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Harvard Business School


Harvard MBA accepts the typical, the outstanding and the unusual. Applicants worrying that they are aiming too high, don't put 100% while crafting the essay.

You don't have to search for the incredible quality to be considered worthy of Harvard MBA.


What differentiates you should be intellectual curiosity - a desire to unearth the truth when information is overloaded, find connections in ideas when nobody is looking, and recognize patterns that influence the outcome of a project.

Intellectual curiosity is one of the most commonly cited narratives in Harvard MBA Essays.

The nuance of your life experience should differentiate your essay from the many that would use the same theme.

Sample Harvard MBA Essay - Volunteering (Mental Health Awareness) 

I had seen hundreds of tweets, and Facebook likes on Mental health Awareness, with bold letters indicating the number to call. Dismissing them...

Open-ended questions are tough. But Harvard MBA team has hinted that given all the information they have (resume and recommendation letters), what additional information would give you like to share. The essay is a personal reflection question. The resume has captured your achievements, and the recommendation letters provides a perspective from your supervisor/client or CEO.

What you need now is a personal journey that helped you become who you are. We had clients who didn’t have any particular setbacks on first look, but digging deeper revealed skills that were only acquired because they escaped a personal setback.

Start from your childhood. What events shaped your values? What setbacks gave you new insights? What motivated you to pursue the current career path.

Most MBA applicants are career switchers. That should not discourage you from sharing the love for your current job function. Even if the passion has faded and you want to explore other career options, the story connecting your journey to the current job would be an interesting read.

Here is an example of an applicant from a war-torn country who found hope through mentors. With his non-profit, the applicant is solving homelessness in the US.

Sample HBS MBA Essay – Gratitude & Giving Back

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With the case study method, the students are in the shoes of the protagonists, but the FIELD project offers students the opportunity to be the protagonists.

Harvard believes in the cycle of thinking, doing, and reflecting.

The FIELD courses 1 to 3 does just that.

Thinking about Businesses is not the same as getting your hands dirty with the implementation.

The school has a lineup of rich experiences through global immersion projects in China, India, Poland, Costa Rica, Ghana, Brazil, and South Africa, to name a few. The sponsors present the challenge to the team of 6 with the supporting data.

Quite often with the fieldwork, data might be updated or challenged. One such example was when a team of FIELD students worked with Intel, who presented that the percentage of PC users in China was only 20%. On entering the field and collecting the sample set of data, it became apparent that what Intel provided was wrong.

Challenging assumptions, data, and strategy is the key to the field experience.


How can you demonstrate your potential as an effective FIELD team member at Harvard?

Some of the premises that you can use are:

1) Entrepreneurial experience
2) Leading a team in a non-profit...


15th May 2018: The Harvard MBA Admission team has announced that there won't be any Round 3 deadlines for the 2021 graduating class.

R1 Deadline:
Sep 5th 2018
R2 Deadline: 4th Jan 2019

The application will be open by June 1st week

Start writing your HBS MBA Essay with F1GMAT's Harvard MBA Essay Guide

Jan 25th, 2018: This noon, the first iteration of interview invitations were sent. Check your email.

For interview preparation and creating authentic narratives, Download F1GMAT's MBA Admission Interview Guide.

The interview scheduler - the tool to organize the interview location and time, will be open only by 26th Jan 2018 at 12:00 noon EST. The admission team recommends using them as soon as it is live. The demand for the slots would be pretty high.

Jan 30th, 2018: Next 1/3rd of the R2 interview invitations will be out.


October 5 2017: Interview invitations will be sent today. You will receive one of...


The deadlines for Harvard MBA Class of 2021 has been announced.

Round 1: Application deadline - Wednesday, September 05, 2018 at 12:00 noon EST
Decision notification - 12th December 2018

Round 2: Application deadline
- Friday
, January 4, 2019 at 12:00 noon EST
Decision notification - March 21st, 2019

Round 3: Application deadline
- For this year, there won't be any Round 3. So get ready and Get the Best Harvard MBA Essay Tips


Finance and Consulting were the two favorite industries before the 2008 crisis. Following the meltdown, recruiters from Technology began poaching MBA candidates from Finance background. The emergence of FinTech helped companies find talents in the intersection of the two industries. As applicants, it comes down to who offers the best base salary and guaranteed compensation. The total guaranteed compensation determines your ROI while the incoming class and the brand reputation among recruiters influence the number of offers.

Post-MBA Salary

Industry (Harvard MBA)

Harvard MBA program is known for the high median base salary. The latest class received $135,000 with 66% of them earning a median signing bonus of $25,000.

Consulting, Consumer Products, Investment Banking, and Consumer Electronics were particularly generous in offering signing bonus with the majority of candidates receiving guaranteed compensation in the range of $25,000 to $50,000.

Venture Capital/Leverage Buy Out/Private Equity
- the most popular sub-industry in Finance only offered 37% of its candidates a signing bonus. However, the Base Salary of $152,000 beats the Consulting median Base Salary, encouraging 41% of applicants to choose Financial Services...


GDP USA Growth rate 2008 to nowIn a span of just 10 years (1999 to 2009), the US Economy went through two booms and busts. The 2001 bust was the result of irrational exuberance that you see when new technology has not found a foothold on the market. Speculators jack up the price. Real investors play along. And then all go to the dust. 2001 was the period when taking the Business online no longer was a lottery for exponential growth but became the new reality of doing Business.  

The 2008 financial meltdown nearly brought down world economies, prompting the govt. to offer a $700 billion bailout – the largest Financial Rescue plan in US history. Officially called, the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, the plan bought non-performing loans in auto, mortgages and college tuition. The turnaround happened when the Congress passed the Recovery Act in Feb 2009. It took a year for the Act to see results when private employers outperformed govt. recruitment, adding 17.6 million jobs from March 2010 to Nov 2017 at an average of 190,000 jobs. 2008 also triggered the longest period of high unemployment rate – a trend that was reversed only in June 2015.

In such a dynamic time, it is only fair to evaluate two sought-after MBA...




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