How Supervisors, Company Culture and Extra-curricular define you

The first deliverable in Basic/Detailed profile evaluation is the creation of an IMPACT table. The joint exercise between the MBA admissions consultant and the applicant lists all possible events – successes, failures, individual projects (hobbies, extra-curricular and volunteering) and team projects (professional projects, group sports, and volunteering) that marked the applicant’s growth in the company or made their skills attractive for Business Schools.

What I learned evaluating hundreds of applicants’ growth is that individual projects tend to have a clear IMPACT over team projects. This seems counter-intuitive as what you do professionally as a team should have defined you as a person.

Unfortunately – it doesn’t

Team Size – Magic Number

When the team size crosses 5, individuals put less effort to reach the goals. This is not a conscious decision. We tend to fall for what Social Psychologists call Social Loafing.

As an individual – most tasks allocated to us has a clear performance indicator and deliverables. With a team, the burden of the responsibility is shared and depending on the company culture – individual performers are revered or hidden beneath team metrics.

As the complexity of the tasks increases and the success of the project depends on external conditions (market response/economy/manufacturing/supply/team performance), managers/supervisors rely on a group of functional experts to communicate pro-actively and complete the tasks. Unless everyone in the team is equally motivated and represent individuals with equal skill set – both are unlikely, team performance is a function of the median.

Managerial Skills of the Supervisor

Another factor that MBA applicants forget is that their success as a professional is heavily dependent on the managerial skills of the supervisor.

I had a client who used to allocate 1-hour every Friday as a Manager to offer specific praise for team members who have exceeded the expectation and met all quality guidelines for the project.

The secret was specificity. It was never – “good job creating the copy in 1 day” but “ I loved when you wrote…”

The constant engagement with the team increased the team’s output by 35% in just 6 months.

He monitored the mood of the team through the ease with each the daily morning meeting translated to the first deliverable for the day.

Everybody was required to deliver a micro-project in just 3 hours. The technique was to push the team member to perform as fast as possible without thinking.

By doing so, the Manager created a routine. After a month, the impossible 3-hour turnaround time became a norm for all the teams working under him.

He developed the process. This was not part of the company culture or best practice.

The Culture of the Company

The client who developed a new process that valued deliverable over theory/brainstorming was part of a rising media start-up in London.

We used the story for his strengths Essay.

This was not his one-off trick.

The start-up encouraged risk-taking.

He went on to share how two of his previous innovative project management techniques brought down the productivity of the team. The explanation became a backstory for his failure essay.

Most of you work for the Fortune 500 companies with little incentive to innovate as outrageous results – good or bad, are noticed and rewarded/punished over above average performance.

Extra-Curricular Completes the Picture

You can’t create fake stories and spin narratives that can’t be concurred by your supervisors.

Don’t worry.

The admission team understands the rigid hierarchy and bureaucracy of big companies, where completing the specific task before time is appreciated over any form of innovation.

Your Extra-curricular and volunteering experience should bridge the gap in your narrative.

The most common question that I get is regarding the relevance of extra-curricular in MBA Application.

I would say – list them all out.

The bigger picture of who you are as a person needs examples from volunteering, individual/group sports, and creativity outside work.

Work limits you to a stereotype.

Articulating IMPACT

For MBA applicants, the inability to articulate IMPACT can be the difference between a persuasive and a cliched essay narrative. Fortunately, most companies have established markers for evaluating IMPACT at an organization and team level.

The 360-degree feedback and appraisals should be used as data points for your MBA Application. What we offer is the context for each achievement.

Subscribe to our Basic Profile Evaluation or Detailed Profile Evaluation Service, and we will help you:

1) Shortlist the most relevant achievements and failures
2) Offer context for all your projects (Easy to read and understand)
3) Map your personality to the right MBA program/Post-MBA job function

Social Loafing: A Meta-Analytic Review and Theoretical Integration
Winning MBA Essay Guide

Sample Essays + Essay Writing, Review & Editing Tips + 15 School-Specific Tips = Winning MBA Essay Guide

"Pressed against the deadline, I ordered F1GMAT's Winning MBA Essay Guide as their blogs always had something interesting to say. It was by far one of the best decisions I have made in my life. Going through the Essay Guide, I learned the art of storytelling, using various ploys mentioned in the book. Most important one being the “W pattern,” a strategy of information sharing that creates a sense of excitement in the mind of the reader." -
MIT Sloan MBA Candidate

Only 1 in 900 gains admission to Harvard MBA program. If you write your essay focused only on your achievements, post-MBA goals, and your pre-MBA experience, you will be among the 899 rejected applicants.

ATTENTION is the secret ingredient. How will you get the attention of the essay reviewer?

You know why parables shared 1000 years ago are still shared among us?


Yes, the art of storytelling has won presidency for Obama, transformed Apple from an unknown start-up to a brand synonymous with Quality, and gained admission for the average MBA Applicant.

F1GMAT's Winning MBA Essay guide will teach you how to transform your essay to an epic life journey with trials and tribulations that will move the admission team.

Who Should Buy The Winning MBA Essay Guide?

If your essay looks too bland, our Winning MBA Essay Guide will show you, with examples, on how to use the elements of Storytelling like Incorporating "The Struggle", Using Emotional connectors, narrating the Journey and the use of Chronology, Vividness and Active Verbs to transform your essays.

If you are stuck in the Writing process, our Winning MBA Essay Guide will show you how to silence the Analytic Mind and overcome mental blocks.

If you feel that the essays are not persuasive, our Winning MBA Essay Guide will teach you how to use the W-Pattern narrative, Contexts, Turning Points and "The Show Don't Tell Approach" to write a Winning MBA Essay.

If you don't have enough leadership experience, our Winning MBA Essay Guide will show you how to highlight non-obvious qualities like Trust, Focus, Listening Skills, Personal Responsibility, Humility, Self-Knowledge, and other secondary traits to prove your leadership.

If you don't know how to review your essays, our Winning MBA Essay Guide will demonstrate how to improve readability with the power of iteration, and maintain your original voice by removing review biases.

Pages: 671

Winning MBA Essay Guide Includes
+Harvard MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
    Sample MBA Essay – Gratitude & Giving Back (319 Words)   
    Sample MBA Essay – Entrepreneurship (Influence of Childhood) (401 Words)   
    Sample Harvard MBA Essay - Volunteering (Mental Health Awareness)   (774 Words)   
MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
    Sample Why Stanford MBA Essay (Consulting)(399 words)  
    Sample Why Stanford MBA Essay (Tech Entrepreneur) (390 words)  
    Sample Why Stanford MBA: Career Switching (Finance to Green Energy Consulting)(394 Words)  
    Sample Essay A: What matters most to you, and why? (740 Words)

+ Chicago Booth MBA Essay Tips (2018 Entering Class)
    #1. Modern Art = Make you Think   
    #2. Teamwork and Individual Ambition   
    #3. Adventure   
    #4. Diversity = Creativity   
    #5. Classroom Experience   
    #6. Harper Center   

+ Columbia MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
    Sample Columbia MBA Essay 1: Enterprise Technology to Consumer Marketing (495 Words)  
    Sample Columbia MBA Essay 2:  New York for Marketing Professionals (244 Words)  
    Sample Columbia MBA Essay #3 - Team Failure (Marketing Lead) (242 Words)  
    Sample Columbia MBA Essay #3 - Team Failure (Technology – Engineering Lead) (248 Words)  
    Sample Columbia MBA Essay #3 - Team Failure (Pharma – Product Manager) (244 Words)  

+ MIT Sloan MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
     Personality Type (Accepted MIT Sloan Students)   
     Cover Letter Checklist   
     Sample Cover Letter – Technology Consulting (286 Words)   
     Sample Cover Letter – Healthcare Entrepreneurship (296 Words)   

+ Kellogg MBA Essay Tips (2018 Entering Class)

     Sample Essay 1: Demonstrated Leadership (Marketing) (449 Words)
     Sample Essay 2: Demonstrated Leadership (Technology) (449 Words)   
     Sample Essay 3: MBA as a Catalyst for Growth (Technology) (438 Words)
     Sample Essay 4: MBA as a Catalyst for Growth (Non-Profit to Consulting) (442 Words) 

+ Insead MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
   Sample Essay 1: Candid Description, Strengths & Weaknesses
    Sample Essay 2: Achievements and Failures
    Sample Essay 3: Extra-Curricular and How enriched you are

MBA Essay Tips (2018 Entering Class)
     Sample MBA Essay: Non-Profit   
     Sample MBA Essay: Technology   
     Sample MBA Essay: Marketing   
     Sample MBA Essay: Getting Fired   
     Sample MBA Essay: Diverse and Inclusive Culture   
     Sample MBA Essay: Leadership   
     Sample MBA Essay: Post-MBA Goal & How Pre-MBA Experience will help  
+ Yale SOM MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
Sample Yale SOM MBA Essay: Business Development (Mobile Phone Start-Up)(486 Words)
     Sample Yale SOM MBA Essay: Investment Banking (IB)(404 Words)
     Sample Yale SOM MBA Essay: Consulting (442 Words)   
     Sample Yale SOM MBA Essay: Technology (452 Words)   
     Sample Yale SOM MBA Essay: Marketing (492 Words)
     Sample Yale SOM MBA Essay: Entrepreneurship (497 Words)
+ Ross MBA Essay Tips (2018 Entering Class)
    Sample MBA Essay: Finance Professional who was a former member of a rock band   
    Sample MBA Essay: Technologist (Idea to Action)   
    Sample MBA Essay: Creative Marketing (Idea to Action)   
    Sample MBA Essay: Consulting (Made a Difference)   
    Sample MBA Essay: Losing a Client (Resilience)   
    Sample MBA Essay: Finance to Marketing (extra-curricular)   
    Sample MBA Essay: I am Aware that I am different   
    Sample MBA Essay: I find it Challenging when People   
    Sample MBA Essay: A valuable thing I have taught someone   
    Sample Essay – Part 2 (Short-term & Long-Term Goals, skills relevant to your career goals and how Ross  
    prepares you for the goals)   
+ Wharton MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
    7 Professional Gains
    Sample Wharton MBA Essay 1: What do you hope to gain professionally from the Wharton MBA? (473 words)   
    Sample Wharton MBA Essay #2: Math Tutoring and Experimental music’s value for the Wharton Community (388 Words)   
+ London Business School MBA Essay Tips (2018 Entering Class)
    London as the Financial Hub   
    London as the Technology Hub   
    London as the Consulting Hub   
    How to Cite the Curriculum (Example)   
    Sample LBS MBA Essay: Post-MBA Goals - How Prior Experience & LBS MBA will contribute (486   
+ Darden MBA Essay Tips (2019 Entering Class)
Sample Darden MBA Essay – About yourself Personal, Professional or Both (100 Words) (Near Death Experience)   
     Sample Darden MBA Essay – About yourself Personal, Professional or Both (100 Words) (Networking and Job Offer at an Unlikely place)   
     Sample Darden MBA Essay – About yourself Personal, Professional or Both (100 Words) (Mountaineering)   
     Sample Essay – Where you want to go with Darden (47 Words)
     Sample Darden MBA Essay – Evolving Leadership Style (198 Words)
     Sample Darden MBA Essay – Meaningful IMPACT (200 Words)
     Sample Darden MBA Essay: Short-term Post-MBA career goal (149 words)

+ Duke Fuqua MBA Essay Tips (2018 Entering Class)
    Framework for Answering the Duke Fuqua Short-Answer Essay Questions   
    Sample Short-term Goals Essay – Technology to Consulting (100 Words)   
    Sample Long-term Goals Essay – Consulting for Government (100 Words)   
    Sample Long-term Goals Essay – Plan B (89 Words)   
    Framework for Answering the Duke Fuqua 25 Random Things   
    Sample Duke Fuqua Essay: The Fuqua community and you (Max 2 Pages)  
+ NYU Stern MBA Essay Tips (2018 Entering Class)
     Sample NYU Stern Essay 1: Goals (498 Words)    
     Essay 3:  Personal Expression (a.k.a. "Pick Six")    
          5 Examples with Images

+ Sample Essays
+ The Art of Storytelling 
+ Leadership Narratives
+ Review Tips
+ Persuasion Strategies
+ The Secret to "unleashing" your unique voice
+ How to write about your Strengths
+ How to write about your Weaknesses

Download Winning MBA Essay Guide (2019 Entering Class)

Navigate F1GMAT

F1GMAT Services (MBA Applicants) 

MBA Research

MBA Salary(Latest Salary Data)
MBA Admission Interview Tips



MBA Application Essays

GMAT Tutorials (Free)

GMAT Question Bank

Top MBA Programs

Get F1GMAT's Newsletters (Best in the Industry)
Included in the Newsletter:

  • Ranking Analysis
  • Post-MBA Salary Trends
  • Post-MBA Job Function & Industry Analysis
  • Post-MBA City Review
  • MBA Application Essay Tips
  • School Specific Essay Tips
  • GMAT Preparation Tips
  • MBA Admission Interview Tips
  • School Specific Interview Tips
  • Funding Guidance and
  • Special Consultation Service (only for Subscribers)

Subscribe to F1GMAT's Newsletter