Saturday, December 25

Dinged by Fuqua

That's 2/3 ... No i/v invite...i thought Fuqua would be a piece of cake for me...but i think i have not really understood the b-school app process well...out of my 3 apps...i only got 1 i/v invite...and then did my best to screw up the i/v...got WLed...at times i feel i was born to write a book 'How to screw up things when u re in a good situation..'

I didn't even prepare for r-2...had not given thought to safety schools....why i behaved in such an eccentric manner can't be explained thru this blog...

so r-2 or no r-2?? NO...i am not well prepared and i dont want to waste my and ad-com's time by submitting sub standard apps...I got my essays reviewed by a frnd who was part of ad-com at a b-school...and boy the way he bashed up my essays, sharing the experience is beyond the scope of this blog....I badly under played my story....and once he shared his insights...i realized that i am a very poor marketer...a b-school app is the best place to show ur marketing skills...and that too when u re eyeing marketing job post MBA....

Merry christmas and happy new year to all the fellow bloggers,...

and yes all this while i will try to pull of Booth's WL with all my might....and who knows if i can put a better app in next 10 days...Maybe..maybe i will....Makhtub...

Thursday, December 16

Waitlisted at Booth !!

Some light at the end of tunnel...Can someone guide me about the next steps?? seems like i had totally ignored the possibility of WL...i was thinking in binary terms..ding/acceptance...glad that i am not dinged...gives a nitro boost to my confidence....hopefully i ll hear some good news from Fuqua...and i am very determined about pulling chi...after my visit to chi .. i have literally fallen heels over head in love with the school...

also, this WL gives me the confidence for r2 apps...Wharton and Ross it is...and if time permist...LBS too...but time is too lesss....

Dear KT,

Your application to the University of Chicago Booth School of Business has received the careful consideration of our Admissions Committee. While we are impressed with your application, we are unable to provide you with a final decision at this time and will place you on our waitlist for future consideration. I want to assure you that being placed on the waitlist signals our sincere interest in your candidacy.

This year, our admissions process was highly competitive. While Chicago Booth is grateful to have so many talented students seeking to join us in Fall 2011, we are simply not able to admit all of our most qualified candidates at this time.

During the coming months, the Committee will review waitlist candidates for admission as a part of our Round 2 evaluation process. Decisions will be released as part of our Round 2 process on March 16th. While we hope to enroll as many waitlist candidates as we can at that point, the possibility does exist that some students will continue to be on the waitlist into the next application round.

You are more than welcome to visit Chicago Booth at any time, though this is not necessary and will not directly impact your admission decision. In the meantime, we ask that you stay in touch should you choose to make other plans and no longer wish to be considered for a spot in the Class of 2013.
As we continue with the Admissions process for Fall 2011, please contact our office directly via e-mail regarding any questions you may have (admissions@chicagobooth.edu ). We appreciate your patience during this process and wish you the best.

Sincerely,
Kurt Ahlm
Senior Director of Admissions

Wednesday, December 15

Knock out punch

Despite my i/v debacle, i was hopeful of making it to Chi {incorrigible optimist..i am one of those who believe Man U can turn around 0-4 in last 5 mins} ... after waiting whole night yesterday for that elusive call ... i slept at 1 am but woke up at 5 am to check my cell phone...and was aghast to see the blank screen :) ... no news in case of b school app process is a bad news...

the journey was exciting, enriching and tiresome...perfect record till now 2/2 dings...waiting for 3rd school...have got a Hat Trick chance {bad things often provoke ppl to throw bad jokes...}...

Trying to restore sanity...time for R2...will app to 3 more schools {is 3 unlucky for me?? frowning smiley ... got to change that to 2 schools ;) } ....

Ross/Tuck/Columbia/Wharton/LBS--got to pick target schools...not much time at hand....

congrats to all da admits...and all of us dingos...its not the end of the world...end of the world will be 2012 ... when admits wud have completed excruciating 1st year at b-school {ha ha...sour grapes for me..} ...

all da best for r-2....

small tip {now a reject is going to give tips :)} : for career goals essay -- decide wats ur target industry .. go to the website of ur target companies...careers section --> see the progression, skill set reqd for ur target job...wat are the responsibilities..or u can find detailed skill set or job responsibilities on job portals...it helps to succintly define ur career goals....

Friday, December 10

My life these days!!

With R-1 results puring out...and applicants are anxiously checking school's admissions blog, application status, b-school forums etc...strangely i am least bothered...maybe i know that my fate is sealed {for good or bad..} ... i have never felt so emotionally detached ever in my life...Had applied to 3 schools...1 has dinged me...another i/ved me..and 3rd has still not started rolling out i/v decisions....

Wat to do in R-2 -- i have started thinking abt it..

If i get an admit...will share few essay and resume tips with fellow bloggers {can share my thoughts right now also...but i don't think i wud be able to share wat worked and wat didn't .. :) } ...

Thursday, December 2

Clarification -- esp for gmatclub members...

Was browsing thru gmatclub.com and saw the mention of my blog

http://gmatclub.com/forum/calling-all-kellogg-fall-2011-applicants-97100-620.html

clarification: I got an i/v waiver from Kellogg but never got the i/v invite...and i read on gmatclub forum that the last date to receive i/v notification is - Nov-23...

so i used my analytical mind {in the best of its capacity..} and deduced that i am dinged...

My bad -- i wrote that i am OFFICIALLY dinged by Kellogg...
-----------------------------------------------------

one of the funniest reply on gmatclub --

ring ring



"Hello"
"-no the stuffing, Aunt Mary, not the mashed potatoes! Oh hi, this is Kellogg. You're rejected."
"What?"
"Happy Thanksgiving!"

uprightcitizen -- that was too gud...kudos...+1 :)

Tuesday, November 30

True Lies -- Sonia Gandhi..

Read this fabulous article on a blog:

know real Sonia Gandhi

excerpt:

Ms. Sonia Gandhi’s background as is publicized by her and her Congress Party today, is based on three lies to hide the ugly reality of her life.

First, her real name is Antonia not Sonia. The Italian Ambassador in New Delhi revealed this in a letter dated April 27, 1983 to the Union Home Ministry which has not been made public. Antonia is Sonia’s real name in her birth certificate. Sonia is the name given to her subsequently by her father, Stefano Maino [now deceased] following his return from Russia where he had been a prisoner of war. Stefano had joined the Nazi army as a volunteer. Sonia is a Russian not Italian name. While spending two years in a Russian jail, Sonia’s father had become quite pro-Soviet; especially after the liberating US army in Italy had confiscated all fascists’ properties including his.

Second, she was not born in Orbassanoas she claims in her bio data submitted to Parliament on becoming MP, but in Luciana as stated in her birthcertificate. She perhaps would like to hide the place of her birthbecause of her father’s connection....know real Sonia Gandhi {click on this link to read more}...
 
p.s: These re not my views... ;) ... no sabotage pls...

Monday, November 29

typical i/v questions

1. walk me thru ur resume/tell me abt urself -- make sure that u share a story and not just the titles and nos on resume {i kno i still havent got an admit and looking at my performance i might not get one ;) but still after speaking to alums and current students this is wat i learnt } ..

2. u re doing so good in ur current profile...why an mba?? {share why u want an mba..linking with ur ST and LT goals..and why now...wats the harm in continuing with ur current firm?? ..}

3. why xx school...be passionate here...kno the school well...

4. if u have anything spectacular in ur resume -- be ready to share the why and how behind that...{i had v good extra currics so i was probed around this a lot...}

5. if u re leading teams...be ready to answer..ques such as -- wats ur leadership style...wat wud u do if a team member fails to pull his/her own weight...a tough client...work place conflict...{i think i screwed up a bit in this part..failed to articulate..}

6. wat s ur biggest achievement...

7. wat do u do outside of the work...

8. apart from courses and club activities...wat else u re plannin to learn at the school...

9. any ques for me??

the ques are very generic..all u need to do is sleep well the night b4 ur interview and be confident during the d day...

Thursday, November 25

1st ding

Kellogg has officially dinged me....ooops...was kind of expecting it....

Happy thanksgiving....

feels a bit bad...but whatever happens..happens for the best....at the very least i can have a bowl of Kelloggs...or i will have 2 today ;) ....

All da best to kellogg aspirants....

Tuesday, November 23

WTF! only i can do it

The lady in maroon {U Chi} sent one of the best combos of beauty and brain {My interviewer} to gauge my fit with Chi....She soothed my nerves..and asked me very simple questions but i think i love to screw things up... :'( ... wont even get into detail of things....i ll share the after impacts and things u shud not do during a b-skool i/v...

after impacts --

had beer {or shall i say crate of beer} with a frnd {who also screwed up his FRM...had he not screwed it i wud have been drinking alone...} ...

all those who are going to make it to Chi...i must say that u re going to have spectacular 2 years...campus is gorgeous..u gotta see it to believe it...students are smart and driven...the place has kind of positive vibes...

things not to do...

1. dont have too much beer on days preceding your i/v
2. dont forget to give a mock i/v
3. don't miss ur b.fast on the day of i/v
4. don't be casual...

U.Chi

Guy at the admissions desk -- hi..i am xyz..are you nervous?
KT -- I am doing awesome...u looking nervous...are you done with ur i/v or still have it?
Guy -- i am a second year student .. i am taking the i/vs..
KT - Oh sorry i missed ur name batch...now i am nervous...

Tuesday, November 9

Guest Post by Maria

Choosing an MBA Concentration: Tips and Options

Before choosing a school, it’s a good idea to be sure of your top three picks for concentrations so that

you can factor this into your decision. You’ll want to make sure that the institution of your choice has

strong programs for your top concentrations, and evaluating the quality of these programs can help you

choose both your number-one concentration and the right school from which to earn it. To get a good

idea of which concentrations might interest you, take a look at the following tips and concentration

offerings for MBA candidates.



Evaluating Your Personal Goals


To get started, think about what you want out of an MBA program, getting as specific as possible. If this

seems difficult, analyze what you want in a career – for-profit or nonprofit, international or country-

specific, entrepreneurial or established? Use what you know of yourself to decide how much potential

financial compensation, travel requirements, technological focus, social interaction, and other factors

might influence your career choice. List both what you would require in your ideal job and what you

would eliminate from it. If high compensation and job security are important to you, you might consider

choosing one of the concentrations in top demand according to CNN Money: Accounting, Finance,

and Marketing. However, make sure that the concentration you choose reflects your personal skills,

interests, and career goals – otherwise, you could be financially successful but wishing for a more

fulfilling job.



Evaluating Your Options



There are many different MBA concentrations for you to choose from, and there are more being added

consistently. To try to break them down into manageable categories, let’s look at some common

concentrations that represent technical, social, and managerial options.



Technical: Concentrations like Information Systems and Quantitative Analysis, in addition to the more

general Finance and Statistics, can give detail-oriented and technologically savvy candidates the chance

to attain their goals. For example, Information Systems involves a heavy load of computer-based study,

encourages deep analysis of organizational operations, and can result in entry-level positions like

systems analyst, systems consultant, and data information specialist.



Social: Human Resource Management is a good example of an MBA concentration that involves the

social side of business. Communication and problem-solving skills are central to the careers that make

use of this concentration, and people are integral to the basic foundations of HR. MBA candidates who

choose a concentration like this one will be involved in helping employees develop their skills, analyzing

the future human resource needs of corporations, and understanding organizational psychology.

Potential careers include recruitment consultant, business partner, HR manager/executive, talent

acquisition manager, and more. Other socially grounded MBA concentrations are Negotiation and

Conflict Management, Business and Public Policy, and International Business.



Managerial: If you’re headed straight to the top and you’re ready to take charge, you might consider

a managerial concentration. This is perhaps the largest category of MBA options, but some of the

most common are just plain Management, Entrepreneurial Management, Health Care Management,

Multinational Management, and more. With Management, candidates learn to develop a clear

perspective on an organization’s entire set of operations, focusing on improving these operations

through better management of people and systems. The potential careers for those with MBA

Management concentrations are essentially unlimited, as this program prepares candidates for

successful jobs in a wide variety of institutions, industries, and types of organizations.



Making the Choice



Be sure to interview prospective professors, fellow students, and department heads as you consider

which MBA concentration you’d like to pursue. This will help you get a better idea of which types of

concentrations interest you, whether or not the faculty members seem competent, and how successful

the current students in each program are. Look for hardworking students and professors who are busy,

but willing to give you a few minutes of their time. You don’t want to choose a program that’s too easy

because its credibility probably won’t hold up against more difficult and prestigious options. Overall,

choose the concentration that contributes most to your personal sense of fulfillment and you’ll make

the right decision.



Bio: Maria Rainier is a freelance writer and blog junkie. She is currently a resident blogger at First in

Education, researching areas of online colleges & blogging about student life. In her spare time, she

enjoys square-foot gardening, swimming, and avoiding her laptop.


Optional Photo (Public Domain)

URL: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4032/4523323053_c1fe161e04_z.jpg

Monday, November 8

Lady in Maroon

lady in maroon has finally agreed to date me...planning to plant a perfect kiss... ;)

Tuesday, October 26

Done with the Round 1

My third app for R-1 is complete and i plan to submit the same by Oct-31. I can see a difference between my first 2 apps and the 3rd one. My motivation and passion for doing things is coming out in the essays. I am still not sure whether this would be enough for getting into a top b-school.

My strategy has been quite risky, i have applied to all schools in top 10 {in fact 2 schools are in top 5 and 3rd is near the bottom half of top 10}. No safety schools for me...

Interview invites have started rolling for one of my target schools but i haven't heard anything. I am talking about my first app. More or less my chances at this school are over { i still don't want to believe that :( ..}...in next few days i/v invites will start rolling for my 2nd app and i am expecting an i/v call at the very least....

As for my 3rd app i will only get to hear somethin in Dec {i/v decision}...for R-2 i have shortlisted 2 more schools...but a lot would depend on the results in r-1...if i am admitted then i won't apply to any other school...and if i am dinged at all 3 schools without an interview even then i won't apply anywhere ... :) ... Catch 22.... my mind is playing tricks with me...

Anyways..good thing is that i have updated my resume and it looks pretty impressive as compared to its earlier version.....can anyone tell me about some good job portals ;) ...

The feeling of completing my apps for r-1 has yet to sink in because my recommendors have not submitted the recs....will request them to do the needful at the earliest....

lastly, all da best to fellow applicants....biii

Friday, October 22

Stay ahead once you are admitted ...

Many of us have put enormous amount of efforts and time to get into one of those coveted b-schools. But getting into those b-schools won't mean much if we are not able to stay organized and focussed. Below is a guest post by Alvina Lopez {reminds me of J Lopez :)} on i-phone apps for MBA students...it's a smart way to stay focussed and organized....

iPhone Apps for MBA Students


As a MBA student your coursework is designed to teach you how to become an effective

manager. While learning managerial skills out of a textbook might be piece of cake, when

it comes to managing your own life while trying to earn your degree, it can prove quite

difficult. But it doesn't have to be thanks to certain iPhone apps created to make balancing

schoolwork, networking and your social life a whole lot easier. Below are the top iPhone

apps every MBA student needs to download to have a smoother semester.



Stay Organized

Every MBA student knows that the amount of assignments, projects and exams can get

overwhelming. A sure way to make sure you don't fall behind in class work and get

your "A" is to download apps that will help you study and stay organized. Let's be honest,

even if you own a daily planner, sometimes you can forget when important assignments are

due. Date Wheel is a neat app to that helps you remember important assignment due dates

using a countdown mechanism. It will tell you when your assignment is due and how many

days left you have to complete it, so you can balance your time effectively iiBlueSky is also

another convenient app that can help you excel in school. It uses its visual mind mapping

interface to allow you to take and review notes and prepare for exams.



Stay Informed
As a MBA student, it's your responsibility to be well-educated in all aspects of the business

industry. Only way to do this is to be familiarized with the news and to be well-informed of

what's going in the world. The Google News app is a great way to stay updated with current

events not only in the business sector but with world-events as well. NetNewsWire is also

another great iPhone app. This news aggregator selects different articles from different

publications on the same subject so you don't receive your news from just one source.



Stay Social

TwitterFon and Facebook apps are an automatic given and are already pre-installed in most

iPhones. While the social networking sites help you stay connected with friends so you

won't go completely insane during the semester, your Twitter and Facebook friends most

likely won't find you a job come graduation time. But Career Builder and Linkedin can.

These apps will keep your resume on file at all times and can help you find and apply for

jobs through your phone.


P.S:

This guest post is contributed by Alvina Lopez, who writes on the topics of accredited online


colleges . She welcomes your comments at her email Id: alvina.lopez @gmail.com.
http://www.accreditedonlinecolleges.com/

Tuesday, October 19

2 hawks down..2 more to go..

Have already submitted 2 of my apps and finding it hard to freeze the 3rd one. I want to approach the essays for my 3rd and 4th college from a different angle all together. I have all the ingredients but i don't have the recipe.

Shall i use the conversational style or go with the conventional style. I just want that my essays should reveal my personality in best possible manner. In retrospect, i am not happy with my 1st two apps. The grief is enhanced by the fact that those were my top 2 choices.

I don't have a clue about my next 2 apps and here i am killing time on blog. On Saturday i am going to play poker with friends. I have 9-10 days at hand before i hit the submit button again but things are not moving at the right pace.

I plan to submit 4 apps in R-1 and 2 more in R-2. If i don't get any interview invite in R-1, i may scrap my plans for R-2. I would better introspect and take corrective measures...

p.s: hats off to those who have submitted 4-5 apps in a short time...

Thursday, October 14

That's life

Oct-14-2010

Waiting at the petrol station for my turn, i was sitting in my car and listening to the radio. Suddenly a Beamer stopped along side me and i started day dreaming. How much i loathed sitting in a car that costs almost 1/10 of a beamer. Then, an old man arrived on his scooter. He had a perenial smile on his face, highlighting that he still brushes his teeth regularly {i wonder those were real or artificial}.

It was a long line and the staff at petrol station was working slowly, cars moved at an infinitesimally slow speed. My eyes kept on ping ponging from Beamer to scooter. Old man was pushing his scooter everytime a car in front of him moved out and the beamer was just gliding smoothly. I could see sweat dropping from old man's forehead while cool air from my car's AC kept the temp. under control. I turned to have another look at the beamer and saw the guy sitting inside. He was wearing a collar on his neck {i believe he had spondilytis}, had wrinkles on his face and the  lines on his forehead deepened as he shouted on the phone.

Automatically, my mind started comparing old man to this guy. The guy in beamer would have been around 35 yrs old but looked paler in comparison to the old man. Then at three parallel pumps, staff started filling fuel in my car, the beamer and old man's scooter. I paid the bill by card and watched the old man search his pockets for every possible sign of money. He fondled his pockets until he took out every note, he counted the money twice and grinned before paying his bill. Then he started kicking his scooter{no push start }, cars behind him started honking and he had to manually push his scooter few feets ahead.

The beamer sped off, the guy in car still shouting on his mobile phone. I moved forward and parked my car to observe the old man. He must have kicked his scooter 30 times but no luck, every now and then he would manually push his scooter few feets ahead {i wonder whether that was to give way to others or because he was embarassed}. I wanted to get out of my car and help him but could not get out of my car. I am a mechanical engineer but i don't know shit about scooters. I requested god to help him but i think god also failed in automobile engineering ;) {no pun intended..god i am sorry...i love u..}.

Then the old man started pushing his scooter towards a mechanic who was sitting in a small shop outside the petrol station. The smile from old man's face faded and mechanic's face started beaming....i got to know that smile is infectious....

Thursday, October 7

The Last Mile

Am tired...i don't feel like reviewing my essays anymore... :) ... God grant me the sanity and strength to complete the last mile....

My recommendors are doing a better job than me...first recommendor told me that he has already submitted my recos.... and i hope he wrote good things about me .. amen

Called up second recommendor...he assured me that everything would be done by Saturday....well before the deadlines on Oct-13th, 14th and Nov-1...

I assured myself that i will try my best to submit the apps on last day....i had freezed my essays in last week of Sep but could not resist playing with them and now am myself confused which version is to be submitted....

Resume is done...need to get transcripts scanned....

More or less i am on track....But i feel like running a race with blind folds on....i can't see where do i stand with respect to the competition.....Interesting....

Come Nov-1 and am off for an excursion .....

Sunday, October 3

Can lines be dead?? Deadlines ;)

MBA blogosphere is silent than normal...and it's obvious...people are busy giving finishing touches to their essays...i was out for past many days...first on an excursion with friends..then attended few marriages...and finally was out to attend a high flying official event...

My apps -- more or less i am done..have given my best shot....not bothering about what the results are gonna be...because ultimately we get wat's best for us...and not wat we desire ;) {i know deadlines can make a person philosophical}...

Few observations:

Hyderabad airport -- Male Toilet --> || <---Female Toilet {can a toilet be male or female?? and if yes..do they also make love??}

Deadlines...do we burry lines once they re dead?? {graveyeard for lines ..oops..pathetic...}

Goa

KT: Sid i think that's superb..wat do you say?
Sid: You are right...she's superb..hot legs...and well endowed...
KT: i am talking about that car..is it skoda superb??

At a shop selling petrol bottles

KT: Aunty how much for the bottle
Aunty: 65/litre

KT:Sid .. now here we have something that can become a bomb
Sid: No buddy...she is too old to become a bomb...she hasn't got the potential
KT: I am talking about the petrol bottle

Enuffff......nervousness can often provoke people to fire PJs....

All da best to all the fellow applicants.....2 months from now..we will start getting the results....no matter wat the results are gonna be...life will go on....so ve fun ;)

Saturday, September 18

Stacy Blackman helps in designing the b-school strategy...

I have been fortunate enough to get hold of "DESIGNING YOUR BUSINESS SCHOOL BRAND" by Stacy. The book talks about various parameters that one should take into consideration while formulating the application strategy. It starts by explaining the important aspects of branding yourself, moves on to help you plan your branding strategy and ultimately touches upon the topic of communicating your strategy to the ad-coms.

The book has just 28 pages and i believe is a good resource for applicants who have started late. The book will help an applicant to understand his/her own strengths and accordingly create a portfolio of schools based upon the risk apetite. The book explores the characterstics of decision making body {ad-com}, and the nuances of app process, helping the applicant to create an effective sales pitch.

Then there is a brag sheet, an exercise that will come handy while working on various type of essays {basically helping you to answer the WHAT part}. Once you have listed all your accomplishments {small or big/ personal or professional} you need to articulate them in an interesting manner..and here Stacy suggests the STAR approach {Once the plot is freezed STAR approach will help you in building the narrative}..Lastly, the book will help applicants to answer "Why" and "How" parts of the app...

Having read Richard Montauk's bestseller {How to Get Into the Top MBA Programs } and scott shrum's "Your MBA game plan", i couldn't help but compare Stacy's product to these 2 books. Montauk's book is as detailed as it can get...it talks about positioning, effectively communicating your story etc etc in utmost details and to add to it the book has many sample essays...The problems that i see with Montauk's book are:

1. it is too detailed..gets boring at times...and after reading sample essays you might be tempted to think along those lines..in the way losing your own unique brand ... {reading sample essays is good but getting too influenced by them is bad..}
2. if you are starting late then Montauk is not for you...reading hundreds of pages and understanding them will take time...
3. reading some out of the world essays and recos might deter your spirit...the sample essays included belong to some of the Godly candidates...and i am not one of them....{these sample essays might create a self doubt..in some of the applicants}

The MBA game plan --

1. talks at 20, 000 ft level...
2. good to read when you are contemplating whether to go for an MBA or not...

Stacy's book
1. Short, crisp
2. has good exercises to help you create an app strategy
3. downside is the price...at USD 29+ i think price is a bit on higher side..but then you are going to spend 140k USD on MBA...so 29 USD is peanuts..

p.s: the views expressed above are entirely mine..

Thursday, September 16

Life comes a full circle!!

dd-mm-1998

"It's 10 in the morning and you are lazing around.."

"Dad..i don't have much to do..i have given the board exams and now let me have fun for some days.."

"Ok..you have fun ... i am leaving for office...will play poker with you in the evening!!"

"Bye dad!!"

"bye"

dd-mm-2010

"Dad, it's 10 in the morning and you are still reading the newspaper.."

"I am a retired person now...let me have fun .."

"Ok..you have fun ... i am leaving for office...will play poker with you in the evening!!"

"sure..i will wait for you ... bye !!"

"bye dad"

Life has indeed come a full circle...

Thursday, September 9

Colloquial Language in essays!! Is it fine??

Today while taking a call with one of the clients i came up with a revolutionary idea about writing the essays. But my concern - "Is it fine to be totally myself in the essay??" For example -- i love to use smileys ... !!! marks...and colloquial language...i know that too much of colloquial language can write me off...but if i pour my heart out in 1 of the 4 essays, then is it fine?? I re-wrote one of the essay for a school....and got some great compliments from my friends...The new approach made the essay really humorous and fun to read...but the compliments came with a statutory warning -- KT -- you will be taking a big risk by submitting this essay.....it can make or break your case...

I want to ask fellow bloggers/consultants/students/ {and adcoms - if u have the time to read this blog :)} ... can i be myself in one of the essays??

PS: I am feeling really great about this essay....i think i wrote my previous drafts under the influence of the matter that i have read/heard .... is it fine to be original??

Wednesday, September 8

Leadership Essay - Kellogg + Kaneisha Grayson

I had no plans of writing any blog post but yesterday i re-worked on Kellogg essay 2 that wants the applicants to share their key leadership experiences. This is one of the most challenging essays i have faced till now. with 600 words at hand how to share key leadership experiences and then also share the leadership areas that one hopes to develop while pursuing the MBA.

I shared my draft with Kaneisha of theartofapplying. Actually she offered to proof read my essay and help me with it...Must say that despite of being busy with her clientele she helped me in real quick time. Kaneisha not only pointed at the exact shortcomings of my essay but also suggested ways to improve upon it. The idea was right there on paper but i wasn't able to put it down concisely and effectively...Kaneisha's comments helped me in doing so...Now my essay looks a lot better...Thanks Kaneisha for your wonderful support!!! And very soon i would like to have a detailed discussion with her around the app process and how she can help the applicants who started late...{believe me i am not being paid anything to write this :) ... but i wish i were paid a few dollars ;) }...

Now coming back to essay...in order to tackle this question..don't simply focus on "WHAT"...its redundant to tell the ad-com what you did...because in one way or the other your resume/data sheet or reco will convey the ehat part,,...

Answer the whys/hows in as much depth as possible and with vivid example...whyswill help the ad-com in understanding your passions...and hows will help the ad-com in understanding your personality..+ what traits you developed in the process and what is it that you bring to the table...

lets take an example...I lead my undergrad soccer team to a victory in inter college soccer tournament. We won the cup and $10, 000 in cash..our feat was highlighted by local papers and channels alike..i was nominated the man of the match ... i scored 4 goals in final and 12 in the tournament...Do you think this is going to help??

During the final year of my undergrad dgree i was given the responsibility to lead the college soccer team. With most of the senior players already out of college i was facing the challenge to construct the team and motivate the players to perform well in inter college tourna....i analyzed the strengths and weaknesses of our team and realized that our defense suffered a major blow as the seniors {who were playing in defense positions} moved out...i changed my position from a centre forward to central mid fielder..to support the weakend defense..revised our strategy...instead of playin 4-4-3, i used 2-3-5...bla bla...obviously u want to convey the challenge and your approach in a concise manner..not like me...finally i asked my team to give their best..i told them that if u guys can pull it off you will be hot properties in college with lots of girls going ga ga over you...{i used the right carrot to motivate the team..;)} ...

Also, as i did last year...i checked the GMAT distrib of incoming class at Kellogg and here is the analysis

Gmat Score (UP TO 640)    (650 - 690)     (700 - 740)    (750-800)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Enrolled Students 12% {71}  23% {135}     48% {282}  16% {100}
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Total Applicants    6% {316}  20% {1054}   52% {2740} 23% {1212}
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Acceptance Rate        22.47%      12.81%        10.29%       8.25%
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Interesting trend..and i kept on fretting about GMAT score

Monday, September 6

K-1 Submitted

Long time since i wrote a post on this blog!!! Well..my illness turned out to be a bad throat infection and that eventually led to a high fever. Bleeding throat + Fever + 5 Sick leaves {am still not fully fine..100F..and weakness..bleeding has stopped}...didn't had much to do .. prepared a one page resume...and i think this one will come handy for all my apps...

am really getting scared now...not much time left...am leaving the town on Sep-19...and will come back on sep-29...Kellogg app is sealed..ll make few cosmetic changes before submitting ...nopes..how can i submit those essays...i have to work on essay4 - one more time...

Booth and Fuqua -- status quo -- no work done...for both these schools essay 1 and 2 are done...3rd essay needs to be worked upon....and i plan to do so in next 2 weeks...

Fourth school -- Wharton/Tuck/Ross -- oh my god...i love all 3 of them...but i am not sure to which i wud be applying this time....or maybe i will push 2 of these schools to second round....so only 3 schools in r1...

And finally i submitted my Kellogg part 1 application....checked..re-checked and again checked all the info...paid $250 using my c card...and as soon as i hit the pay button i felt i didn't answer some ques...last minute psyche up...had checked the part 1 on pdf format {Kellogg allows you to check whole of ur r1 app before submitting...}but still wanted to feel the pressure...at times i hate myself for pushing hard against the deadlines.. {part 1 deadline is sep24}...

Will share some resume crafting tips soon,...worked hard on my resume for the first time in my life...and  people liked the final product...got few compliments such as -- the resume shows u re a 'leader', 'driven', 'passionate', 'result oriented guy' ..woha....i am loving it....wish ad-com feels the same...

plan to submit part 2 once i am back from my trip...ll try and share the progress....until then.....Bbyeee.

Monday, August 30

Foursome...believe me it's awesome!!!

Aug-28-2010

Fever: Hello darling!! Long time .. {a vicious smile}

Me: uh  ah...well..how are you??

Fever: don't worry about me...and be ready to answer that question yourself...

Me: Sweetie...you are so hot {literally...;) i am at 98 F ... but mere kiss of you can send my body temp to 102F}...

Fever: Mwahhh!!! you have been longing for a hot kiss...weren't you??

Me: i was .. but i was not dreaming of you...and why in the hell Ms Sneezy and Ms coughy always accompany you?? i don't believe in foursome...why are you 3 after me?? i don't even use the Axe affect!!

I am still feeling tired after kissing and hugging ms fever and her friends...the foursome was awesome...after 3 days i am still feeling tired...

Monday, August 23

Apps Update!!!

I have been busy for past few days...Swimming/Yoga in the morning...Office -- busy preparing presentations for enterprise wide strategy...leading projects...miss S is not keeping well for past few days so that's a big reason for worry...during night i work on my apps...{1-2 hours daily}....

Kellogg -- drafts were submitted to reviewer....got some really good suggestions....need to work on suggestions......discussed my case with both my recommendors...more or less sealed....started working on part 1 of app...plan to submit it in next 7-8 days

Fuqua -- a basic outline complete for 2/3 questions...plan to work on it Oct-10 onwards {will be applying during Nov deadline}

Booth -- Started working on app but i feel i am going to go down with fever/cold n cough...:'(

Strengths -- quantiatively speaking, i have good acads, decent score, nice depth and breadth of work ex, good extra currics, leadership experience

Weaknesses -- qualitatively speaking, i am unable to put my thoughts on paper {oops on word doc}.I write good stories with regards to wat happened , wat were the consequences but fail to reveal "MY" contributions..Not good!!!

Opportunity -- Started early so have plenty of time to make necessary changes to my ESSAYS!!!

Threat -- Might become complacent..or wear out before the final race

Friday, August 20

ooh la la

i don't know why but since this morning i am feeling a little spark inside me, waiting to burst and create a halo all around me.....it's not that i am falling in love...{i love miss S and i am content}....i don't know what happened but i am feeling really good!!! it's not that i have written some good essays lately ...{i am giving my best shot but am not worrying too much}....i am not sure wat sparked off this feeling but i am liking it...

i had never imagined that my 100th post would be such a crap... :)
actually, i want to get on top of my office table...shout the coveted F word with a big grin on my face and jump off while folding my knees and thrash the roof with my fist....

we spend so much time pretending to be wat we are not but when we are wat we want to be...it shows...

i think its time to ...

Monday, August 9

Chugging ahead...

Made some good progress over the weekend, had a call with my first reviewer and worked on my K essays. Must admit that final product is looking better {i hope ad-com likes my essays..}. Now is the time to get the essays reviewed by 2nd and final reviewer {who happens to be a Kellogg student}. So more or less i am on my way to meet my self imposed deadline of Aug-15 for completing the K essays.

Started working on Fuqua application this morning. Essay-1 {career goals} seemed easy but when i started working on it, i realized that i simply cannot use my Kellogg essay. I have used the theme of Kellogg essay-1 {obviously my story isn't going to change} but Fuqua essay is going to be a lot more elaborate. And, Fuqua doesn't even ask "why Fuqua" in essay-1 {that's kept for Essay-3}...Essay-1 has started taking shape and i plan to wrap it up by tomorrow. Want to finish Fuqua App by Aug-24 and then send it to reviewers...

Post that i will have time till Sep-15 {almost 20 days} to complete 2 other apps...And i forgot to mention the recommendations :'(((((((( .... 60 days from now and I can see myself getting nervous ....

Wednesday, August 4

Lambastedddd!!!

My first reviewer shared his thoughts on my essays and i must admit that the comments were an "eye-opener".

To do:
1. Individual essays are not fitting into the bigger picture - According to my reviewer, my essays are fine content wise but all the essays taken together do not create a comprehensive/clear picture of me. I need to work on Essay-1 {career goal/why mba} and Essay -4{best mistake ever made} ...Essay 1 is going to drive the central theme and essay 4 will support it...
2. Few gramatical mistakes -- need to correct them

Good thing -- Essay 3 {how do i see my student evaluator evaluating my app} -- i got some really great comments or shall i say compliments on this one..so more or less essay3 is freezed ..

Essay - 2 {leadership} is also coming out fine but i need to link the individual paragraphs effectively. Also, the leadership traits demonstrated should come out clearly... need to fine tune this essay...

I have been blogging about taking the bigger picture into consideration but i failed to do so. I think we get attached to our ideas and fail to see the gap...highly recommended that you get your essays reviewed by some trust-worthy people...to find out whether your story is making sense and whether your story is coming out nicely....

On a side note...i have started researching Fuqua...and with each passing day i am falling in love with the school...{am already in love with Fuqua but the bond is getting stronger...}..will soon start working on Fuqua app...Plan to wrap up all my apps by Sep-15 as i have to attend many marriages starting sep-19....

Tuesday, August 3

Half way through

Pretty much on my way to accomplish my self imposed deadline of completing Kellogg essays by Aug-15. Have shared the "draft" {i know i would still need to work on multiple drafts} of my essays with a friend and a awaiting his inputs. One thing that i know for sure is that "team-work" theme is not coming out in my essays. Need to work on this part + got to dig into Kellogg website and got to bug my friends at K for further inputs...

When i shared my essays with my friend i hid the questions, i have asked my friend to tell me what does he think about my essays i.e. what he feels that i am trying to answer. This is an old technique suggested by many succesful candidates and also by admission consultants...

Next in line is Fuqua and i have to start researching Fuqua in a more systematic way.

My only concern is that i might get out of steam before the actual race...starting early is good but at times you peak too early...

Sunday, July 25

Kellogg Essay - 2 !!!!! Helpppppppppp

Essay #2


Describe your key leadership experiences and evaluate what leadership areas you hope to develop through your MBA experiences (600 word limit).

This essay is giving me a real tough time. 15 drafts later i still feel that my response to this essay SUCKSSS!!! I have interesting and impactful anecdotes to share but i am unable to narrate them in an effective manner.
 
I am feeling like a dumb who knows the taste of chocolate but can't explain it...and word limit is also not helping me in this case. I am over-shooting the word limit by well over 16%. I am sharing only 2 experiences and still not able to wrap up my response within the word limit. Someone please teach me the art of crisp writing....

Thursday, July 22

Booth application goes live today...

Another update...Booth application will go live later today....so finally the app season is heating up....:)

Long due updates

Long time since i posted on this blog. Firstly the back injury kept me out of the action then i went out with miss S and friends to a hill station for an excursion. For past few days i am practising Yoga in order to strengthen my back. At the same time i felt really lazy to work on my apps and a heart-quake that originated in my chest wreaked havoc on my brain. :)

Now, after a long time i am feeling good!!! Physically - 6/10, Mentally - 5.5/10 and Emotionally - 4/10 {Huh -- you call it good...15.5/30...pathetic... ;) }...

I am done with the first draft of my Kellogg essays. I have a self imposed deadline of Aug-15 to complete the Kellogg Essays. Post that i would start working with my recommendors. I must say that Kellogg's essays are the best to start the app process. They cover everything -- career progression, future goals, why MBA, why xx college, leadership traits, set-backs, uniqueness..

Essay - 1 -- career goal, why mba etc.. is coming out good and has started taking a nice shape. I am close to the word limit {3% out}...must have worked on 16 versions to come this far...

Essay - 2 -- leadership essay -- This one has taken up the maximum time. I had many stories from my life to highlight my leadership experiences and i shortlisted 4 examples. Then wrote many versions with different stories and after close to 10 versions i have freezed the theme for this essay. It is not at all coming out good, i have to make it a lot more crisp and work on How and Why part of the essay.

Essay - 3 -- student evaluator ques -- this one has shaped up well and i think it will take 2 revisions before its ready to be submitted

Essay - 4 --The best mistake I ever made was…….Well i have made zillions of mistakes during my stay of approx 900 million seconds on planet earth. Sharing majority of these mistakes would embarass me but i have few stories that were good learning platforms. Theme is freeZed the narrative needs to be worked on...

I am hopeful that by Aug-15 i would finish all 4 essays. When i looked at the essays of my other target schools {Ross, Fuqua, Booth} i was comfortable...working on Kellogg essays has already given me a platform to work on other essays. I know that i will have to put in equal amount of effort for other schools but my thinking would be much more structured...

thats all for now...

Monday, July 12

DUKE MBA Application is open...

Duke has opened its online MBA application for FT MBA. Sep -30 is EA deadline and Nov-1 is R-1. Also the details of Info-sessions have been posted on the site...

All the best to all the Duke applicants.

Wednesday, July 7

I hate luv storys -- Another chocolate brownie

Due to local elections my office was closed yesterday and i decided to watch the movie "I hate luv storys". As soon as i booked the tickets, my hunch told me to keep an analgesic with me to avoid the headache. Miss S was at her taunting best -- "You are a cold hearted person and wouldn't ever enjoy a romantic movie". The omens were not too good.

I started out late from home and bought "Disprin".

"Can't you speed up? we are going to miss the beginning" Miss S growled louder than my car's engine..

"Sweetie, don't worry they show a lot of ads in the beginning" i consoled her

As soon as i reached the mall, i realized that lifts and escalators were not working :'( .. Miss S and I rushed from basement 2 to 3r floor, trying to catch the movie's begining.

"I am going to the washroom..you please take the seat" my words bought out strange expressions on Miss S' face....i was still wondering about all these bad omens..

I hate luv storys is another flick in the category of "Love Aaj Kal", "Dil Chahta hai {dch}". {It doesn't match to the standards set by DCH but is based on the same theme}

Another story where a guy doesn't believe in love and is only interested in S**. Then heroine comes into picture and everything turns tipsy topsy.

PLOT: Scriptwriter added 30 gms of DCH, 25 grams of Love Aaj Kal, 2 TBSP of DDLJ and then blended them nicley using KJo blender. Finally the movie was boiled in a Aditya Chopra cooker and Garnished with  Dharma production leaves. Plot has nothing new but narrative is good.

Narrative: The plot has nothing new but the director has narrated this story in a wonderful manner. First half is really good, poking fun at romantic genre films, showing how often people mistake love for liking, revealing the mentality of guys and girls. Second half is a bit slow, direction is fine but editing could have been a lot better..Also i still wonder why don't hero and heroines use mobiles judiciously at the critical moments.. Why can't heroine SMS hero asking him not to board the flight and why in the f*** hero doesn't take imp. calls at the crucial moments??

Music: I burnt the music straight away to play in my car...Vishal and Shekhar have composed very good songs. The title track is jazzy, while sadga kiya, bin tere and bahara are situational, used well in narrative and obviously are ear candies {i don't know if there is a word called ear candy :) } My penchant for this album increased many folds after watching the movie

Casting: Out an out Imran Khan and Sonam Kapoor movie...Sameer Dattani -- Sonam's first choice was pathetic...i really don't understand who took his audition. Sonam Kapoor is looking too good and has played her part to perfection..way to go girl. Imran Khan is an average actor and had Ranbir Kapoor played the lead -- i would have just loved the movie...I don't know the name of actor who played the character of Kunal in the movie...He has got a good comic timing...watch out for him...

In nutshell, it's another butter chicken served with mouth watering garnishing. And yes i didn't had to use the Disprin....will keep it for some other flick :)

In my last post, i had mentioned that i will review the movie and share some tips to re-ignite passion in relationships. Movie has beautifully shown how often we create rules to lead our lives. These rules take the fizz out of the life. Living a disciplined life is not bad but making your life  a rule book is not a good idea. All the relationships have a spark in the begining but as responsibilities overshadow passion, love life starts taking a back seat. It's important to break rules every now and then to enjoy life. I am not advocating infidelty all i am saying is that you can go home after office and take your partner to a pub and get drunk. Its also kool to pack your bags and make an un-scheduled trip to some place. Key is not to become too predictable and not to get caged by useless rules...."Stop thinking about life...Start living it...Start Feeling it..."

Tuesday, July 6

Love vs Bungee Jumping !!!

"Fall in love with the same person again and again" -- I picked this line from somewhere and suggested this to a friend...
"It's easier said than done...what shall i do to re-invent the passion in my love life.." was the reply...

I thought hard about it...but am still clueless...Relationships once gone awry don't invoke the same feelings...Is there a way to re-ignite passion and sustain excitement in a relationship???? Then suddenly my mind started comparing falling in love to bungee jumping...


Falling in love and jumping from height -- both involve excitement and danger. Somehow god has wired my brain in such a manner that mere mention of "Love" or "Bungee Jumping" starts pumping adrenalin in my veins.
I am not sure whether it's love or the physcial attraction that makes the begining of a relationship so exciting and passionate. When i had fallen in love the world turned rosy by a shade of pink, a smile flashed on my face whenever i read her SMSes {i actually read and re-read them :), food tasted a lot better than ever before, reckless drivers didn't invoke anger...in sum, love/attraction made the world a lot better place to live in...

Those feelings are still fresh in my mind---- holding her hand for the first time...tasting the nectar from her lips... {am not describing intimate moments any further ;) } ...watching her smile...watching her innocent hazel eyes under the moon-lit sky....I would want to fall in love again and again.... :) ...

Love -- refers to a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes, ranging from generic pleasure ("I loved that meal") to intense interpersonal attraction ("I love miss S"). {Source - wikipedia}



Bungee Jumping -- Bungee jumping (also spelled "Bungy" jumping) is an activity that involves jumping from a tall structure while connected to a large elastic cord. {Source - wikipedia}




Stepping on that board...checking the safety gear for one last time....heart beating extra fast ... breath trying to match the erratic pattern of  heart beat....that peculiar feeling in the feet....looking down, holding your fists..and..JUMP!!!!!!!!


So far so good!! Falling in love and jumping off that board is really fun...Once you have jumped and experienced the thrill, the re-bounds have sent jitters down your spine...Now what??? Now you simply hang in there for few moments...
If a condition is imposed that one will have to hang like this for months after each jump, would you be willing to dive?? I am sure not many people would want to experience the thrill in this case...how about jumping again and again?? Fun..isn't it...

Similarly, falling in love is exciting but if the couple doesn't re-invent their love from time to time...if they cannot sustain the passion that sparked off the relationship in the first place..then love becomes sort of boring...{Miss S -- am just expressing philosophy --don't take it personally}

But it's back to square one, "How to keep re-igniting the passion?" I was telling my friend "WHAT" but am unable to answer "HOW"...{Essays have influenced my thinking..WHAT, HOW etc..} ... Watched the movie "I hate Luv Storys" today...to be honest till now i always had to take an analgesic after watching the romantic movie...but this time it was different. In my next post - am going to review the movie and answer the HOW part...actually if possible watch the movie,..you will understand what i am sayin ...

Thursday, July 1

Leadership experience essay

I was thinking about Kellogg's essay on leadership experiences.

Essay #2


Describe your key leadership experiences and evaluate what leadership areas you hope to develop through your MBA experiences (600 word limit).

Word limit - 600, this means that one can share 2 and the most 3 experiences. I decided picking up 2 experiences. Now, a person can demonstrate leadership traits in various spheres of life aka "Professional", "Social-Service", "Extra Currics" etc. It's my personal opinion that one should include 1 experience from outside the professional life. Career assessment done in essay 1 will cover few leadership traits demonstrated in professional life. I chose 2 experiences - representing my efforts in professional and extra currics spheres.

Next, i started thinking about leadership in general and came across the following quote:


"Leaders don't wait. They shape their own frontiers. The bigger the challenge, the greater the opportunity."

I have highlighted few key words in the quote above. In absense of a challenge it's hard to demonstrate true leadership. "Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm but it requires a true leader to steer the ship in stromy seas"

List down all the success stories from your life and now sort them in descending order of the challenge that you faced in each of those incidents. Share the challenge that you faced...Show how you shaped the frontier {crafted the solution to the problem}, show the impact of your solution and don't forget to summarize the learnings from the incident...

Challenge -- Solution-Orientedness -- Impact -- Learning....

I believe any leadership experience essay can be answered while keeping in mind the above mentioned 4 key words....

Suggestions are most welcome!!!!

Tuesday, June 29

Broke my back againnnn!!!!!!!!

WTF!!! I must realize that i am getting older and that i need to take special care while lifting heavy weights. Broke my back again on Friday morning and i am sure all my plans would have to be re-visited....rest, rest and some more rest ....

Had planned an excursion trip with friends and that's too gone for the toss...i will try my best to recuperate within a week so that i can atleast go to some hill station for 3-4 days....

Heil Myoril ...

Wednesday, June 23

Friendshipppp!!!

Heart -- Am on verge of losing 2 good friends!!! :'(

Mind -- Why do you think so? They are just moving to a new location and you have all the means to connect with them. You can mail em, sms em, call em.

Heart  -- I can connect with them but distance does changes the relations. Friendship is not easily forged, it takes time to find a person whom you can call a friend.

Mind -- You are thinking too much

Heart -- Thinking is your problem dude!!! All i can do is "FEEL". And, for your kind information -- feelings are 14 times stronger than your stupid logics...

Mind -- You can always make new friends...didn't you lose friends in school and then in college?? And you always found new ones...

Heart -- hmmm...you are right but then every time i lost friends it created a void in my life...

Mind -- Come on dude , don't behave in a childish manner...or shall i say child like...

Heart -- haven't you heard the song "Dil to bacha hai ji" .. Oops..i never intended to fire such a PJ..

Mind -- think of it that life is good!!! it has been good!!! WhY do you "FEEL" so much...you have so many things to keep you engaged....write, go on drives...meet new people...void would be gone...

Heart -- easier said than done...

Mind -- i m not asking you to give up your old friendships...just asking you not to fret over this issue....

Heart -- will try

Mind -- friendship is like a string, the moment two people hold ends with the right traction they become friends...when you try to pull too hard -- the string breaks...and once you losen the grip -- the string becomes a drag....

Heart -- Thanks for the gyan...

Mind -- hope you ll grow up and learn to handle issues in a mature manner...now stop sucking me up..have got to complete a task...

Tuesday, June 22

Got the TOEFL waiver!!!

Good news -- i have got the TOEFL waiver from all my r-1 target schools. So that's one thing less to worry about. I would suggest all my fellow bloggers to either seek TOEFL waiver early in the process or if required give TOEFL as soon as possible.

TOEFL does not require much preparation but if one has to divert his/her focus from apps to TOEFL during the last lap then it might be a problem....last days should only be kept aside for Essays and discussions with recommenders...

Monday, June 21

Feeling good :)

I had written a post about "How i chose my recommendors?" and was glad to see Accepted.com's reply:

read reply here

Feeling good that my choice has been re-enforced...

Friday, June 18

Godddd help !!!!!!!!!

At times i wonder luck is the most important factor in one's professional life. And this realization always happens after i meet my SVP. He is working for the company for past 30+ years now and has plethora of experience when it comes to Operations. He started his career with Operations and by sheer stroke of luck  was appointed to lead the division that is involved in highly analytical work. {Who in the hell decided to place him in such a position, really want to kick his/her butt}. He does not even have a remote idea of the work that we do and to make the matters worse he wants to apply rules from Ops to this field.

What would happen if consultants at Mckinsey started measuring their performance in terms of accuracy and timelines? Does one measure the impact of knowledge services in terms of these bloody factors? Yes they can be a small part of overall performance metrics but who is going to measure the overall IMPACT of the work? What difference did the project made to profitability or share-holder value etc....this question does not even comes to the mind of our smart SVP.

I feel that our SVP is trying to make Ferrari in Suzuki's factory -- god knows what will happen. Attrition rate that was below 10% has shot up to 35% since the time this highly intelligent creature has started leading our group..Quantity has started over-shadowing quality...God help!!!!

Thursday, June 17

Career Goals essay

Finally after pain-staking revisions for almost 25 times i have finalized the outline for career goals essay. I think Passion, Aspiration and Vision are essential ingredients of any b-school essay but these 3 play a major role in defining the career goal essay.

Passion-- put down all the things that you have done since starting the professional life. Ask why you attended a particular under-grad college, why you graduated in a particular concentration, why you made certain career moves or joined a particular firm. Now, try to see the common linkage between all your choices. Is there a common theme? Is there something that ignites passion in you and brings out the best in you?? If yes then this will answer the WHY {Passion} part of career goals essay.

Aspirations -- By the time you attempt career goals essay you should be crystal clear about your short term goals after MBA. In many cases this crystal clear vision would be lacking but even in this case you should have a clear idea about the direction in which you want to head.

Now someone might argue that many people change their career aspirations once they attend teh college and nothing is wrong with that. True!! But you don't want to tell the ad-com that you are just meandering aimlessly...YOU HAVE TO SHOW THAT YOU HAVE GIVEN A DUE thought to your career. And you know what is it that you want from the school and how best you would use the school's resources.

Vision -- Leadership and vision go hand in hand. Don't just stop at your short term goal after the MBA. B-schools often rant about producing leaders and they are very serious about it. Show them that you have a vision to be among the higher echeleons of the management. Things that seem impossible right now will become possible once you wear the badge of a particular top b-school....

Monday, June 14

Early Action - to apply or not !!!

The question that is bothering me for some time now is whether to apply in early action round? Does applying in EA increases one's chances of getting in? But, then with a binding to withdraw applications from all other schools can prevent one from getting into his/her dream school. Also, are Ad-coms more generous during EA when it comes to shelling out schols??

I have 2 schools on my radar that have EA with a binding. But both these schools are not my dream school {they are pretty close to my dream school but not no.1 }.

Need big time help on this one...

Monday, June 7

Indo-chinese invading the west!!

Portugese, French, Dutch and British established their trading ports in India by 16th century and later established colonies in India. By 1856 most of the India was under control of British -"east india company". What started as a business opportunity led to the forceful occupation of Indian territory and Indian resources. British sent the best of their military officers, administrative officers etc to India in order to develop an army of Indians that could be used to rule India. The influx of British technicians and technology gave India few of the best examples of world class engineering and architecture. British exploited India's rich natural resources while Indians never stood united in face of adversity and in-fighting threw them into clutches of slavery for hundreds of years.

China was never directly ruled by any western power but the hold of its Quing dynasty was weakened after British opium wars in 19th century. Like India, China was equally exploited by west for its natural resources.

At that point of time Britain was the core of power and economic well being. Britain experienced industrial revolution and soon fell short of resources. To feed its factories , britain invaded east.

Hundreds of years later.

USA is the core of power and has the largest GDP.

Most of the people involving high intellect are serving USA in variety of fields. Medicine, Space exploration, Defense, Engineering, Technology and MBAs {how can this blog forget MBAs ;)}. We have already heard allegations of Chinese spies stealing US space exploration and Nuclear ideas to develop the same for China. India is also growing in stature with time.

Indians and Chinese have already established sort of trading ports in USA and UK though in individual capacity. Various bills are proposed to stop the influx of people from these two emerging economies to the developed nations of the world. With almost 1/3 of world population India and China will soon require gigantic infrastructure and tremendous resources to meet the demand of population. When people won't find resources in their home country they will leave for other prosperous countries.

Take that -- Australia has 3 times the area that of India and a population that is 1/50 of india's population.

What remains to be seen is whether in coming centuries India and China will invade west to fulfill the demand of their population?? I am sure in next 15 years or so we will see one big war. Oil has been the reason of many wars in gulf area, next wars could be triggered in Indo-pak-china region because of scarcity of water. Or, it could also happen that India and China unite {highly unlikely at present but not impossible} and try to take control of west.

Its just a thought so take it lightly ;) ... i think a futuristic movie can be made on this theme,,....

Rajneeti - Review

Watched Rajneeti with Miss S and friends this Saturday. So, here i am to review the movie and this time i would try to incorporate suggestions of dear friend Sid.

Plot -- The plot of Rajneeti is inspired by Mahabharat and in parts by Godfather. The first half is gripping and fast paced. A lot of characters are introduced and audience is introduced to their respective thoughts on politics.Post interval director has failed to maintain the pace. Editing is poor and last quarter is heavily inspired by Mahabharat. I would give 2/5 to Rajneeti for its plot. It has got nothing new and later half is painful.

Cast-- Rajneeti has got a powerful star cast. Naseeruddin Shah is wasted {he plays a cameo}. Manoj Vajpayee is awesome and has played the character to perfection. Nana patekar and Ajay Devgan haven't got much to do but have played their parts well. Katirna kaif looks beautiful but her acting is below par. Ranbeer Kapoor has got the best role but he is unable to carry it off. I think Ranbeer is too soft to play such a role and has still not graduated to that orbit of acting where in he could carry the film on his shoulders. Arjun Rampal has exceeded expectations {obviously you don't expect much from him when it comes to acting ;) } but he is looking hand-some. Others have played their parts well and with such a star studded cast you don't expect small names to shine through still Shruti Seth has done well to catch the EYES ;). 3/5 {manoj vajpayee - 4.5/5}

Soundtrack -- Mora Piya and Bheegi si bheegi si are good and are used in narrative. Background score is good and impactful. 3/5

Overall, Rajneeti is a one time watch with friends while munching pop-corns and sipping cold drinks.

My verdict -- 2.5/5

Sunday, June 6

How i selected my recommenders??

Selecting recommendors is a tough job. This task not only reflects your judgement ability {as to who can write favourably for you} but also decides the fate of your application. And its cliche to say that the title of recommendor hardly matters. SO, look for a person who can cover most of your professional life and who would be happy to write favourably for you. Last year i heard one of my friends abusing his supervisor for missing the deadlines to submit the reco.  If you can ask right people to write good recos for you it shows that you have good persuasive skills {imp. for a manager}.

I had 6 options when it came to selecting recommendors. 4 out of 6 have supervised me at some point of time in my career and the other 2 have been my clients for whom i have worked on various projects. I have been reporting into the same person for more than 3 years now, so he was the obvious choice.

Only concern -- I might not get opportunities to travel abroad, to setup new teams, or to expand my team once i disclose my plans to him. But this person has seen me progress professionally as well as has delegated variety of responsibilities my way, so i could not afford to lose his insights on my application. I was apprehensive about revealing my MBA plans to my current supervisor but last week i did so. And to my surprise he encouraged me to go for an MBA and was happy to write recos for me.

Even schools say that one of the 2 recos should ideally come from current supervisor. In case your supervisor has changed recently, mention that in your rationale behind selecting the recommendors. {Most of the schools often ask for the rationale behind selecting a particular recommendor.}My supervisor is well versed with my shortcomings and strengths. He has seen me take numerous initiatives at work place and has also given me numer of opportunities to lead projects and people. So, my task is cut out -- simply share anecdotes from past 3 years to support his claims.

Choosing the 2nd recommendor was tough. I wanted to go with one of my clients, she has an impressive title and when i disclosed my plans to her she was very excited. She could very well write about my client handling experience and about the high impact projects delivered by my team. But, apart from project management she could hardly reveal anything.

My 2nd client does not have very good communication skills and getting 4 recos from her would have been a humongous task. Among my past supervisors, one of them {say recommendor b}currently audits the work that my team does. This person made most sense to me because he has supervised me in my very early days, when i was raw and has seen my now when i am a lot more mature {atleast i think so ;) }. I chose mr. b as my 2nd recommendor. He is the one who can cover last 4.5 years of my professional history and since he has worked very closely with me on some of the projects , i am sure he can vouch favourably for my candidacy.

In sum, choose your recommendors in such a way that most of the professional life is covered, the recommendations reveal various aspects of your personality and that some of the claims made in essays can be backed by recommendors.

I would be happy to see suggestions of fellow bloggers.

Friday, June 4

Second Recommendor - Finalized!!!!!

What a relief!!!!!!!! Both my recommendors are finalized. I have personally spoken to both of them and shared my plans with them. One is my ex-supervisor and current client and the other one is my current supervisor. I think together both of them can cover majority of my professional development.

Also, i believe both of them are well aware of my strengths and shortcomings, both have seen me grow in professional life and i share a good rapport with both of them. Now i need to sit with them and share my app strategy.

Now i can enjoy the weekend ;)

Tuesday, June 1

Crossing the limits!!! - Is it fine???

Lately, i have been thinking hard about "word limits". Is it fine to overshoot the limits given by colleges? I have read mixed responses on this topic. Some say it is fine. If yes, then by what %age? say a college asks you to define your career goals in 400 words, is 410 right or even going upto 460 alright??

And how about falling short?? helpppppppp!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, May 29

TOEFL Waiver Mails

Sent the TOEFL waiver request mails to my target schools today. Even if one of the schools plays spoil-sport i will have to take TOEFL. I have decided that i must get TOEFL and all other nitty gritties out of my way before July-31-2010. Once essays are published i simply want to focus on putting down my story.

Will approach my under-graduate institution next week to get the transcripts done. Or can we simply send across photocopies of under-graduate degree? If transcripts can wait till admit then i will also wait ;)

Any suggestions??

Wednesday, May 26

Kites - Movie review

Watched Kites with Miss S this morning. Miss S was disappointed with the movie and i somehow liked it.

the Plot -- 2/5 {Could have been a lot better}

The movie is the story of J {Played by Hrithik} and Linda {barbara mori}. J and Linda both want to get rich. While J is a dance teacher in Vegas, Linda is an illegal immigrant from Mexico. J's student Jeena {Played by Kangana} falls in love with him. Jeena's dad is owner of one of the biggest casinos in Vegas and has police, senators etc. in his pocket. J senses an opportunity to get rich by marrying Jeena, whom he hardly loves.

J also marries illegal immigrants for money in order to get them green cards. J also marries Linda for money, while J speaks English or Hindi, Linda speaks Spanish. How they fall in love is still a mystery.

J finds Jeena and Linda finds Jeena's brother Tony to get rid of poverty {quite a co-incidence}. Now J suddenly realizes that he loves Linda and Linda reciprocates his feelings. Before Linda and Tony's marriage J asks Linda to finalize their divorce before she can start a new life. Linda accepts his proposal and they spend a romance filled night together, champagne, kissing, rain dance. Both admit to each other that it would have been great if they had married for real.

J drops Linda home and while he was saying good bye, Tony comes in. Rest of the story revolves around how J and Linda run to save their lives. This part is comic, thrilling and romantic at the same time. I won't reveal the end here for it is not a typical bollywood film ;).

Plot could have been a lot better. Aesthetically - movie is good, music and back-ground music is fine {3/5}.

Performances ---

Barbara Mori -- Delight -- looking good, great acting -- 4/5
Hrithik - dancing star, awesome physique, good acting but somehow its not effortless - 3/5
Others -- they don't have much but rest of the cast works fine -- 3/5

Overall -- its a good one time watch -- if you can digest the first 30 minutes of movie, you will like the movie.

3/5 - for me.

Monday, May 24

Fuqua Announces essays for fall 2011 Entry

Fuqua has announced its essays for the fall 2011 entry. There are only 3 required questions { i guess till last year fuqua had 1 long and 3 short essays}.

The essays are usual b-school essays, asking for why MBA, why Duke and why you. Applicants must respind within 2 pages with a minimum 10 point font, meaning one has about 850 words to frame the answers.

Source

New Essays for Fall 2011 Entry


Three essay questions must be completed before submitting your application. Prepare your essays carefully. The Admissions Committee considers your responses to the following questions important in the selection process. Please respond fully and concisely using 1.5 line spacing. Your response to each question should be no more than 2 pages in length, with a font size no less than 10-point.


Candidates who applied to The Duke MBA between September 2009 and April 2010 are considered re-applicants. All re-applicants are required to complete the Re-applicant Essay in addition to the Applicant Essays.

All applicants have the opportunity to submit an optional essay to explain any extenuating circumstances of which the Admissions Committee should be aware.

Applicant Essays : Answer all 3 essay questions.



Today, companies must navigate through complex and interdependent issues. They must deal with health and security matters, environmental impact questions, and diversity and cultural concerns. Leaders need adaptability, imagination, emotional intelligence, and business acumen. Thus, Duke is in the midst of an ambitious global venture that will embed and connect us around the world, and we are seeking future leaders of consequence, who value diversity and collaborative leadership, and who aspire to impact the companies and communities of which they are a part in a lasting and positive way.



In an effort to identify, engage, and foster the development of future leaders of consequence, the Admissions Committee would like to get to know our applicants in a more holistic manner. We would like to know who you are, what has shaped you into the person you are today, and how you hope to impact both Duke and the communities of which you will be a part in the future. The essays are your opportunity to convey that to us. Please be open, genuine, and passionate. Share with us what makes you a dynamic, multi-dimensional person.





1. Describe your vision for your career and your inspiration for pursuing this career path.


2. How will your background, values, and non-work activities enhance the experience of other Duke MBA students and add value to Fuqua's diverse culture?


3. Why Duke? (If you are interested in a specific concentration, joint degree, clubs or activities, please discuss how you would contribute to these in this essay.)


Optional Essay (not required)


If you feel there are extenuating circumstances of which the Admissions Committee should be aware, please explain them here (e.g., unexplained gaps in work, choice of recommenders, inconsistent or questionable academic performance, significant weakness in your application).


Re-applicant Essay



All re-applicants are required to complete the Re-applicant Essay. Please limit your response to two pages. Write an essay describing how you are now a stronger candidate for admission compared to the application you submitted the previous year.

Friday, May 21

Update

Just finished working on essays {from previous year} of one of my target schools. Must say that writing Essays is the most difficult, most interesting and most important part of the application. It took me 5-6 iterations for each essay before my story started making SOME {I think 15-20%}sense. Introspection, positioning and knowledge of target school play a huge role in crafting a winning application.

I now need to read all the essays together to get a holistic picture of my positioning effort. This is important -- don't just focus on a single essay. Start by keeping your overall story in mind. Put down everything, small or big that you have achieved in your life. Now based upon the essay segregate stories, as to which story would be used in which essay. Try to link up all the essays to one common theme but reveal different facet of your personality every time. Make sure that your passion and motivation should reflect in essays.

Would enjoy my friday night and from tomorrow back to work ... hope that by next 8-10 days i will have a set of essays that i would be able to share with one of my friend to get some feedback..Also need to explore the school in much more detail I felt that i need to know a lot more about my target schools before i even think of applying to them....

don't know how much sense this post would have made...but just wanted to share some thoughts :)

p.s: I have started thinking about safety schools :'( ... thats a bad sign for sure... hope that by october this thought fades away ..else ..

Saturday, May 15

Paintings for sale !!

I am uploading 3 paintings by Miss S, they are up for sale. In case you are interested please revert on braveheart4mba(@)gmail.com. I will share the price and delivery details.






Thursday, May 13

Career progress and future goals essay

Briefly assess your career progress to date. Elaborate on your future career plans and your motivation for pursuing an MBA. (600 Words)

I was really aghast with myself as i saw the draft of my answer to the question above. I elaborated my career and never assessed the same. And i briefly touched upon the idea as to why i need an MBA. Needless to say, i used 1200 words to shape up my response.

If i want to submit winning essays i really need to understand the question before i started vomiting my useless answers on word pad. The ad-com commitee wants to understand how i have fared in my career till now and what are the various skills that i have acquired and honed. Also, they want to get a flavor of the impact of my work and most importantly want to understand the motivation behind my career moves. Elaboration of my career goals would point towards the skills that i need to acquire.
Wish i had given a lot more time to understanding the question and framing up the answer than just scribbling my thoughts down.

Plan to work on this essay during this weekend and hopefully trim it down to 700 words before finally taking it to 600 word limit.

lots of work!!!!

Friday, May 7

Clear Admit Career Guides - Review

Disclaimer: The views expressed below are my personal opinion and in no way related to clear admit or any other company.

I recently bought Clear Admit Career guide for Marketing. I am really sad to say that the publication disappointed me. Rather than a true career guide the pdf serves as a handbook for comparing Marketing curriculum of various US b-schools {that too is not a detailed comparison}.

The guide speaks about the career in Marketing only for 1 page. Yes you read it correctly, its "1 page". And this description is also limited to "Brand Management or Product development" paths in Marketing.

The publication could have been a lot better had it served the following purposes:

1. Provided clear cut distinction between a Marketing career in CPG industy and a Marketing Career in non-CPG industries {such as Financial services}
2. The guide could have explained the career progression in Marketing industry and could have explained the roles and responsibilities of Marketers at various stages of their careers
3. Also, the guide fails to describe in detail the skill-set that is required to kick start a career in Marketing,

Good points:

1. Gives you a good flavour of Marketing curriculum at various schools -- though you will have to explore the website and other resources to get the whole story

in short, for $40 the clear admit guide for Marketing is not a value for money buy...if i have to rate this guide on a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being the highest:

My verdict: 1.5/5