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6 Basic Principles of Successful MBA Essays


First Principle: IMPRESS! Sell! Market! The primary purpose of your MBA application essays is to impress the admissions committee and market your candidature for gaining admittance to a leading business school. The objective of the essays is not to only answer the essay questions but to also present your candidature credibly and strongly. Your essays are media to showcase your strengths, skills and qualities: to highlight how IMPRESSIVE your candidacy really is!

Second Principle: Be Yourself! Bring forth an authentic differentiation and present a genuine face in your essays. Each of us has knowledge, skills and qualities that grant him or her the potential to have unique views and to do extraordinary things. Uncover this in yourself and then express YOUR SELF in the essays. Choose incidents, approaches, viewpoints that represent your personality accurately. Your MBA essays are about YOU; so after reading 1000 odd words from you, the reader should want to meet you without asking "tell me something about yourself".

Third Principle: Review! Take at least one other person into confidence (preferably two: one who knows you closely and one who knows you lesser) and get a different perspective on the essays than your own. Good essay writing requires deep self examination and often while immersing oneself in this process, we might develop tunnel vision; we might lose sight of the forest for the trees or simply overlook what might have been otherwise obvious. Get a fresh viewpoint - it always helps.

Fourth Principle: Start Early! Often it seems like we have a long time to act - till we don't. Start early. We will repeat this (and again!) - start on your MBA essays well in advance. Do not wait till the last bell. Write, re-write, re-re-write and then check again well before the deadline. Begin work on your essays and recos 40-60 days before the deadline. Don't let delays and procrastination impede your success.

Fifth Principle: Follow Instructions! Staying within recommended word limits, remembering deadlines, using the recommended fonts and font sizes, answering specified questions. All this would seem simple enough - but sadly hundreds of actual applications each year tell a different story. Following the application instructions demonstrates courtesy, discipline and even underlines your integrity. It eases the burden on admissions committees and reduces impediments to your selection.

Sixth Principle: Believe! If you don't genuinely believe that you deserve and can win an admit to your school of choice - you will often prove yourself right. If you genuinely believe that you deserve and can win an admit to your school of choice - you will often prove yourself right. Believe!


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