MBA Application Snag

08 Aug

Let me start this with a summary of my applicant profile:

  1. Work Exp: One year in a non-profit. Almost 6 years in consulting.
  2. 710 GMAT (Q47, V40)
  3. GPA of 3.92 out of 5
  4. College EC’s: member of Student Government, Peer tutor, church volunteer.
  5. Post-college EC’s: Founding Board member of a committee at work, professional mentoring to new recruits,  volunteer at church, photography, sports (volleyball & tennis)
  6. Post-MBA goals: Entrepreneurship (Agribusiness)

Where’s the snag?

My post MBA goals are both cross function and cross industry. I need to show the adcom that an overachiever like myself with a lot of passion can make it happen. I know this is what I want to do, I know I can do it but I need to convince the adcom that I am a risk worth taking. What makes this even ‘riskier’ for the school is that my post-MBA industry is not a traditional one. (Aside: I knew the industry was a big issue when I talked to one of the adcom members at an admission event.)


I recently found an article on which is all shades of useful and has finally pointed me in the right direction. I am now working on how to demonstrate th attributes recommended in that article in my optional essay.

One advice I will give to career changers: DO NOT CHANGE YOUR GOALS just because you think it will be a hard sell. Some people had advised me to pick a more sellable goal for admission purposes but I do not believe that will work. I don’t know about other people but I find it ver difficult to communicate passion if I am not passionate about something. Another reason is that you want to be sure that the school you attend will help you achieve your actual goals not the fake one you pick for admission purposes. However, this is just my opinion, and you are very free to do the opposite if it works for you.

Any career changer (cross industry, cross function or both) care to share their opinion?


Posted by on August 8, 2014 in Application


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12 responses to “MBA Application Snag

  1. Mo

    August 8, 2014 at 12:09 pm

    I completely agree with you. I’m also in consulting (assurance) and want to change to management consulting which is more competitive. It’s not so easy especially when you have close to five years experience or more. My thoughts, go ahead and sell yourself. If you are a good fit with the school, you will get in. The fact that your post-mba industry is not traditional also helps you stand out. But also, give room in your “sales pitch” that you are open minded and its not agribusiness or nothing. That way you show you have a clear plan of where you want to be but are also open to experiences you will have during your program and the possibility that it might change your initial plan.

    • NaijaMBAgal

      August 8, 2014 at 12:19 pm

      Thanks. I’ll make sure I convey that thought. How’s your GMAT prep coming along?

      • Mo

        August 11, 2014 at 6:55 am

        Its coming along well, better than i expected. Finally broke in the 700 club in OG practice but I feel its inflated as I didn’t write the essay and the IR was kind of repeated. Now i know its possible for me to do, just need to tidy up my quant – reinforce concepts, remove careless errors and get my timing down pat. How are the essays coming along?

        • NaijaMBAgal

          August 11, 2014 at 8:10 am

          That’s good to hear. All the best.

          Essays are coming along. Slowly.

  2. topdogmba

    August 8, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    Hello. I’m in a somewhat similar position (corporating banking to social entrepreneur) plus I got the age thing going against me.
    My strategy is to have a detailed immediate post MBA goal (switching to a social venture fund or CSR function in a corporate bank – which can be bridged very nicely with the skills acquired from an MBA) and a broader long-term goal which leaves room for flexibility.
    I agree if you try to play it safe you lose the *spark* in your application which could be the difference between an offer and a ding. This was part of my problem last season – after toning down my ambitions, my performance at interview was quite flat.
    I laid out a rough vision last month ( which I’ve now worked into a coherent plan for my essays. Started writing this weekend at last! Best of luck NaijaMBAgal!!

    • NaijaMBAgal

      August 8, 2014 at 4:45 pm

      You’re right and I like your ‘rough vision’. I’m working on my plan of attack this weekend.

      Best of luck to you too. 🙂

  3. domotron

    August 8, 2014 at 10:01 pm

    It’s totally fine as a long term goal but riskier if you throw it in as your immediate post MBA goal. As topdogmba mentioned if you can build a plausible path, demonstrate passion and knowledge, show why it makes sense in the context of your career and MBA then it’s not a risk.

    If you can put forth anecdotes about why it occurred to you that agribusiness is where you want to be then even better.

    • NaijaMBAgal

      August 8, 2014 at 10:15 pm

      I’d like to get into the industry immediately after my MBA but not to start up my own thing immediately.

      I plan to show why it occurred to me, my proposed path, skills I have and plan to gain from the MBA and how they will be useful in the industry& function. Do you think that will be good enough?

      • domotron

        August 9, 2014 at 8:09 am

        That sounds solid to me. Gaining experience in the industry first before starting your own venture definitely makes sense. It’s good if you can demonstrate an entrepreneurial record (maybe you have tried startups or had some experience/link with them at work) which helps to tie in your long term goals nicely.

        • NaijaMBAgal

          August 9, 2014 at 9:51 am

          I have those. 3 unsuccessful startups. Thanks

  4. دانلود سریال

    November 28, 2014 at 12:33 am

    thank you


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