If you are a future MBA applicant you may be thinking that round 1 deadlines are so far away. There is no reason to fire the gun before you can see the target. However, there is a lot of work before writing essays and collecting the elements of the actual application. Here are a few pointers to what you can do now for a well structured, thought-through application already now.
First of all, you need to decide on the school(s) you want to apply to. Schools usually have a brochure for potential applicants that explains the program, flexibility, class sized and other characteristics you need to consider within your decision. But remember there’s a lot of things you can’t get out of a piece of paper. If possible, visit the schools you are interested in. Feel the atmosphere and talk to the current students about campus life and why they applied to this program.
One thing you have to plan now is how you’re going to study for the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test). You want to have plenty of time to study. The need for study time varies from student to student. Do you want to hire one of the many tutor services? And which kind? Remember not to take the test too late. You may need to take it again before the deadline to present your best possible score.
Your GPA is a different story. Even though you can’t change the number itself that doesn’t mean there is no way of dealing with a slightly uncompetitive GPA. If you find your GPA to be on the low end of the spectrum, sign up for a few pre-MBA courses. By getting outstanding grades in a few relevant classes will show the admission committee that you are:
- an engaged student
- passionate about the industry
- aware of the problem
An extremely important part of your MBA application is your goals. It’s crucial that you define your short term and long term goals very clear and precisely. You may have an idea about why you’re getting this MBA and why, but having a specified goal to pursue is essential. This is an important question, which may need time for a little extra reflection.
You can never have too much leadership experience or examples of such. Now is the time to take every leadership opportunity in your professional life and in organizations in which you are currently involved.
If you are applying to different schools you’ll be writing different resumes highlighting the elements of your experience that match the best with the different school identities. Creating a basic resume write-up might help you form out several resumes with separate focuses.
Do not send out the same resume to different schools!
This is the time to consider who your recommender(s) will be. Spend these next months showing your recommender your extraordinary professional qualifications.
Building a specified personal brand is difficult and being successful in communicating the brand clearly is not easier. At MBAitNOW we help you find the absolute best strategy for your MBA application and make sure the message comes across.
It all starts with a free consultation with one of our experts.