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How to Present Your MBA Goals – Long Term Versus Short Term Goals

Most business schools abroad want you to write in detail about your MBA goals and the reason behind selecting these goals. So, what exactly are these goals and why are the B-schools interested in knowing your goals? Also, what should be your approach while drafting such essays? So, let’s delve deeper to know more.


What are MBA Goals?

MBA goals can also be termed as career goals after MBA. The admission committee at almost all good business schools likes to know the career goals you want to achieve after MBA and how your MBA degree can be helpful in your endeavour. The admission committee wants to know this because of the following important reasons.

  • Students are often the indirect brand ambassadors for their respective schools, and their career prospects post-MBA can directly affect the school’s reputation and ranking.
  • Your career goals and objectives can play a significant role in deciding whether you will have a satisfying learning experience while pursuing the course. If your career goals don’t match the course offerings, you may end up frustrated and bad-mouthing the course, affecting the institution’s reputation.

Therefore, it is essential to carefully draft both your short-term and long-term career goals to have the right impact on the admission committee.

[READ: How to Write a Great MBA Personal Statement]


Short-term Goals

Many people may confuse short-term goals as something you want to achieve during your time at the B-school, it’s not. Instead, short-term goals refer to the professional goals you wish to achieve right after graduating from the B-school. In other words, the admission personnel want to know the kind of job you hope to get and the plans you might have to make an impact at your workplace.

Additionally, your short-term goals should come across as a platform from where you intend to launch your long-term goals. You can specifically state the types of industries or firms you are looking to join and why. You can elaborate on the work experience and exposure you are seeking to help you get closer to your long-term goals. 

[READ: How to Select Short-term Goals For Your MBA Application]


Long-term Goals

Long-term goals can often build up on your short-term goals. Here, you are expected to provide vision on your post-MBA career trajectory over a long time, say 20, 30, or even 40 years from now, depending upon your age and the number of service years you can have. 

You might have a compelling vision of what a company’s future growth should look like. You can also show glimpses of the legacy you want to build and leave behind for the coming generation. More importantly, long-term goals can reflect on the core values that you believe.

It is alright to draw multiple paths to reach your long-term goals, as such goals ought to have a fallback option. However, your main focus areas should remain the same or at least be interconnected with one another. 


Bridging long-term and short-term career goals

  • Clarity of Thoughts

Avoid cliche statements like “ I would like to have a challenging role in….”. Since you have decided to pursue MBA, it is understood that you are ambitious. So, you should come across as a decisive person who knows what particular short-term and long-term goals he wants to achieve through MBA.


  • Uniformity

Maintain consistency in discussing your goals while applying for admission to different MBA colleges. You can risk losing credibility if you keep changing your goals to suit different applications. The admission committees can spot such default write-ups as you might not be able to convey passions for goals that are not yours. 


  • Balance Between Ambitions and Reality

You can’t state that you want to be the next CEO of Alphabet Inc while beginning your MBA programme when you have no interest in technology. Your career goals should be ambitious but attainable. For instance, you can mention the desire to learn some new skill-set as your short-term goal and how it can help you achieve some far-reaching goals. The idea is to be genuine and be realistic.


  • Making Sense Logically

Your desired career trajectory should have a flow. For instance, it is logical to state something like starting as a business analyst after college and then working your way up in 10 to 15 years to become a fund manager, etc.

On the contrary, it doesn’t make sense if you state that you would like to gain a few years of experience in workshop management and after that would like a greater role in marketing or finance roles. 


  • Uniqueness

Reputed business schools like Stanford love to find unique personality traits among their students. They don’t want to build an image of a factory minting fresh business graduates every year. Therefore, it is essential to state the new ideas on your mind related to your field or how you plan to align your short-term and long-term goals to impact a particular industry eventually. 


  • Passion

The corporate world is constantly searching for passionate business leaders, and B-schools know this. But, remember, being passionate about something is different from having expertise in that field. 

Therefore, you don’t have to come across as an expert in a chosen field. Instead, show your passion bout a particular field and how you want to learn more and relentlessly contribute to that field’s development.


  • Storytelling

You should be able to convince the admission personnel that all your career goals, whether short-term or long-term, are woven to build a successful story of change, impact, and entrepreneurship, and they can be part of this growth story too. 

Articulating your goals in the right way without going over the top or sounding pretentious is essential to making your application stand out. Take your time, and don’t shy away from seeking guidance from veterans who have a track record of guiding several students to their MBA dreams. 

Eventually, be honest in projecting your actual objectives and come across as a promising applicant having the potential to become the business leader of tomorrow.

For over 15+ years as an Entrepreneur, and India’s Top Educationist, Jatin has led a range of initiatives in the Education Industry. In this role, he has created many successful educational services and products geared towards generating success for professionals aspiring to join IVY League and global Top Tier Universities for MBA Programs, Masters Programs, and undergraduate courses. He is the Founder and CEO of PythaGURUS Education, and has been recognized as a thought leader in the Higher education sector. Economic Times, Hindustan Times, Times of India, India Today, Business Today, Tribune, and many other national newspapers have recognized his work, and have given him numerous opportunities to be a regular columnist. He has also served as a panelist for NDTV, and other national news channels.

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