Wednesday, November 01, 2006

MBA wannabes

Getting into top MBA program is pretty tough, or perhaps time-consuming is a more correct word. Applicants must take GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test), which may take months to prepare. Another test for international students are TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language); this also takes some time to prepare. In addition to these tests, applicants must submit their GPA(s), which may be difficult to get in some countries. Then there comes the essays and interview.

I've been helping a few of these applicants, especially in giving my opinions to their essays. Some started well (i.e. good story, structured, good English), some others were hopeless, especially those with bad English. Despite that, the very first thing before getting into this messy journey of MBA application is the decision to get an MBA. Some people are very clear why they want an MBA. And as usual, some others don't. For those who really want it, it's no longer a dream - it's become their goal. (BTW, the difference between dream and goal is merely a date - that the date exists and is reasonable).

Last week I met with several to-be-applicants in Jakarta to share my experience at Duke. Pretty impressive pool of young men and women. I probably can tell, barely from getting the idea how prepared and how knowledgable they are about MBA, who has higher chance to getting into top-ranked schools. Yeah, right. Now I can read palms too...