So many applicants these days look alike on paper in terms of experience and education, test scores and outside involvement that even highly qualified candidates get lost in the shuffle.
We all think we’re pretty unique until we find out that the next guy also volunteered at a similar NGO, or was promoted to VP before his colleagues. Particularly if you come from a feeder industry such as banking, finance or technology/engineering, it gets harder every year to stand out.
Often, the key to distinguishing oneself in the application process is contained within your Post-MBA vision statement.
Leveraging the unique components of your profile to create a post MBA vision that is compelling can be the secret to application success. If you can unfold a plan to achieve something interesting which draws on your past experiences, you will have a better shot at getting noticed. Business schools can smell passion a mile away, so try your best to communicate your enthusiasm for the things you hope to accomplish. If these goals tie in nicely to your past achievements, even better.
As much as b-schools like to see passion, they also can spot a dreamer, someone who floats big plans but does not have the evidence in their profile to back it up, and potentially may not have the horsepower to see it through.
If schools feel your vision is unachievable, they will quickly move on. There is a fine line between vision casting and dream weaving. Vision casting is compelling, exciting and obtainable. Dream Weaving can be naïve, grandiose and unconvincing.
Will Stanford invite you to interview based on your grand post MBA plan? You can’t know for sure until that call comes, but the key will be in how you position your past and future, and how everything is working together in a realistic, believable way to reach great heights. Before you dive headlong into application prep this summer, you might consider giving this area some thought. We have plenty of experts on staff to help you do just that.
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