MBA (B-School) Admissions Consulting - Application Strategy

MBA (B-School) Application Strategy Overview

Applying for business schools involves a huge amount of research, preparation and organization. Knowing where to apply, when to apply and how to apply successfully is the essentials of the task. It is also a process of self-evaluation and self-marketing. Your ultimate success not only is dependent on who you are, what you have done and where you want to be, but also based on how to highlight your most unique experiences in your applications and how to tailor your approach to each school of your choice.

In general, we recommend you first take stock of your major strengths and weaknesses with real-life evidences to substantiate each quality you list. Then you should stop for a moment and ponder on your current stage of life and your short-term and long-term personal and professional goals. Also think about how a business school could enrich your experiences, knowledge and skills and how an MBA degree could help you further your career path. A thorough process of self-exploration will help you prioritize your major deciding factors for choosing schools to apply for. It will also help you tackle the essays and the entire application in a much more organized and effective way.

We typically recommend you to tier the schools of your choice before you start to apply according to your preference and your likelihood of acceptance. In other words, it will be wise to cover all of worst-case, normal-case and best-case scenarios when you select a short list of schools to apply for. However, it will require the same amount of commitment, dedication and hard work for all applications. You should give every application your best effort!

Work with our expert admissions consultants to devise the most effective application strategy that gets you into your top-choice school. Discuss where and when to apply and how to optimally present your candidacy. Gain valuable insights from our team's vast admissions experiences and leverage off our advice to get the most out of your application. We know how to highlight each important detail from your background and experiences to ensure an admissions board notices you. Spend at least a few hours with our admissions consultants and rest assured knowing that an effective admissions strategy has been crafted to match your aspirations.

MBA (Business School) Application Tips

Distinguish Yourself in a Business School Application

The desire to “stand out” (while inherent in all applicants), is not what the admissions committee wants you to be thinking about during your application process. The most important aspect is to answer the questions clearly, making sure you are doing the best job you can to tell YOUR story; instead of constantly trying to put yourself in a context outside of where you think the other applicants are. I have heard admissions committee members say numerous times that over-thinking and over-crafting your application can ultimately hurt your overall chances of acceptance. Often times, students attempt to say exactly what they think the admission committee wants to hear, when what the admission committee REALLY wants to hear is the student’s story told truthfully and thoughtfully.

The Role the GMAT in your MBA application

The GMAT Exam is a chance for the student to prepare for an exam and take on a challenge. Of course, no student walks into an exam without preparing first. Use your GMAT efforts and scores to highlight the areas that you think may be missing from you undergraduate and work experience. If you do not have much quantitative experience, focus on that area of the GMAT to portray to admissions committee that you can do great work in that area as well. Remember it is still just one piece of the mosaic that is your application.

Essays

Many students get very anxious about the essay portion of an MBA application because they believe that this is the section that they have the most control over (unlike the recommendations, undergraduate records, and your job). However, it is important to remember that the essay is just another portion of the holistic presentation of your application. It is not a writing contest, but more so, another tool to present YOU as a prospective business school student. So personalize it. Focus on the areas of your life that you are most proud and passionate about. These items will ultimately be your strongest point in conveying your growth over time and your ability to succeed.

Recommendations

Try to pick a person to recommend you that you have known for a long time. Admissions Committees look for recommendations that are personalized and give somewhat of an inside look into how the student works and presents themselves.

Diversity on an Application

Diversity is an important factor to consider when applying to business school. However, it must be done so in the right way. Many times, students think they must emphasize the diversity that they have been exposed to in the workplace or at school. However, there are many different types of diversity to consider and a very important one is the way in which you lead. From the student leader who wants to be president of the United States, to the entrepreneur who likes to work in small teams and getting a new business up and running, business schools look for Diversity of Character and want to find student who can lead in effective and creative ways.

Interview Tips

Regardless if it is an MBA Admission interview or a corporate recruiting interview, there are common tips we would like to share with you.

1) Know your interviewer and the entire interview process!

Make a few educated guesses about the interviewer’s personal and professional background such as expertise, rank and experience. Think about the relative importance of each interview in the entire application or corporate recruiting process for the position. Sometimes one person makes the decision. Sometimes, everyone’s opinion counts. In general, modify your answers for each different interviewer and interview process. Try to ace all of them!

Typically senior and more experienced people are more interested in finding out your true characters. Read local and, more importantly, national and international news. Make a few remarks or analogies by using your non-work related knowledge. Demonstrate you are well read and a deep-thinker. Creativity, leadership, loyalty are among the traits most valued for any job. Junior and less experienced interviewers are more interested in your current and past achievements so that they can draw comparisons to themselves or their colleagues. They are looking for signs of dedication, good work ethics, easy to work with and reliability.

2) Remember the basics: be articulate, be energetic and be super prepared!

Mock interviews are one of the best ways for you to practice! Practice with your family members and friends from different walks of life. Their questions will prompt you to think further about how you should present yourself

MBA Reapplication Strategy

Deciding to reapply to a MBA Program from a school from which has previously rejected your application should never be undertaken lightly. There is usually a good reason (or a few) why you were not accepted to a particular business school program. Fact: Applying in different years or semesters to the same school will NOT significantly alter your chances of acceptance. While there are slight variations in the acceptance rates from year to year, overall competition to graduate programs is increasing exponentially. It is also important to keep in mind that merely having been rejected once before immediately puts you at a disadvantage in comparison with other applicants in your pool. Reapplying without making significant changes and improvements to your application and profile, as a student is a waste of time and money. Admissions boards will often scrutinize a student who has previously applied more harshly than others simply on the basis of precedent. They will want to see exactly how you have improved your candidacy, spelled out clearly, with detailed anecdotes and progress from your last application. Above all, be sure that you are objectively evaluating your reasons for reapplication. Applications are expensive and time consuming and you ARE at a distinct disadvantage, having previously been rejected. In order to ensure that you are accomplishing this effectively, stick to these three main rules if you do decide to reapply to an MBA program:

  • Make significant changes to your previous application- in form and content.
  • Use only specific examples and anecdotes when detailing your achievements or skills.
  • Attempt to identify the parts of your application that were the weakest (the reasons for your rejection) and address how you have overcome or improved on them.

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Admissions Consulting Services at a Glance

Comprehensive Packages

  • Dedicated Pack - Includes Application Strategy, Essay Review, Resume Review & Mock Interview
  • Elite Pack - Prompt, 7-day access to educational consultant, Application Strategy, Essay Review, Resume Review, Unlimited Mock Interview

A la Carte Services

  • Essay Review - Options include Single Essay (up to 800 words), Mini Pack (Single Essay + Resume Review) and Essay Review for all essays from one or more schools
  • Application Strategy - 2 hour minimum consultation with our education experts to map out application process
  • Mock Interview - 2 hour minimum preparation with our education expert to prepare for upcoming interview with admissions office
  • Case Interview - 2 hour minimum preparation with our expert to prepare for upcoming consulting case or job interview
  • Rejection Analysis - 2 hour minimum consultation with our education expert to evaluate weaknesses in rejected applications and plan next steps
  • Waitlist Strategy - 2 hour minimum consultation with our education expert to evaluate weaknesses in a waitlisted application, and make recommendations for interim period
  • Scholarship Application Review - Our consultants will identify specific scholarships to apply for, work with you to identify strengths that correlate with the stated objectives of the scholarship and review the applications to ensure your chance of receiving the scholarship is as high as possible
 
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MBA Admissions Student Review

For my admission essays, my consultant provided his expertise on editing and structural arrangement of ideas and helped me product finished final products. I received admissions from both my dream schools which are top tier schools. Today, as I decide to join one of them. I cannot thank Craig enough for his services. He is very experienced and uses his experience to guide user on the right track as far as the flow of the essay is concerned. Well, this is besides the excellent editing skills he has. Thanks Craig! -Eric

To register or for more information please email us at admissions@manhattaneliteprep.com.For more recent admissions success stories, please visit Student Admissions Testimonial page.

MBA (Business School) Admission Consulting Director: Tom Kania

Tom Kania has had over ten years of experience helping over 1,000 people from all over the world gain admissions to graduate business school. His admissions experience began when he served on the Admissions Committee for the MBA program for the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. During that time, Tom Kania read over 4000 applications and participated on the admissions decisions for over 7500 candidates. Tom Kania has a very high success rate of getting candidates into premier business schools including Harvard Business School, Standford GSB, Wharton, Columbia, Chicago and many others. His rates of admissions are usually 4-5 times higher than the stated acceptance rates.  His approach to graduate business school admissions comes from a personal marketing perspective where he strives to bring out the best that his clients can achieve. In addition to his admission expertise, Tom Kania is an expert in real estate finance and distressed assets portfolio management. He was recently chosen to be keynote speaker on distressed asset management at a World Bank conference in Ulaanbaarar, Mongolia and also serves as a consultant to many premier financial organizations including Citigroup, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, CB Richard Ellis and the International Finance Corporation. He speaks four languages fluently and holds an MBA from Wharton and a BA from Columbia University.

Featured MBA (Business School) Admissions Consultant: Craig

Craig is not only one of our most outstanding GMAT instructors, he is also a long-standing Manhattan Elite Prep consultant and our Elite Consultant for all of the top graduate school programs. He has lived in Paris and taught English to business executives. His experience comes from advising business owners and delivering top notch admissions seminars. In Austin he is currently the branch office manager for a translation company. He holds an MBA in International Marketing from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. With his in-depth understanding of the admissions process, Craig is more than qualified to assist you in getting you into your dream school.

Featured MBA (Business School) Admissions Consultant: Cabral

Cabral, a 2003 Wharton MBA graduate himself, has successfully helped students gain admissions in Harvard, Wharton, Virginia, Stanford and various other MBA programs for more than 5 years. He began his admissions experience as a Graduate Assistant in the Wharton MBA Office of Admissions. As a member of the Wharton admissions committee, he reviewed applications, pre-screened potential admits, and served on admissions panels at recruiting events in various cities. In addition, Cabral was the Prospective Student Chairman for Wharton's African American MBA Association (AAMBAA) where he was responsible for essay review & mock interview services designed to increase admission rates and applications of minority students.  He has worked with Manhattan Elite Prep since 2007 helping both international and domestic clients (resume review, essay review, MBA interview preparation, short-listing, information sessions, etc.) and received great feedback on his thorough comments and insightful guidance.

 

 

 

 

Featured MBA (Business School) Admissions Consultant: Dilpreet

Dilpreet's resume boasts time spent at Morgan Stanley, HSBC, and Lehman Brothers-- to name a few--  all work experiences which, coupled with her high GMAT score, garnered her acceptance into top business programs such as Wharton, Booth, Insead, and LSE-- the latter of which she attended for her MBA. At LSE, she was highly involved with the Peer Review Program, bringing further insight to students who were already receiving top training as to how to make themselves look good on paper. Her patience, her commitment, and her highly personalized approach to each student set her apart from any other consultant. We are honored and excited to allow you the chance to work with Dilpreet.

 

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Comparison of Add'l MBA (Business School) Admissions Services

Selected Admissions Services Comparison

Mock interview Case Interview Waitlist Strategy Rejection Analysis Scholarship Review
Service Interview Prep for MBA Admissions Interview Prep for Consulting job Interviews Increase chances of acceptance Review rejected applications to identify problems and minimize weaknesses Assess scholarship options and assist in application
Price $150/hr $150/hr $550 per school $550 per school $350 per school
Students MBA Applicants Consulting Job Applicants Waitlisted MBA Applicants Rejected MBA Applicants Scholarship Applicants
Included Interview Prep and Analysis Interview Prep and Analysis Application Review and Guidance Rejected Application Analysis Scholarship Search and Assistance

*Three Exchanges include either phone calls, email exchanges or a combination; **3 day rush + $75; Weekend Rush +$100