February 25, 2015

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I took the 4 school comprehensive package from Amerasia to apply to the MBA class of 2017. Below are my learnings from the experience. Please feel free to PM me in case of queries/ pointers.

1. Why I think a consultant is important?
I think there is merit describing my background here. I am a male Indian Engineer (most competitive demographic?) working as a management consultant with a high-value add consulting firm (think Mck, BCG, etc.) in India. Although I had had an enriching experience across multiple sectors and countries with my firm, I knew I lacked diversity and did not have significant work to show outside of my primary 'job'. The consultant helped in:
a. Bringing together my story - short-term and long-term goals, why I need an MBA, which schools to target, etc.
b. Appropriately differentiating myself from the vast pool of highly qualified applicants within my overly represented demographic.

2. Why I chose Amerasia?
Well, to be honest I don't think there is anything to differentiate between the consultants out there. I used two clear filters:
a. If I liked the consultant and his perspectives when I spoke to him
b. Cost of hiring the consultant
Fortunately, both worked out for me with Amerasia and Alex.
On a side note, please remember to ask for discounts. Adam (the co-founder) is usually very supportive and he provided me 4 schools for 6000 USD, which was substantially below the market rate.

3. What is the process that the consultant follows?
I think a consultant brings rigour to the process and gives you direction to think. I found the 'discovery questionnaire' particularly useful with Alex . A long list of 20 odd questions were given to me, making me think about my goals, desire for an MBA etc. On sending my responses, Alex asked critical questions to ensure I had completely thought through my story and was crystal clear on how my post-MBA journey would look like.
Post-this, we did a detailed school-wise research, listing 10 reasons (specific to me) why I would choose a particular school. Alex dismissed some of my points (such as small class size) as too generic and probed me to find personal reasons. This gave me a true sense of each school and by the end of the exercise, I had a fair idea of what each school stands for and why I would want to be there.
Post-this was the essay writing drill, wherein Alex provided invaluable strategy guides that detailed how to structure each essay for a school. This was followed by the usual editing, which helped polish my essays and bring them to the final state.

Overall, according to me the MBA process is largely driven by you and your thoughts. The consultant will hold your hand and help you walk through the application journey. I personally believe that applicants should hire the consultants for 2-3 schools at max, and cover the rest of the applications themselves.

1. Alex was super helpful - he provided me 4 strategy guides free of cost for schools that I was applying to in round 2.
2. I am headed to INSEAD! Thanks Alex.

June 02, 2016

Can you give me some pointers?
I'm thinking to take consulting from Alex.
Thank You

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