Tag Archives: INSEAD
March 9, 2015
How important are travel and education experiences abroad to achieving success in the global economy? That’s almost a trick question, since the answer is a resounding v-e-r-y. The ability to work well internationally with people …
How important are travel and education experiences abroad to achieving success in the global economy? That’s almost a trick question, since the answer is a resounding v-e-r-y. The ability to work well internationally with people and cultures other than your own has never been more critical than it is today, and one of the best stepping stones to cross-cultural competence is studying abroad.
Wharton Magazine has published a fascinating article highlighting the recent White House Summit on Study Abroad and Global Citizenship. During that event, First Lady Michelle Obama said studying abroad is “quickly becoming the key to success in our global economy. Getting ahead in today’s workplace isn’t [just] about getting good grades … but about having real experience with the world beyond your borders. Study abroad is about shaping the future of your country and of the world we all share.”
Several travel bloggers and digital media influencers were invited to the event. One such guest, the publisher of WanderingEducators.com Jessie Voigts, says, “Study abroad and gaining international experience are critical to citizens of the world today. In order to compete in the international economy, we need to have an educated, well-traveled, resilient population.”
We’ve covered the subject of studying abroad in the past, and of particular interest were the research findings of Kellogg School of Management Professor Adam Galinsky, who suggested that living abroad boosts creativity. Together with the study’s lead author William Maddux, an assistant professor of organizational behavior at INSEAD, they conducted five studies to test the idea that living abroad and creativity are linked.
The results showed that the longer students had spent living abroad, the more likely they were to come up with more creative solutions to problems. “Knowing that experiences abroad are critical for creative output makes study abroad programs and job assignments in other countries that much more important, especially for people and companies that put a premium on creativity and innovation to stay competitive,” Maddux wrote.
Take a look at Lisa Ellen Niver‘s piece, “Make Study Abroad an Education Imperative,” for further thoughts on how international education experiences will help Americans keep pace with other countries in global marketplace.
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January 20, 2015
INSEAD inaugurated its landmark, S$55 million Leadership Development Centre in Singapore last week, completing the third phase of the school’s major Asia campus expansion. This year marks INSEAD’s fifteenth anniversary in Singapore at the same …
INSEAD inaugurated its landmark, S$55 million Leadership Development Centre in Singapore last week, completing the third phase of the school’s major Asia campus expansion. This year marks INSEAD’s fifteenth anniversary in Singapore at the same time as the country celebrates its own fiftieth year of independence.
The 10,000 square-meter center will raise capacity by 50% to meet growing demands for management and leadership education in Asia, and significantly increase the number of students, executives, top scholars and practitioners on-site.
Annually the Asia campus will welcome 500 MBA students, 5,000 executives, 90 Global Executive MBA students, and 200 participants enrolled in the Master of Finance program.
“The Leadership Development Centre is a significant milestone for INSEAD in our continued global growth and commitment to providing relevant and locally-driven business education across Asia, and globally,” INSEAD Dean Ilian Mihov said at the inauguration ceremony, held January 15th-16th.
The Singapore campus is currently home to 63 permanent faculty hailing from 22 countries, and there are over 7,000 INSEAD alumni living and working in the Asia Pacific region. The expansion will allow the campus to build its complement of world-class faculty to 70, which translates into expanding research in areas such as emerging markets, Asian business leadership, global strategy and other areas of critical importance to the region.
“At the core of INSEAD’s global offering is the large number of permanent faculty present on each campus, highly localised research and diverse mix of nationalities and cultures represented on each programme,” says Andreas Jacobs, Chairman of the Board of Directors at the school, who believes these characteristics are what sets INSEAD apart from other business schools with outposts abroad.
“For companies and individuals to have an edge in today’s rapidly evolving global business environment, access to insights into the Asia Pacific region is vital,” adds Michael Pich, Dean of Executive Education. “INSEAD’s continued investment in Asia, home to many of today’s key emerging growth markets, helps businesses identify, understand and leverage the changing opportunities and challenges these markets present.”
November 10, 2014
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com As business becomes more global, future MBA applicants may ask themselves if they should consider heading abroad for business school. In many cases, the …
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com
As business becomes more global, future MBA applicants may ask themselves if they should consider heading abroad for business school. In many cases, the answer will be yes.
The best business schools attract international students and faculty of the highest caliber, and in terms of rankings, elite European programs perform as well as many top programs in the U.S.
According to the latest top MBA salary and job trends report, international study experience is sought by 67 percent of MBA employers, and recruiters “most significantly agree that candidates with international experience outperform those without.”
There are four factors you should weigh to determine if a European business school is a better fit to help you reach your career goals.
1. Global networking options: If you want to build a global network in a multicultural environment, then apply to schools that can help you fulfill those goals.
While MBA programs at Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business have sterling reputations worldwide, just 17 percent of 2013 HBS grads and 13 percent of 2014 Stanford MBA grads found work abroad after graduation. If you know you want to work in Europe, you’d be better off choosing a local school where you can network directly with employers.
2. Greater classroom diversity: The top programs in Europe tend to be much more internationally oriented, with 96 percent of the class coming from outside the country at some schools. Think about how that culturally diverse mix enriches class discussions, as well as creates networking opportunities that span the globe.
There is one caveat to the diversity of top European programs: They typically enroll fewer women compared with U.S. business schools. For example, IMD, a business school in Switzerland, is 96 percent international with a 24 percent female representation. INSEAD, in France, is 96 percent international but women make up 36 percent of the student body.
3. Lower average GMAT scores: Test scores are one of the key data points in the MBA admissions process, and in Europe you’ll often find GMAT scores trending lower than in the U.S., making them slightly less competitive. This is likely due to the fact that many students attending European schools are not native English speakers, so the admissions committees allow applicants a bit more wiggle room with their scores.
At the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, the average GMAT score was 723 for the class of 2014, 721 at New York University Stern School of Business and 728 at University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. However, at similarly ranked schools in Europe the averages were much more attainable: 700 at London Business School, 685 at HEC Paris and 670 at IE Business School.
[Don’t make one of these surprising application mistakes of prospective MBAs.]
4. More established students: Students at European business schools also tend to have more years of work experience under their belts than those attending U.S. schools, which could come as a relief to applicants worried they skew too “mature” for a seat at the most competitive programs.
Another draw: Most of the programs are one year in length, saving both time and money for older candidates with families who don’t want to be out of the workforce too long. The shorter time frame doesn’t mean a skimp on learning, however. One-year European MBA programs will have a heavier workload in order to maintain the quality and integrity of the program.
If your professional goal is to live and work abroad, pursuing an MBA in your desired location is arguably the best introduction to business life in that country. A cultural immersion experience of this kind is not without its challenges, but most participants would agree studying abroad is not just financially rewarding, but personally fulfilling as well.
September 9, 2014
Two campuses, multiple degree options and a diverse and international class set INSEAD apart. When you approach this set of essays, make sure you are ready to explain your career plans in detail, and highlight …
Two campuses, multiple degree options and a diverse and international class set INSEAD apart. When you approach this set of essays, make sure you are ready to explain your career plans in detail, and highlight any International experiences in your background.
INSEAD focuses separately on the job and personal portion of your MBA application essays, seeking to understand candidate’s current career position in detail before delving into the personal aspect. Though career is covered in several essays rather than one, you should make sure that all of the essays work coherently together. As INSEAD states on the website: “We evaluate each applicant against four central criteria: leadership potential and work experience; academic capacity; international motivation; and ability to contribute to the INSEAD experience.”
Stumped by the INSEAD application? Contact Stacy Blackman Consulting to see how we can help.
Job Description Essays
Essay 1. Briefly summarise your current (or most recent) job, including the nature of work, major responsibilities, and, where relevant, employees under your supervision, size of budget, clients/products and results achieved.
This question should focus entirely on your current (or most recent) work situation. Though you will want to provide relevant context for your current role, make sure you are devoting most of the essay to describing the details of your day-to-day responsibilities and oversight. If you are lighter on supervising others or managing a budget, you have the opportunity to highlight some key responsibilities and results.
When you are composing this essay make sure you focus on what you uniquely have contributed to the role, rather than reciting the job description. What have you done that is above and beyond?
Essay 2. Please give a full description of your career since graduating from university. If you were to remain with your present employer, what would be your next step in terms of position?
This is essentially a walk-through of your resume using the essay format to allow you to provide a unifying thread through the narrative. INSEAD is seeking to understand your career trajectory and how you have grown and progressed through your career. Think about the choices you have made in your career, and how your past experiences have combined to provide you with your current skill set. If you have a fairly straightforward career path you can take the opportunity to comment on some of the learnings from each position. The second part of the question also needs to be answered. Think about the next step at your job, and where you might land if you did not leave to pursue an MBA. While this is a straightforward question, you may need to demonstrate that you can’t get where you want to go from here ”“ and that you will need an MBA to achieve your goals.
Essay 3. If you are currently not working, what are you doing and what do you plan to do until you start the MBA programme if applicable? (250 words maximum)
If you are not employed at the moment, you will want to answer this question to show how you are utilizing your time without full time employment. Ideally you are currently involved in an activity that is going to further your career or personal goals at this time. The best answer is one that shows you are self-motivated and do not need paid work to continue developing yourself. Perhaps you are volunteering in a non-profit that is related to your career goals. Maybe you are working with a friend on a start-up. Or you are consulting and building contacts in your industry. If you are out of work only briefly, it’s also perfectly reasonable to be pursuing travel or other activities that develop your international awareness and perspective. However, make sure that your activities can tie back to your long-term goals or other key aspects of your application strategy.
Essay 1. Give a candid description of yourself (who are you as a person), stressing the personal characteristics you feel to be your strengths and weaknesses and the main factors which have influenced your personal development, giving examples when necessary. (600 words max.)
Strengths and weaknesses are a common topic for MBA applications. This is a great opportunity to highlight some of your skills and attributes that demonstrate leadership, teamwork or other qualities that will drive your future career success. Demonstrating self-awareness and the ability to assess your own performance will be impressive. While examples aren’t required, consider that adcomm is reading a vast number of essays and that concrete examples are both easy to understand, and may help you stand out from the crowd.
When describing weaknesses you will want to focus on those weaknesses that you have taken concrete steps to address, or that have been a route to learning more about yourself. Often strengths and weaknesses are two sides of the same coin, in which case you can even tie your key weaknesses to your key strengths. Because it is often difficult to write about one’s weaknesses this is an especially important essay to share with others to seek feedback on tone and impact.
Essay 2. Describe the achievement of which you are most proud and explain why. In addition, describe a situation where you failed. How did these experiences impact your relationships with others? Comment on what you learned. (400 words max.)
This essay is an opportunity to showcase one of your most important achievements. Impressive achievements that stand on their own are great, but you will want to pay equal attention to explaining why these accomplishments are valuable to you. If you concisely explain the accomplishment and how you were able to bring it to fruition, you will have room to provide the context for your personal pride in the accomplishment. If you don’t have an achievement that you think is incredibly impressive on your own focus mainly on what is important to you and an example that shows the activities you value.
The flip side of achievement is failure, and INSEAD wants to understand how you view both. When approaching any failure essay it’s important to use a real failure that has emotional resonance for you. An accomplishment framed as a failure will be easy to see through and will not demonstrate anything about your maturity or ability to grow. Your failure should be real, and also something that led you to grow or learn. If you can describe how you have changed your approach as a result of the failure that is an excellent outcome.
The third part of the essay deals with how these experiences impacted the others around you and what you learned. Whether you were part of a team or the main impact was on a loved one, this part of the essay encourages you to step outside your own narrative of success and failure and think about how you have impacted other people through your actions. Most obviously a success led to happiness from a team or a manager, while a failure was disappointing to those around you. However, your particular achievement or failure could have led to a learning experience for your team, an opportunity for someone else, or a chance for you to be closer to another person through a team challenge. Think creatively about this aspect.
Note that your application to INSEAD ideally covers both the personal and professional. This essay could be an opportunity in this essay set to bring in a new angle on your profile through describing one of your most substantial accomplishments outside of work.
Essay 3. Tell us about an experience where you were significantly impacted by cultural diversity, in a positive or negative way. (300 words max.)
This essay should demonstrate your awareness of the world outside your own ethnic or cultural identity. INSEAD is a highly international program and seeks candidates that both demonstrate and value diversity. This could be an opportunity to highlight any international or cross culture exposure you have had such as traveling outside your home country, or when experiencing diversity within your home country.
When you describe the experience and judge it to be either positive or negative it will be important to provide some individual context. Every applicant from INSEAD is coming from a unique background and from many different countries. Your perception of positive or negative cultural diversity will be a view into how you interact with the world. For example, you could view the lack of diversity in a workplace or school environment as a significant negative, or perhaps you had an experience of being the only “diverse” person in a work or personal situation. On the positive side perhaps you learned more about others through a new cultural experience or through team building with a group of people different from yourself. Where you are coming from will be the deciding factor in terms of what experiences are ultimately positive or negative.
At all times consider the environment at INSEAD and what your essay is saying about your ability to fit in among a highly diverse group of people.
Essay 4. Describe all types of extra-professional activities in which you have been or are still involved for a significant amount of time (clubs, sports, music, arts, politics, etc). How are you enriched by these activities? (300 words max.)
Nothing is more personal than what you choose to do outside of school or work. What are the most meaningful pursuits you have spent your time on? You should both describe the main interests you have outside of your professional pursuits and explain why they are meaningful to you and why you spend time on them.
Ideally you can also explain how you will continue your involvement while at INSEAD and cite some specific clubs or groups where you see your interests contributing to the community.
Optional Essay: Is there anything else that was not covered in your application that you would like to share with the admissions committee? (300 words max.)
This essay is 350 words you can use for anything you would like to showcase and that you were unable to work into the rest of your application. Because INSEAD’s questions are quite thorough you may have covered all aspects of your candidacy and personal qualities in the other five essay questions, in which case you can feel comfortable skipping this question (it IS optional). If you did not have a place for an interesting hobby, new aspect of your background to describe, or key accomplishment, it may be appropriate to use this space to tell that story.
It is far better to fully explain any issues in your application than to leave the admissions committee to guess what happened. If you have any challenging aspects to your candidacy like a low GPA or a failing grade in college, this is the correct place to address those concerns. Explain your issue clearly and focus most of the essay on the correction for the issue. For example, if you had a disciplinary issue in college, spend most of the essay demonstrating that you learned from the experience and have been an ideal citizen ever since rather than focusing on the negative. Avoid blaming anyone else for your issue, and relentlessly show why this one incident is in your past and will stay there.
July 27, 2014
For the September 2015 intake, INSEAD asks applicants to answer the following job description and motivation essays. Job Description Essays Essay 1 Briefly summarise your current (or most recent) job, including the nature of work, …
Job Description Essays
Briefly summarise your current (or most recent) job, including the nature of work, major responsibilities, and where relevant employees under your supervision, size of budget clients/products and results achieved. What would be your next step in terms of position if you were to remain in the same company? (350 words max.)
Please give a full description of your career since graduating from university. It should be written as if you were talking to someone at a social gathering detailing your career path with the rationale behind your choices. Discuss your short and long term career aspirations. (350 words max.)
Essay 3 (Optional)
If you are currently not working or if you plan to leave your current employer more than 2 months before the programme starts please explain your activities and occupations between leaving your job and the start of the programme.
Give a candid description of yourself (who are you as a person), stressing the personal characteristics you feel to be your strengths and weaknesses and the main factors which have influenced your personal development, giving examples when necessary. (600 words max.)
Describe the achievement of which you are most proud and explain why. In addition, describe a situation where you failed. How did these experiences impact your relationships with others? Comment on what you learned. (400 words max.)
Tell us about an experience where you were significantly impacted by cultural diversity, in a positive or negative way. (300 words max.)
Describe all types of extra-professional activities in which you have been or are still involved for a significant amount of time (clubs, sports, music, arts, politics, etc). How are you enriched by these activities? (300 words max.)
Essay 5 (Optional)
Is there anything else that was not covered in your application that you would like to share with the Admissions Committee? (300 words max.)
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June 9, 2014
INSEAD has posted the application deadlines for its September 2015 and January 2016 intakes. September 2015 Intake Round 1 Deadline: September 24, 2014 Notification: November 28, 2014 Round 2 Deadline: November 12, 2014 Notification: January …
INSEAD has posted the application deadlines for its September 2015 and January 2016 intakes.
September 2015 Intake
Deadline: September 24, 2014
Notification: November 28, 2014
Deadline: November 12, 2014
Notification: January 23, 2015
Deadline: January 14, 2015
Notification: March 20, 2015
Deadline: March 4, 2015
Notification: May 13, 2015
January 2016 Intake
Deadline: March 4, 2015
Notification: May 13, 2015
Deadline: April 22, 2015
Notification: July 3, 2015
Deadline: June 17, 2015
Notification: August 28, 2015
Deadline: August 5, 2015
Notification: October 9, 2015
Competition for each round is equal regardless of the intake or round you apply for, INSEAD notes. This season, the program has added a fourth round of admissions to better manage the influx of incoming applications and to provide additional flexibility to applicants.
To be included in a specific round, applications must be complete and submitted by 23:59pm Central European Time on the day of the deadline.