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2009年7月份,我给一个老朋友(Simon FT-MBA,2010春季班)为申请MBA而写的Essay提了几点比较关键的修改建议。后来,她成功拿到Simon的Offer。再后来,她建议我做留学DIY咨询方面的工作,并向我介绍了我的第一个客户。最终,我的第一个客户也成功拿到几个TOP16商学院的面试并顺利拿到Duke Fuqua商学院MBA的录取。 本人毕业于上海复旦大学管理学院国际企业管理系,属于商科科班出身并且做过管理工作、有领导经验的人士。

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Essay必读:How To Craft Articulated Credible Engaging And Exciting Goals  

2017-03-08 05:09:37|  分类: PS/Essay/简历/推 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Essay必读:How To Craft Articulated Credible Engaging And Exciting Goals

 

 

Why MBA?

 

An Accepted.com Special Report

 

By Cindy Tokumitsu

 

 

Why Write a Blog Post Series on Goals?

 

A few years ago, in the good old days when Wharton still offered feedback to rejected applicants, I talked with a potential client who happened to be reapplying to Wharton. I asked him whether he’d obtained feedback on his application, and he said yes. Well? “Actually they said they really liked my application. They said I was well qualified, and I would be a good fit for the school.” Pause. “The problem was my goals. Venture capital. They said it wasn’t a feasible goal for me.

 

Like many people, this person dreamed of going into VC – he surely could do it, given the chance, and it would be wonderful for him – just that his chances of getting a VC job post-MBA were about zero. The ADCOM knew that, and he should have known it too.

 

Inappropriate goals, ineffectively presented goals, and impractical goals can get otherwise well qualified applicants dinged from top MBA programs. This story is not an isolated case. I have heard similar ones every year for thirteen-plus years.

 

How do you avoid this scenario? Effort. Thought. Research. Many people start their MBA application process with their goals sort of sketched out in their head. But sketched out won’t cut it, and if you focus only on what you’d like personally without figuring out how you’re going to make it happen, you might not realize that there are a few obstacles, as the person in the above story belatedly discovered. It’s not that you should never present complex or difficult goals in an MBA essay, but rather that if you do you should acknowledge that fact and have some concrete sense of how to achieve them. If the above applicant had said in his original essay that he knew how hard it would be for him to land a VC job and here’s how he was planning to go about it, and if it still didn’t work out, here’s what he’d do instead that would also take him to his long-term goals, he might have been admitted, considering how positively the ADCOM viewed the rest of his application.

 

So what exactly are well-articulated, credible, engaging – and ideally exciting – goals, and how do you craft them in the goals essay? This special report will walk you through that process step by step.

 

 

 

Exactly What Are Goals?

 

I want to move from the buy side to the sell side.

I want to shift from technology consulting to investment banking.

 

Not goals.

 

An engineer once really said to me, “I want to go into either finance or consulting.

 

Not goals.

 

A goal isn’t something you want, it’s something you do, something you want to achieve, an impact you want to have, and the process of getting there. Therefore, it needs to be specific. Start with two key components:

 

1. Industry

2. Function

 

A third key component for many people is geography, if it is integral to the goal (e.g., developing solar energy in northern Africa).

 

Then add the “do” part – what the work will actually consist of, and what you hope to accomplish.

 

Here are some examples that incorporate the above elements:

 

? I plan to return to operations but work at a higher, decision making level, such as Senior Operations Manager in an East Asian semiconductor firm or a related industry. In this role I would, for example, oversee $XXX operations, a global high-tech supply chain, and manage a diverse range of technical and business professionals.

 

? Currently I’m a BPR consultant; I plan to shift to strategy consulting at a top global firm such as Bain or McKinsey, ideally focusing on clients in the pharma/biomedical space, and help them setup operations in Eastern Europe.

 

To wrap up this section, I’ll add a couple of cautions about this phase of the process, developing core goals:

 

1. Your short-term goals are naturally a stepping stone, and hence people often focus solely on what they will learn, experience they will gain, and people they will meet. Short-term goals should also include the elements noted above – what you want to do, accomplish, and contribute.

 

2. Ensure that your goals really require the MBA education. Of course any learning is helpful for almost any endeavor; but the ADCOMs want to see that you really need the resources they offer, which they view as precious and not to be squandered. (And they’re right!)

 

 

 

Goals on Steroids

 

First, I must thank Linda Abraham for this wonderful phrase. I had previously used the blander designation, “goals plus.”

 

By following the advice in the previous post you can create goals that are clear, credible, and convincing, but they won’t necessarily be exciting. They won’t make the ADCOM reader think as she reads, “Wow, it would be great if he could do that!” And this latter reaction is really what the goals essay should aim for. As all my clients have probably heard me say, you want to make your reader your cheerleader.

 

To generate such a response, deliver goals plus – show how goals developed from experience, and describe motivation and vision for goals.

 

? Experience means when, where, and how your goals developed.

? Motivation is the pivot point when something gained traction with you; when you became engaged and captivated in some way so that you want to pursue a given path.

? Vision is the broader impact of achieving the goal, beyond your own immediate efforts.

 

These three elements are separate words but in actuality will likely be intertwined. Here is a brief example, slightly modified from an HBS goals essay I wrote for a hypothetical applicant in Consultants’ Guide.

 

Last year, when I was in Taiwan advising a global financial services company on consolidating its Asia strategy, I found myself thinking what a shame it was that my relationship with the client proved responsive rather than proactive. With my knowledge of the region’s changing demographic and logistical realities, I could have recommended strategic opportunities a year ago to prevent the client from getting bogged down in redundant acquisitions and incompatible markets. Following that experience, I envisioned a new consulting paradigm resembling primary care medicine, based on a long-term, prevention focused relationship between the consultant and client.

 

Adding experience, motivation and vision turns the goals from static to dynamic. There are three other advantages of “goals plus”:

 

1. The experiential basis enhances credibility.

2. They create a story, which is more engaging and memorable than pure exposition.

3. Your goals inherently differentiate you, because it’s your story, it’s naturally unique.

 

 

 

 

Goals Essay-Writing Nitty-Gritty

 

Short- and long-term goals

 

Before you start drafting your goals essays, work out three levels of goals: short-term, intermediate, and long-term. It helps to have this whole picture in your mind regardless of where you’ll “zoom in” for a particular essay. Short-term is immediately post MBA to about two years later; intermediate is about two to five years post MBA; and long-term is the rest. Usually essays ask for short- and long-term goals, but you’ll need intermediate as the bridge between them.

 

Short-term goals are the most specific, for obvious reasons – they’re closer in time and they’re also the direct link to the MBA program. As you describe successive steps, use less and less detail in each, because the further out you project, the less certain things are. Don’t go beyond what’s practical, e.g., describing in detail what you’ll be doing in twenty years. Adapt each phase to reality too. If your targeted industry (say, healthcare) is in great flux, that point should be reflected in your goals.

 

Responding to specific goals questions

 

Different sets of essay questions will emphasize different aspects of the goals; they’ll require different lengths and have different tones. Some are open; other are focused and directed. The key is to “read” not just the words but the tone of the question. Anecdotally, I’ve noticed a trend toward short, focused goals essay questions; there are fewer 1,000 word goals essays (Haas is an exception), fewer essays asking for your “vision” (Fuqua is an exception). Most want the facts, straight. Columbia asks you to define goals in 200 characters. Wharton gives you 300 words to answer, “What are your professional objectives?”

 

Read the question carefully, and emphasize in your essay what the question emphasizes (e.g., short-term or long-term equal or do they just mention post-MBA goal?). In other words, be guided by the question. That doesn’t mean you can’t bring in other elements, but they should support your main points. In the Wharton essay, for example, you’d boil down your experience and motivation to a contextual sentence or two.

 

Often the question asks why you want an MBA or want to attend the particular program. Link these points directly to your goals. If you can weave in your school visit and/or interactions with students and alumni, great!

 

 

 

Final Miscellaney – Plan B, Research, Professional Support

 

I will wrap up this series with a few miscellaneous points.

 

Plan B

 

Think you’re done with MBA goals? Think again… In the current global economic volatility, having a Plan B for your immediate post-MBA goal can be not only good planning for you, but also enhance your goal essay’s credibility. It’s particularly important if you’re targeting a difficult-to-enter industry (remember that VC dreamer?) or changing careers. In fact, ADCOMs have specifically said that they welcome this recognition of reality; it gives them more confidence that you can get employed.

 

The challenge, however, is to discuss a Plan B without using a lot of precious space and without sounding undirected. In the goals essay, focus mostly on your main short-term goal. Then add one to three sentences about a reasonable alternative that you’d also consider, explaining how it also would be a good step toward your further goals. Example: an applicant is targeting an IT manager role post-MBA with the long-term goal of CIO; a Plan B could be a tech strategy consulting post-MBA job.

 

Preliminary research

 

I’m always surprised at how few people do roll-up-the-shirtsleeves research on their goals before writing essays. Digging around on the web for a couple of hours or talking to people in careers related to your goals can yield rich detail for your essays. Moreover, mentioning this research in your essays enhances the sense of commitment to your chosen path. I suggest reading up on the industry and it’s current and future challenges, and conducting informational interviews regarding the industry or business function.

 

Taking this step will enable you to write sharply and engagingly about your goals. It enhances the interest factor of the essay. Also it will prevent big mistakes like those of that Wharton re-applicant in the first post in this series. By presenting selected tidbits of your research in your essay you’ll show you’re resourceful and committed, and equally important you’ll show you have something to say, i.e., contribute.

 

Professional assistance

 

I’ve said a lot of “do this” and “do that” in this special report. If you feel that having knowledgeable, experienced, committed assistance as you walk through this process would be helpful, please consider using admissions consulting & essay editing services to help you perfect your application.

 

 

 

以上内容摘自:

Accepted.com 

 

 

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