Thursday, January 30, 2014

Using an English teacher for MBA Interview Practice

This is something I do NOT recommend, primarily because the feedback you are receiving is not coming from someone with ample experience preparing applicants to gain admittance to the school you are applying for. This kind of perspective is important, and is what you should be aiming for when it coms to live practice.

Having said that, I am aware that a lot of my clients do use a regular English teacher (in most cases for general English communication practice. This is great! Some use their teacher for interview practice. This is less than great, especially if the English teacher does not have relevant experience or is aware of the MBA interview (and entire application) process.

Here is a way you CAN use your English teacher when rehearsing for an interview:

(1) Give your teacher a bunch of questions that your target school has asked in the past.
(2) Ask them to ask you these questions. Ask your teacher to listen carefully to your answers, but not to give you any feedback on any of them.
(3) After doing a few of them, go back and ask the teacher to recall for you the key details of your answers to a previous question (ideally core content like your career goals or why you need an MBA).
(4) Listen to what kind of information you get back and decide how effectively you are getting across your message. If what they say back to you is not what you are intending to get across, ask questions as to what might have been clear, and what detail may be lacking or where further explanation is warranted.

What you are doing here is practicing. Of course, before practice you need to devise contents. What stories are best? What details show the best fit with a program? What's the right balance of work and non-work content? Such strategic planning is something you should do with someone familiar with the process, and experienced at advising as to what strategies are effective for you when it comes to answering interview questions.

John Couke

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Rotterdam School of Management (RSM) to Host MBA Information Session and Master Class in Tokyo on February 19, 2014

The Rotterdam School of Management (RSM) will be hosting an event in Tokyo to give potential applicants the chance to learn a bit more about RSM and their programs. The Master class will also help potential applicants get a feel for their curriculum.

The event will be on February 19, 2014 (a Wednesday). Sign up here!

John Couke

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Kellogg MBA Program to Host Interview Day in Tokyo on February 1st 2014

I have seen a couple of examples early in 2014 of schools aiming to set up interviews on short notice. Kellogg was sending out emails earlier today offering slots to their Tokyo Interview Day set for February 1st. This is earlier than in previous years.

There are two takeaways here for MBA applicants.

(1) Do a session of interview practice after completing your first application.

You may feel like there isn't time for this, but the reality is that it is important to know how well you are communicating and what areas you need to work on EARLY in the application season. The interview is the clincher and the earlier you begin your preparations the better off you'll be.

(2) Start interview practice RIGHT AFTER completing round 2 applications.

There's no time to wait, even if you're tired. If you haven't already done so, arrange your practice starting now - and don't delay!

John Couke

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Kellogg MBA Round 2 Deadline Extended

Kellogg has just extended their Round 2 deadline for admission to the MBA program to January 9th at 5pm central time. The new deadlines are posted here, and came after the application system seemed to have been down for a period of at least 8-10 hours.

The lesson to be learned is to apply early. Waiting until the last minute is risky. If something goes wrong, the casualty will be your application.

John Couke