GMAT Club
December 23, 2020
variantguy

Joined: Feb 03, 2019

Posts: 288

Kudos: 446

Verified score:
750 Q49 V42

My background:

Indian male, 30 years old, first-time applicant
Undergrad: IIT
Postgrad in Marketing from a Top 5 communications school in Asia
5.5 years of work experience in advertising, branding, and product marketing roles
GMAT: 750

When I decided to apply to business schools, my profile had a few obstacles that usually end up crushing most applicants’ dreams - a highly competitive demographic pool, age, no blue-chip employers on the resume, several job switches, and what some schools would consider a second MBA situation as well. I applied to an M7, two T10, and two T15 programs.

Things I worked on with Greg:

I had the opportunity to work with Greg for the interview prep through the GMATClub moderator scholarship.

Greg offered to set up a free 30-minute consultation call to understand my profile and goals better. Even though this is somewhat standard practice with admissions consultants, what really stood out for me was that Greg offered the same level of support to a ‘non-paying’ (scholarship) client like me as he would have to a paying client. For me, this spoke highly about the level of support I could expect from him in the future. By the end of the call, I felt that he had a great understanding of where I was in the application process and accordingly suggested the service that would benefit me the most.

Greg and I decided to work on interview prep for two schools where I had been invited to interview - one a T10 and one a T15 (I had already finished interviewing for the M7 school). We did two full-length Interview prep sessions, each of which included a 1-hour school-specific mock interview session followed by a 1.5-hour question-by-question analysis and feedback session, which in reality lasted longer than that (at no extra cost).
Besides this, Greg also went above and beyond and offered free advice and tips for my other interview at a T15 school.

Based on my positive experience working with Greg and the results (see below), I also took an hour of Greg’s service for scholarship negotiations and was not disappointed there as well!

My results:

I got into the two T15 schools, one offered me a $40k scholarship and the other offered a 50k scholarship!

(Even though I did not get into the other T10 school that we did the interview prep for, it’s worth mentioning that that school is one of the most selective ones and was a stretch school to begin with. I definitely felt much more confident going into the interview with Greg’s insightful help and preparation than I would have otherwise.)

Further, I used Greg’s help to negotiate scholarships at both the schools where I was admitted. For this, I took one hour of service with him, which involved one strategy discussion call and one review of negotiation emails for each school. It was heartwarming to see that Greg didn’t just stop at helping me secure admits but wanted me to get the best possible outcome in terms of scholarship as well, and he ended up spending more than 1.5 hours providing thoughtful feedback and edits.

One of the T15 schools came back and offered 10k more!! That is a 40x ROI, and even that doesn’t speak enough of Greg’s expertise!

What made working with Greg awesome:

Right from our first interaction, I felt that Greg was really invested in my success, even though we hadn’t worked on my applications from the start, and I was essentially availing his Interview Prep services for free. Having heard stories of how controlling and money-minded some admissions consultants can be, it was refreshing to see Greg’s commitment to ensure that I achieved the best possible outcome.

His Interview Prep sessions were extensive and tailored to the specific school in question. For both the Prep sessions, not only did Greg conduct a one-hour mock interview, but he also followed it up with well-researched and comprehensive guides of questions for each school. Beyond that, his experience and knowledge of what specific schools and AdComs are looking for immensely helped my response preparation.

During the feedback sessions, Greg’s attention to detail really stood out. He was able to provide laser-sharp feedback, which helped me work on specific areas in my responses. Again, during all this, I felt there were many times when Greg went above and beyond our official engagement - whether it was spending 3 hours instead of the originally committed 2.5 or accommodating Interview Prep in his schedule on short notices as soon as I received the interview invites, or even taking the time to provide detailed responses to my questions over email as soon as he could.

Similarly, I credit his communication expertise and meticulous feedback on my negotiation emails with the 10k bump that I received from the T15 school.

Overall, I consider myself lucky to have had the opportunity to work with Greg and achieve two great admits with scholarships! I would wholeheartedly recommend Greg for his thorough professionalism, personalized coaching, attention to detail, and unmatched dedication and commitment to the applicant’s success.

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December 21, 2020
variantguy

Joined: Feb 03, 2019

Posts: 288

Kudos: 446

Verified score:
750 Q49 V42

I recently heard back from my dream school (a top 7 US News program): an admit to their Full-Time MBA Class of 2023 with a sizeable scholarship!!! To put this result and Faisal’s contribution to it into perspective: I succeeded as a reapplicant, at one of the most selective business schools globally, in an unprecedentedly competitive admissions year and reduced number of seats due to deferrals (thanks to COVID19). It was only due to Faisal that I was able to overcome these impossible odds.

Coming into my second application cycle, having had decent success the first time around (two T15 admits with partial scholarships), I was looking to work with a consultant who could help elevate my applications to the next level for a shot at M7/T10 schools. I spoke to several consultants, most of whom did not seem confident that I could get into an M7/T10 school with my profile. Some were even hesitant to work with me since I already had two admits with scholarships from the previous year, and they perhaps saw more downsides than upsides in this endeavor for them.

After speaking to Faisal for the first time, I immediately knew that I wanted to work with him. What impressed me about him was that he showed great empathy and understanding when listening to my background, experiences, and goals. On top of that, Faisal’s experience as an admissions team member at Booth reflected his knowledge of what it takes to get into an M7 program.

In terms of school selection, Faisal struck the delicate balance between helping set realistic expectations through his openness and, at the same time, ensuring that I was applying to the schools that I’d really want to attend. In contrast, most consultants will ‘nudge’ you to apply to schools where you have better chances of being admitted so they can keep their records intact. Faisal didn’t discourage me from applying even to Stanford and Wharton, which even I knew were ‘extreme reach’ schools for me. We also decided to apply to three other M7 programs where I was a reapplicant (most other consultants tried to sway me away from reapplying since it’s always a high-risk proposition).

I also liked that Faisal works with a much smaller number of people (usually 4-5), compared to some of the other full-time consultants who take on 12-15 applicants each round. I knew that this would guarantee that I was getting the personalized attention that I wanted for my applications.

Once we started working, I could see why Faisal has enjoyed such an impressive success as an admissions consultant. Instead of immediately plunging into essay writing and building application packages, Faisal guided me for the first few weeks to dig deeper and helped me articulate a personal brand story that was authentic, unique, and powerful. Once I started writing the essays, I’d always get feedback that led to significant improvements to my drafts without taking the authenticity or uniqueness away, a testament to Faisal’s exceptional story-telling skills. We went through at least three (and sometimes even up to five) drafts for each of the essays I wrote for the six schools, and I never even once felt that Faisal wasn’t 100% committed to improving my essays and resume. He even took the time to review my application forms to ensure that all parts of my app were up to the mark.

On top of that, Faisal’s project management skills are top-notch. He always responded within the 72-hour turnaround time (and sometimes even earlier) that he had committed when we started working. Thanks to all this, I was able to submit six competitive applications in Round 1, with an admit + scholarship at my dream school as the result.

Business school admissions can be incredibly challenging. You want to work with a thorough professional with ample experience and past success who is willing to personally commit to and invest in your success, just as a friend would. If you go with Faisal, you will get all this and more!

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