There’s a reason (five, actually) why you won’t find MBA essay examples on our site. Read it here – MBA Essay samples just don’t work. If you are intending to refer to MBA essays as examples, that’s one thing. Re-using them as templates is going too far. MBA Admission Officers reading your MBA applications have been in the business for far longer than you have.
Achamba, the super MBA, had the same issue when he was planning to apply. He had set his eyes on the best business schools in the world and he knew he should do something that his competitors won’t.
He thought why not take the Eklavya route and treat the Admission Officers as his mentor. So he devoured the Adcom blogs of all the top schools to see whether he can collate the advice into a super powerful set of MBA essay writing tips.
At the end of a 3-month research exercise, he could squeeze out only 2 tips.
1. Be honest
2. Be yourself
‘Dammit!’ thought Achamba. As all supremely enlightening revelations that have been shared with the world (via celeb gurus ranging from Oprah to Deepak Chopra), the answer he was looking for was within him. So he got down to work and completed writing his business school essays. In the hope that other desi Eklavyas will look up to him as their guru, he’s sharing the MBA essays as samples.
Now you are getting a little too personal. Did I ever ask you what you are going to do with my entire life savings that I’ll pay you as tuition fee?
Sorry, that didn’t come across too well.
I don’t really mind the intrusive questions, but here’s the bigger issue. I have no clue what I want to do. I thought that’s where you guys come into the picture.
All I really want right now is to get away from my current job. I’m desperate enough to pump in 10 years of my future earnings for the escape route.
Yup, there you go, I admitted it. An international MBA is a $100,000 escape route for me.
I could say that my strength is X-Ray vision and my weakness is Kryptonite. But I’d be lying.
Or just like all my friends who are applying, I could say my strength is that I’m an charismatic, people-oriented leader and my weakness is that I’m a perfectionist. And I’d still be lying.
Unless you strap me to a lie-detector, I could say tons of things I know you want to hear. So what’s the point?
They never asked me such vague questions during school, junior college or university admissions. I turned out pretty ok by the time they were done with me.
Here I am getting ready to pay through my nose to cover up my weaknesses and make myself more attractive to employers. Please do not destroy my self-esteem with these random questions.
In the spirit of constructive feedback, it might be better for you to look at my resume & GMAT score and take a call. Those are real, tangible things I’ve already done. The rest is just a figment of my (MBA consultant’s) imagination.
Nothing worth talking, really. Which is why I want an MBA, so I can do something after that. But I understand that won’t impress you. So let me think a little more.
Hmm, yeah ok, I have an answer. My biggest accomplishment so far has been – bladder control. My mother has been the single most important source of inspiration in meeting this milestone.
She’d say, ‘Son, I don’t want to put any undue pressure on you. But this bed-wetting needs to stop. You need to understand that our supply of bedsheets, water and sunshine is limited. And let’s not forget that you are 18 now you dumbass!’
Her advice rings in my ears to this day. Or maybe it was the slap I got from my dad that started the ringing. I’m not entirely sure.
Coming to what I’ve learnt from this, hmm, let’s see. I learnt many things, like tapping into long-forgotten memories and using obscure analogies to connect it all to this application.
For instance, without batting an eyelid, I can say this – Just like business, the human body is complex. Mastering various functions takes time and you can’t always outsource stuff. I’ve been a slow bloomer, but eventually I got there. And that’s where your MBA degree will help.
On a serious note, plagiarism is a big issue for Admission Committees. And even if your MBA essays aren’t as bad as Achamba’s, if you blindly follow general advice, they may still stand out…for the wrong reasons.
So, by all means, be honest and be yourself. But also be aware of the fact that this is not a friendly chat you are having on Facebook with your chaddi-buddies. It’s a business negotiation between you and the top schools. So present yourself professionally.
You might be planning to work with professional MBA admission consultants in India (expensive!) or abroad (damn expensive!). Or you may be reaching out to colleagues, friends, family members who have gone through the process for help.
Having mentors who can give you objective advice is great. But, don’t let others sway your judgement. The MBA admissions process isn’t perfect. You may question many of the things Admission Committees ask you to do to prove your mettle.
Always keep in mind what’s important for you. Whether you get into the best schools in India or internationally, the admissions process can be the introspective exercise that you never did earlier. Look at it as an opportunity to understand your own motivations and aspirations.
Once you are back in the rat race, you may never have a chance to pause and introspect.
While we are on the topic of honest MBA essays, given the anonymity that blog commenting offers, how would you respond to some of the MBA essay topics? We’d love to get a peek into your mind.
If you found this interesting, read more about the Adventures of Achamba – The Super MBA.