Getting ready to kick-off the MBA application process? Some color commentary for the football minded: Why applying to b-school is like preparing for the Super Bowl.
You’ve been getting ready for this your whole life (even if you didn’t know it).
This is a holistic and thoughtful process. You can’t simply become a strong MBA candidate in a few months. We’re looking at your story comprehensively—how you perform in the classroom, your track record of involvement, the decisions you’ve made to go from one job to the next, etc. These things don’t just materialize when you decide b-school is right for you. Don’t let the pressure impact you too much though—keep reading!
You don’t have to have all the best players to have the best team.
The Patriots didn’t draft Tom Brady until the 6th round. Patriots wide receiver, Julian Edelman, played quarterback in college. Sure they’re some of the best now, but that wasn’t always the case. It’s about being one part of a collective whole. Similarly, you don’t have to be perfect across every dimension. Different applicants stand out for different reasons.
That said, put your best foot forward and shine where you can. Learn to tell your story, regardless of what it is, in a clear and convincing way. Look at your current resume and career goals objectively—will an admissions committee see a common thread? If it’s not that obvious (and even if it is), you should be really good at explaining it to us.
Utilize the experts.
In football it might be the coaches or other key personnel; in b-school admissions it’s your colleagues, friends, and program resources (in-person and online events, student ambassadors, etc.). Talk about the MBA in general. Talk about specific schools. Determine what’s important to you. The more information you have, the better you’ll understand how you and your goals fit in. As such, you’ll be better prepared to submit a strong application and make an ultimate choice if you’re faced with more than one admit.
Quick time-out on this one: Utilizing the experts does not mean having someone else do the work for you—not even an admissions consultant.
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