MIT Sloan introduces their essay questions with important advice:
“[T]he essays are a chance for you to discuss your passions, values, interests, and goals. Emphasize those experiences that were most important and meaningful for you — which may not necessarily be those that were most outwardly prestigious. Be sincere and be specific…We are interested in learning more about you and how you work, think, and act. For each essay, please provide a brief overview of the situation followed by a detailed description of your response.”
MIT Sloan Essay 1: Please tell us about a time when you had an impact on a group or organization. Describe in detail what you thought, felt, said, and did.
This is similar to the leadership and accomplishment questions of Harvard Business School and the Michigan MBA. You don’t need to choose a professional example, so think expansively about your personal, extra-curricular and community service experiences. As with every school, be strategic about choosing your examples (ie, mix up professional with personal or extra-curricular). Also follow their instructions to set up the experience quickly and focus on the your actions, reflection, and results. Give concrete examples of the leadership skills you displayed and articulate measurable as well as more intangible results.
MIT Sloan Essay 2: Please tell us about a challenging interaction you had with a person or group. Describe in detail what you thought, felt, said, and did.
As with the previous question, consider examples from your personal as well as professional life. Further, with all questions that ask about a challenging time (or mistake/failure) explain why it was difficult but then focus on the positive lessons learned. Describe how your thought process evolved over the course of the interaction.
MIT Sloan Essay 3: Please tell us about a time when you defended your idea. Describe in detail what you thought, felt, said, and did.
Similar to the previous question, when describing why you needed to defend an idea avoid expressing solely negative thoughts on the opposition to your idea. Instead focus on your thoughts and actions. This is a great opportunity to reveal your passions and interests.
MIT Sloan Essay 4: Please tell us about a time when you executed a plan. Describe in detail what you thought, felt, said, and did.
This MIT Sloan essay should have a beginning, middle, and end to show the inception, execution, and results of the plan. That said, remember the focus is on your thoughts and actions. Do not just describe the events around executing the plan.