One of the most important moments when applying for an MBA program is the candidate’s essay. Harvard is no exception. And yet many do not give it proper value, thereby reducing its chances. In the end, perhaps this is the “best” way to distinguish yourself among other applicants for admission.
Dan Rogers, Harvard’s current freshman MBA, offers you some tips on writing a great essay. He graduated from Birmingham University in Great Britain with an honorary degree in Economics and Political Science, later, for four years, he worked as a consultant in the field of strategic management. In addition to Harvard, he was accepted into many other business schools. Annually many young professionals from around the world are fighting for a place in the top business school. This year’s competition was tougher than ever. The pressure on the labor market, and the financial difficulties caused by the situation in the economy, convinced many that they should join the battle for getting a seat in a business school. While the increase in the number of talented candidates was a surprise for the admissions of business schools, for the applicants this meant only one thing: entering a top business school became even more difficult. They soon realized that they needed not only to work even harder to achieve their dream of entering a business school, but also to find a way to distinguish themselves, their advantages, and to show oneself in the best possible way. When your GMAT level is normal, the same as for everyone, then the introductory essay is the most important distinguishing component in your dossier. While there is no magic formula for writing a great introductory essay, there is still a technique for writing a perfect essay than an interview technician. And the “theory” of writing begins with a chapter that says how best to present your external characteristics.
It is very important why you write an essay. Think of a member of the admissions committee, as a buyer, going to buy the best goods. The essay is your chance to sell yourself, to shout to the buyer: “Hey, you there, look at me! Buy me.” Commercial offer Marketing is a process that takes place in two stages: first, an understanding of the values of the buyer, and secondly, the creation of commercial proposals to convince the buyer that this is what he needs and even more. Commercial offers of the perfect product not only meet all the requirements of the buyer, but also after the acquisition for a long time remain in his mind and memory. Therefore, the person counting for admission needs to analyze both the school’s requirements and his own experience
Many people believe that all schools are looking for the same thing. And this leads to what the entrant offers the same to different customers. For example, the message “I’m a guy who walks in front” can resonate well with some schools. But it can also easily alienate the buyer who heard “I’m a guy who works successfully only in cooperation with others.” This slight change of emphasis in understanding can mean absolutely different things – failure or success.
You need to find out what each school is looking for, what is the ideal candidate for her. You also need to determine for yourself which elements of leadership, teamwork, entrepreneurial experience and management skills each school wants to hear. And only knowing everything about the business school, you can tell your personal professional history. Getting information about a business school is very important. If you do not have the opportunity to visit all the schools on your list, then at least get acquainted with them during the World MBA Tour. You can also use the links and find the current or former student of the school, capable of shedding light on its secrets and characteristics. All efforts made to ensure that this five-minute conversation took place will fully pay off. Think about yourself.
The second half of the equation is the process of self-analysis. I began to gradually fill out a huge sheet of paper, brainstorming, until my eyes began to close. I forced myself to think carefully over a series of test questions. What in my life pushed me to enter a business school? What is driving me? What is my personality and uniqueness? What are my strengths? What events in my life influenced me? What makes me an ideal candidate? How can I show my leadership skills and teamwork skills? Only, when I felt that I had completely exhausted my resources, I showed this poster to my closest relatives. Maybe they know something else that makes me interesting. To really make a real picture of yourself loved, you probably even have to remember yourself at the age of five. Ultimately, you will have a long list of different stories and ideas; and they will be the basis for the questions of the essay.
Now you are ready to connect both halves of the equation together. For each issue of the essay, you will have an idea of what the school wants to hear in return, and the opportunity to choose a suitable story from your life in order to woven the perfect answer. For each question, you need to find an opportunity to demonstrate what experience you have gained. Do not forget: the members of the admissions committee did not pass through introspection with you, so you need to hold them by the hand through all your answers as a guide. The best answers are those that are easy to understand and follow. When you delve into your answers, do not forget to keep in mind that members of the admissions committee understand your uniqueness. Reading the complete collection of your answers, try to understand: what is the complete idea that you leave in the essay. Will this be a holistic view that will remain in the memory of the members of the selection committee? Who you are? How will they remember you? As a “savvy consultant who climbed Mount Everest,” or “the Dodger supporting local charities”? Think about what kind of idea of yourself you want to leave. I wanted to appear to be a “managed consultant, endlessly challenging myself, mentally and physically.” It was not something specifically invented for admission, it’s who I really am. As for the rest of the income, you can not falsify it. Of course, you can think of something, but it’s foolish to try to be what you are not.
The final part of writing an introductory essay is a request for help. Successful applicants have a whole team of people supporting them. They have a mom, dad, girlfriend or drinking buddies who are ready to voice, check writing and edit grammar. They have bosses, managers and school graduates who provide a strategic look, confirm their dignity and test their ideas. These people know when you are hiding something, and can help clarify your ideas. I’m pretty sure that the real factor of my uniqueness was found with the help of friends who were honest enough with me to say when my answers were unconvincing.
Now you have a guide. Like the best medicines, the formula for writing an essay is simple: understand why you are writing this essay, find out your audience, find out yourself, sell yourself to your audience, create yourself a simple, but at the same time unique brand, ask your friends for help. Sometimes I caught myself thinking that I could pay someone to do my essay. But I’m afraid that all the other components of success are at the mercy of luck.