yourself. “As an admissions team, we already know the new hire’s professional and academic background, so learning these ’25 Random Things’ helps us get to know someone’s personality, background, special talents, and more.”

Duke Fuqua applicants do the same, and may be interested in learning more about the new associate dean of admission’s own random things.

Shari Hubert’s 25 Random Things:
  • My father is currently serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Uganda – very proud of him
  • I am a newly minted Auntie. My younger sister just had her first child – Charlotte “Charli”
  • I have a famous Aunt – she was the 1st mother on the Fresh Prince of Bel Air
  • I am a Virgo and totally live up to the definition
  • I was named after Shari Lewis of the “Shari Lewis and Lambchop” show
  • I had a near fatal kayaking accident in college – haven’t stepped foot in a kayak in over 25 years
  • I brought a pair of pink silk pajamas and a curling iron to a weeklong camping trip in the wilderness of Mount Moosilauke – clueless college student!
  • I consider myself a connector and enjoy coaching/mentoring young professionals
  • I love romantic comedies and action movies (Muriel’s Wedding and any of the X-Men, James Bond movies are among my favorites)
  • My favorite female actor is Meryl Streep; favorite male actor is Robert De Niro
  • My favorite music artists are Annie Lennox, Seal, Adele and New Edition– I have very eclectic tastes in music and shows
  • I enjoy Karaoke but am tone deaf
  • The most memorable place I’ve visited is Angkor Wat – very spiritual
  • The most beautiful place I’ve visited is the Amalfi Coast – breathtaking
  • I was recognized in March with a distinguished alumni service award by Harvard Business School at their annual African-American Student Union Conference – for my work helping young people pursue their dreams through the value of an MBA – very humbled and proud. LOVE MY JOB
  • I grew up in a single parent household with my mom. She was my hero – sacrificed her career to work as a full-time nanny to put me through college
  • I love Brussels sprouts and eat them every chance I get
  •  Despite my chosen career path, I am an introvert naturally. My Myers Brigg indicators are ISFJ
  • I still get butterflies when I have to speak in public or present to large audiences
  • My happy place is having a glass of wine, sitting on the couch after work getting caught up on my Netflix, Hulu and Sling TV shows (currently watching Handmaids Tale, Rake, House of Cards, Casual, Queen Sugar, Grace & Frankie, Ray Donovan)
  • I am an avid spinner
  • I have traveled to all but one continent – Antarctica is on my bucket list – hopefully will get there before the next iceberg cracks off
  • I am deathly afraid of horror movies and roller coasters
  • I am an early riser, go to bed early, and can fall asleep in any moving object even if I just drank a cup of espresso.
  • I could in theory become a vegetarian – love vegetables and crave them, but in practice I am held back because I love PORK even more
Hubert said she’s excited about being part of Duke and the unique community of Durham. “I have long admired Duke as a university, and The Fuqua School of Business, from my early days as a corporate recruiter, and more recently as a colleague in this wonderful world of admissions.”

Hubert says she is already impressed with the instinct around Fuqua to bring out the best in others. “Personally, I have been pleasantly surprised to experience that ‘Team Fuqua’ is not just hype, nor is it only reserved for students, but is a way of being that is fully embraced by staff, faculty and alumni as well.”

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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

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

Duke Fuqua Welcomes Shari Hubert as Assoc Dean of Admissions   [#permalink] 09 Oct 2017, 12:00

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