3 questions you must prepare for your next business school Interview

Very few people actually enjoy the interview process. Aside from the fact that it is a challenging, often stressful experience where every word matters and people are judging every aspect of your character that they can, the interview process does not leave much left to enjoy. However much the interview process may be distasteful to some, it does represent a prime opportunity not only to put a face and personality behind the name and credentials on your application file, but also to express your qualities and intentions in person.

While most MBA programs pride themselves on uniqueness, and will most likely accept on some unique asset you possess, the questions they ask are generally not very unique. They are, rather, predictable. So why not prepare your answers, knowing that you have a fairly good idea of what they will ask? Usually, they’re interested in what you’ve accomplished and experienced (academically, personally, professionally), and why you made the choices you did.

While some questions differ from one school or interviewer to another, most questions will include something resembling the following:
 1. Why do you think now is the right time to pursue an MBA?
 2. How will you fit into our program? What will you bring? What will you add?
 3. How will you do in the real world after you graduate?

1. Why do you think now is the right time to pursue an MBA?

For most questions, interviewers are looking for specific examples from your past, and concrete arguments for why you made the decisions you did in your life. For this specific question, interviewers are looking for responses using examples from your academic, personal, and professional life. For tackling this kind of question, we would advise focusing on the strengths of that particular school and pairing them with your own ambitions. Answer the “Why Now?” query with well-considered reflections on both your short- and long-term objectives. Admissions committees also want to verify that you are serious about attending their particular program and why, because they can usually only accept so many people each academic year.

2. How will you fit into our program? What will you bring? What will you add?

Because most business schools try to keep their class sizes relatively small, they have a tendency to start resembling small businesses. It is a good idea to show that you researched the school, identifying specific aspects of a school, like their curriculum, class size, facilities, faculty, or alumni network. Coursework usually involves a substantial amount of teamwork, and as many courses actually use teamwork a context for development. In other words, teamwork is largely unavoidable so it behooves you to prove that you are a good team player and leader.

This would also be a good opportunity to mention your most successful team experiences. Emphasizing organizational, leadership, and social abilities and above all, express yourself confidently. Admissions representatives look for applicants that appreciate the value of the program, but the program’s values, culture, or overall ethic (however you prefer to classify it) and add to it.

3. How will you do in the real world after you graduate?

OF all speculations, this might be the most difficult, but it is also probably one of the most unrealistic. After all, many MBA candidates change their specialization during the program which, needless to say, would affect your future plans rather profoundly. So relax, they expect a great deal from you but they don’t expect you to tell the future. What they really want to know is, after you’ve graduated, how will you represent their program to the “real world”? For MBA programs, and universities in general, reputation is extremely important, and graduates can either add to it, or bring it down. Your interviewing abilities give them some insight into how you will probably do in the job market. It may seem hard to believe, but listening skills, professionalism, and confidence are the three qualities for which admissions officers are on the look out, as they seem to be good indicators of future success in the business world.

If you need help to prepare for your an upcoming interview, and you want to be confident to get admitted, contact us at MBA Center Europe.

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