Advice for Your HBS MBA Application

HBS MBA applicationThe Round 2 deadline is coming up at Harvard Business School on January 5, 2021. That means there’s no time like the present to review some key elements your HBS MBA application should highlight.

Unsurprisingly, high-impact leadership is the “Big Kahuna” at HBS. Meaning, it’s the most important trait the AdCom looks for. When evaluating your leadership potential, the admissions committee will look for evidence that you’ve made a positive impact on the communities of which you’ve been a part, both personally and professionally.

Your past leadership achievements are the best gauge of your potential for realizing your future ambitions, so make sure to highlight instances that support your case in this area. The admissions committee understands you may not have several years of work experience from which to draw. Take comfort in knowing that it’s not about the scale of your achievements. Rather, it’s the fact that you left indelible footprints.

Be sure also to focus on service to others in your application. As with leadership, the committee is concerned with the connection between your achievements and how they reflect who you are. Community service is important for two reasons.

First, because it provides insights into your deeper interests and the causes that you care about. Secondly, because the admissions officers want to see evidence that you’re the type of person who devotes energy to making a community stronger. After all, they may be inviting you into their community.

With a mission to “educate leaders to make a difference in the world,” HBS isn’t looking for candidates who simply want a résumé boost. If you’re applying to Harvard, you have to have passion and vision—think big. Passion is a useful tool for staying motivated and productive, whether it’s in school or business.

But it goes much deeper than simply being passionate about what you’re doing. You need to express your passion in a way that inspires and projects energy onto those you work with. It’s not just your footprints that interest HBS admissions. They also want to see the footprints of those who follow you as you blaze a new trail in an area of passion.

Before You Submit Your HBS MBA Application

Finally, prospective applicants can take advantage of one of these upcoming webinars to learn more about HBS before this season’s final deadline.

  • Life at HBS Chat Series: MBA Students in the Women’s Student Association (12/3)
  • Get to Know HBS Series: Admissions Q&A (12/7, 12/17, 1/4)
  • The Value of an MBA for STEM Majors (12/9)
  • and more!

Keep in mind, Harvard Business School is closed from December 21st through January 3rd. So, this will be your last chance to ask the AdCom any questions as you put those finishing touches on your application over the next few weeks.

Image by Flickr user Chris Han (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

SBC’s star-studded consultant team is unparalleled. Our clients benefit from current intelligence that we receive from the former MBA Admissions Officers from Harvard HBS, Wharton and every elite business program in the US and Europe.  These MBA Admissions Officers have chosen to work exclusively with SBC.

Just two of the many superstars on the SBC team:
Meet Anthony, who served as the Associate Director of MBA Admissions at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he dedicated over 10 years of expertise.

Meet Andrea, who served as the Associate Director of MBA Admissions Marketing at Harvard Business School (HBS) for over five years.

Tap into this inside knowledge for your MBA applications by requesting a consultation.


(323) 934-3936

Latest Blog Post

B-Schooled Podcast Episode #144: 10 Things to Consider 6 Months Before Applying (Part 2)

If you have six months (or more) before your application deadline, this two-part B-Schooled podcast is for you. In Part 1, we shared five sets of suggestions to help you: 1. Think about your ...