The Admission team is looking for candidates who combine humbleness, agreeability, openness, and conscientiousness. In addition to the four main characteristics, the candidate should show a mix of risk-taking, creativity, and extroversion.
Now let us start writing – “What matters most to you, and why? “.
We have shared a sample Stanford MBA Essay A.
Don’t use any part of the sample essay for your Stanford MBA Application.
Read and find inspiration.
Sample Stanford MBA Essay A: What matters most to you, and why? (750 Words)
In a world where beheading innocents is normal, it is easy to get Cynical about the future. When the world becomes a large pool of cynics, they are blinded from the opportunities that lay ahead. Giving up is easy. Fighting on despite the injustice and the uncertainties is what has made us humans survive over 200,000 years. I take pride in our ancestor’s ability to fight even greater uncertainties, but life for me is more than a fight, it is about the experiences that delights and tests me.
Without balancing the four building blocks of my life - personal, professional, social, and spiritual, my foundation will be shaky.
Social: I look forward to building a close group of friend in Stanford GSB, and contribute with my actions, solutions, or...
An MBA Applicant, we reviewed, had a consistent 4-year performance in the advertising industry. He was responsible for some of the best campaigns in a top Ad Agency. As we condensed his performance to interesting narratives using the switching views method, shortlisting conflicts, finding antagonists and adding elements of storytelling, he shared one big secret just two days before the application deadline. Despite being a top 1% contributor, he was fired from two of the four jobs. We felt betrayed that he chose not to share this crucial piece of information while we were sending questionnaires for the life audit session. According to him, Firing was a negative incident, not something that enhances the narrative arc, or adds to the saleability of his profile. MBA Admission team has often found evidence of 'getting fired' during background checks, and had to reject accepted applicants because they chose not to disclose employment gaps contributed by the incident.
What most applicants fail to understand is that any incident can be transformed to a story by adding four elements: Characters, Points of Views, Obstacles, and Resolution. The top MBA program he was applying even had a question - "What is...
For this MBA essay, you have to list your short-term and long-term goals. You might also have to do a thorough research on your target Business School to answer these questions.
Why MBA - Harvard Business School?
Establish a clear strategy before you approach any set of MBA essays. For HBS, this is especially important because you can choose amongst several questions in order to illustrate your candidacy. It’s a great idea to brainstorm to uncover your strongest stories so that you can best demonstrate important leadership, management, academic and personal qualities. Harvard is interested in knowing how you work as a person, how you think, and what kind of leader you are. Community involvement and a broad international perspective are certainly valued, as you can see by the topics. Most importantly, specific and concise examples are the best way to demonstrate who you are. Without specifics, a claim to be a leader is empty. Also make sure to answer the question completely, but do not add extra information if it is not relevant.
You have to be decisive and strategic with your essays, interview and follow-up essay. Learn how to handle the Harvard MBA Admission process with HBS Essay Guide
Another common mba essay question is - What does an “ethic” mean to you and how important is it? Give a specific example (e.g. decisions you had to make in the past) to illustrate this.
For me, Ethics means a well-defined standard of fairness. The standards ensure that I conduct myself with honesty and compassion. It is also my responsibility to assess the standards regularly for social and cultural influences, and take corrective steps if necessary.
For specific examples from your professional life, mention:
1) How you negotiated your way around a suggestion by your manager/supervisor to perform certain tasks that was against your ethics.
2) This example should emphasis how you were able to negotiate on the new course of action that was ethical .
3) Emphasis the win-win strategy that you suggested and how it was a workaround for the initial unethical action suggested by your supervisor(provide examples of resistance on your new course of action)
When you write about weakness in an MBA Application essay, focus on real weakness, the consequence, realization and how you were able to fix it. The weaknesses can be related to skill or limited exposure to team dynamics. Whatever be your weakness, do not cite the ones that show lack of maturity, leadership, or communication. Some elements of weaknesses in these three areas can be mentioned in your essay, but the very reason that you are writing about your weakness in an objective manner shows your maturity. Only leaders invite criticism and work hard on their weaknesses. By writing openly about your shortcomings, you are highlighting your traits as a leader.
For a complete list of leadership traits that you should highlight in your MBA Application Essay, Download F1GMAT’s Winning MBA Essay Guide
The weakness essay follows a simple trajectory
Weakness (Real Weakness) -> Consequences (Loss of Account/Revenue/Missed Deadlines) -> Realization (Feedback from Managers/Observation about the loss) -> Work on Weakness (Corrective Action) -> Results (Win Back a Client/Exceeding Expectations/Life Lesson)
If you want help creating a structured essay like the simple trajectory shown...
This sample MBA essay will answer the following questions - How do you define teamwork? How have you demonstrated team work in your career?
Tell us about a time when you built or developed a team whose performance exceeded expectations.
Describe a time you had to inspire a reluctant individual or group.
Teamwork for me is the actions that members in a group take in order to achieve a common goal, which is much greater than the personal aspirations of each team member. Communicating openly, working towards conflict resolution and supporting each team members in achieving a common objective are the three key aspects of teamwork.
When you give an example about teamwork, cite instances where:
1) You have worked with a diverse team (team with diverse experience, skill type, nationality and cultures)
You are unique and sample essays should only be used as a guideline. After you have read sample essays, school specific mba application essays and understood the dynamics behind writing essays, create a first draft. Don’t worry about making grammatical errors or creating poor sentence structures. Let your thoughts flow. Put to paper a detailed description of your personality, your unique story and the journey till now.
Initially, don’t worry about relevance. Just start writing. You have to edit the essay in the next version. During that time, you can remove irrelevant parts of your story from the essay. We have quite a few Sample Essays that are generally asked in MBA Application:
This sample MBA essay will give you pointers to answer - What is the most important thing in your life? For extensive tips we have created Winning MBA Essay Guide. We spent five years reading and evaluating essays - from the brilliant to the awful before compiling this ebook. Download it here.
Maintaining good self-esteem is the most important thing for me. A balance of personal, vocational and spiritual aspect of one's life is necessary to achieve this goal.
I would say that as a personal goal, maintaining a healthy lifestyle would top the priority list. This is not an easy goal as this involves exercising regularly, avoiding addictions of any kind and investing time in relationships (that I value). On a spiritual level, my goal would be to master practices that would help me in making decisions that are in accord with the values that I believe in - Honesty, Excellence and Collaboration.
This sample mba essay answers the question - Describe when you were part of a team where the group process and/or intended outcome failed. What did you learn?
I am sure you might have faced failures in your work/college life. As you know, various factors influence the outcome of a group process. In some occasions, you might have played a major role in the negative outcome of a team. You have to be honest with it. The admission committee is not expecting you to blame your team members or lack of synergy (the most overused word in essays and in b-schools) for the failure.
Failures can be due to
1) Lack of skills/Early stages of skill development
You were the event manager for a...
This sample MBA essay will answer the question
"Please explain if you have been involved in charity/volunteer and/or entrepreneurial activities, giving examples of your involvement, the amount of time you gave to each activity and why you chose to get involved."
What the Business School wants to know?
B-School wants to know about your outlook and commitment towards the well-being of your community. There are hundreds of charity and not-for-profit organization around the world. Were you a volunteer in one of them? Mention your role and the activities that you had to do. What skills did you develop?
“During the summer of 2007, I received a mail from my friend, X. He wanted me to be part of an NGO (mention the name) that he was managing. The process of managing the NGO became a little overwhelming for him and he wanted someone to share his responsibilities. I had just moved from City X to City Y. I agreed to be part of the NGO to help my friend. As I got involved with the day-to-day activities of the organization, I realized the value that my friend was adding to the society. This thought forced me to retrospect on the priorities of my life. Working for <NGO Name> not only changed my outlook towards life but also polished...