There are many misconceptions about personal statements in general and it is also true for MBA personal statements. These can run from the absurd to the plausible. The absurd misconceptions regarding the personal statement essay is probably something you’ve heard before. According to this misconception all you need to do is to create a stunning original essay and you will get into the school of your choice. If you believe this and you buy into it you are going to be hurting your academic career. The truth of the matter is regardless of how well you’ve written your MBA personal statement essay if you don’t have the numbers or the experience to make you a viable candidate, even if your essay was written by William Shakespeare himself or George Orwell, who is a very effective essayist, you’re not going to get to the school of your choice. The essay is a tie breaker. It is a means for the admissions committee to flesh out your personality so that if somebody else who doesn’t have a good personal statement essay falls into the same range as you, you may get in before them. But to think that the admission essay is some sort of a silver bullet to get into MBA school is a fatal assumption. Don’t make it.
With that said there are other ways you can screw up your MBA personal statement. Here are the most common reasons people messed up their essay:
1.Not answering the question.
This is so basic that it’s self explanatory. Still too many MBA applicants think that just because there is a personal statement question in the admission’s package for their program that they can launch into some sort of personal exposition or personal contemplation. If you feel the urge, don’t do it. You have to focus on the actual question post by the essay. This question all leads back to the key question which is why should the MBA program that you are applying to admit you instead of another applicant. Well that is the over arching and underlying question you still have to go through the specific question that was asked. You know and the admission committee knows what the real question is but you still have to play by the rules.
An MBA if anything else teaches you how to be an effective communicator. You need effective communication skills for you to be an effective manager. It’s as simple as that. However if you can’t write a clear essay and you can’t communicate your ideas clearly you are definitely starting off your MBA career on a bad foot. So make sure that whatever assertions you make are very clear, effective and to the point.
An essay is a literary form where you seek to change the mind of the reader. That’s all there is to an essay. It’s a persuasive piece of writing. Sadly way too many applicants to MBA school forget this fact and all of a sudden they think that as long as they just list out their resume in long form that they will get in.
Nothing could be further from the truth. You’re expected to write an essay so write an MBA admission essay.
How do you write an essay? Make an assertion, back up that assertion. Raise counter arguments, kill those counter arguments, straight forward. But instead of news facts or historical facts or medical facts use personal facts that are relevant to the essay question.
Popular education blogger Chris Walker, wrote this piece for MBAPersonalStatement.Com, the Internet’s leading source of free MBA admissions resources.