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Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog

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Build an Effective MBA Application as a Female Candidate  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jan 2015, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Build an Effective MBA Application as a Female Candidate
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com
It’s tempting to dismiss the idea that female MBA applicants can benefit from targeted tips when applying to business school as out of touch or old fashioned. But the reality is that women are still considered a minority on campus and sometimes gender stereotypes can impact their applications.

Female enrollment continues to trail behind men, and despite gains in recent years, the latest Graduate Management Admission Council application trends survey reveals that the proportion of woman applicants dipped slightly in 2014 for full-time, two-year MBA programs. The number dropped to 37 percent in 2014 from 39 percent in 2013.

In business school, as in the working world, a woman might find herself in a position where she is the only woman at the table or in the minority. So, you need to do all you can to feel comfortable and confident in those situations. Obviously, this information won’t apply for every female applicant, but having an awareness of some of the differences that exist can be very helpful.

A frequent issue I’ve had in my consulting work with female clients relates to the admissions committee doubting whether the applicant has enough moxie to contribute to the classroom discussions that form a crucial part of the MBA learning experience.

Several clients have reported that their recommenders received phone calls from admissions officers with questions such as, “Is she confident?” or “Will she speak up in class discussions?” I can’t recall a time when a male client experienced a similar problem.

In the application process, female candidates have to make sure that they exude confidence. Essays, interviews and letters of recommendation need to indicate a comfort level with speaking out, defending points of view and collaborating with all types of people.

In an interview scenario, female candidates often begin their answers with a disclaimer that reveals their insecurities and detracts from any positive information that follows or are too modest about their accomplishments for fear of appearing arrogant. Ideally, you started cultivating your personal brand early on in your application process, so tap into those bullet points and broadcast your accomplishments and skills with pride.

Business schools have made significant efforts to increase female enrollment over the last decade, and the numbers are much higher than when I attended Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Some male-dominated post-MBA career paths, such as finance, are hungrier for women as well, so a woman targeting those fields may have an advantage over one pursuing a role in brand management. This is true in the MBA admissions process as well as in the job search.

Another upside is that by tapping into storytelling skills and the emotions behind an event or experience, we’ve found that female clients generally have an easier time coming up with compelling essays. The admissions committee doesn’t favor women over men outright, but the subjective nature of this part of the application process often gives females an edge.

If you are a woman planning on applying to business school in the future, I encourage you to connect with Forte Foundation and Catalyst, two widely respected organizations dedicated to expanding opportunities for women in business. Forte’s mission is to educate women on the value of an MBA degree, and holds events throughout the year to help prepare female applicants to become the best candidate possible.

Also, look for MBA blogs written by female students and applicants, such as Defying Gravity–The MBA Journey, My Life of Bliss, and Pulling that MBA Trigger, for advice from those who have walked the path before you.

The array of opportunities for women on campus is another important aspect of business school that you can consider as an applicant. Be sure to research what options your target programs offer, and think about how you could help contribute to them.

The Huffington Post featured a great article last year written by a student at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business who believes being a woman MBA candidate is a beautiful thing, the best part being that you have the ability to affect change. Showing schools that you are aware of their networking opportunities for women and have ideas for how to build upon them is a great way to convince the admissions team that you are a perfect fit.

Earning an MBA degree opens doors all over the business world, so make sure to evaluate all of your options and take advantage of the numerous resources available to help you reach your career goals.

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Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
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UV Darden School Names Scott Beardsley as Dean  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jan 2015, 18:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: UV Darden School Names Scott Beardsley as Dean
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The University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business has appointed Scott Beardsley as its next dean, effective August 1. Beardsley succeeds Robert F. Bruner, who is completing his 10th year as Darden’s dean, and last year announced his intention to return to the faculty at the end of his second term.

Currently a senior partner of McKinsey & Company, Beardsley leads learning and leadership development for all McKinsey professionals. He has been based for most of his 26-year career in its Brussels, Belgium office.

Beardsley received a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering magna cum laude from Tufts University and an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management, where he received highest honors as a Henry S. Dupont III Scholar and served as editor and marketing manager of the MIT Sloan Management Review. He is a candidate at the University of Pennsylvania for an executive doctorate in higher education management, expected in May.

“The Darden School of Business is moving from strength to strength,” says U.Va. President Teresa A. Sullivan. “Scott Beardsley’s knowledge and vast experience will help guide the school to greater heights of excellence. We are very fortunate that Scott will build upon the strong legacy of Bob Bruner, who, along with his team, achieved recognition for Darden as the world’s best graduate business education experience.”

A frequent author, speaker and media commentator, Beardsley has presented at the World Economic Forum at Davos and teaches as a faculty member in McKinsey’s programs. Previously, he lectured in the MBA program of the Belgian business school Institut d’Administration et de Gestion. He chairs the board of directors of the American Chamber of Commerce in Belgium.

In a press statement, Beardsley expressed great enthusiasm for this new role, saying, “I believe deeply in Darden’s values and its clear and focused mission to improve the world by developing responsible leaders and advancing knowledge. I am very excited to be part of the University of Virginia family, and its Jeffersonian commitment to excellence.”

You can learn more about Darden’s newest dean, Scott Beardsley, here.

You may also be interested in:
Darden’s Dean Bruner Plans Return to Faculty Position

Darden’s Dean on the Value of International MBA Students

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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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Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1610
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Should You Consider Applying in Round 3?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Should You Consider Applying in Round 3?
You tried your best, but you just couldn’t pull together all of your business school materials before Round 2 deadlines hit. Now what should you do? Isn’t Round 3 where MBA applications go to die?

Not always.

In general, it is tougher to earn a spot at most top MBA programs when you apply in Round 3. Admissions committees have seen thousands of qualified applicants throughout Rounds 1 and 2, have pulled together a fairly good idea of what the incoming class will look like, and have also compiled a waitlist of additional candidates.

Before Round 3 closes out, a certain percentage of people who were admitted in Round 1 and 2 will have already committed to a program. In short, there will be precious few spots left when the adcomm finally turns its attention toward final-round applications.

So where does that leave you? It depends. If it’s been more than five years since you graduated from college, you should seriously consider applying in Round 3. While every situation is different, time could start to work against you at programs that tend to focus on younger applicants.

Plus, the odds of your candidacy significantly improving over the next eight months after you’ve already been in the workforce for so long are probably slim. If this is your situation and all you need to do is put the finishing touches on your materials, go for Round 3.

There are also other circumstances that make Round 3 a perfectly fine option: you’re in the military and recently received your release papers; you are going through a job change or rolling off of a major project; you had extenuating circumstances that prevented you from applying earlier (and which you can reference in the optional essay); or you are most interested in MBA programs outside of the “top 20.”

However, if you’re only two or three years into your career, it may make sense to wait until next season’s Round 1. Focus on building more leadership and community service/volunteer experience in the meantime and make your application even stronger.

And remember:

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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

_________________
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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Michigan Ross School Gets $20M for New Leadership Center  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Jan 2015, 12:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Michigan Ross School Gets $20M for New Leadership Center
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The University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business has received a $20 million gift from former General Mills CEO Stephen Sanger and his wife Karen Sanger to launch a new center that will expand the school’s leadership development programming.

According to an announcement made Thursday by the school, the new Sanger Leadership Center builds upon the current activities of the Ross Leadership Initiative — including the annual Impact Challenge and Crisis Challenge, Legacy Lab, Story Lab, and skills-based workshops — as well as the Leaders Academy, where students create, launch and lead actual businesses.

Ross students will use the center as a resource for personalized coaching, development, and feedback, while faculty will take advantage of the center to help develop cutting-edge ideas and new leadership practices.

“Leadership development is a strategic imperative for companies around the world—it is one of those burning issues that keeps CEOs up at night,” says Alison Davis-Blake, Edward J. Frey Dean of the Ross School, who expressed her appreciation for the Sangers’ generosity and commitment to expanding the school’s most intensive, realistic leadership development opportunities.

One of the things that sets Ross graduates apart is their leadership skills, says Sanger, who received his MBA from the University of Michigan in 1970. “This difference reflects the innovative, hands-on programs of the Ross Leadership Initiative. Karen and I are honored to support the continued growth and development of this program through the establishment of the Sanger Leadership Center.”

The Sangers’ gift is part of the university-wide Victors for Michigan campaign, which kicked off in 2013 with a goal of raising $4 billion.

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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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When Your B-School Rejection Makes the News  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: When Your B-School Rejection Makes the News
A popular MBA applicant blogger this season who goes by the moniker Grant Me Admission woke up to a huge surprise earlier this week when he found out the profile about his journey to b-school originally published on Poets & Quants had found its way to Fortuneonline.

Over the past few months, readers of his blog have followed along as he decided to retake the GMAT after scoring 710, mulled over the mistakes he made last year applying to Tuck School of Business, and fell in love with Kellogg School of Management. We also felt his pain upon receiving ding after ding from all five of the schools he applied to this season during Round 1.

While wading through brutal anonymous comments likely required cultivating an especially thick skin, Grant also found much to gain from hearing these fresh perspectives. The plan now, he says, is to complete his post mortem on why he didn’t get into business school, do some serious self-reflection, and see how plans to go to a top school fit in with all that.

As any applicant will tell you, applying to an MBA program is seriously hard work. And with acceptance rates at the best schools as low as they are, applicants need to make sure every aspect of their package is as polished as humanly possible. Take a look at the original article as well as his reaction post. It really is illuminating for many b-school hopefuls out there.

You may also be interested in:
Should You Consider Applying in Round 3?

How to Cope with B-School Rejections

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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: 1610
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Survey Says MBA Essay Trimming Trend Hasn’t Spread  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Jan 2015, 11:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Survey Says MBA Essay Trimming Trend Hasn’t Spread
Last week, Kaplan Test Prep revealed the results of its 2014 business school admissions officers survey which found that the vast majority of U.S. MBA programs don’t plan on cutting the number of admissions essays they require applicants to submit.

While programs such as those at Yale School of Management, Stanford Graduate School of Business, and University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School made headlines last cycle by eliminating essays and reducing word count, Kaplan notes that just 13% of the 204 surveyed business schools had cut the number of admissions essays for this cycle, compared to 2013; and just 3% of schools say they plan to cut the required number of essays for the next application cycle.

“While it’s true that some of the most competitive business schools have cut the number of admissions essays or reduced the word count, our survey finds that the overwhelming number of MBA programs continue to see value in applicants submitting more information about themselves,” says Brian Carlidge, executive director of pre-business and pre-graduate programs, Kaplan Test Prep.

Some applicants may have a harder time with fewer essays and the lower word count, Carlidge notes, because it forces them to be more succinct. However, the essays are perhaps the most important element of the application as they provide candidates with the opportunity to show the admissions team why they are a good fit for the school in a way the GMAT score, GPA, and work experience cannot, he adds.

The streamlined trend is still one to watch, though, Carlidge says, pointing out that several years ago only a handful of schools allowed applicants to submit a score from the GRE instead of the GMAT, but now it’s something almost all schools allow.

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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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Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1610
Location: Los Angeles, CA
INSEAD Inaugurates Leadership Development Center  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jan 2015, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: INSEAD Inaugurates Leadership Development Center
INSEAD inaugurated its landmark, S$55 million Leadership Development Centre in Singapore last week, completing the third phase of the school’s major Asia campus expansion. This year marks INSEAD’s fifteenth anniversary in Singapore at the same time as the country celebrates its own fiftieth year of independence.

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The 10,000 square-meter center will raise capacity by 50% to meet growing demands for management and leadership education in Asia, and significantly increase the number of students, executives, top scholars and practitioners on-site.

Annually the Asia campus will welcome 500 MBA students, 5,000 executives, 90 Global Executive MBA students, and 200 participants enrolled in the Master of Finance program.

“The Leadership Development Centre is a significant milestone for INSEAD in our continued global growth and commitment to providing relevant and locally-driven business education across Asia, and globally,” INSEAD Dean Ilian Mihov said at the inauguration ceremony, held January 15th-16th.

The Singapore campus is currently home to 63 permanent faculty hailing from 22 countries, and there are over 7,000 INSEAD alumni living and working in the Asia Pacific region. The expansion will allow the campus to build its complement of world-class faculty to 70, which translates into expanding research in areas such as emerging markets, Asian business leadership, global strategy and other areas of critical importance to the region.

“At the core of INSEAD’s global offering is the large number of permanent faculty present on each campus, highly localised research and diverse mix of nationalities and cultures represented on each programme,” says Andreas Jacobs, Chairman of the Board of Directors at the school, who believes these characteristics are what sets INSEAD apart from other business schools with outposts abroad.

“For companies and individuals to have an edge in today’s rapidly evolving global business environment, access to insights into the Asia Pacific region is vital,” adds Michael Pich, Dean of Executive Education. “INSEAD’s continued investment in Asia, home to many of today’s key emerging growth markets, helps businesses identify, understand and leverage the changing opportunities and challenges these markets present.”

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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: 1610
Location: Los Angeles, CA
How to Decide Between MBA Programs  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: How to Decide Between MBA Programs
If you’re reading this post, there’s a good chance that you’re in a very envious position: you’ve been accepted into more than one MBA program. Congratulations!

Let’s just take a moment to appreciate how many people wish they were you right now. We certainly hope you understand how impressive this achievement is and have taken some time to celebrate accordingly.

But now you have a tough decision to make. You probably only applied to schools you were truly interested in, and soon it will be time to choose between two of them (or more). How should you figure out where to spend eighteen months of your life—not to mention tens of thousands of dollars?

Step one is to attend each program’s Admit Weekend. Spending time on campus and around current students and other admitted applicants will go a long way in helping you decide which program is the better fit. If you cannot find a way to go to the Admit Weekend for each school you’ve been accepted to, do everything else you can to at least visit campus and sit in on a few classes. Worst-case scenario: try to speak or Skype with alumni and current students.

Then think about where you want to end up geographically after graduation. Is one program in your desired city—or at least in the same overall region? Does one program have a reputation for helping its students land jobs in the area you want to live?

If location isn’t a concern, then focus on what does matter most to you: recruitment stats for certain industries? Diversity? International opportunities? We know you reviewed all of this information when you were deciding where to apply in the first place, but now it warrants a second, closer look.

In the end, this may be the best advice of all:

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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

_________________
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: 1610
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Boothie’s Advice to Early Career Candidates  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Jan 2015, 05:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Boothie’s Advice to Early Career Candidates
If you haven’t already checked out the recently re-launched Booth Experience blog, run by students at Chicago Booth School of Business, you’re missing out! For the uninitiated, this blog covers the entire gamut of the Booth community, from daily student life to academics; to recruiting, career services and internships; to student clubs and travel stories, and everything in between.

Even if Chicago Booth isn’t on your short list, there’s a series on the blog that many of our visitors can benefit from reading. The first installment came in early November, when Alex Simon broached the topic, “How do you know when it’s time for an MBA?” Simon was 24 when he started at Booth, and with just two years of work experience, he worried he would be at a serious disadvantage with classmates five to 10 years older than he.

Does that sound familiar to anyone? If so, ask yourself the three questions he raises: Do I have enough experience to succeed and contribute? What benefit will I get out of one or more years of work experience? What’s my career progression with an MBA?  “You’ll avoid a lot of undue recruiting stress if you get a good handle on your options before applying to or starting your MBA,” Simon writes.

Whereas the first post in the series required introspection, the next installment, published last week, turns the tables and brings up some of the key questions MBA applicants should be asking about their target programs.

Simon believes early career candidates need to focus on these three issues: How strong are the career opportunities for early career candidates? How can I contribute to the school? Does the school offer enough diversity to explore multiple interests?

“The way I feel today may not be how I feel ten or twenty years from now, and you can only get an MBA once. As an early career candidate, you should make sure the program you select lets you understand everything that’s out there,” he advises.

Simon’s advice is spot-on, so we’re looking forward to reading his thoughts in the final post of the series, coming soon. In that entry, he promises to share some tips to early career candidates who are considering applying to an MBA program in Round 3 or next season.

You may also be interested in:
How to Determine When the Time is Right for an MBA

Timing Your MBA: Work Five First or Dive Right In?

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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: 1610
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Dartmouth Tuck School Names New Dean  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Jan 2015, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Dartmouth Tuck School Names New Dean
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The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth has named Matthew J. Slaughter as the school’s 10th dean, Dartmouth announced Thursday.

A scholar of international economics and an expert in globalization, Slaughter is a renowned academic who has held several key leadership roles at Tuck since joining the faculty in 2002. He will assume his new role on July 1.

“Matt embodies all that is great about Tuck. He is a committed scholar-educator with a global outlook and deep connections to the worlds of policy and practice,” said Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon, who also noted that Slaughter is devoted to the school’s values and traditions, its close-knit community, spirit of innovation, and culture of diversity.

Currently Signal Companies’ Professor of Management, associate dean for faculty, and founding faculty director of Tuck’s Center for Global Business and Government, Slaughter previously served as associate dean of the MBA program. From 2005 to 2007, he served on the Council of Economic Advisers in the Executive Office of the President of the United States.

Slaughter succeeds Dean Paul Danos, who announced in March he would not seek reappointment at the end of his fifth term in June 2015.

“I am delighted Matt will become our new dean,” Dano said. “Matt is a superb scholar and a gifted teacher, and Tuck is indeed fortunate to welcome a leader of his accomplishments and thorough knowledge and appreciation of Tuck’s traditions and operations.  I have every confidence Matt will lead Tuck to new levels of excellence and distinction.”

To learn more about Slaughter, the next dean of Tuck School of Business, you can read the full announcement here.

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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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User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1610
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Should You Retake the GMAT?  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Should You Retake the GMAT?
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com
While I occasionally hear tales of MBA applicants offered admission in a top business school with a 640 GMAT score, the truth is that  accepting students with stellar scores of 700 or higher is more the norm at the most competitive programs.

Before you start to panic and become hung up on achieving the highest score possible, or fixate on the average GMAT score reported by the schools, I urge test-challenged clients to focus instead on aligning their scores within the 80 percent range, which schools usually list within their admitted class profile.

Many experts in the test prep industry advise all students to plan on taking the test twice. If your score after the first attempt is already at or above your goal, you can always cancel the second sitting. Remember, top schools want to see scores in the 80th percentile in the quantitative section. So if you score 100 percent in verbal and low in quantitative, you would want to retake the exam, especially if you don’t have a strong quantitative background outside of the GMAT.

[Learn about ways to fix a low GMAT score.]

There is absolutely no reason to retake the GMAT when you score over 700, test prep company Magoosh says emphatically. You’ve already proven you can handle the quantitative component of the curriculum, so turn your focus toward ensuring all of the other parts of your application are as strong as possible.

Keep in mind that this high number is primarily for those targeting a top-tier MBA program. If you scored a 680, the decision to retake should be carefully considered, as you may be better off focusing on your essays or coaching recommenders instead. Applicants looking at programs in the top 20 or 50 should check the average scores of admitted students to determine their personal target GMAT score.

If illness, nerves, exhaustion, or simply a lack of adequate preparation resulted in a low score, then a second attempt becomes a necessity. Repeat test-taking, with additional preparation, typically results in a higher score as students become familiar with the experience, and therefore, less stressed out.

[Learn to dodge your fear of failure when applying to business school.]

Although the Graduate Management Admission Council allows you to take the test as many times as you like, you must wait 31 calendar days before retaking the exam. Make sure to check your target schools’ application deadlines in order to allow enough time to send in your final scores.

Applicants self-report their highest score, and it’s worth noting that the admissions committee doesn’t have an issue with students taking the exam more than once. In fact, committees may look positively on the dedication you’ve shown to improve upon your prior performance. Mind you, I’m talking about a score report with two or three scores, max – not one that shows you’ve sat for the GMAT seven times.

After your first test, it’s time to go over your entire GMAT performance to determine your weaknesses and double-down in those areas as you resume your studies. Don’t completely ignore the sections you did well on, however. You wouldn’t want to improve in one area but do worse in another the next time.

If you studied alone or took a class for your initial preparation, you might consider studying one on one with a GMAT tutor for the second go-round. A test prep expert can work around your schedule and tailor the curriculum to your needs.

Finally, some people aren’t natural test-takers and have a less-than-optimal performance no matter how well they know the material. One of the primary causes is stress under pressure, and it may help to watch this video tour of the GMAT Test Center and detailed explanation of all procedures to increase your comfort levels about what to expect.

If that familiarity still isn’t enough to calm your nerves come test day, consider using relaxation techniques such as meditation and visualization to reduce test anxiety. Also, taking the GMAT in the same center will help you feel more comfortable with the test-taking process and any logistics that may have thrown you off the first time.

Business school hopefuls can be incredibly hard on themselves when they make mistakes on the GMAT, but each error is a learning opportunity and a chance to improve. So don’t become discouraged if your first score isn’t where you’d hoped. Relax, and think of it as a dress rehearsal for a stellar performance to come.

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Harvard Tops Financial Times 2015 Global MBA Ranking  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Harvard Tops Financial Times 2015 Global MBA Ranking
Earlier this week, Financial Times released its 2015 global MBA ranking of the best business schools, and the results showed no surprises—only a shuffling—at the very top. This is the third time in a row Harvard Business School has taken the crown, and the sixth time since the ranking began in 1999.

Its alumni have the highest average salary three years after graduation, at $179,910 (weighted), nearly doubling their pre-MBA pay. Harvard is among the top schools for career progression and its MBA was the most highly recommended by graduates of other schools.

The ranking is based on surveys of business schools and their 2011 graduates, and the Financial Times methodology involves assessing MBA programs according to the career progression of alumni, the school’s idea generation, and the diversity of students and faculty.

Top Ten Business Schools in FT’s 2015 Global MBA Rankings
  • Harvard Business School
  • London Business School
  • University of Pennsylvania Wharton School
  • Stanford Graduate School of Business
  • INSEAD
  • Columbia Business School
  • IESE Business School
  • MIT Sloan School of Management
  • Chicago Booth School of Business
  • UC Berkeley Haas School of Business
HBS alumni may top the ranking for salaries, but Wharton’s doctoral program in business has made it the world’s leading research-based business school with the most articles published in the FT45 list of peer-reviewed and practitioner journals, the FT reports.

You can learn more about this year’s results and methodology by checking out the complete Financial Times ranking coverage.

You may also be interested in:
Rethinking MBA Rankings

The Truth Behind Three Common MBA Rankings Myths

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Negotiating Merit Scholarships  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Jan 2015, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Negotiating Merit Scholarships
Being accepted into an MBA program is a major accomplishment that makes the months of application preparation (and worrying) all worth it. Icing on the cake is learning that you’ve also been awarded a merit scholarship.

If you suddenly find yourself with a financial incentive to attend a certain school, you’ll be understandably honored and overjoyed at your good fortune. However, if you’ve been accepted into more than one program, this unexpected twist can often make your ultimate decision that much harder.

Here’s something such lucky future students often forget: you can try to negotiate merit scholarships. This is one of those rare situations in life where—if handled professionally, of course—you really have nothing to lose.

If you received drastically different scholarship amounts for two or more programs—or were given a financial award for one school but nothing for another—why not contact the AdCom and explain your situation?

This is probably obvious, but we wouldn’t recommend naming the competing institution, sharing your offer letter or making demands. Rather, simply reach out to the admissions office, reiterate your deep interest in attending their program, and then ask if it’s possible to be considered for a higher scholarship amount (or any scholarship amount) because you now have another offer of acceptance and financial incentive on the table.

Good luck!

And remember:

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Endowment Gift Creates Social Enterprise Center at Columbia  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Jan 2015, 08:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Endowment Gift Creates Social Enterprise Center at Columbia
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A new center created at Columbia Business School will help develop the next generation of business leaders’ understanding of how management impacts society and the environment.

In a statement released Wednesday, Columbia Business School announced that Sandra and Tony Tamer made a “transformative endowment gift” that will also serve as the educational, curricular, research, and strategic hub of all social entrepreneurship activities at Columbia.

Columbia Business School Dean Glenn Hubbard thanked the Tamers for their generosity, noting that the new Tamer Center will build upon the school’s existing Social Enterprise Program, “(…) allowing for a more robust array of options for the growing number of Columbia community members who are looking to put social problem solving at the heart of their careers.”

The new Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School will:

  • Establish the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures: The Fund will provide seed grants of up to $25,000 to select nonprofit, for-profit, or hybrid early-stage social ventures that demonstrate a high degree of social innovation and impact.
  • Enhance the Loan Assistance Program: This program helps alleviate the financial burden of repaying education loans while pursuing a career in the public, nonprofit and social entrepreneurial sectors. The new Center will increase the number of alumni who can receive financial support, as well as the duration of that financial commitment from a maximum of five years to 10 years.
  • Broaden the Summer Fellowship Program: The Summer Fellowship Program pairs social enterprise students with organizations that are creating social and environmental value. Currently reserved for business school students, the program will now include graduate and undergraduate students from across Columbia University so that social ventures may benefit from student talent across disciplines.
  • Support Social Entrepreneurs at the Columbia Startup Lab: The Tamer Center will offer additional financial support to social entrepreneurs who are participating in the Columbia Startup Lab and who receive funding from the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures.
  • Develop a Social Entrepreneurs Network: Aspiring social entrepreneurs need to tap into an advisory network of seasoned professionals and experts. To create such a network, the Tamer Center will leverage the School’s Social Enterprise Leadership Forum, a collection of 100 leaders, practitioners, funders, policymakers, and faculty members who regularly participate in social enterprise and entrepreneurship events at Columbia.
“Columbia is uniquely qualified and positioned to serve as a source of inspiration and education for budding social entrepreneurs,” said Tony Tamer. “Combine that with its already well-established Social Enterprise Program and its strategic position in New York City (…) and you have all the ingredients necessary to be the preeminent center and source of leadership talent for the social enterprise community.”

“One of the most exciting opportunities is bringing the diverse interdisciplinary perspectives of Columbia together,” added Sandra Tamer. “Students studying business, engineering, law, medicine, or public policy will now be able to come together to develop new ideas, innovative solutions, and practical models to solve emerging challenges facing society today.”

To learn more about the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School, please visit www.gsb.columbia.edu/socialenterprise.

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Endowment Creates Social Enterprise Center at Columbia  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Jan 2015, 10:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Endowment Creates Social Enterprise Center at Columbia
Image
A new center created at Columbia Business School will help develop the next generation of business leaders’ understanding of how management impacts society and the environment.

In a statement released Wednesday, Columbia Business School announced that Sandra and Tony Tamer made a “transformative endowment gift” that will also serve as the educational, curricular, research, and strategic hub of all social entrepreneurship activities at Columbia.

Columbia Business School Dean Glenn Hubbard thanked the Tamers for their generosity, noting that the new Tamer Center will build upon the school’s existing Social Enterprise Program, “(…) allowing for a more robust array of options for the growing number of Columbia community members who are looking to put social problem solving at the heart of their careers.”

The new Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School will:

  • Establish the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures: The Fund will provide seed grants of up to $25,000 to select nonprofit, for-profit, or hybrid early-stage social ventures that demonstrate a high degree of social innovation and impact.
  • Enhance the Loan Assistance Program: This program helps alleviate the financial burden of repaying education loans while pursuing a career in the public, nonprofit and social entrepreneurial sectors. The new Center will increase the number of alumni who can receive financial support, as well as the duration of that financial commitment from a maximum of five years to 10 years.
  • Broaden the Summer Fellowship Program: The Summer Fellowship Program pairs social enterprise students with organizations that are creating social and environmental value. Currently reserved for business school students, the program will now include graduate and undergraduate students from across Columbia University so that social ventures may benefit from student talent across disciplines.
  • Support Social Entrepreneurs at the Columbia Startup Lab: The Tamer Center will offer additional financial support to social entrepreneurs who are participating in the Columbia Startup Lab and who receive funding from the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures.
  • Develop a Social Entrepreneurs Network: Aspiring social entrepreneurs need to tap into an advisory network of seasoned professionals and experts. To create such a network, the Tamer Center will leverage the School’s Social Enterprise Leadership Forum, a collection of 100 leaders, practitioners, funders, policymakers, and faculty members who regularly participate in social enterprise and entrepreneurship events at Columbia.
“Columbia is uniquely qualified and positioned to serve as a source of inspiration and education for budding social entrepreneurs,” said Tony Tamer. “Combine that with its already well-established Social Enterprise Program and its strategic position in New York City (…) and you have all the ingredients necessary to be the preeminent center and source of leadership talent for the social enterprise community.”

“One of the most exciting opportunities is bringing the diverse interdisciplinary perspectives of Columbia together,” added Sandra Tamer. “Students studying business, engineering, law, medicine, or public policy will now be able to come together to develop new ideas, innovative solutions, and practical models to solve emerging challenges facing society today.”

To learn more about the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School, please visit www.gsb.columbia.edu/socialenterprise.

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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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Endowment Creates Social Enterprise Center at Columbia  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Jan 2015, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Endowment Creates Social Enterprise Center at Columbia
Image
A new center created at Columbia Business School will help develop the next generation of business leaders’ understanding of how management impacts society and the environment.

In a statement released Wednesday, Columbia Business School announced that Sandra and Tony Tamer made a “transformative endowment gift” that will also serve as the educational, curricular, research, and strategic hub of all social entrepreneurship activities at Columbia.

Columbia Business School Dean Glenn Hubbard thanked the Tamers for their generosity, noting that the new Tamer Center will build upon the school’s existing Social Enterprise Program, “(…) allowing for a more robust array of options for the growing number of Columbia community members who are looking to put social problem solving at the heart of their careers.”

The new Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School will:

  • Establish the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures: The Fund will provide seed grants of up to $25,000 to select nonprofit, for-profit, or hybrid early-stage social ventures that demonstrate a high degree of social innovation and impact.
  • Enhance the Loan Assistance Program: This program helps alleviate the financial burden of repaying education loans while pursuing a career in the public, nonprofit and social entrepreneurial sectors. The new Center will increase the number of alumni who can receive financial support, as well as the duration of that financial commitment from a maximum of five years to 10 years.
  • Broaden the Summer Fellowship Program: The Summer Fellowship Program pairs social enterprise students with organizations that are creating social and environmental value. Currently reserved for business school students, the program will now include graduate and undergraduate students from across Columbia University so that social ventures may benefit from student talent across disciplines.
  • Support Social Entrepreneurs at the Columbia Startup Lab: The Tamer Center will offer additional financial support to social entrepreneurs who are participating in the Columbia Startup Lab and who receive funding from the Tamer Fund for Social Ventures.
  • Develop a Social Entrepreneurs Network: Aspiring social entrepreneurs need to tap into an advisory network of seasoned professionals and experts. To create such a network, the Tamer Center will leverage the School’s Social Enterprise Leadership Forum, a collection of 100 leaders, practitioners, funders, policymakers, and faculty members who regularly participate in social enterprise and entrepreneurship events at Columbia.
“Columbia is uniquely qualified and positioned to serve as a source of inspiration and education for budding social entrepreneurs,” said Tony Tamer. “Combine that with its already well-established Social Enterprise Program and its strategic position in New York City (…) and you have all the ingredients necessary to be the preeminent center and source of leadership talent for the social enterprise community.”

“One of the most exciting opportunities is bringing the diverse interdisciplinary perspectives of Columbia together,” added Sandra Tamer. “Students studying business, engineering, law, medicine, or public policy will now be able to come together to develop new ideas, innovative solutions, and practical models to solve emerging challenges facing society today.”

To learn more about the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School, please visit www.gsb.columbia.edu/socialenterprise.

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

_________________
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Michigan Ross Director on Interviewing, Team Exercise  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Jan 2015, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Michigan Ross Director on Interviewing, Team Exercise
This weekend, on-campus interviews kick off at University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. Director of MBA Admissions and Financial Aid Soojin Kwon has some reminders for MBA applicants on how to shine during your interview, and also shares Ross’s perspective on why the team exercise, though optional, is so important.

Based on their experience with Round 1 interviews, the admissions committee is stressing the following points for the next round of interviewees:

  • Make your answers clear and succinct. This is an important skill. But don’t come across as scripted.
  • Answer the questions that are asked. This will differentiate the scripted interviewees from those who aren’t. It’ll also demonstrate listening and thinking skills.
  • Do your research. Know why Ross, why XYZ career (pre- and post-MBA).
  • Don’t agonize over how you can differentiate yourself, or the fact that you work in a non-business field. If you tell your unique story, and follow Tips 1 – 3, you’ll go a long way towards making a positive impression.
How you present yourself, and your ability to react and respond gracefully in unfamiliar situations, weigh heavily in both the MBA admissions process and later on when recruiting kicks up. Kwon points to data collected by the Graduate Management Admission Counsel’s most recent Corporate Recruiters Report, which indicates that employers consider communication as the most important skill set for new graduate business school hires.

Finally, the director offers some frank advice about the currently optional team exercise. “Opting-in sends us some important positive signals: (1) that you embrace opportunities to shine; (2) that you are comfortable with ambiguity, since you can’t control the team exercise experience; and, (3) finding the right fit is important to you,” says Kwon, noting that MBA recruiters are also looking for these qualities.

From our perspective as MBA admissions consultants, you should never pass up the opportunity for face time with the admissions committee. Allowing them to get to know the real you, beyond the version on paper, is critical to your chances of receiving an offer of admission.

Good luck!

You may also be interested in:
Group Interview Advice from Michigan Ross Admissions Director

If you have been invited to interview with a school that is using the group interview format, you will absolutely want to take advantage of Stacy Blackman’s live group practice session. This format can be fun, but also challenging and stress inducing! Success comes from practice and becoming comfortable with the format.

We’ll have dedicated groups of 3-6 people for Wharton and Ross, with experienced moderators and admissions experience. You’ll receive preparation tips and a one-hour mock experience, followed by written feedback with actionable advice. For more on this new service, click here.

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Wharton’s Advice for the Team-Based Discussion  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Feb 2015, 10:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Wharton’s Advice for the Team-Based Discussion
The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School plans on sending out Round 2 team-based discussion invites on February 12th, and deputy vice dean of MBA admissions Maryellen Reilly Lamb shared a few tips about the experience in her most recent blog post.

Here’s a quick refresher on the team-based exercise: Five or six invited candidates work together to solve real-world business scenarios as a team. Wharton believes the exercise demonstrates how applicants approach and analyze specific situations and interact with other people—two critical components of Wharton’s team-focused learning style.

Everyone’s TBD experience will be different, says Lamb, adding that your approach to the TBD will be a balance between being prepared and adapting to the situation.

Here are four aspects the director feels candidates should focus on to maximize their experience.

Flexibility: Challenges can change from moment to moment, so stay flexible and leave your preconceived notions at the door.

Your skills and strengths: Tap into tactics you have used successfully in the past while working in a team setting, and lean on your strengths to help propel the group forward.

The overall process: Lamb suggests asking yourself, “How can you provide value to ensure that best possible outcome for your team? Does your team need more brainstorming? Do they need more clarity around the proposed ideas?”

There is no “right” way: It may be easier said than done, but accept that you should just be yourself, get a feel for the dynamics of your particular group, and let the chips fall where they may.

Interviews will begin on campus in Philadelphia in late February, as well as various locations across the globe, including Dubai, London, Mumbai, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, and Tokyo. Applicants should interview in whichever location is most convenient for them.

For more advice, take a look at this post by (now) second-year student Alexandra Gorin. In it, she explains how she prepared for the TBD, what she experienced, and what she took away from the group interview. It’s chock-full of helpful tips!

***
Success comes from practice and becoming comfortable with the format. With that in mind, Stacy Blackman Consulting now offers live group practice sessions to help applicants with this fun but challenging new interview style.
Our experienced moderators have admissions experience at the Wharton School, and participants receive preparation tips and a one-hour mock experience, followed by written feedback with actionable advice. Find out more about our interview prep options today.

 

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Round 2 Updates from MIT Sloan  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Feb 2015, 11:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Round 2 Updates from MIT Sloan
The admissions team at MIT Sloan School of Management will be ready to send out Round 2 interview invitations starting the week of February 16th, a recent post on the MIT Sloan MBA admissions blog reveals.

These interviews are conducted by MIT Sloan admissions staff only, and will take place on campus in Cambridge as well as in 15 additional cities in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia.

The admissions team explains that the behavioral-based interview will have three components:

  • You may be asked follow-up questions from your application. For example, your interviewer might ask you to elaborate on your academic and/or professional experiences, or provide more detail on a specific example.
  • You will be asked behavioral questions that will give evidence of certain competencies. For example: “Describe a situation where you had a conflict with another individual, and how did you deal with it?”
  • Finally, we will give you the opportunity to ask us any questions.
More information about the interview process will accompany the email invitation. To those not invited to interview, MIT Sloan will issue a final decision by March 6th.

You may also be interested in:
MIT Sloan School of Management MBA Essay Tips

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GMAT Now Features Enhanced Score Report  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Feb 2015, 06:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: GMAT Now Features Enhanced Score Report
The Graduate Management Admission Council has launched a new GMAT Enhanced Score Report, providing test takers with access to an in-depth analysis of their overall performance on the GMAT, including their performance on the various sections and subsections within the exam. Image

The report provides metrics that describe everything from the test taker’s average time to answer each question type, to overall time management relative to other test takers, and provides insight and analysis about how students might use the report to talk about or improve their score.

This new GMAT Enhanced Score Report is delivered to a test taker following their sitting of the exam. In 2014, GMAC introduced the Score Preview feature for the GMAT exam that allows test takers to cancel a GMAT score if it isn’t up to their standards or expectations, before sending it to a school.

Both Enhanced Score Reports and the Score Preview feature provide test takers with greater control over how and when they report their scores to the schools to which they are applying.

“The value of the GMAT Enhanced Score Report is that, used alone or together with the GMAT’s other prep and score reporting features,  it can help students strengthen their performance, improve their scores and be better prepared for the process of applying to business school,” says Ashok Sarathy, vice president of Product Management at GMAC.

The GMAT Enhanced Score Report can be purchased following the taking of the GMAT exam for $24.99 (USD) through the mba.com store.

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GMAT Now Features Enhanced Score Report   [#permalink] 03 Feb 2015, 06:00

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