Did you know that an increasing number of MBA programs are making use of online video-interview platforms? That’s right—for some schools, you must record responses to one or more short-answer prompts before your application is considered complete. Often, the system will also allow for at least one extra try, so if you’re not thrilled with your initial response, you can record it again. (Phew.)
Why do schools add this extra step? Simple: they want to get a better sense of your personality. They’ve seen what you have going for you on paper; a video interview can help them judge whether or not the “real you” matches the impression you’ve built through your other materials.
Unfortunately, video essays can be a source of major stress for already-anxious prospective students.
But here’s some good news: the reality is that it’s unlikely you will totally bomb your answer (especially if you have the chance to re-record it). In fact, with just a little bit of confidence and preparation, you could give a response that makes the AdCom think, “We just have to meet this person!”
Here are some video-interview tips:
- Prepare (and practice) succinct responses for all of the typical MBA-related questions: Why Program X, Why an MBA overall, Why now, What are your career goals, Summarize your career to date, and so on.
- Then add some “fun” questions and responses into the mix: Review the last book you read/movie you saw/TV show you watched, What’s your favorite song and why, Where’s the best place you’ve gone on vacation, et cetera.
- Record yourself answering these questions. Have a trusted friend review your responses and tell you how you’re coming off. Tweak your style accordingly.
- When the big moment arrives and it’s time for the real thing, remember that no one is trying to trick you into embarrassing yourself. It’s just another opportunity for you to show what an asset you’ll be to an MBA program.
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And if you’re still feeling unsure about your video-interviewing skills, you might be interested in Stacy Blackman Consulting’s online practice platform.