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Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog

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Why ‘Find Your Passion’ is Bogus Career Advice  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Nov 2019, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Why ‘Find Your Passion’ is Bogus Career Advice
Not that long ago, most workers were like Fred Flintstone. When the bugle blew at the end of a shift, you punched out and called it a day. Work wasn’t supposed to be meaningful or fulfilling. It was something you did to put food on the table and keep a roof overhead.

That’s definitely not the case today. In fact, for years, we’ve heard that we need to “find our passion,” and the career path that will fulfill it. “Do what you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life,” they say.  Sounds great on a bumper sticker. But what if you don’t have a clue what your passion is? Does that make you a loser? Nope. Because find your passion is terrible career advice.

Don’t expect to “find” your passion. Cultivate it instead.
According to a Stanford study, when people focus narrowly on discovering their one true passion, they neglect other interests. Mantras like “find your passion” make it seem like once you find that spark, the rest should come easy because it’s “meant to be.” It also gives the impression that we each have a finite number of passions.

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But if we’re honest, we’re not that good at most things the very first time we try them. The researchers found that when people encounter inevitable challenges, that fixed mindset makes it more likely they will abandon their newfound interest.

A better approach, they say, would be to cultivate your interests or talents in multiple areas. Begin by homing in on the projects and activities that you enjoy at work.  Then, work to improve and grow in areas that engage you—forget about that passion label.

Happiness doesn’t come from matching your job to a pre-existing passion, Cal Newport points out in his book, So Good They Can’t Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love. He argues that you should focus on work that allows you to become more skilled at something meaningful. In time, that mastery enables you to appreciate your work.

As Newport explains in this interview, “ ’Cultivate’ implies that you work toward building passion for your job. This is a longer process, but it’s way more likely to pay dividends. It requires you to approach your work like a craftsman. Honing your ability, and then leveraging your value, once good, to shape your working life toward the type of lifestyle that resonates with you.”

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A successful career requires more than just passion.
You can be passionate about baking, skiing, traveling, football, etc. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you can parlay those interests into professional success. Passion is just one element of a fulfilling career. The career-focused non-profit 80,000 hours researched the predictors of job satisfaction and found that most people need these five things:

  • Engaging work (aka something you’re passionate about)
  • Work that helps others
  • Work you’re good at
  • Work with people you like
  • Work that covers your basic needs (fair pay and work/life balance)
As you can surmise, loving your work probably won’t lead to a happy career without those four other crucial factors.

In the end, it’s okay to make peace with the realization that you may never feel Steve Jobs-level passionate about your career. A sense of fulfillment can come from many sources. You can make a positive impact on those around you and live a life full of meaning.

Help out in your community. Start a side hustle. Focus on family. We aren’t identified solely by what we do professionally. Find other ways to feed your interests and enjoy the balanced life you have created.

***

Did you enjoy this post?  It originally appeared on the Blacklight, our new newsletter for professionals.  the Blacklight aims to illuminate with every dispatch that lands in your inbox. If you’re thirsty for guidance to help you slay it at work or as a student and move your goalposts closer, sign up today!

The post Why ‘Find Your Passion’ is Bogus Career Advice appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
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Advice from Former MBA Admissions Officers  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Dec 2019, 11:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Advice from Former MBA Admissions Officers
You probably already know that we have a diverse group of MBAs on the Stacy Blackman Consulting team. We each bring something unique to the table that can benefit the rest of our staff (and our clients!). This week we thought the timing was right to highlight consultants who have previous adcom experience. We’re proud to have former MBA admissions officers from all of the top MBA programs on our team!

In addition to directly advising applicants, our ex-adcom consultants help with Flight Test reviews for each of our All-In clients. They also contribute their inside knowledge of the admissions process to our internal message boards (so that our entire team can benefit from their experience). Furthermore, they also weigh in on program-specific or client-specific questions when the need arises.

We asked these valuable resources to share their insights with those of you gearing up to submit your materials in Round 2. Here’s (some of) what our former MBA admissions officers on the team had to say. We’ll cover the rest in a future post, so stay tuned.

Did you know…?
  • The adcom will spend about 20 minutes in total reading all of your application materials.
  • During the early part of the screening process in each round, adcom members may review as many as 50 to 100 applications per day. Details and unique stories about your background can make you stand out from the crowd.
  • At least two individuals read each application: either two adcom members or a contract reader does the first pass, followed by an adcom member.
  • Admissions teams will often compare applicants from the same industry, the same firm, or even the same office location. Your toughest competition work a few cubicles away.
  • The application questionnaire is one of the most overlooked opportunities to highlight your accomplishments. Many candidates copy text from their resume into the application. Instead, you should view it as an opportunity to add rich details and expand on your limited resume bullet points.
  • You can take the GMAT or GRE as many times as you want. Adcom members like to see you keep trying to improve your score (assuming it needs improvement).
Heed this sound advice when it comes to your applications (and life in general):

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Ready to get serious about your MBA applications? Take advantage of a free consultation with one of our former MBA admissions officers!

***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 exclusive offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

The post Advice from Former MBA Admissions Officers appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1720
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Eli Broad’s $100M Gift Will Create Broad Center at Yale SOM  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Dec 2019, 13:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Eli Broad’s $100M Gift Will Create Broad Center at Yale SOM
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The Yale School of Management has received a landmark gift of $100 million from The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, Dean Kerwin K. Charles announced today. This pledge—the largest in the school’s history—will establish The Broad Center, devoted to strengthening the leadership of America’s public school systems.

This gift will help create a tuition-free master’s degree program for emerging education leaders. It will also create advanced leadership training for top school system executives.

Charles began discussions with The Broad Foundation shortly after starting his term as dean on July 1. The plans that emerged fit squarely with both the school’s mission to educate leaders for business and society. They also reflect Charles’s long-held research interest in how to overcome barriers to economic advancement and human flourishing.



The intersection between business and public education
“Those outside our community may be surprised to see a business school dedicate a major program to public education,” Charles notes.

“But this is exactly the type of issue our school has always cared about—one where leadership informed by systemic thinking, rigorous analysis, and compassion can make a real difference for communities,” he adds. “We share this core vision with The Broad Foundation, and I am excited to see how the strengths of this school and the strengths of The Broad Center can combine to help us realize it.”

The Broad Foundation has invested in public education for 20 years. It has come to believe that schools alone can’t solve the inequities, indignities, and challenges facing students from underserved communities.

Leaders of the country’s urban school systems need rigorous insights and frameworks to address their challenges and create new opportunities. The Center will become a platform for reimagining how skilled management practices can improve the performance of public school districts. In turn, this will create benefits for schools, students, teachers, administrators, and communities across the country.

Yale SOM seeks to train leaders who are attuned to urgent needs, both globally and in their local communities. The school also supports leaders who engage in the work of management with passion, energy, and caring. These new programs at The Broad Center will continue to use management and leadership tools to achieve social progress.

The post Eli Broad’s $100M Gift Will Create Broad Center at Yale SOM appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1720
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Eli Broad’s $100M Gift Will Create Broad Center at Yale SOM  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Dec 2019, 11:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Eli Broad’s $100M Gift Will Create Broad Center at Yale SOM
Image
The Yale School of Management has received a landmark gift of $100 million from The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, Dean Kerwin K. Charles announced today. This pledge—the largest in the school’s history—will establish The Broad Center, devoted to strengthening the leadership of America’s public school systems.

This gift will help create a tuition-free master’s degree program for emerging education leaders. It will also create advanced leadership training for top school system executives.

Charles began discussions with The Broad Foundation shortly after starting his term as dean on July 1. The plans that emerged fit squarely with both the school’s mission to educate leaders for business and society. They also reflect Charles’s long-held research interest in how to overcome barriers to economic advancement and human flourishing.



The intersection between business and public education
“Those outside our community may be surprised to see a business school dedicate a major program to public education,” Charles notes.

“But this is exactly the type of issue our school has always cared about—one where leadership informed by systemic thinking, rigorous analysis, and compassion can make a real difference for communities,” he adds. “We share this core vision with The Broad Foundation, and I am excited to see how the strengths of this school and the strengths of The Broad Center can combine to help us realize it.”

The Broad Foundation has invested in public education for 20 years. It has come to believe that schools alone can’t solve the inequities, indignities, and challenges facing students from underserved communities.

Leaders of the country’s urban school systems need rigorous insights and frameworks to address their challenges and create new opportunities. The Center will become a platform for reimagining how skilled management practices can improve the performance of public school districts. In turn, this will create benefits for schools, students, teachers, administrators, and communities across the country.

Yale SOM seeks to train leaders who are attuned to urgent needs, both globally and in their local communities. The school also supports leaders who engage in the work of management with passion, energy, and caring. These new programs at The Broad Center will continue to use management and leadership tools to achieve social progress.

The post Eli Broad’s $100M Gift Will Create Broad Center at Yale SOM appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

Image
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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1720
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Vacation State of Mind  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Dec 2019, 11:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Vacation State of Mind
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Show of hands if you would move to France in a heartbeat if you could. There’s a lot to love about the land of the 35-hour workweek: 30 paid vacation days off annually, leisurely lunches—with wine!—on the daily.

Alas, the U.S. will never rival France in the work-life balance or vacation department. (A moment of silence, please, for our collective dashed dreams.) Expedia’s 18th annual study on Vacation Deprivation found that the U.S. took the fewest number of vacation days globally in 2018, tying for last place with Japan and Thailand.

The latest stats available from the US Travel Association show that Americans had 705 million unused vacation days in 2017. That’s up from 662 million the year before. Even sadder, 52% of employees left unused vacation days on the table at the end of 2017.

We’ve seen reams of evidence that happiness and productivity skyrocket when employees have adequate time off to recharge. Unfortunately, significant roadblocks—no time and/or financial constraints—remain in place for many of us.

But researchers from the UCLA Anderson School of Management have come up with a genius workaround. Professors Colin West, Cassie Mogilner Holmes, and Sanford E. DeVoe suggest this simple, affordable hack: frame your weekend like a vacation.

When (not) in France
In two studies reported in a working paper, the researchers instructed one group to treat the weekend as they usually would. To the second group, they urged participants to “think and behave in ways as though you were on vacation.”

They discovered that participants who treated the weekend as a vacation returned to work on Monday happier than the control group that spent the weekend in their usual routine. Sure, the “vacation” crowd did spend less time on housework and childcare and more time eating and getting busy. But those activities themselves didn’t account for the higher happiness score.

“West, Holmes and DeVoe teased out that it wasn’t that the vacation-minded were happier because they did fewer chores or spent more time on enjoyable activities. It had more to do with the fact that once nudged out of their normal weekend routine, they spent the weekend being more present in whatever they were doing.”

DO try this at home
We love need vacations because they force us to break out of our daily routines. We can indulge in fun or relaxing activities without any guilt that we “should” be doing something productive instead.

You don’t have to travel anywhere to be on vacation. Vacation is a state of mind. With a little effort, you can replicate those conditions at home. Slow down. Resist the urge to check work email. Give yourself permission to spend the afternoon reading a book or going for a hike. Why not check out that new restaurant everyone’s ‘gramming about? Your To-Do list isn’t going anywhere. Even if you aren’t either, you can still reap the benefits of a proper mental break that kicks off every Friday evening.

***

Did you enjoy this post?  It originally appeared on the Blacklight, our new newsletter for professionals.  the Blacklight aims to illuminate with every dispatch that lands in your inbox. If you’re thirsty for guidance to help you slay it at work or as a student and move your goalposts closer, sign up today!

The post Vacation State of Mind appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1720
Location: Los Angeles, CA
College Senior MBA Programs  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Dec 2019, 14:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: College Senior MBA Programs
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More elite business schools seek to recruit top undergraduates.
Over the past decade, business schools have become increasingly keen to pique the interest of college senior MBA applicants. They realize that such candidates can make significant contributions to the classroom dynamic despite their lack of post-college professional experience.

You can find programs targeting younger candidates at several elite schools. Newer options include the Chicago Booth Scholars Program and the MIT Sloan MBA Early Admission program. Columbia Business School also has a deferred enrollment program, as does Stanford Graduate School of Business. The HBS 2+2 Program has been around since 2007. Meanwhile, the Yale Silver Scholars program is even older, having launched in 2004.

College senior MBA applicants 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. Show that you come armed with the knowledge, maturity, and experience that most people take those extra years to acquire.

Here are three essential qualities you will need to demonstrate to admissions committees as a college senior MBA applicant.

Maturity
Demonstrate maturity in your applications by showing that you have experience handling adult issues and problems. Also, make clear that you’re not intimidated by older, more senior professionals. Your letters of recommendation should address your level of maturity and focus. In particular, they should show how you compare to other people your age.

Possible recommenders might include a summer employer or internship supervisor. You want whoever you chose to be able to objectively assess your professional promise and comment on your managerial abilities.

Remember, maturity isn’t a matter of growing older—it’s about growing wiser. Obviously, you can’t focus on how long you’ve been doing something. So instead, demonstrate how you’ve grown. This could cover anything from your values to your view of the world.

It should go without saying, but make sure your MBA application process doesn’t include active participation from your parents. You’re at a critical career crossroads here. The admissions committee wants to see applicants who have demonstrated leadership and wisdom. That’s a hard sell if you have 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 significant fundraiser.

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

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

In addition, make sure the admissions committee can see that you have lots of interesting experiences and insights. These will allow you to actively participate in class discussions with stories that 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?

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 real taste of what you want to do with your career. Demonstrate that you’re confident that this is the best next step for you.

Your job as a college senior 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 critical to admissions committees.

The post College Senior MBA Programs appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1720
Location: Los Angeles, CA
HEC Paris Leads FT’s 2019 Ranking of the Best Business Schools in Euro  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Dec 2019, 13:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: HEC Paris Leads FT’s 2019 Ranking of the Best Business Schools in Europe
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This year, HEC Paris has knocked London Business School out of the top spot in the Financial Times 2019 ranking of the best business schools in Europe. The FT publishes five main rankings each year: MBA, Executive MBA, Masters in Management, and the two rankings for executive education. Only schools that take part in all five are eligible for a full score.

Note that this is a relative ranking based on the aggregated performances across five rankings. Therefore, FT stresses that a good score in one or two does not automatically mean a better placing overall. The full-time MBA program at HEC Paris ranked 6th, but its EMBA ranked 1st and MiM took second place.

Per the Financial Times: High alumni salaries and pay increases for masters in management and EMBA graduates contributed significantly to [HEC Paris’s] overall success. But it does not score highly in every category — it has one of the lowest proportions of female faculty at 18 per cent, joint third-lowest on the table.

In this year’s ranking, INSEAD leads the field for its full-time MBA program. Meanwhile,  the University of St Gallen in Switzerland is top for MiM. Spain’s IESE Business School and IMD of Switzerland were ranked number one for customized and open-enrollment executive education programs respectively.

2019’s Best Business Schools in Europe
  • HEC Paris
  • London Business School
  • SDA Bocconi
  • University of St Gallen
  • INSEAD
  • IESE Business School 
  • ESSEC Business School
  • IE Business School
  • ESMT Berlin
  • Said Business School-Oxford
To determine this composite ranking, the Financial Times compiles a significant amount of data from the participating business schools, including average salaries, the increase in salary its graduates receive three years after completing their degree, and the percentage of graduates employed three months after finishing school. You can read the complete methodology for the FT’s European composite ranking here.

The post HEC Paris Leads FT’s 2019 Ranking of the Best Business Schools in Europe appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1720
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Our Ex-Adcom MBA Consultants Have More Advice  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Dec 2019, 12:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Our Ex-Adcom MBA Consultants Have More Advice
We recently talked about how Stacy Blackman Consulting has former admissions officers from all of the top programs on our team, and how these ex-adcom MBA consultants help with Flight Test reviews for each of our All-In clients. They also contribute their insider knowledge to our internal message boards and assist with program-specific questions. We asked these valuable team members if they had any advice for our readers getting ready to apply in Round 2.

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Here’s Part Two of what our ex-adcom MBA consultants had to say: 
  • For some schools (such as Columbia), fit and knowledge of the school matter as much as your qualifications. You still have to have the qualifications, mind you. But if you have them and don’t thoroughly know the program, it can be a reason for rejection. Know where and why you are applying!
  • Schools like to see a mention of you attending their events or speaking with their students (or both!) in your essays.
  • Programs have a lot more to offer visiting prospective students on campus during the school year versus over the summer. Plan your campus visits accordingly.
  • It is a good idea to have items and examples to discuss in your interview that are not on your resume.
  • For some schools (such as Kellogg), interviews are truly blind; your interviewer will have only seen your resume.
  • Connected alums can email admissions directly on your behalf without counting as one of your formal recommenders. (Tip: use this very sparingly!)
  • In a group interview situation (such as at Wharton), highlighting the ideas of others or effectively drawing out quieter members of the group is seen as a plus.
Ready to get serious about your MBA applications? Take advantage of a free consultation with one of our former MBA admissions officers! Learn more about our consultants here.

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 exclusive offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

The post Our Ex-Adcom MBA Consultants Have More Advice appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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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
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1720
Location: Los Angeles, CA
New STEM-Designated Concentration at UNC Kenan-Flagler  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Dec 2019, 19:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: New STEM-Designated Concentration at UNC Kenan-Flagler
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The University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School has announced it will offer a new STEM-designated concentration in business analytics and management science in its full-time MBA program beginning January 2020.

“Our focus is on strategic decision-making to prepare our graduates to use analytics to lead companies,” said Rajdeep Grewal, the Townsend Family Distinguished Professor of Marketing and a concentration leader.

“Our students will develop a deep understanding of business problems and the analytics skills to make informed, data-driven strategic decisions.”

The toolkit includes computational tools, predictive and prescriptive models, and statistical methods. The business knowledge encompasses business functions including finance, human resources, marketing, operations, and strategy.

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While building their course portfolios, students can hone their data analytic skills across business functions. These skills help students succeed in:

  • Traditional business sectors such as retailing, industrial markets, energy, real estate, and consumer packaged goods
  • Emerging sectors that include the digital marketplace, fintech, biotechnology and healthcare
  • New ventures that seek to exploit opportunities provided by big data in business-to-consumer and B2B markets
“At UNC Kenan-Flagler we continue to innovate so we can prepare students not only for today’s job market, but also for the future,” said Brad Staats, associate dean of MBA Programs and professor of operations.

Learn more about the new STEM-designated concentration and its course offerings, professors, employers, and key resources here.

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Write a Killer Resume for Business School  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Dec 2019, 09:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Write a Killer Resume for Business School
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Do you plan to submit a standard resume along with your MBA application in Round 2? If so, you’re missing a valuable opportunity to sell your candidacy to the admissions committee. Like a traditional CV, the purpose of the resume for business school is to make an excellent first impression. It should also persuade the reviewer to take a closer look at you.  However, the reader of your MBA resume will be different than the person hiring you for an investment banking job or an engineering position.

Rework your resume so that it functions more as a narrative about your career and outside interests—not a dry list of responsibilities and achievements. A resume for business school should focus heavily on MBA skills and traits such as leadership, teamwork, and international work experience. Some admissions officers consider your resume just as crucial as the MBA essays. The extra work you put into a resume for business school could make the difference between a ding and an interview offer.

#1: Shows Career Progression
Illustrate career progression by highlighting promotions or showing how you continued to cultivate your skills after switching to a new job. For example, if you have worked for the same company for five years but received two promotions, you should highlight all three job titles, with separate dates of employment and descriptions. Those descriptions should reflect increasing levels of responsibility.

Applicants who have been in the workforce for several years, possibly at various companies, may need to be selective in detailing professional progress. But how do you decide which experiences to include and which to ax? First, ask yourself if the work was meaningful. Then, determine if it illustrates a specific skill set or a significant accomplishment. Also, consider if it supports your career path as well as your future goals. Only include it if it makes sense for your overall story.

Demonstrate that throughout your career, you have picked up new skills, assumed new responsibilities, and developed as an individual. Emphasize that others have recognized this growth.

#2: Provides Leadership Examples
Although you’ll further hone your management abilities during an MBA program, the admissions committee wants to know that a foundation of strong leadership skills is already in place. Show when you united people behind a common goal, made use of other’s talents and abilities, instilled a vision, challenged the status quo, identified a new problem, or prioritized the needs of the organization above personal needs.

It’s important to note if you manage one or more people. Even if you informally supervise and mentor someone, it’s worth including on the resume for business school. Mention if you’ve taken the lead in recruiting, as it means you’re acting as the face of your company. This demonstrates that leaders at your company respect you and trust that you will represent them well. Remember, your resume is a tool to tell your story, so keep your resume focused on the experiences that highlight the story of you as a leader.

#3: Quantifies Results
It’s great to describe your responsibilities, but don’t miss the chance to quantify your results whenever possible. Sure, managing staff is interesting. But the fact that you led a team of over 30 employees and improved profitability by 25%, is something a reader can understand. By giving the reader a number, you provide them with the chance to see just what kind of leader you were and will be.

Also, keep this point in mind, recently shared by the admissions team at the Tuck School of Business.

Focus on achievements, not responsibilities. One way to differentiate between the two is to ask yourself—“If I Ieave this job, will the next person who takes my place be able to write exactly the same bullet point?” If the answer is yes, then there is room to improve.

Applicants often find it helpful to bullet point their accomplishments using the STAR method. This acronym stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Result. For each employment position listed on your resume, think of a project, initiative, or transaction where you made a meaningful contribution. Then describe the situation, your task, the actions you undertook, and the results.

#4: Avoids Industry Jargon or Acronyms
Never assume the admissions committee member reviewing your application is intimately familiar with your particular industry. Write for a lay audience, and avoid flowery or stuffy language. Use familiar words instead.  You do want to provide a snapshot of your functional skills. Still, the admissions committee will be more interested in the fact that you led a cross-functional team to develop a new version of your product than the fact that you coded in three computer languages to build the latest version.

To appeal to an MBA audience, an applicant must think beyond technical tasks. He or she must identify what lies behind those tasks that might reveal an effective business leader. Rephrase your accomplishments so that anyone could understand them. With hundreds of applications on their desks, the admissions staff has only a few minutes to review each resume. It should be immediately digestible.

#5: Looks Clean and Polished
Imagine someone scanning your resume for the first time on the 30-second walk down the hall to the interview. That person should be able to get a clear picture of the candidate – and that quickly.

Appearances matter when it comes to a winning resume for business school. Make sure to adhere to proper margins, spacing, and accepted fonts. Some applicants try to squeeze it all in by reducing the font and eliminating margins. This is an excellent way to ensure that your resume is not reviewed. No one wants to go blind scrutinizing resume number 207 of the day. Some business schools specify formatting requirements; if so, do not deviate from the requested format.

Admissions committees and alumni interviewers look for people who others will enjoy being around both inside and outside of class. Therefore, it’s also a great idea to include at least some brief mention of your interests and hobbies at the bottom of the document. A lot of times, it’s this information that interviewers use to break the ice when they first meet you.

Never underestimate the power of a well-executed resume for business school.  Use this opportunity to create a powerful first impression on the admissions committee and show why you’d be an asset to their program, and, fingers crossed, your future MBA interviewer.

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Find Zen While You Stay on the Waitlist  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Dec 2019, 12:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Find Zen While You Stay on the Waitlist
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If you were a Round 1 applicant this season, over the last few weeks, you might have received great news, upsetting news, or a mix of both— otherwise known as placement on the waitlist.

First of all, the waitlist is encouraging feedback. It means that you are qualified to attend the program. Your application and profile interested the adcomm, but it was a competitive year, though. Unfortunately, they couldn’t immediately offer you a place in the class. No matter the reason, the waitlist is still a tough place to be. So try to stay calm and adopt a zen mindset. This will help you accept what is while making any changes within your power.

Will I get in?
There is almost no way to know if you will get admitted off the waitlist. It certainly does happen, often, yet you have little information about the ranking of the waitlist, how many people are on the waitlist, or whether the school will reach the yield they are looking for with regular applicants. Therefore, remaining on the waitlist means requires comfort with ambiguity. Hopefully, you were admitted to another school and can decide whether to stay in limbo or not.

Should I stay on the waitlist?
The decision to stay on the waitlist depends on your interest level in said MBA program. If it is your top choice, you may be willing to remain on the list until school begins, especially if you are willing to move quickly and give up a deposit on a school that has offered you firm admission.

If the waitlisting program is not your first choice, or you would like to settle your MBA plans before school starts, you may choose to remove your name from the list. It is a considerate move for another applicant if you do so promptly, allowing someone else a chance at their MBA dream.

Can I improve my chances of admission from the waitlist?
You may be able to improve your chances. The number one rule of waitlists is to follow directions. The school has provided instructions about how to handle the waitlist process. Follow these directions to avoid negatively impacting your standing with the admissions committee. If the school tells you that no additional materials are required, no supplemental materials are needed, and you should not submit any under any circumstances.

If the MBA program does provide the option of submitting additional materials, apply a consistent application strategy to the task. The AdCom may welcome letters of recommendation, improved GMAT scores, or other essays/letters from you.

Carefully consider your strengths and weaknesses, and whether the following would be beneficial in your situation:

LETTER/ESSAY
Have you recently received a promotion at work, accomplished a personal goal, or completed an academic class with a high grade? If so, it may be worth writing a letter to update the admissions committee with your news. Try to keep your essay or letter factual and do not repeat information already included in your original application.

RECOMMENDATIONS
A supplemental recommendation may add information about you to strengthen your position on the waitlist. If you are involved in an extracurricular activity, know someone associated with the school, or can use a letter to enhance a part of your application, this may be the right direction to proceed in. Make sure your additional recommendation is brief, focused, and adds significant additional information to your overall profile.

GMAT SCORES/TRANSCRIPTS
Factual information like improved GMAT scores or transcripts from successful business-related classes could go a long way towards bolstering your chances.

While waitlist standing is frustrating, it is a positive indication for your application. In the end, you may receive final admission from your chosen program. In the meantime, do yoga, meditate, go for a run–whatever you can do to maintain your inner peace as you wait to hear a formal decision.

Good luck!

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Happy Holidays from SBC!  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Dec 2019, 05:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Happy Holidays from SBC!
[img]https://www.stacyblackman.com/wp-content/uploads/holiday-2019-734x489.jpg[/img]
Seasons greetings from all of us here at Stacy Blackman Consulting! At this time, we want to send our best wishes to you and your families for a wonderful holiday season. Looking forward to a phenomenal 2020 filled with happiness, good health and the promise of new opportunities!

Warmest regards,

[img]https://www.stacyblackman.com/wp-content/uploads/Stacy_sig.png[/img]

 

 

P.S: Round 2 deadlines are right around the corner…if you’re applying to Harvard Business School on January 6th but feeling a bit intimidated, don’t miss this terrific post published last year on the MBA Voices Blog on [url=https://www.hbs.edu/mba/blog/post/finding-the-confidence-to-apply-to-hbs]finding the confidence to apply[/url].

The advice is spot-on, and really, it holds true for any elite business school that you may be considering.

The post [url=https://www.stacyblackman.com/blog/happy-holidays-sbc/]Happy Holidays from SBC![/url] appeared first on [url=https://www.stacyblackman.com]Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting[/url].

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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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No Bitter Grapes from Charles Shaw  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Dec 2019, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: No Bitter Grapes from Charles Shaw
This knowledge nugget comes to you courtesy of the Blacklight. Enjoy!
Trader Joe’s has sold over a billion bottles of its Charles Shaw private label wine since hitting the shelves in 2002. Known affectionately as “Two Buck Chuck,” the wine is smooth on the palate and even easier on the wallet. TJs customers cart away cases of the stuff—it’s literally cheaper than some water brands. If you graduated from college in the last decade or so, you probably know the low-cost libation replaced beer kegs at parties across the country in the aughts.

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While you may have ample experience imbibing the brand, you may not realize there’s a real person behind the label. Charles Shaw, a grad of West Point and Stanford GSB, became keen on wineries during a small-business and venture class at Stanford. He wanted to start in the wine business upon graduating. But, as his wife Lucy pointed out, Charles had no money for such pursuits. She suggested he take his degree and go work for a bank instead.

At some point, the bank transferred Shaw for a position in France. While there, he fell head over heels with the Beaujolais-style wines that were all the rage. Eventually, he decided to leave the corporate world behind and dive into the venture he felt truly passionate about. Charles and Lucy moved back to the States, and in the late 1970s, started in the Napa wine business.

The Charles Shaw Winery, launched with money from Lucy and her family, produced some terrific, award-winning wines from its earliest days, and enjoyed considerable success for nearly 20 years. Unfortunately, a series of miscalculations, a production disaster, a pestilence, and a messy divorce caused the whole operation to go up in flames in 1991. Bankruptcy was the only solution.

Two Buck Chuck? Try Zero Buck Chuck
Four years later, a court-appointed trustee sold the Charles Shaw Winery brand, label, and name for $27K to Fred Franzia, owner of Bronco Wine Company. Shaw didn’t receive a penny from the sale. Franzia would go on to re-brand and sell the once chic label as an “everyman’s juice” in an exclusive deal with Trader Joe’s.

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When the bottles first hit the shelves, Shaw admits he wasn’t a fan, calling the Two Buck Chuck wines and the use of his name, “embarrassing and demeaning.” But over the years, his perspective has mellowed considerably, much as a fine wine does.

In a recent conversation with his alma mater, Shaw shared three lessons he’s learned from the failures of his namesake winery.

Lesson #1: Fight against rigid thinking
“My timing was terrific in terms of getting in there at the right time, but in the premium wine business, like in haute couture and perfume, it’s all about demand,” Shaw explains. He had become so enamored of Beaujolais that he went all-in on a varietal unknown to most Americans.

“What I should have done was throw things against the wall to see what would stick rather than just defining myself as a Beaujolais producer. I gambled on that niche. I wanted to be the light-red guy. But I should have made a chardonnay, a merlot, a sauvignon blanc, for example, and put them out there in small quantities, then watched to see if there was a demand pull. And when there was, I should have turned and run in that direction. That would have been so easy to do.”

Lesson #2: Be collaborative
When asked what he might do differently if he had the chance, Shaw says he would be more collaborative. His wife Lucy didn’t drink, nor did she even like to talk about wine. Some might say that makes for a doomed partnership in the wine business. “If you have partners, it’s really a good idea to have them buy-in. I was collaborative with the industry people, our other partners, but neglected the most important partner of all: my business partner and partner in marriage,” he says.

Lesson #3: Watch your expenses
Shaw advises entrepreneurs trying to get a small business off the ground to watch their expenses. “I know I paid all my employees on the high end for businesses in Napa Valley,” he admits. “We had a Cadillac health plan. But in a small business, you have to examine yourself to see if you’re tough enough. I know my competitors were.”

Still sanguine despite it all
Shaw spends his days running a database company out of Chicago, but he hasn’t given up on his vintner dreams. He made two vintages of rieslings at a leased winery in Michigan. At a world riesling championship in Australia, the wines took second and third place.

“We got beat by a German outfit that’s 700 years old. But financing is difficult, and I’ve been obstinate about not having partners and trying to do it on my own,” he admits. “So, we haven’t done very well.”

Regardless of the setbacks and failures, Shaw says he continues to learn from his experience. He also gets a kick out of the fact that college students adore Two Buck Chuck. His Stanford class reunion invited him to speak about resiliency and his journey toward retirement, with all its highs, lows, twists, and stumbles.

“That gave me the chance to look at all the things I went through, and I really enjoyed it,” Shaw says. “I used to be upset about Fred Franzia and Joe Coulombe [MBA ’54 and founder of Trader Joe’s]. But not anymore. I got a note from Joe last Christmas, from some fancy hotel in Florence. He’d sold Trader Joe’s to Aldi, the German guys, back in the ’70s, and he told me how many millions of cases of Charles Shaw wine they sold last year. I look at it this way: He’s out of it. I’m out of it. But Joe and Fred saved the brand, and the brand survives today.”

***

Did you enjoy this post?  It originally appeared on the Blacklight, our new newsletter for professionals.  the Blacklight aims to illuminate with every dispatch that lands in your inbox. If you’re thirsty for guidance to help you slay it at work or as a student and move your goalposts closer, sign up today!

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Stacy Blackman’s 2019 Year in Review  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Dec 2019, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stacy Blackman’s 2019 Year in Review
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How is it possible that we are saying goodbye to 2019 and ready to turn the calendar page to a brand-new decade? You know what that means…resolution time! Once again, we resolve to push ourselves to learn and grow. This fresh start spurs us to rededicate ourselves to both personal and professional goals.

With that in mind, we’re highlighting the SBC blog posts that resonated the most with our readers in 2019. We selected each to help you better prepare as you journey along the road to business school.

Now, without further ado…

Heed This Advice
Tips for a Killer MBA Recommendation Letter

Many applicants don’t invest time and attention in their reference letters. They select their references, direct them to the proper forms, and hope for the best. You can influence the quality of your recommendations. These are the key elements to keep in mind when choosing who should write your MBA recommendation letters.

Background Checks in MBA Admissions

Background checks in MBA admissions are more common for some schools than others, but their overall use is growing. Last season, one of our clients shared, “I am a little worried about the background check process.  How detailed is the search? How do they verify earnings, for example?”

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Two former MBA Admissions Officers on the SBC team–from Harvard HBS and Duke Fuqua–had this response: “It depends on the company the school hires. But, they will verify undergraduate degree and GPA as well as dates of employment, positions held and salary with the HR departments and/or direct supervisors.”

That X-Factor
Character Prevails for Stanford and Harvard Double Admits

We’ve worked with many top applicants this MBA admissions season who achieved this impressive feat—some with scholarships to boot. Here we analyze eight cases—and we have eight specific takeaways to share. Their unique admissions stories can offer some very clear lessons for prospective MBA applicants.

Successful Reapplicant to Harvard Business School, Stanford GSB

Many applicants face this crossroads—whether to forgo business school completely and focus on their current career path—at the end of an unsuccessful admissions cycle. No one can answer that question but you. However, the important takeaway is that one failed attempt does not mean you’ve blown your chance forever.

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See how SBC helped Ed Redden fix three common mistakes in his applications. These improvements ultimately lead to admissions offers from both elite schools the second time around.

Rock Those Essays
Stanford GSB Essay Tips for 2019-2020

Here at SBC, we have worked with hundreds of applicants over the years who have successfully gained admission to Stanford. As one of SBC’s former GSB Admissions Officers notes, “Stanford is looking for people who will make a big difference AND have a better shot than most in being able to execute. Stanford GSB students also seem to have this ‘X’ factor associated with them. Almost like an ‘unexpected’ trait, talent, or experience.”

Wharton School Essay Tips for 2019-2020

Beyond your credentials and experience, fit is important at Wharton School. Are you excited to join the Wharton community? How will you contribute? Wharton values diversity and teamwork and wants a class that will work well with each other.

One of the former Wharton Admissions Officers on our SBC team also shared that Wharton is seeking, “Solid applicants across all dimensions with emphasis on strong performance in GMAT and professional experience.”

Harvard Business School Essay Tips for 2019-2020

The most challenging part of the Harvard MBA essay is remaining disciplined. One of the former HBS Admissions Officers on the SBC team notes that “The essay really is make or break for HBS – so many applications have acceptable credentials up to that point of the application and it is the essay that sets the overall application apart and earns it the interview.”

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Kellogg School Essay Tips for 2019-2020

The Kellogg School is a close-knit community that values diversity and philanthropy.  Caryn Altman, a tenured consultant on our SBC team, previously served as an admissions officer at Kellogg and also holds an MBA from the school. Caryn describes the importance of pinpointing “unique points of difference” throughout your entire application—essays, resume, interview, etc.—since it can be challenging to distinguish yourself from other applicants of similar backgrounds.

Columbia Business School Essay Tips for 2019-2020

The kind of MBA student who is a good fit for Columbia and its setting in New York City will be those that plan to take full advantage of the unique opportunities on offer. As one of SBC’s former CBS Admissions Officers notes, “With CBS, it really is a holistic approach, but the fit is VERY important.  They want to know why CBS- that is a big part of their culture. They want to know you’re going to fit in.”

Smile for the Camera
MIT Sloan Cover Letter and Video Advice for 2019-2020

Students at MIT Sloan School of Management are engaged, creative, and thinking outside the typical MBA frameworks. One of the former MIT Admissions Officers on the SBC team shared that MIT seeks applicants who can navigate, “problems of progressive complexity, ability to adapt to ambiguous situations, independence of thought, humility/consideration for others.”

***

Thank you so much for making the Stacy Blackman Blog a top destination for your b-school research. We hope this resource continues to serve you well as you embark on what is definitely a life-changing, career-boosting journey. On behalf of the entire SBC team, I wish all of you success, health, joy, and continued growth and learning in 2020. See you here next year!

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A Business School Teaching Style for Every Personality  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jan 2020, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: A Business School Teaching Style for Every Personality
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Many MBA applicants make the same wrong assumption: No matter which top program you attend, the business school teaching style will be more or less the same.

While there are similarities across the top-tier programs, each school has a different teaching style. There’s the case method approach, lecture-based instruction, and the experiential learning and team-based focus approach. Some schools concentrate almost entirely on one style. Others employ a mixture.

Finding a fit in teaching style is essential. We advise clients to seek out a program where they can thrive and feel comfortable. However, applicants often push this piece of the puzzle onto the back burner. They tend to place more weight on factors like rankings, career center offerings, location, and culture.

Teaching style is often one of the last things applicants focus on. Yes, there are many different aspects of a program to consider as you select your target schools. But we believe this one should have more weight. After all, it directly affects not only your enjoyment of your two-year investment but the quality of knowledge that you walk away with as well.

The Case Method
Harvard Business School established the Case Method approach more than a century ago. With this method, students analyze and debate authentic management scenarios to create recommendations that the firm in question should employ in the future.

Harvard relies on case studies for approximately 80 percent of its instruction. Meanwhile, students at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business review more than 500 cases in a variety of industries and functions during their two-year program.

Considered the gold standard in management education by many, this method relies on lively class discussions with multiple points of view. A proper case analysis requires a lot of preparation from students. They must feel at ease sharing their ideas in front of large groups.

Gregarious personalities will thrive with this business school teaching style. Shy individuals, on the other hand, may cringe at the thought of showing up to class. This is not the learning environment for those who feel uncomfortable speaking in front of strangers.

Lecture Style
All top MBA programs include courses taught using a lecture format. However, some schools stand out for their significant use of this traditional educational technique. CMU Tepper School of Business uses approximately 50 percent lecture-based instruction. Meanwhile, the lecture format at the USC Marshall School of Business comes in as a close second at 48 percent.

The UCLA Anderson School of Management, Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management, and Oxford’s Said Business School use lectures about 40 percent of the time.

Fans of the lecture method believe this is the best way to concretely teach students the business concepts and theories they will need once they’re back in the workforce. This business school teaching style may also feel more comfortable for introverted students and those who enjoy absorbing the wisdom of a seasoned professor.

In some instances, the lecture approach is simply the most expeditious way to get the information across. Columbia Business School devotes about 40 percent of class time to lecture and 40 percent to case studies.

Experiential Approach
In recent years, more and more schools have expanded the experiential components in their curricula. These additions include more team challenges, simulations, fieldwork, and extracurricular activities.

A leader in this area of action-based learning is the Michigan Ross School of Business. Ross has a seven-week, full-time consulting project known as the Multi-disciplinary Action Project. First-year MBA students connect with corporate, entrepreneurial, and nonprofit projects both in the U.S. and abroad that require thoughtful recommendations on organizational challenges.

Harvard Business School has the yearlong Field Immersion Experiences for Leadership Development course for first-year students, which offers small-group learning experiences that are experiential, immersive, and field-based.

This hands-on approach to learning benefits those with an entrepreneurial spirit, as well as generalists who enjoy working in groups and want to learn how to get things done. Unlike the lecture and case methods, which focus on theory, experiential learning encourages students to learn by doing.

As you can see, there is much variation in how MBA programs present their material. Take a closer look at your personal preferences to find the best business school teaching style for you.

This previously published post has been updated for 2020.

The post A Business School Teaching Style for Every Personality appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Goizueta Foundation Gifts $30M to Namesake B-School  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Jan 2020, 15:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Goizueta Foundation Gifts $30M to Namesake B-School
Emory University’s Goizueta Business School has announced that it will receive a gift of $30 million from The Goizueta Foundation.  In honor of namesake Roberto Goizueta, former chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, the business school will invest the gift in three areas that closely reflect his vision and legacy. These include a global classroom, innovation center, and institute for business and society.

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Goizueta Foundation gift to support significant innovations
These include:

  • a virtual classroom;
  • the use of holograms to facilitate “pop-up” campuses at remote locations (with a focus on Goizueta’s Executive MBA and non-degree Executive Education programs);
  • virtual reality simulations for experiential learning;
  • enhancement and expansion of the business school’s highly successful entrepreneurship and innovation programs; and
  • further investment in programming focused on the impact of business on communities and social responsibility.
“Roberto C. Goizueta believed that it is business’ responsibility to use its resources – its people, its finances, and its influence – to do well in the world and to create a dignified quality of life for everyone,” said Erika H. James, John H. Harland Dean of the Goizueta Business School.

“Our school is dedicated to advancing that notion, and it is through that belief that we are changing the narrative on how people view business in the modern era. This generous and transformational gift will allow us to make significant and sustainable investments in key areas of focus and of growth that will benefit our students, our community, and our society.”

The gift is the largest in the history of the business school. It is also the capstone on a critical year in the Goizueta Business School’s history. In 2019, the school celebrated the 25th anniversary of its naming after Roberto Goizueta. Last year was also the centennial of its founding.

Read more about the Goizueta Foundation and its major gift to the school here.

The post Goizueta Foundation Gifts $30M to Namesake B-School appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Do Top B-Schools Have an International Experience Requirement?  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Jan 2020, 14:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Do Top B-Schools Have an International Experience Requirement?
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The ability to work well with people from other cultures has never been more critical. In response, business schools have continued to deepen their focus on globalization. While most schools do not have an explicit international experience requirement, MBA admissions committees seek curious, open-minded applicants who are eager to learn about the world at large.

Having meaningful work, study, or travel experience outside your home country makes you more desirable as an MBA applicant. After graduation, these global experiences translate into marketable job skills. Think adaptability, leadership, cultural awareness, and communication and language abilities.

INSEAD, for example, lists “international motivation” as a criterion for admission. But this does not mean you have to live or work abroad before you can apply. Instead, it means you seek out and feel comfortable with people from many different backgrounds.

The INSEAD blog describes international motivation this way:

International motivation is not necessarily about how many countries you have lived in. It is about your willingness to adapt your communication style around different cultures, your motivation to want to explore them, and your desire to effectively collaborate with people who may be very different from you.

Here are two key reasons why there is an international experience “requirement” when applying to business school.

The value of diverse perspectives
Look at the demographics of any elite MBA program and you will see a considerable number of non-citizens enrolled. A cohort of students from an array of backgrounds, cultures, and languages enriches everyone’s experience.

Having a broader perspective of global business issues in your arsenal means you bring a unique viewpoint to class discussions and team projects. It also expands your network as you tap into professional associations with your contacts in other countries.

MBA applicants should highlight any experiences traveling, studying, or working abroad. Schools want to ensure candidates can actually thrive – not just survive – in the program and work well with a diverse group of classmates.

INSEAD notes that you can highlight your ability to navigate this level of diversity can in many different ways. For instance, working in a multicultural team or for a multinational company. Or, dealing with international clients. Have you learned a foreign language? Even a passion for traveling in your spare time counts at INSEAD.

Adaptability is a requirement of today’s jobs
Have you already logged significant international work experience or education before business school? If so, you are three steps ahead of the game. When you immersed yourself in another language or culture, you likely encountered some form of culture shock. This process ultimately becomes a valuable learning experience.

You demonstrate real leadership skills when you break through communication barriers. And when you learn how business practices work in an unfamiliar environment, you adapt to new social and business norms and go beyond your comfort zone. These skills are a crucial differentiator in a competitive MBA applicant pool.

International travel and work experience can also offer a wealth of material for your MBA essays. Often, such experiences will spur new career goals and a broader vision for your life.

But what if you haven’t traveled a lot? You can still meet the international experience requirement by highlighting instances where you worked with people from other countries and cultures. Can you take on a work project that puts you in contact with international offices or teams? If you have the time and resources, think about traveling internationally in the months before applying. Research international volunteer opportunities or continuing education study abroad programs.

Your application probably won’t get rejected because you did not fulfill the suggested international experience requirement—if every single other component is compelling and persuasive.

In your essays, reference your enthusiasm for the school’s diverse culture. Discuss your plans to take advantage of study abroad programs. Mention your desire to take part in clubs or student groups that will boost your cross-cultural awareness. As long as you can show you plan to expand your mindset and increase your international exposure during business school, you should be fine.

The post Do Top B-Schools Have an International Experience Requirement? appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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5 Times it Makes Sense to Apply to Only One MBA Program  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jan 2020, 09:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: 5 Times it Makes Sense to Apply to Only One MBA Program
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Many schools consider couples applying together as a special case.

Deciding how many business schools to apply to is not a one-size-fits-all proposition. The majority of applicants target four to six schools. But some candidates choose to focus their energies and apply to only one MBA program. The reasons range from the personal to the professional to the financial.  Believe it or not, this single-minded approach can pay off—and increase your chances of getting in. Here you’ll find five scenarios where putting all of your eggs in one basket is a perfectly valid decision.

Location-specific requirements
Most applicants consider location when coming up with their school list. Sometimes candidates prefer an urban environment over rural. Or, a warm climate instead of cold. Often the location preference is industry-specific. For instance, applicants keen on finance often look exclusively at schools in or near New York City.

Do you need to remain in your current region? Maybe you want to live in a specific city. In these cases, you may need to apply to only one MBA program because it’s your only option. Perhaps you have the needs of a spouse or children to consider. If so, you may want to attend business school without uprooting the lives of your loved ones. The location requirement holds especially true for applicants considering part-time or evening MBA programs who plan to continue working while they earn their degree.

Company sponsorship
If you will attend business school on your company’s dime, you may have to contend with the caveat that they will only sponsor a particular MBA program or only a part-time program. If you plan to stay at the organization long-term, you might view the limitation on where you can earn that MBA degree educational subsidy is probably worth it.

Highly specific career goals
The decision to apply to only one MBA program can make sense for a person who has a very particular career path–say, healthcare, technology, real estate, etc. You might be very interested in a specific program offered by one school, or a teaching method, or a set of professors.

If you can determine which MBA program will likely connect you with the company you want to work for, and if that company only recruits at one program, then there’s probably only one place you want to earn the degree.

One former client, Jeremy, had a good job at a tech startup in Menlo Park. He only wanted to remain in that world – exploring other startups, networking with tech entrepreneurs and executives, and staying looped into that scene.

He also wanted to keep working a few hours a week during school. Stanford Graduate School of Business, an ambitious choice, was the only school that captured his heart. Fortunately, the gamble paid off. He ultimately received an admission offer from this prestigious program.

Joint application with a partner
While this demographic makes up a small percentage of applicants, it’s a significant one. You’ll need to explicitly convey to the admissions committee that you and your partner are both applying to their program. Many schools consider couples applying together as a special case.

Schools generally don’t want to break up families or relationships. If both candidates meet admission requirements, you may have an easier shot at entry. As you select your schools, research clubs and support available to married students. If you can, find out how other applicants presented their case to the admission committee.

Intuition
Some applicants have had their heart set on a single school since the idea of pursuing an MBA first started percolating. If you fall into this camp, you’ll have an easier time than many other applicants explaining why “X” program truly is the only place for you.

Showing how you are a good fit for the program, and proving your utter commitment to attending that school, reassures the admissions committee that you will accept an offer of admission if given a chance. The admissions committee always have yield in the back of their minds when making admissions offers. No school likes it when accepted candidates turn them down for a competing program.

As a bonus, it’s much easier to research and apply to only one MBA program. You have a single MBA application and can completely tailor it to one school, as opposed to creating several unique applications at the same time.

Whatever your reasons for having a single b-school on your mind, make sure that your academic and professional profile is in line with the requirements and expectations at that particular school. This approach requires pragmatism and optimism in equal measure.

A version of this post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.

The post 5 Times it Makes Sense to Apply to Only One MBA Program appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Re: Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jan 2020, 12:29
Some key findings:

Women with their MBA see pay gains of 55-65% of their pre-MBA salary within five years of graduation.
Companies with female board directors, experience on average, a 53% higher return on equity.
85% of MBA graduates attribute their MBA in advancing their careers.
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5 Tips to Help You Speak Up, Boost Confidence  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jan 2020, 08:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: 5 Tips to Help You Speak Up, Boost Confidence
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Every day, people in homes and offices across the country face a daunting decision. Do I speak up and risk getting penalized by or embarrassed in front of my friends, family, colleagues, or superiors? Or, do I remain silent, refrain from influencing a conversation or decision, and go unnoticed? In his stellar TED Talk “How to Speak up for Yourself,” Columbia Business School professor and negotiations expert Adam Galinsky offers viewers an answer to this time-weathered dilemma.

Through vivid and real-world examples, Galinsky offers viewers five steps to follow to increase their power, overcome insecurity, and boost their assertiveness in public settings.

“Each of us has something called a range of acceptable behavior. When we stay within this range, we are rewarded; when we step outside of this range, we are punished by being dismissed, demeaned, or ostracized,” says Galinsky, the Vikram S. Pandit Professor of Business at CBS.

“To speak up, we need to both understand our range and also learn how and when to expand it. The key thing that determines that range more than anything else: your power.”

Smart Strategies to Help You Speak Up
Galinsky provides a series of five tools we can use to help increase power and improve assertiveness.

  • Advocate for others (aka, the “Mama Bear Effect”). Advocating for others is more comfortable than advocating for oneself. Thus, people can speak up and use behaviors that traditionally fall outside their range of acceptable behavior. Doing so helps people not only begin to understand their ranges, but also know how to expand them.
  • Perspective-Taking.  Although this may sound easy, Galinsky calls perspective-taking one of the hardest – but most important – tools people have for better understanding and expanding their ranges of acceptable behavior. Research by Galinsky and others show that by better understanding what someone else wants, that person is more likely to give you what you want.Signal flexibility.  The most effective way to signal flexibility is by giving people a choice.  Providing people with a range of options and/or alternatives lowers their defenses and makes them more receptive to your point of view. Galinsky notes that this tool can work in a variety of situations, from selling a product to parenting a child.Gain allies.  People feel most comfortable when they have social support in an audience.  Galinsky advises that two easy ways a person can build allies are to be an advocate for others (see number one) and to ask people for their advice.Display expertise and show passion.  Displaying expertise garners confidence from others, which in turn increases one’s power and expands one’s range of acceptable behavior. Audiences grant greater permission for people to speak up when they display a passion for a topic.
Take more risks in 2020
“Speaking up can be risky, but these tools will help lower your risk,” says Galinsky. “Whether you’re offering advice to a family member or friend, or deciding whether to confront your employer about a pertinent issue at work, these steps will help increase your confidence, elevate your power, and improve your assertiveness by expanding your range of acceptable behavior.”

***

We have reposted this previously published blog entry because it offers valuable—and actionable—insight to help you become the best version of yourself in 2020!
Photo by Jason Rosewell on Unsplash

The post 5 Tips to Help You Speak Up, Boost Confidence appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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5 Tips to Help You Speak Up, Boost Confidence   [#permalink] 13 Jan 2020, 08:00

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