Anonymous MBA Consulting Reviews

by on July 16th, 2013

Recently, I asked all the readers of this blog and users of beatthegmat.com to send me reviews if they have used an MBA consultant. I suggested a specific format where they can be graded using an A-F scale, and compared across their peers so that MBA applicants can make an informed decision (a la Yelp or TripAdvisor). This is a big upfront expense for many applicants and there is not a ton of information out there (other than promotional stuff on websites dedicated to the MBA world). Well, I have gotten a couple responses so far and have put them below. I will continue to update these reviews as I get them. If you would like to submit one, please check out the below format and email me the answers at mbagirljourney@gmail.com or you can paste them directly below!  

Here is the format for the criteria:

Scale:  A+, A, A-, B+, B, B-……you get the idea, all the way to F. (A-F grading scale, N/A for services you didn’t purchase)

Consultant Firm/Name: ____________________

Package Type: _______________________(i.e. hourly, one-school)

  1. Manner:  attitude/how they interact with you
  2. Understanding of my Industry: i.e. via a diagnostic/questionnaire/ Q&A interview
  3. Understanding of my job and accomplishments: i.e. via a diagnostic/questionnaire/ Q&A interview
  4. Understanding of my story: i.e. via a diagnostic/questionnaire/ Q&A interview
  5. Responsiveness:  How quickly they get back to you
  6. Essay Editing:  How in-depth and consultative were they when editing your essays
  7. Resume Editing:  How in-depth and consultative were they when editing your resumes
  8. Recommendation counseling:  How consultative were they when helping you get your recommendations  together
  9. *Interview Help:  How helpful/thorough were they in helping you prepare for interviews?
  10. Overall Strategy: How effective do you feel the overall strategy of your application was, i.e positioning/overall picture
  11. Any other comments you would like to tell us about your consultant experience?

Review for MBA Admit: overall strategy, B+

Consultant Firm/Name: MBAadmit – Dr. Shelly Watts

Package Type: One-school w/ consortium package. Added extra essays to the package as needed (applied through the Consortium so it was a bit different)

  1. Manner: attitude/how they interact with you: (A-) Good interaction, positive attitude, really felt like I had somebody in my corner, felt genuine.
  2. Understanding of my Industry: (B-) In-depth questionnaire, but my industry was very different and therefore hard to understand.
  3. Understanding of my job and accomplishments: (B) same as above ^^
  4. Understanding of my story: (B+) I felt she understood my story and had a good grip on the best way to portray it.
  5. Responsiveness: (B-) There were a few times I was itching for her to get back to me and it felt like it was taking forever. Also, she would often say “her team” was editing essays or something to that affect, but it was pretty obvious that she runs her business completely by herself, for better or for worse.
  6. Essay Editing: How in-depth and consultative were they when editing your essays (B-) I expected more from a few of the essays, but the goals essay (main one for me) was on point.
  7. Resume Editing: How in-depth and consultative were they when editing your resumes (B-) I really don’t even remember, which means it must not have been that in-depth.
  8. Recommendation counseling: How consultative were they when helping you get your recommendations  together (A+) This made everything worth it, she whipped up my recommendations into tip-top shape. She requested that the recommenders send them to her, bypassing me for integrity, for editing. But my recommenders ended up showing me the before and after of their recommendations anyways, and wow! They were so rough beforehand that they may have been a deal-breaker for me, and I never would have known it.
  9. *Interview Help: How helpful/thorough were they in helping you prepare for interviews? (N/A) This service was available for an additional cost, but I was uninterested.
  10. Overall Strategy: How effective do you feel the overall strategy of your application was, i.e positioning/overall picture? (B+) Overall, solid. I’m glad I used her.
  11. Any other comments you would like to tell us about your consultant experience? So, I was a strange candidate because I was focused on schools where I had the best chance at a full-ride scholarship rather than top-ranked schools, but I felt like her strength was more geared towards the typical Top 7 or so schools. I remember her trying to convince me to apply to Harvard & Columbia more than a few times, and given her HBS experience I’m sure that’s where a candidate can get the most bang for their buck. Oh, and her prices were 1/3 of her competitors; it was one helluva deal.

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