We have had many applicants ask us if too much work experience is a thing during MBA applications. to be completely honest with you, it is. With more work experience, your responsibility to prove the need for an MBA increases.
Nitant was facing the same problem with about 8 years of experience in a brand development role.
However, with us, Nitant cracked INSEAD, the world's #1 Executive MBA Program!
His journey was full of hurdles, but his diligence got him his dream MBA admit.
Nitant’s MBA resume had typical problems. He was writing a resume in the way he had always done for jobs, while we needed him to write an MBA for an admissions committee.
The biggest difference between a job and an MBA resume is who evaluates it.
A job resume is evaluated by someone who knows your job function and the industry very well, while an MBA resume is evaluated by an admissions committee member who might have no idea that a job function like yours even existed.
This was Nitant’s first struggle. He had to explain the intricacies of his job in layman terms without diminishing the significance of his accomplishments. The second struggle was that he had to accomplish this in just one-page.
This is where we introduced him to the STAR format. The STAR format suggests that each situation that you write about in your resume should be accompanied by a task you were assigned, an action you took, and the result you delivered. It took some time and strategizing, but we were able to use the STAR format and crunch Nitant’s vast resume.
Nitant was also self-aware and made space for an upcoming promotion although he would only serve a couple of months.
While you might think it’s the obvious thing to do, but an admissions committee member from Haas once revealed that a student who was about to get accepted was denied admission due to failure to mentioning a promotion.
Next up was Nitant’s goals story. Though elaborate, Nitant’s answer wasn’t quite what the business schools are looking for. Nitant was answering what an MBA was while the schools ask how an MBA will help you.
Also, his short-term goal did not seem in harmony with his present or his long-term goal. While sometimes this is just a case of the applicant not being able to join the dots between his past, present, and future, this was different.
Many applicants come in with a short-term goal in mind that they chose because they did not know of a much more suitable option available to them.
For example, Nitant’s short term goal originally was consulting. Because he had shared his story and his aspirations with us, we suggested that general management might be a better fit for him. After researching about the same, and talking to a few reliable acquaintances, Nitant realized that General Management was the perfect short-term goal for him and accepted our suggestion.
Now what this did for him was bring a lot more conviction in his reasons for doing an MBA. His equation of Past + Current Handicaps + MBA = Short-term and Long-term goals were much stronger.
His essays were a historic account of the life of Nitant. He had mentioned a lot of information about himself but hadn’t revealed himself at all. Confused? Read on.
When writing an application essay, you need to keep in mind that the admissions committee doesn’t want to know your accomplishments, they have your resume for that. What they want to know is your journey to that accomplishment. They want to know what influences your decisions and what personality traits helped you succeed in a certain task.
While Nitant had answered every question very matter-of-factly whereas this was the perfect place to show his personality. So, we suggested him to do exactly that. After some feedback, and a few iterations of the essay we were satisfied with what we had and submitted his applications.
Nitant was on very happy, and rightfully so when he informed us that he had received an admit from INSEAD and will be joining their January intake.
To be a part of this amazing man’s MBA journey was truly a great experience.