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Tips for Business School Personal Statement

Your personal statement for business school is one of the most important components of your application portfolio. The essay is kind of like a presidential candidates speech at a convention; the audience may have learned a lot about you from second-hand sources, but this is the only shot to sell yourself in your own words. Accordingly, you should bring your A-game.

The most essential aspect of a strong essay is a compelling narrative. Tell your story and give it an ambitious ending. Place yourself within a chronology, and explain why its now time to get an MBA. You may have been a Philosophy major who entered the workforce as an Editor but ended up really interested in Marketing and Business Development. Or you may be looking to switch your focus from selling grain in Nebraska to nanotechnology in The Netherlands. Everyone has a story; tell yours.
Its also super important to show a track record of success. B-school admissions counselors want to fill their spots with students who will go on to be successful (and, cynics may say, give money back to the institution). Regardless, dont highlights missteps or regrets keep the piece almost 100% positive and optimistic, without sounding cocky or self-entitled.

Hopefuls often neglect to properly edit their personal statements for business school. While youre certainly not applying for a PhD in English, you are expected to submit a polished product and a polished product means no typos and solid grammar. Show a friend who reads a lot, show a significant other, take a few days, look at it one more time, and then send it off.

The B-school personal statement is not the single most important part of your application. Your work history and GMAT score are certainly more weighty in the decision-making process. Nevertheless, there is more volatility in the person statement, more room for candidates to make or break their applications. So take your time, tell your story, bounce it off a friend, and then move upward and onward


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