Now That Your MBA Applications Are Done, Now What?

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    It is the new year, so this is the time when many people have submitted their MBA applications or are about to do so. If you do not have yours in yet, you should get it done, because many deadlines are approaching in the winter and early spring.

    Now, of course, the hard part begins – the waiting. If you applied to an MBA program who does interviews by invitation, you should expect to hear from them in the next six weeks. The order in which applicants are invited for interviews rarely has anything to do with how good your application is. It is important to stay upbeat and positive. If you have not done it yet, spend some time getting ready for the interview. You should ask a friend or a coworker to help you to get ready for the interview.

    Remember that most MBA interviews will be behavioral, and you should be ready to talk about your recent work experiences to better illustrate any answers that you give. Keep in mind that an MBA interview is a conversation and you need to know what you want to convey in this conversation. Make sure that you listen too. The person who is interviewing you will have important information to share about the university. He or she also could become a key connection at the school down the road.

    Other important tips for the interview that is coming include:

    • Listen to the question: Many interviewees tend to just think about the great answer they have and they do not fully listen to the question. Listen for what the person is really asking, and do not worry if you take a moment to think about your answer. It is better to collect your thoughts than to give a confused answer.
    • Strive for the right tone: A nice conversation with the interviewer should not make you let your guard down or to give cute answers. Do not let the friendly atmosphere of the conversation let you share any doubts you have about the program or your abilities. Remember that humility is always more effective than arrogance. You might talk about, for example, character traits that you want to build upon at the school, such as building relationships and influencing other people.

    So what else should you do while you are waiting for an answer from your MBA schools? First, think about the electives you may want to take in MBA school. Then, consider taking a break. The process for applying to MBA schools takes a lot of time, and you probably feel some relief that at least the application process is over. It is a good idea to take a break and to reconnect with your family and friends. No matter how the application process turns out, you have really turned a corner in your professional life, and your life will almost certainly change from the experience.

    One thing to remember is that the MBA application process is focused on you, obviously, but becoming a stand out person in the business world often means that you need to become a leader and show leadership. This means that you need to be very sensitive to the world around you and to people around you. So, you should try to be aware of the needs of others around you in the next few months. As you grow into a leader, you will learn that being really successful has as much to do with the success of those around you as much as the success of yourself.

    Try to teach, mold and lead others, not just demand excellence from yourself. The most transformational leaders in a company are able to positively influence the people around them and those who work for them.

    And of course, you should always strive to make the world a better place than what you found in the first place.