Second in a series for individuals who have not yet started to prepare their MBA applications. For a look at Reasons 1-5, see our previous blog post at www.mbaexchange.com
6. I have too much / not enough work experience to apply
The range of full-time work history for admitted applicants is much wider than you may think. Top business schools accept individuals to their full-time MBA programs with as much as 30 years — or as little as 0 years — of experience. They assess professional “impact” with consideration for the duration of experience. The key is to convince the admissions committee that you will: a) perform well in the classroom, and b) contribute to the learning and growth of fellow students. And regardless of your age, if a full-time education doesn’t feel like the right fit at this stage of your life, there are some excellent part-time and executive MBA programs to consider. (And keep in mind that the median age of full-time MBA admits is somewhat higher for European vs. US b-schools.)
7. I don’t have any great accomplishments
A business school could fill its entire incoming class with superstars who have achieved amazing things — professionally, academically or personally. However, a solid gold resume does not guarantee admission. Adcoms place just as much — if not more — value on what an applicant has learned while overcoming adversity and how much potential he or she has to make a positive difference in the world. When a b-school is assessing a candidate, there’s no bigger turnoff than arrogance! The real key to success is authenticity. To discover your most significant and convincing points of difference, start with an objective, expert evaluation of your past, present and future.
8. I applied and was rejected last year
Many successful applicants to leading business schools gain admission on the second or even third try. As long as you show self-awareness, determination and improvement, your reapplication will get serious reconsideration. A ding analysis provided by an experienced admissions consultant can provide you with a baseline for improvement and a game plan for successful reapplications. Harness the disappointment and frustration of being denied to drive your campaign for a better outcome next time.
9. I’m anxious about the interview
Most people get nervous when they have to face a decision maker. If you didn’t feel that way, then there would be some doubt about how much you really want to succeed. A successful interview begins with a candid understanding of your strengths and weaknesses. Then you need to discover what attributes are most important to the school that’s interviewing you. And finally, it’s all about practice, practice, practice. Having the guidance and support of a professional advisor for interview preparation can help even the most anxious applicant overcome self-defeating distractions and gain the confidence to prevail.
10. I probably won’t be admitted
There’s only one way to make sure that you won’t be admitted — don’t apply! Yes, the competition is significant and the process is demanding. And there are no guarantees. But the intellectual, emotional, social and financial benefits of a top MBA education are amazing. Why shouldn’t you be among those to earn those benefits? Thorough analysis, thoughtful planning, and diligent implementation are likely to produce a positive outcome for you at a respected business school. Starting today will only improve your chances for success. Procrastination is a choice with consequences. Convinced to go for it? Good!