How to Answer Columbia MBA Long-Term Goal Essay (2019-20)

 “What, in your imagination, would be your long-term dream job?”

The long-term post-MBA goal is phrased interestingly. See how the admission team has used the word ‘imagination’. They would like to see what you have anticipated for your future.
 “What, in your imagination, would be your long-term dream job?”

The long-term post-MBA goal is phrased interestingly. See how the admission team has used the word ‘imagination’. They would like to see what you have anticipated for your future.

What role and responsibilities would fulfill your career and personal goals, 10 years after graduation, when you are probably closing in on or crossed 40?

How to frame Columbia long-term Post-MBA Goals

1) Choose your bigger picture

The bigger picture need not be related to non-profit or Entrepreneurship, but if your pre-MBA experience have evidence of strong connection with startups or demonstrated participation in community engagements, don’t hesitate to mention them.

The most commonly cited long-term goal is in Entrepreneurship for a very good reason. More than half of the alumni from top MBA programs including Columbia are associated with Entrepreneurship in some form (investing or founding). It makes logical sense to mention Entrepreneurship as a long-term goal.

2) Cite potential IMPACT

Ten years is a long time frame for guessing if you would follow the same career path that you have anticipated. When I started F1GMAT in 2009, I was a Software Engineer eager to join an MBA program focused on Entrepreneurship.

I found great pleasure in offering consulting for a friend who was starting her apparel Business. Soon I realized that it was not just start-ups. I genuinely enjoyed offering consulting solution in any industry. The whole process of defining problems, understanding the strengths & weakness of the business/applicant, and developing a feasible/marketable solution works for applicants too.

F1GMAT and my consulting career was an accident. I would be the first to admit.

But when you are applying for Columbia Full-time MBA program, you don’t have the luxury to casually mention potential career paths. There should be some connection to what you are offering right now in skills and the future career path. Maybe it is an amalgamation of your pre-MBA and post-MBA skills, but you have to define it. The truth is that many of you would fall into careers that you have never anticipated, but essays are tools to measure your thought process.

Clarity is valued more than creativity.

Clarity defines ambition.

If you want to see how investment decisions are made, watch any start-up investor meet. The clarity with which Founders and CEOs mention the roadmap brings in millions in funding. The probability of the market not reacting or changing in the near future is zero. Still, investors appreciate a Founder with a clear plan. They want to know that the money is invested in someone with a ‘vision’. The admission team too need that assurance that they are investing their brand on someone who has the potential to change an industry or achieve goals in the top 1%.

GM defined a 20-year plan for developing electric cars, when Uber and Lyft disrupted the market, and forced them to reconsider the production volume. Competitors and market condition defines Businesses.

Your application is also not in isolation. Competitors with similar profile are phrasing the long-term goal. Some are going into the nitty gritty of the future while others are staying away from predicting the future, but choosing to spin the narrative on their strengths.

3) Predict the Future and map your long-term goal

What most of your competitors won’t do is define the change in the industry, 5 years down the line. 10 years is too far away, but 5 years is a reasonable timeframe to predict. Once you define the likely change in job profile, it becomes easier to match your skills.


What are the new payment protocols that would disrupt the existing financial systems? What does that mean for your career? What roles would turn defunct in 5 years? Not mentioning traditional roles is the first step in standing out.

When the internet rolled out, music, publishing, and movie industries were disrupted. Media was no longer under the control of a few executives.

How will blockchain change the way transactions and information are managed?

Finance professionals should read ....

Find out how to predict the future and map your long-term goal (Consulting & Finance) with F1GMAT's Columbia MBA Essay Guide

4) Start with your Strengths

Predicting the future is a risky Business, but I can guarantee that your essay will stand out. Most applicants use a bottom-up approach where they evaluate their strengths, by citing pre-MBA experience, hobbies, extra-curricular, and potential value from the MBA program to predict a long-term goal.

Pre-MBA Experience + Hobbies & Extracurricular + Value from MBA --> Long-term Goal

Value from MBA --> Short-term goal


If you are not comfortable predicting the trends in your industry, start with your strengths. We have also shown how to map your strengths to Columbia MBA in our Essay Guide.

Testimonial - Columbia MBA Essay Guide

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The bulk of the initial chapter is about using evidence-based case that before randomly writing about the short-term and long-term goals, begin with the curriculum and employment trends. Skillfully weaving post-MBA placement data with narrative creativity, the author captures the techniques that successful MBA applicants use to leave a memorable first impression. " - Verified Purchase

"This is the best book I have read on "writing Columbia MBA Essay." The advice on using words that convey motion and emotion, and finding authentic voice is both practical and easy to learn. I can now edit my essay with more insight. It is refreshing to find an essay guide that doesn't talk just about style but shows how to write coherently by combining curriculum structure with post-MBA goals. The Sample essays on a, " given a free day, what would you do," and "passion" show how creative writing can capture the story of the applicant without exaggeration." - Verified Purchase

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Download F1GMAT's Columbia MBA Essay Guide

F1GMAT's Columbia MBA Essay Guide will show you:

1) How to create the 50-character post-MBA professional goal using Facebook’s mission statement as a starting point

2) How to use the 5-Step Process to write about Post-MBA Career Goals

3) How to write about long-term career goals connecting your pre-MBA experience and short-term career goals

4) How to Quote New York's Economy and match it with your post-MBA career path

5) How to write about Immersion Seminars and Master Class

6) How to use Internship and Full-time Jobs data for your Essay

7) How to write about your Hobbies/Extracurricular/volunteering in an interesting way

8) How to demonstrate fit for the Columbia MBA program

9) How to quote the right leader

Bonus: 11 Sample Essays

Sample Goals Essay 1: Enterprise Technology to Consumer Marketing (496 Words)   
Sample Goals Essay 2: Healthcare (Finance to Consulting) (499 Words)   
Sample Goals Essay 3: FinTech (Product Manager to Strategy) (482 Words)   
Sample Columbia Good Fit Essay 1: Value from NYC (237 Words)   
Sample Columbia Good Fit Essay 2: Entrepreneur Mindset (Persistence/Creativity/Opportunity Seeking) (237 Words)   
Sample Columbia Good Fit Essay 3: Teamwork and Learning (242 Words)   
Sample Columbia MBA Leader I admire Essay #1 (Elon Musk) (250 Words)   
Sample Columbia MBA Leader I admire Essay #2 (Father) (244 Words)   
Sample Columbia MBA Leader I admire Essay #3 (Mother) (243 Words)   
Sample Columbia MBA Leader I admire Essay #4 (Math Teacher) (242 Words)   
Sample Columbia MBA Leader I admire Essay #5 (Co-Founder) (250 Words)   

Download F1GMAT's Columbia MBA Essay Guide (2020 Entering Class)

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