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Joined: Jul 27, 2016
Mark Lellouch from Admissionado was crucial in getting me accepted into Berkeley Haas and LBS's full-time MBA programs! I highly recommend Mark.
Mark tries to lay the roadmap of pursuing an MBA. Mark asks you very tough questions about your BIG IDEA, which is essentially showing to schools that you're a business opportunity with extremely high potential. Additionally, Mark makes sure that this BIG IDEA is a realistic goal given your background and experience. It's important that your goals for doing an MBA align really with your past. This required some deep thinking and digging in the beginning. However, once your vision is clear, you're off and running.
Additionally, Mark has invaluable feedback to accurately answer essay prompts. With hands-on editing and extremely detailed comments, Mark transformed my approach to answering and conveying information in a clear and concise manner. I couldn't recognize the first draft from the final one.
Mark Lellouch is an excellent and experienced coach that is well worth the investment. I highly recommend Mark and Admissionado.
Joined: May 18, 2020
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See full review here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1UwHO1CEShg8py5T_jYt4XS23ZOCfJOQOJx8ap04HY_s/edit?usp=sharing
Or here: https://medium.com/@bryancai/quick-guide-to-admissions-consultants-92f3199268ef
**** SUMMARY, READ DETAILED REVIEW FOR MORE INFO ****
Do not recommend going with Mark Lellouch or Admissionado, based on a firsthand experience and direct comparison with another consultant from MBA Mission
- Does not help build your story with you together; plays mainly a critics' role (this is bad, vs. this is bad and this is what could work better)
- Unstructured in his comments and contradictory
- Could not answer direct questions on the application
- Took vacation during most critical part of application (early August); zero handover done to other colleagues
- Did not play as a coach, and was not encouraging
Recommend selecting admissions consultants based on personal recommendations only - ideally from people with a very similar background to you; online reviews do not tell the full story and even if consultant has 1 bad review, run away as that is a red flag
The best admissions consultants are not just critics, they build the story with you and they also play coach and cheerleader to you
Joined: Dec 16, 2017
Inspired by the movie “The Pursuit of Happyness”, I have divided my review of Admissionado into the four different stages of my application journey.
The first stage is called “All in”. Six months back, in November 2018, I appeared for GMAT. After reviewing GMAT Club forums and a few amazing applicant profiles, I was 99% sure I was not going to get into any dream MBA school. It felt like I had everything going against me: I was an older Indian applicant 32+ with around nine years of work experience, a pretty regular finance and strategy resume with no out of the world achievements, and no globe-trotting work experience. Moreover, last year I had applied to a few b-schools only to be dinged by all without any interview. By God’s grace, I came across this very page of Admissionado reviews. Reviewing their website, including the candidate reviews from India and China, impressed me.
The free consultation was a bonus as I wanted someone to assure me that I wanted someone to assure me I had zero chance of getting into a top b-school. To be frank, even the short questionnaire for the free consultation was a bit depressing as, to me, all the questions seemed to emphasize why I shouldn’t apply for MBA. I ended up having a one-hour complimentary call with Claudia. Unexpectedly, she gave me hope by saying that I did have a chance of getting into a top b-school, in spite of the weaknesses in my profile. The fees she quoted represented a steep six months of savings. I had couple of days to accept Claudia’s offer as the R2 deadlines were near. Encouraged by her confidence in me, I decided to take a leap of faith and went “all in” with application.
The second stage of my journey is called “Knowing thyself”. I was introduced to my consultant, Mark Lellouch, who has impressive credentials; for the first time in my life, I was interacting with a Stanford GSB graduate. Admissionado has an exhaustive induction process and I had to fill out a detailed questionnaire. This helps the consultant to learn more about you as a person, your aspirations in life, unique strengths, and unusual talents. I was honest in my responses and, before my first call with Mark, I was afraid that my profile would be chided away by the demi-god from Stanford. To my surprise, Mark was warm and humble and thorough with my profile, and he uncovered strengths that I ought to capitalize on in my application.
Being a finance professional, I was thinking of applying to good b-schools in the U.S., but Mark recommended I apply to London Business School because of my age and years of work experience. Though LBS was not on my radar, I liked their curriculum and institutional thought process. I followed Mark’s advice and started LBS application.
Admissionado gives you structure and ample material to write good essays, but the best part is they don’t spoon feed you, they mentor you through this Journey whereby you discover yourself and your stories, sharing the best of these in your essays. Mark responded promptly to all my queries and reviewed all my essays 5-6 times before the deadline. Even though Admissionado charges extra for 24-hour returns, Mark reviewed my entire application one last time before the deadline on emergency basis without levying any charges. Submitting an MBA application definitely made me wiser about myself and gave me clarity on my strengths and how an MBA from LBS would advance my career and allow me to fulfill my professional aspirations.
The third stage of the journey is called “Rehearsing”. I was elated to be selected for an interview. The stakes increased dramatically as I was just one step away from my dream school, without any guarantee of getting in. Mark made the interview process simple – detailed notes on how to ace the interview round along with likely questions, plus two one-hour sessions for prep and a mock interview. Half of the work was actually done while preparing the application, now it is more about delivery and personality. The detailed interview questionnaire allowed me to assimilate the best stories from my life and work experience. I prepared and rehearsed all the questions and I believe that, without such a questionnaire, the interview prep would have become generic. The mock interview I did with Mark helped raise my confidence and identify areas for improvement. I went into the interview having rehearsed extensively and executed according to plan.
The last part of the application process is called “Happiness and gratitude”. I woke up early on 29th March knowing that the LBS results would be in my inbox. I clicked open the email and forwarded it to Mark and Claudia, still trembling. I couldn’t believe it. Thanks to them, I had gotten an admit, something I never thought possible. I am still short of words to express my gratitude.
Kindly note – the views and opinions expressed above are my own, written out of a feeling of gratitude. I have not received any monetary benefits for writing the same.
Joined: Oct 21, 2010
750 Q1 V1
This is the first consultant experience I had that I enjoyed, which resulted in my first successful application since many years of trying. I saw Admissionado had good reviews on GMATClub so I set up a free profile eval on the website. Claudia got back to me almost instantly (she really responds very quickly) and started the process of connecting me to a consultant.
Mark Lellouch reviewed my responses and scheduled an introductory call with me where he shared his thoughts on my profile and my application strategy. I liked what I heard and how it seemed customized and realistic for my situation, so I went ahead with the Deluxe package. Immediately I filled out a very detailed questionnaire so that Mark could come up with a succinct summary of my strengths, weaknesses, and plan for my target school. Having an assessment like that on the front end really helped me clarify how I wanted to present myself across the entire application - resume, essays, forms and all.
After getting the front end down, we then started working on the application components - resume, essays, etc. Throughout this, Mark never wrote for me, but rather challenged my drafts as a cold eye and gave me clear prompts on how to modify my material to best present myself to the school. This is Mark's best attribute by far - he is able to give you the right instruction and advice for you to articulate the best image of yourself clearly. I was stunned at how good my materials looked after reviews with him compared to my initial drafts...especially my resume.
I was invited to interview and Mark supported me through that as well with the same excellence as in the writing phase - by telling me HOW to think when responding rather than WHAT to say when responding. It is this crucial difference that has helped me grow as a person, not to mention getting a successful admission to my dream school - one that I've tried multiple times for many years to get in with different consultants who were not as effective. Claudia was also very supportive throughout the entire process, and as mentioned above, responded very quickly.
I would definitely recommend Admissionado and Mark. They were very helpful and exceeded my expectations of what a consultant can really do for you. Mark's greatest skill is being able to guide you to articulate the best version of yourself.
Joined: Feb 16, 2019
I worked with Mark as a reapplicant to four M7 schools. I ended up with admits from 3 of them and a waitlist from the fourth. From the very first Skype call, I felt I was working with a very seasoned consultant who knows the nuances of getting into an M7 school. I found Mark to be excellent at understanding my goals, beliefs, and experiences. He took enough time to walk through all facets of my life so far and followed up with detailed discussions.
As a re-applicant, I experienced a world of difference in his approach and its effectiveness when compared to my previous consultant in another online-based consulting service. He pushed me hard to link what I have done so far and what I want to do post business school and helped me develop a strong theme. He is also sincere and doesn't hold back on what he feels, and this was very useful for me. End of the day, you don't want a consultant who tells you everything is good all along and the results telling a different story.
I highly recommend Mark and Admissionado to anyone who wants to get into a top school. He will not only help you strategize better but will also help you self reflect and bring out a purpose which you couldn't articulate coming into the admission season.
I would also like to add that the Admissionado staff are amazing. Claudia and Andriana are great at managing the overall process and make things very organized for the applicant and the consultant. Working with Admissionado was a pleasurable experience.
Joined: Mar 13, 2016
700 Q48 V39
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I signed up for a 5 school JRD package with Mark and it was the best decision ever. With Mark’s help, I got into several M7 schools (with scholarship) and will be attending my dream school (one of HSW- and I come from an extremely overrepresented community- so the odds were stacked against me). Mark is extremely smart (he was a Stanford GSB grad himself) and extremely humble. With his advice, I was able to arrive at strong post-MBA goals based on my background (we went through several iterations for this- he didn’t let me stop till they were rock solid). What I especially liked about Mark was that he wouldn’t just edit something or cut out irrelevant parts of the essay, but he would give out a detailed explanation as to why he is doing what he is doing. There were several times when I had a writer’s block but Mark was quick to respond to my Emails and help me brainstorm (He would turn around essays way quicker than the 72H guarantee that Admissionado gives you; Email responses were always within 6-8 hours). Also, the editing team does a great job in polishing your essay (making sure the tone is right and that you don’t appear arrogant or shy). There were many instances when I just couldn’t figure out a way to trim down the essay to the word-limit, but Mark and Admissionado’s editing team did a phenomenal job in assisting with this as well. I was completely satisfied with the output of each and every essay and don’t believe it could have been any better.
The other area where Mark’s coaching really helped me was with interview prep. I strongly recommend you choose this add-on option if you get through to the interview stage. He coached me on my tone, the type of words that I have to use (for example- rewording “hard-working” as “tenacious”), the way I need to structure my responses to “curve balls” and the time limits I should try to stick to for all the responses. Though it was supposed to be a 1H call, it went on for way over and there was never any rush from Mark (the same thing happened during the introductory call).
I used a different consultant last year and didn’t get in anywhere (no interview calls either), but that changed this year- all thanks to Mark. I would strongly recommend Admissionado for helping YOU get into your dream school. Also, not to forget- their Operations team (Claudia and Lauren) does an amazing job in responding to your queries.
Joined: Jul 05, 2015
Mark is a very nice person that boasts an incredible resume (Brown, Harvard, and Stanford GSB), so when I selected him as my consultant, I was very confident that I was in good hands, especially since he seemed VERY confident in me during the during the free consultant. He would throw out names like Stanford, Kellogg, and Wharton when suggesting schools I would be a fit for. I was not sure where to apply at first, but I knew I wanted to aim high and during the free consultation, Mark echoed my ambitions.
That changed after I signed with Admissionado. I gave my suggested school list (all M7s) to Mark and he immediately changed his tone, saying they were too risky. Despite this, I decided to go ahead and aim for my dream schools.
Mark is very good at writing an essay (poetic phrasing, good language, etc.), but he does miss the mark with content. For the majority of my essays, Mark had me focus on my career goals while de-emphasizing my personal story, which in hindsight, did not allow me to stand out from other people with a similar career background and aspirations. After submitting my essays and ultimately getting dinged without an interview, I had friends/colleagues who attended those schools review my essay (something I should have done before submitting). They all echoed the same thing - that my personal story was missing. They emphasized that my leadership and work history was reflected pretty well in my resume and that my career goals could have been stated in the 500 character box provided on the application, but my personal story, the one that truly sets me apart from my peers, the one related to my extracurricular activities, and the one I was dying to tell, was missing.
During the next round of applications, I wrote an essay with my personal story with feedback from my friends from the school (another M7) and ultimately received an acceptance.
Overall, Mark was very timely and made himself available for long phone conversations pretty much any time I needed him. Additionally, he is a very eloquent writer. The quality of my writing improved greatly with Mark's help and I couldn't have written my last essay as well as I did without his help with previous essays. However, I think he was short sighted when suggesting the content of the essays he helped with. I would recommend Mark and Admissionado only to help polish the essay, but not come up with the content from scratch. The process overall was a little stressful, especially with the dings I received after following his advice.
We appreciate the feedback. If it means we can get a little bit better, we'll take it. We wish your experience with us matched the standard we hold for ourselves which is... the best it can possibly be. While our recollection of our process together diverges from your account in a few places, we'd rather take your word and focus on areas we may stand a chance at improving. Again, all feedback is welcome, and helpful. We're die-hard perfectionists by nature, so we will not stop until our satisfaction rate is as high as it can possibly be, 100% of the time.
One minor thought about school lists. We're always eager to aim high with everyone who's willing to take the shot, and we'll be very honest about our thoughts on their chances at a given program. The one thing we aren't likely to say, perhaps ever, is that applying exclusively to M7 schools is a risk-free proposition, even for the most badass of them all. So we look to achieve balance in an overall list of target schools. Now, if we garbled our perspective there either during our initial consultation or after the work began, that's an honest oversight for us. We love taking smart risks with individual schools, but when considering a full slate of target programs, we have one eye on balance, always.
At any rate, we understand you're going to end up at an M7 school after all, so heartiest congrats, and regardless of everything, we're rooting for you to keep kicking ass...
Joined: Aug 03, 2016
720 Q51 V35
Apart from the personal profile and goal guidance, essay assistance and letter of recommendation support, something that really helped me was the interview preparation and mock interview.
First, Mark helped me identify which were my best stories and how to analyse them under the STAR approach. This helped me shape my top professional achievements and mistakes into stories that would highlight my strenghts, leadership capabilities and areas of improvement.
I didn't have much time to prepare for my mock interview, in which I felt I did pretty bad. However, Mark told me I had good stuff to work on, and pointed out which things I shouldn't waste much time on.
After only a few hours of practice I felt I was ready to face my first interviewer for MIT.
Although I felt I did much better on the following three interviews, I got admitted to all four schools for which I was interviewed!
I don't believe I would have had the same results if it weren't for Mark's help!
Joined: Feb 09, 2017
680 Q46 V38
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I had always dreamt of going to a top European Business school and I was decided to do everything possible to make it happen! That is why I convinced myself to give it a try with a consultant. After all, if I were to pay an MBA tuition I was clearly able to pay a consultant fee.
I arrived at Admissionado attracted by its services. I crossed some e-mails with Claudia and I knew I was ready to seize the opportunity.
I worked with David (Fung) and I feel I was lucky because he is an amazing person that really gives his best into the application. He never stopped believing in me and my dream, and when I had doubts, he was the one to cheer me up and to give me excellent pieces of advice. I remember sending him drafts and getting honest feedbacks on how to approach better some questions in order to push me to put my best efforts into the essays. I also highly appreciated the fact that David was available for me and that he always answered within a reasonable time and in the best manner. Joining forces with David allowed me to pass pre-selection and I then started working with Mark.
With Mark, I practiced my interviews and I really improved myself. Mark really made me think about how to approach better the interviews and how to tell my story in the best way possible. Interviews are definitely a key part of the selection process and having the support of an expert gave me the confidence I needed.
In my personal opinion, everyone should work with Admissionado because they really know how to approach the adcom and their expertise allows people to raise chances to get in.
Finally, I'm really thankful to the Admissionado team because I am going to my dream school and I couldn’t have done it without them!
Joined: Jun 19, 2016
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If I could describe Admissionado in one word, it would be, "SAVIOR". Previously having applied to the BBA program at Ross and getting rejected, I was determined to strengthen my application and reapply. But, at that time, there was little hope left inside me and I was in dire need of guidance and assistance.
That was when I sought out admission consulting services and came across Admissionado. The first thing that sparked my interest to go for Admissionado was their enthusiasm and professionalism which made me feel super pumped to work with them. As an example, here’s a quote from their first email, “We're excited to get down to business, so let's do this!”
Initially, I didn’t know which package (from the countless services that Admissionado offers) would be best for my situation. They were very understanding and provided me with a solution to try out the Discovery Package first and if I am satisfied with their services, I could upgrade to the Junior Deluxe Package.
After filling up the Client Questionnaire and Profile Evaluation Tool (which I found to be very useful as it would help me to clarify who I am, what I aim for and how Admissionado could help me), I was paired with Mark (EXCELLENT CHOICE!). Our first Skype session was mind-blowing because it really made me think about what I really wanted, what my strengths are and how I could demonstrate that to the Adcom. Due to Admissionado’s excellent customer service and follow-ups that have constantly kept me on track, I decided to upgrade my package.
It was the BEST DECISION EVER! Besides the thought-provoking analyses from Mark on my application essays, quick feedback on how I could improve and clarify my essay points and extra guidance on shaping how I write my extracurricular activities, I believe that Admissionado has strengthened my personality and built my confidence (making me more sure of who I am, what I want to become in future and how the BBA could help push me forward in life).
Thank you Admissionado for being there for me and guiding me to my dream school! I am very excited and am looking forward to attending the Ross School of Business at UMICH for the BBA Program this coming Fall.