Tag Archives: Stanford GSB

Stanford GSB Interview Timeline

Here’s a heads-up for applicants regarding a recent update on the interview process at Stanford Graduate School of Business. According to the MBA Admission Blog, the school has decided to compress the interview timeline. This …

stanford interview timeline

Here’s a heads-up for applicants regarding a recent update on the interview process at Stanford Graduate School of Business. According to the MBA Admission Blog, the school has decided to compress the interview timeline.

This means interview invitations for Round 1 applicants will only go out from October 28-Novembr 26, 2013, instead of over the entire round. Final notification is still December 11th, but you’ll know on November 26th whether you’re still being considered for admission.

“Some of you have told us that if the answer is a definite ‘no,’ you’d rather know earlier to give you more time to work on Round 2 applications for other schools,” writes Victoria Hendel De La O in Stanford MBA admissions. “Our hope is that this compressed timeline helps ease your anxiety as you navigate the application process.”

Because this condensed interview process is still a pilot, interview dates for Rounds 2 and 3 have not yet been set.

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Which B-Schools are Social Media Savvy?

Are you at all surprised that Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business boast the strongest performance in MBA50′s 2013 US B-School Social Media Ranking? According to the results presented by chief editor …

Are you at all surprised that Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business boast the strongest performance in MBA50′s 2013 US B-School Social Media Ranking? According to the results presented by chief editor of MBA50 Matt Symonds, HBS leads the pack on Facebook and Linkedin, while Stanford GSB attracts the biggest following on Twitter and You Tube.

In fact, the data gathered shows these two schools are way ahead of other elite American MBA programs, and Symonds calls the difference between the top 5 and top 25 striking, noting that “many business schools have been slow to embrace social media, particularly in the way they market themselves.”

Top Five in Twitter Followers

  1. Stanford GSB (113,560)
  2. HBS (67,811)
  3. UPenn Wharton School (63,670)
  4. MIT Sloan School of Management (40,943)
  5. Georgetown McDonough (39,214)

Top Five in Facebook Likes

  1. HBS (121,678)
  2. UV Darden School of Business (71,850)
  3. Stanford GSB (71,662)
  4. Wharton (37,285)
  5. MIT Sloan (25,061)

Top Five in LinkedIn Followers

  1. HBS (32,670)
  2. Wharton (18,523)
  3. Stanford GSB (11,991)
  4. UV Darden (8,533)
  5. MIT Sloan (7,878)

Top Five in YouTube Subscribers

  1. Stanford GSB (53,797)
  2. HBS (32,436)
  3. UC Berkeley Haas School of Business (7,863)
  4. Columbia Business School (7,052)
  5. Wharton (6,070)

As the numbers show, the difference between first and fifth in each category is stark, indicating that today’s business schools need to significantly ramp up their social media participation if they hope to land the attention of this generation of tech-native consumers.

Today’s students don’t see social media as a trend; rather, this is a generation that has grown up with the Internet. Business schools, like any enterprise, need to adapt and evolve to this new reality in order to prepare graduates who can develop and manage marketing strategies that address the nuances of the online world.

You may also be interested in:

Give Yourself a Social Media Makeover as a B-School Applicant

Social Media Influences Curricula, Affects Applicants

 

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Look Beyond the Top Business Schools for Your MBA

This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com People typically pursue an MBA because they are looking to improve their career opportunities and increase their future income. What some applicants don’t …

This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com

People typically pursue an MBA because they are looking to improve their career opportunities and increase their future income. What some applicants don’t consider is that you can achieve both of those objectives even if you don’t make it into the business programs at Harvard, Wharton or Stanford.

While rankings are a valuable piece of the puzzle when you’re narrowing down your school list, don’t get hung up on the top few programs. It’s more important to be pragmatic and align your expectations with the MBA programs that match your particular profile, particularly if your GMAT score isn’t through the roof or your career trajectory has stalled out.

MBA programs update their career or recruiting reports annually and post them online, so a good strategy is to think about the company or industry you want to work in, and find out whether they recruit at your target schools.

[Research b-schools that match your learning style and personality.]

For example, top MBA employers including McKinsey & Co., Goldman Sachs, Boston Consulting Group, Bain & Co. and Deloitte Consulting recruit heavily at the most elite schools. But they also recruit other schools, such as at UCLA Anderson School of Management, Emory’s Goizueta Business School and Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business. These graduate business schools all placed in the Top 25 of the 2014 U.S. News Best Graduate Schools rankings.

While most schools don’t disclose the number of hires per company, MBA applicants can extrapolate that you might not need to get into a top school in order to land at the company of your dreams.

A few years ago, our client Priya had her sights set on attending one of the top three ranked schools in the U.S. However, as her consultant worked with her on her applications, it became apparent that her chances of admission were less than ideal.

Priya had taken a few swings at the GMAT, but test-taking was a significant weakness for her and her scores topped out at 640. She had a few years of work experience, but promotion freezes had left her stuck at her initial position without advancement.

[Find out how to fix a low GMAT score.]

Priya was starting to wonder if she should apply to business school at all. Before letting her quit, Priya’s consultant asked why she wanted to apply to those top three schools.

Priya wanted to work in corporate finance at a specific Fortune 500 firm after graduating, and had chosen the top schools where that company heavily recruited. With her career goal in mind, Priya and her consultant decided to change strategies.

Since an MBA was the key to achieving her career goals, Priya cast a wider net to include schools ranked in the top 50. She also retooled her application to emphasize her specific, concrete career plan, which helped shift focus away from her weaknesses.

Priya found a great fit in the University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill’s Kenan-Flagler Business School. Though not as competitive for admission as the very top schools, it ranks No. 20 in the U.S. News rankings and in the top twenty of several other lists, and offers a concentration in corporate finance that Priya found appealing.

She maximized her academic and networking opportunities while on campus and found a job with her chosen finance firm after graduating using the skills and contacts she gained, rather than relying solely on recruiting. Priya is now moving up the ranks and is encouraged by the fact that her firm’s CEO obtained his MBA from a school that rarely even appears on a business school ranking list.

[Get MBA admissions tips for applicants with a finance background.]

Location is often overlooked by candidates choosing a b-school, but is extremely important. Recruiters give priority to candidates who have already lived or worked in the same region where the position is located, and graduates tend to gain employment near the geographic location of their MBA program.

While an MBA from Harvard opens doors anywhere, if you’re interested in working in the energy sector, you might have a better shot going where the energy industry thrives. Examples in the oil and gas industry include the University of Texas—Austin McCombs School of Business or Rice University’s Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business.

Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business offers an MBA concentration in energy & environment, as well as a new concentration in energy finance.

The point is, if you’re not going into finance or consulting, you have greater flexibility in finding a niche program that’s the right fit for you.

While a degree from an elite business school is a goal and dream for many, several factors – such as test scores, undergraduate academic performance and tuition costs – influence whether it’s a viable option. If you believe the degree is critical to your career goals, consider expanding your school options while still getting a great return on investment.

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Tuesday Tips: Stanford GSB Essay Tips

Stanford Graduate School of Business has just published the essay questions without changes for this new application cycle, maintaining the theme of candid self-evaluation and authenticity. The Stanford GSB MBA admissions website provides clear guidance …

Stanford Graduate School of Business has just published the essay questions without changes for this new application cycle, maintaining the theme of candid self-evaluation and authenticity. The Stanford GSB MBA admissions website provides clear guidance and advice for what to do, and what not to do that all applicants should read and follow.

As you approach topics for this set of essays think about the events of your life that have shaped your values and your future plans. Your accomplishments and achievements are part of why you have developed into the person you are today, however it’s far more important to explain your influences, lessons learned and motivations. Introspection and honesty should persist through the entire set of essays.

Total word count for all three essays combined must not exceed 1,600 words, so applicants must be judicious in deciding how much or little to write for each prompt. As a general guideline, Stanford GSB suggests 750 words for essay one; 450 words for essay two; and 400 words for essay three. Check your deadlines before you get started to make sure you are maximizing the time on your essays.

Stanford GSB Essay 1: What matters most to you, and why?

This classic Stanford GSB MBA essay is your opportunity to demonstrate who you are, what motivates you, and why. Topics can range from personal history to grand visions of the future. While this topic should not be explicitly career related (and the strongest essays are likely not career oriented at all) it may raise themes that you will continue in your career essay.

To generate ideas, try brainstorming over a period of a few days. Ask friends and family what values they see you demonstrating in your life and choices. Keep a notebook by your bed so you can record your first thoughts upon waking up, and mine your personal history for ideas.

Though the essay question may seem open-ended, answering the question with vivid and specific examples will provide solid evidence that you have demonstrated or experienced “what matters most” throughout your life. Keep in mind as you select examples that Stanford GSB specifically advises focusing on people and experiences that have influenced you, rather than accomplishments or achievements.

Stanford GSB Essay 2: What do you want to do—REALLY—and why Stanford?

We’ve observed that in these economic times plenty of candidates are content to be conservative about their dreams. For Stanford that approach may backfire. Stanford likes to see applicants who dream big, and have the credibility to achieve their goals.
So think hard about what you REALLY want to do. Not what your parents or partner want you to do. Not what your boss wants you to do. Not what you think an MBA program wants to hear. What do you, with your own unique background and values, want for your life?

If the question seems too vast, take a few minutes to close your eyes and reflect. Envision your life in twenty years. Where do you live? How do you spend your days? What is your favorite activity? How does this vision fit into your career aspirations? Dream big about what two years at Stanford can bring into your life. Once you have identified your dream career, you also need to make sure an MBA is an important part of achieving your plans.

Stanford wants candidates whose MBA will make an impact on the career they REALLY want, not candidates who are looking for a prestigious piece of paper. Remember that MBA programs want to help promising candidates reach their goals, not admit perfect people who will not learn from the two years in school.

One thing that is crucial “not to do” is be less than specific about why Stanford. You should know everything about the program that overlaps with your interests and aspirations. Have you met current students and alumni? Who are the professors you are excited about? What are the unique programs?

Stanford GSB wants to know what you specifically need that will be uniquely satisfied by the program at Stanford GSB, and research will help you determine the specifics of the academic program, community and students will be essential to demonstrating your knowledge and fit with the program.

Essay 3: Answer one of the three questions below. Tell us not only what you did but also how you did it.
What was the outcome? How did people respond? Only describe experiences that have occurred during the last three years.

Choose strategically here. What aspects of your background or career progress have not be highlighted in the previous two essays? Is there a community service involvement you would like to demonstrate? All examples must be from the past three years, and it is important to clearly describe your process and results.

HOW is the key word for these two essays. By asking specifically about your behavior, the admissions committee hopes to understand your motivations by clearly “seeing” your actions.

Option A: Tell us about a time in the last three years when you built or developed a team whose performance exceeded expectations.

If you have formally led a team at work, this is an ideal essay to highlight your management experience. Most candidates for Stanford have little formal management or leadership experience. In that case, think about the times you have served informally as a leader. Perhaps you led a team as part of a project at work. If work did not provide an opportunity for you to lead a team, consider an example in your volunteer or extracurricular activities.

Whatever the situation, describe what happened and your role in the performance of the team. In addition to clear description, explain what the expectations were for the team and how your team exceeded them. Be as specific as you can about the how: what were you thinking and doing as you built or developing the team?

Option B: Tell us about a time in the last three years when you identified and pursued an opportunity to improve an organization.

While formal management experience may be less common if you’ve only worked for a few years, improving an organization is something that is possible with any job description. Think about the times that you have seen a problem and proactively solved it. Did you create a new initiative that involves many others? Have you impacted the culture or operations of your organization through an idea or by developing your team? Think about actions you have taken that may have lead to a fundamental shift in the way things are done or perceived within your company or organization.

Option C: Tell us about a time in the last three years when you went beyond what was defined or established.

The topic of this essay can be from almost any area of your life. It will be helpful to give the context around what was defined or established to clearly demonstrate how you went beyond. Why and how did you achieve results beyond expectations? This topic could be similar to Option A in scope, yet is focused on your individual achievement rather than directing a team’s actions.

As you put together your Stanford GSB application it will be helpful to read all of the essays together (and have others read them) to see the overall impression. It should be clear what your underlying motivations are, what you hope do you with your career, and how you operate as an individual and in a team within an organization. As Stanford GSB clearly requests, the best essays will illuminate your individual voice clear and strong.

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Stanford MBA Essay Questions

The Stanford Graduate School of Business has posted the essay questions and updated guidelines for letters of recommendation for the 2013-2014 MBA admissions season. The questions remain unchanged from last year’s application. Essay 1: What …

Stanford MBA essays

The Stanford Graduate School of Business has posted the essay questions and updated guidelines for letters of recommendation for the 2013-2014 MBA admissions season. The questions remain unchanged from last year’s application.

Essay 1: What matters most to you, and why?

  • The best examples of Essay 1 reflect the process of self-examination that you have undertaken to write them.
  • They give us a vivid and genuine image of who you are—and they also convey how you became the person you are.
  • They do not focus merely on what you’ve done or accomplished. Instead, they share with us the values, experiences, and lessons that have shaped your perspectives.
  • They are written from the heart and address not only a person, situation, or event, but also how that person, situation, or event has influenced your life.

Essay 2: What do you want to do—REALLY—and why Stanford?

Use this essay to explain your view of your future, not to repeat accomplishments from your past.

You should address two distinct topics:

  • your career aspirations,
  • and your rationale for earning your MBA at Stanford, in particular.

The best examples of Essay 2 express your passions or focused interests, explain why you have decided to pursue graduate education in management,  and demonstrate your desire to take advantage of the opportunities that are distinctive to the Stanford MBA Program.

Essay 3: Answer one of the three questions below.

Tell us not only what you did but also how you did it. What was the outcome? How did people respond? Only describe experiences that have occurred during the last three years.

  • Option A: Tell us about a time in the last three years when you built or developed a team whose performance exceeded expectations.
  • Option B: Tell us about a time in the last three years when you identified and pursued an opportunity to improve an organization.
  • Option C: Tell us about a time in the last three years when you went beyond what was defined or established.

Essay Length

Your answers for all of the essay questions cannot exceed 1,600 words.

Stanford GSB suggests these guidelines as a starting point, but notes you should feel comfortable to write as much or as little as you like on any essay question, as long as you do not exceed 1,600 words total.

Essay 1: 750 words
Essay 2: 450 words
Essay 3: 400 words

Stay tuned for our Stanford MBA essay tips, coming soon, and here’s a reminder of the Stanford GSB important dates and deadlines.

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Stanford MBA Application Deadlines

The Stanford Graduate School of Business has posted the MBA application deadlines for the 2013-2014 admissions cycle.  This year’s three deadlines are as follows: Round 1 Deadline: October 2, 2013 Notification: December 11, 2013 Round …

The Stanford Graduate School of Business has posted the MBA application deadlines for the 2013-2014 admissions cycle.  This year’s three deadlines are as follows:

Round 1

Deadline: October 2, 2013

Notification: December 11, 2013

Round 2

Deadline: January 8, 2014

Notification: March 26, 2014

Round 3

Deadline: April 2, 2014

Notification: May 7, 2014

The Stanford GSB notes that more applicants have been applying in Round 2 over the past few years, making the second round larger and more competitive. For those considering applying in either Round 1 or Round 2, the school strongly encourages applicants to consider Round 1. All applications are due at 5 p.m. PST.

For additional details, visit the Stanford GSB’s admissions website.

 

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