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MBA Essay Tips


Although MBAs will vehemently dismiss the need for PHDs in a teaching Job, most professors in top Business Schools have a PHD. So if your goal is to be part of a prestigious institute like Harvard, Wharton or any other Ivey league schools, doing a PHD after Executive or Full-time MBA would be a good move. Mind you, if your goal is to be part of 2nd tier Business Schools, PHDs are not a requirement. If you are an MBA and have considerable number of years of experience and achievement to show, you will be valuable for top Business Schools. So understanding the teaching qualification of your target schools is necessary.

Your career goal will play a major factor in making this decision. Answer the following questions: Why you want to pursue a Ph.D?

After you have thought about your motivation, read about the following scenarios.

a) Teaching Jobs

In this example, we use the fictitious profile of a Marketing lead, who has to work with an inexperienced team and nearly lost the client after the team presented a cliched idea. The unexpected exit of the senior most marketer from the team adds to the pressure. The narrative focuses on the leadership of the applicant and how he motivated the team to rise above the limitations. The inspiration for the campaign is narrated with an interesting turn of events.

Essay #1: Kellogg’s purpose is to educate, equip & inspire brave leaders who create lasting value.  Tell us about a time you have demonstrated leadership and created lasting value.  What challenges did you face, and what did you learn? (450 words)

Kellogg Sample Essay: Leading a Marketing Campaign

With just 2 years into understanding the nuances of developing campaigns and finding influencers for amplifying the marketing message, I was assigned to lead the campaign for <x> AgroPro – a newbie from the US with limited market penetration. However, the flagship brand – Masaki Chips, had a cult following in India and Japan – an unlikely two markets, since the two countries had diametrically opposite palette for spices

In the second example, we use the fictitious profile of a Technology consultant, who is from an Entrepreneurial environment and finds the bureaucratic culture limiting for innovation and productivity. Finding the root cause of the cultural problem is narrated with the perspective of the company and its history of serving faceless enterprises. The actions the applicants took to change the attitude of the team towards risk and innovation is the basis for this leadership essay.

Kellogg Sample Essay: Changing Company Culture

Essay #1: Kellogg’s purpose is to educate, equip & inspire brave leaders who create lasting value.  Tell us about a time you have demonstrated leadership and created lasting value.  What challenges did you face, and what did you learn? (450 words)

Earning double promotion and leading the technological integration for over 20 start-ups have acclimatized me to the ramen noodles’ story, founders sleeping under the bench, and 48-hour hackathons that became the basis for their new products. I was surprised when the Founder shared the news that he had accepted a $20 mn acquisition deal with <x> - the 100-year old tech giant. As part of the deal, the management gave promotion to top 10% of the employees.

In the first example, we share the journey of an applicant, who couldn’t afford to recruit urban talents due to the high cost. To disrupt the traditional model of recruitment, the candidate takes on a long-term solution – train the undereducated community in villages on communication, technology, marketing, and business development. Through a 20-year plan, the candidate has started the journey of revolutionizing the job market by utilizing the most underused commodity – graduates from the rural heartland.

The growth of <x> to gain over 15% market share in the b2b email marketing space is a testimony to the courage, empathy, inclusiveness, and impact-oriented mindset of the Founder.

Sample Essay #1: Values are what guide you in your life and work. What values are important to you and how have they influenced you? (443 words)

Evaluating the ‘introduce yourself’ answer of a technologist brought chuckles to the rest of the interview panel. They were making fun of the peculiar accent that is a trademark of North East India. The topics switched from functional knowledge to stress questions. The applicant kept hopping and eventually won the hearts and minds of the panel. I realized that there were hundreds of candidates who don’t leave the best first impression but through sheer determination integrates into the global marketplace.
In the third example, we evaluate the shortcut that nearly cost the technology company its 60,000 power users. The candidate – a consultant, working in Digital solutions is called to evaluate the increasing churn of a software giant’s cloud-based service. The suite of services that include office, productivity, and social products saw a 15% drop in customers, within two quarters, ringing alarm bells in the stock market. An internal analysis suggested a competitor’s IPO to be the cause for customer migration. The candidate’s instincts said otherwise.

In this techno-consulting narrative, the candidate’s value of empathizing with the customers and keeping an open-mind are central to this Kellogg ‘values’ essay.

Sample Essay #1: Values are what guide you in your life and work. What values are important to you and how have they influenced you? (446 Words)

It is not often that one gets the chance to talk to the C-Suite of a Technology giant to decode the reasons for the alarmingly high churn rate for their flagship product. They had neatly laid out five probable reasons for the shift in customer preference. Now it was up to us three to start the analysis.




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