Stanford MBA Essay Tips: What Matter to you & Why?

The Stanford GSB What matters most essay tips will demonstrate how to highlight the five personality traits to stand out from the competition.

Essay A: What matters most to you, and why? (750 Words)

Answering the ‘What Matters most to you and why” require understanding the audience you are targeting. The latest Stanford MBA Admission team is a perfect mix of Eastern and Western minds. To appeal to the common ethos of the MBA admission team and the values of Stanford GSB, you have to understand the expectations.

If you write what the MBA Admission team wants to hear – “Socially Responsible Professional/Entrepreneur,” without showing any personal ambition to balance your social responsibility, your truth will get lost in the message.

Balance is the key here.

The more vividly you can explain your career path, the more likely you will follow through and the more believable it would be for the Admission team. Use phrases and words that show intent. When you have a clear idea about the curriculum, it will come across in the essay.

We recommend that you take a print out of the first 15 pages of this Essay Guide where we have analyzed the curriculum in detail. It would be easy for you to refer the list while articulating ‘What Matters to you the most’. It should bind the values of the clubs that you would participate and the goals of the learning experiences. With 400 words for Essay B, the options are limited to explain the ‘Why’ Stanford part.

With Essay A, the admission team is dissecting your personality in detail, by understanding your values, and recognizing what drives you to push yourself, despite the steady flow of obstacles. Although Myers–Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is the go-to personality test used to categorize 16 personality types through four attributes– Extroverted/Introverted, Sensing/Intuitive, Thinking/Feeling, and Judging/Perceiving, it is not sufficient to evaluate your future behavior.

Business Schools are carefully creating teams that are open, humble and acts with integrity.
The new model – The Big Five, was started with the work of D. W. Fiske (1949), later developed by researchers Norman (1967), Smith (1967), Goldberg (1981), and McCrae & Costa (1987). We believe ‘The Big Five Model’ is much more useful in understanding yourself, and accurately capturing your unique personality in Essay A.

The Five traits are: Extroversion, Agreeableness,  Conscientiousness, Emotional Stability, and Openness

Emotional stability: An emotionally stable person has a higher threshold for stress. She remains calm despite conditions in the environment limiting her progress.

Is Emotional Stability important for Stanford MBA Admissions?

Stanford MBA Admission team wants their class to display an acceptable level of Emotional stability – mature way of debating, influencing through persuasion, and persisting through setbacks. But the team is not expecting candidates without any negative emotions. Applicants fearing that any expression of negative emotions can hinder their admission chances, tend to cut words, and phrases that show ‘passion’ and ‘irrational fears,’ some of which are the manifestation of ambition and obsessive focus on ‘impact.’

Andy Grove, the former CEO of Intel, transformed Intel to a microprocessing giant with one philosophy – be paranoid about your competition. He would obsess over every new start-up, and observe closely whether the competition is faster or better. Andy would change even the core Business to beat Intel’s competition. When Intel was leading the memory chip manufacturing, Japanese manufacturers entered the market with low-cost memory chips.

Knowing that the #1 position was temporary, Andy invested heavily on a new product – microprocessor and discarded his prime revenue-generating product – microchips.

Andy can be described as an ‘Emotionally Unstable’ person, but you need the paranoia, obsessiveness, and nervousness to make sharper decisions. Studies have proved that an emotionally unstable person of Andy’s characteristics is better at making faster and better decisions than the secure CEOs. Studies have shown that, even for professionals down the hierarchy, job performance had the least correlation with positive emotional stability. So it is not just the CEOs and Entrepreneurs. Acceptable level of ‘madness’ is essential for your genius to shine through, but avoid giving any hints of ‘arrogance’ in your writing.  

Download F1GMAT's Stanford MBA Essay Guide and learn to demonstrate the five personality traits in Stanford MBA Essay A.

2019-20 Stanford MBA Essay Guide

1. 7 Sample Essays for Inspiration

Sample Why Stanford MBA Essay (Consulting)(400 words)    
Sample Why Stanford MBA Essay (Tech Entrepreneur) (390 words)    
Sample Why Stanford MBA: Career Switching (Finance to Green Energy Consulting) (389 Words)    
Sample Why Stanford MBA: Career Switching (Private Equity to Operations) (399 Words)    
Sample Essay A: What matters most to you, and why? (740 Words)(Balance in Life)    
Sample Essay A: What matters most to you, and why? (750 Words)(Vulnerability and Learning)    
Sample Essay A: What matters most to you, and why? (748 Words)(Freedom and Commitment)

2. Detailed Analysis of Stanford MBA Curriculum for 2019 that you can use in your essay

3. Demonstrates how to answer Essay B in three ways (as a Career Enhancer, as an Entrepreneur and as a Career Switcher)

4. Shows how to use ‘The Big Five Model’ to evaluate your unique personality for Essay A.

5. 200+ pages of General Essay Writing, Storytelling and Editing Tips

Stanford 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.

Download 2019-20 Stanford MBA Essay Guide

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