Ask GyanOne:Indian applicants for global top 30 MBA programs

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by GyanOne » Mon Jul 06, 2015 6:00 am
How have the ISB Placements 2015 been? Which Top Companies visited? Which Industry Dominated?
Get all your answers here

Achche din have certainly arrived at the ISB campus in 2015. For the Co2015, ISB reported interim placements figures that indicate a whopping jump of 77 percent over corresponding figures last year. This should bring glad tidings to those who are considering the school in the near future. While the number of offers per se is not a guarantee of substantially better placements, it does certainly indicate rising demand for ISB graduates. This will no doubt help the school in the rankings (ranked 33 this year in the FT ranking after being ranked 34 last year. ISB's best rank in the same ranking has been 12 in 2010), besides of course giving its graduates a wider spectrum of more post-MBA options.

ISB Placements 2015 : Consulting and Tech dominate

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by Yash_rathi » Wed Jul 08, 2015 1:53 am
Hi GyanOne,

Please review my profile -

Engg - 2.65/4 CGPA (Non-IIT/NIT/BITS)(University of Mumbai)

After Engg -
1 year - Own start-up related to iOS App development and Web development
Start-up was co-founded by 4 class-mates (including me)
The stint ended after a year as the other 3 co-founders left for the States to pursue their MS, I on the other-hand wanted to pursue my MBA.

Please note - The start-up was a successful experience.

Post start-up work ex - 1.5 years and counting
Business Analyst at ZS Associates (Management Consulting)
My job involves sales and marketing consulting for clients across the Pharma (dominantly), financial, banking, insurance, etc. domanins

GMAT - 700

Questions -

1 - I know my CGPA is very low as per B-school standards. Thoughts regarding how to over-shadow it?
2 - Current GMAT is 700. Re-take? And what is the ideal score for my profile?
3 - I have a job offer currently from a pharmaceutical giant for a better package. They are offering me a better role with more job responsibilities and a promoted designation also. Considering I'll apply next year R-1, should I switch my job and gain an experience for a year and a half more or stay at my current job and get promoted? Major question I'm facing right now.


Thanks in advance !

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by GyanOne » Wed Jul 08, 2015 2:22 am
Yash_rathi wrote:Hi GyanOne,

Please review my profile -

Engg - 2.65/4 CGPA (Non-IIT/NIT/BITS)(University of Mumbai)

After Engg -
1 year - Own start-up related to iOS App development and Web development
Start-up was co-founded by 4 class-mates (including me)
The stint ended after a year as the other 3 co-founders left for the States to pursue their MS, I on the other-hand wanted to pursue my MBA.

Please note - The start-up was a successful experience.

Post start-up work ex - 1.5 years and counting
Business Analyst at ZS Associates (Management Consulting)
My job involves sales and marketing consulting for clients across the Pharma (dominantly), financial, banking, insurance, etc. domanins

GMAT - 700

Questions -

1 - I know my CGPA is very low as per B-school standards. Thoughts regarding how to over-shadow it?
2 - Current GMAT is 700. Re-take? And what is the ideal score for my profile?
3 - I have a job offer currently from a pharmaceutical giant for a better package. They are offering me a better role with more job responsibilities and a promoted designation also. Considering I'll apply next year R-1, should I switch my job and gain an experience for a year and a half more or stay at my current job and get promoted? Major question I'm facing right now.


Thanks in advance !
Hi Yash,

Thanks for posting.

To begin with, your CGPA seems unusually low. Did you simply divide your percentage by 25 to arrive at it? If you did, that's not the right way. If we are not mistaken, that should put you around 66.5% for Mumbai University, which is decent performance given the university you belong to.

Overall, your profile seems fine. We understand the part about the start-up after the first year, but some more context around that is needed (for example, why did your co-founders leave if the startup was successful?). Still, the start-up experience will not drag you down. You will have about ~4.5 years of experience by the time you join, which is fine in terms of both quantity and quality given your experience with ZS now.

On your questions:
1. See our comment on your CGPA above. It might not be as low as you think it is.
2. You should retake if you feel you can raise your GMAT score significantly. Depending on the schools you are targeting, this may be ok. As an example, for ISB or say, Oxford Said, this will be fine. For schools like Duke or Darden, you might like to think in terms of a retake (Just taken some random examples to make the point. Not implying that you will be necessarily applying to these schools).
3. Switching your job will not be a problem from the point of view of quality of work experience. However, this will be the second move for you in just two years, and you might want to address that in your essays next year. In just 3.5 years (by the time you apply next year), you would have been part of a (closed) startup, been in two jobs, and would also have applied for an MBA. If the new role is decidedly better, move. Else, it is better to stay put and get promoted (from just an admissions point of view).

Hope this helps. Feel free to come back with more questions.

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by Yash_rathi » Wed Jul 08, 2015 2:57 am
3. Switching your job will not be a problem from the point of view of quality of work experience. However, this will be the second move for you in just two years, and you might want to address that in your essays next year. In just 3.5 years (by the time you apply next year), you would have been part of a (closed) startup, been in two jobs, and would also have applied for an MBA. If the new role is decidedly better, move. Else, it is better to stay put and get promoted (from just an admissions point of view).
Does this mean that if the role is better, it is fine to switch? Provided I can justify my move to the other organization within a year and a half at ZS.

Also, won't ZS be a better work experience to show? (Consulting) vs. Pharma --> (Big dilemma I'm facing currently)
Overall, your profile seems fine. We understand the part about the start-up after the first year, but some more context around that is needed (for example, why did your co-founders leave if the startup was successful?). Still, the start-up experience will not drag you down. You will have about ~4.5 years of experience by the time you join, which is fine in terms of both quantity and quality given your experience with ZS now.
The other co-founders were preparing for GRE as well as working on the start-up. They intend to return to India and continue the start-up. They really wanted to do an MS as a post-grad is the new norm.

Any schools you would recommend looking at? (which are completely safe for me)
They need not be in the top 10, I'm open to all.


Thanks!

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by Yash_rathi » Thu Jul 09, 2015 3:31 am
Hi Gyanone,

Any thoughts on the above post?

Thanks!

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by GyanOne » Thu Jul 09, 2015 10:36 pm

Does this mean that if the role is better, it is fine to switch? Provided I can justify my move to the other organization within a year and a half at ZS.

Also, won't ZS be a better work experience to show? (Consulting) vs. Pharma --> (Big dilemma I'm facing currently)


Yes, if the role is substantially better (more leadership opportunities, more global opportunities etc) it may be fine to switch. Not possible to comment without really comparing the two opportunities in more detail. There may be pros and cons on both sides. Unless you are sure that the new opportunity is substantially better on all fronts (salary doesnt count), stick with ZS.

The other co-founders were preparing for GRE as well as working on the start-up. They intend to return to India and continue the start-up. They really wanted to do an MS as a post-grad is the new norm.
That seems a bit shaky, really. Throws up additional questions. Still, this is not a major issue, given your ZS experience later, so fine.
Any schools you would recommend looking at? (which are completely safe for me)
They need not be in the top 10, I'm open to all.
Would suggest you retake and then come back with a revised score, as you are anyway planning to do that. Your apps are an year away, so you should start looking at schools later, once you have the revised score. Also, choosing safe schools is easy :-). What involves more effort is choosing the right schools that you would be enthusiastic about and that would be the right fit with your goals and admissions chances. We would welcome your further queries post your revised GMAT on this front.

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by GyanOne » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:42 am
What Has Been Your Biggest Failure Till Date?

Questions about failure are common set of questions seen in many B-School Applications. Apart from the obvious takeaway of "learning from the mistake/failure", what are some of the other aspects that the MBA Admissions team is trying to learn about the candidate? There are two other important aspects that the Admissions team is trying to judge through this particular question.

How to Approach MBA Admissions Failure Essays

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by GyanOne » Sat Jul 11, 2015 5:35 am
Which Top US Bschools Accept Applicants for Second MBA

There are many legitimate reasons why one would want to consider a second MBA in USA. Career progression, the need to learn advanced management skills in a specific topic area not explored in your first MBA, and the exposure and opportunity offered by top programs are often the frequently quoted reasons. While Asian and European schools are quite open to considering the candidature of applicants who already have a first MBA, not all schools in the US are as open. This article is meant to clear some of the confusion around this.

Second MBA in USA: Schools that will accept, and those that won't

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by GyanOne » Tue Jul 14, 2015 6:46 am
Is an MBA from Singapore Worth It? Which Are the Best MBA Programs?

Which is the Best MBA in Singapore? Is it the prestigious INSEAD, the much-vaulted NUS, its perceived lesser cousin Nanyang (or NTU, as some refer to it), or the fast emerging SMU? For MBA applicants who would like to explore the potential of Asia, there are few programs that have the pan-Asian appeal of MBA programs in Singapore. The city itself is known as Asia's hub for business, and almost every multi-national business organization that operates in Asia has an office (and in most cases, its regional HQ) in Singapore. Whether it is financial services, energy, FMCG, or consulting, you will find top employers from each sector based in Singapore. No wonder, then, that MBA aspirants look to the city, and its MBA programs, with much interest.

Is an MBA from Singapore Worth It

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by GyanOne » Sat Jul 25, 2015 5:32 am
Is ISB Worth it? 5 Reasons Why It Is

Is ISB worth it? Is ISB good? Is it value for money and effort? These questions are now not as uncommon as they once were. In this post, we try to address this issue, presenting five reasons for why we believe ISB continues to be a premium school. In our opinion not only is ISB good, but it is a great school and has some excellent factors going for it.

The Indian School of Business (ISB) program is one of the youngest MBA programs in India (and Asia, and the world) and has quickly created a great reputation for itself. In 2008, ISB became the youngest school ever around the world to feature in the FT top 20 MBA ranking. It improved on this position further, reaching its top ranking of 12 in 2010. ISB was the place to be, and almost every Indian applicant had it as one of the options in his/her B-school portfolio. People (mostly Indians) would turn down offers from schools ranked within the top 10 to instead attend ISB. Around this time (actually, beginning a little earlier - but most observers did not really focus on this in the euphoria of the high ranking) ISB faced a number of events that began to dent its image a little bit.

Top 5 Reasons on Why ISB is Worth It

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by GyanOne » Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:37 am
The MBA Optional Essay - Is it Really Optional?

The MBA Optional Essay is a bit of an enigma to most MBA applicants when they first see it. For most people preparing their MBA applications, the other essays adequately cover the applicant's career goals, reasons for choosing the relevant school, and key achievements and learning. The optional essay therefore presents an opportunity to provide yet more information, but in most cases, applicants are not clear about what exactly it should contain. As a result, many applicants tend to use this essay to provide random information, extend other essays, or make a further case for their candidature. This article attempts to remove the confusion underlying the content of the optional essay, and presents a few scenarios on how it should be used.

How to Use the MBA Optional Essay Wisely

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by GyanOne » Fri Jul 31, 2015 2:45 am
Life at ISB: Campus, Teaching, Placements and Peers

ISB Hyderabad. Almost every Indian MBA applicants aspires to get into this top ranked MBA institute. And Why not? It is not just management education that you go his institute for. It is an experience in its own.

Campus: 'One school, two campuses' is what was reiterated time and time again during the earlier days to get it through to our stubborn heads that both the Hyderabad and Mohali campuses have exact modus operandi. And gradually we got to see that the professors teaching in Mohali travels to Hyderabad for the next term and vice versa to keep the academics seemingly indistinguishable. I know there are a whole lot of state of the art campuses in India, but ISB campuses are beyond the lifeless buildings shining under careful investment...it is an example of flawless operations and most humane maintenance system some 770 individual will agree on never seeing before every year.

ISB Hyderabad Teaching, Peers and Placements

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6 Ways To Improve Your Profile for Top MBA

by GyanOne » Tue Aug 04, 2015 6:04 am
6 Ways To Improve Your Profile for Top MBA

Applying for MBA admissions soon? Deadlines that are still six months (or even more than an year) away may lull you into a fall sense of security of being well-prepared or having 'enough time' to work on those applications when they are due. If you are aiming for top schools, though (from Wharton, Stanford, MIT, and Tuck to INSEAD, LBS, ISB, or HKUST), you need to start looking at your profile now. Applying to top programs is not just about filling in applications. It is also about addressing the gaps in your profile, so you can present the best 'you' to the admissions committees. This article aims to give you some advice on how to improve your profile for MBA admissions.

By the time the deadlines are at striking distance, and you begin working on your applications, there will be no time for you to address these gaps. At that stage, the best you could do would be to prepare to explain the gaps well. Therefore, act now.

Tips to Improve Your Profile for Top MBA: Improve Profile for MBA Admissions
Last edited by GyanOne on Sun Apr 19, 2020 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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by GyanOne » Mon Aug 10, 2015 6:13 am
IE Business School: Why Should you Consider this Top European MBA?

IE Business School, ranked 12 as per FT Global MBA rankings, boasts of an extremely diverse class profile with students from more than 70+ nationalities. Udit Bhatnagar, a GyanOne client, looks forward to start his MBA journey at IE and explains his reasons to select this European MBA program, despite the 'economic conditions' in Europe.

What attracted you towards Europe?

Like most other MBA aspirants I too was contemplating between US and Europe as an MBA destination. But my confusion didn't last long as I was very clear to take up the 1-year program. If we look at some of the rankings, then European schools dominate the list when it comes to the shorter duration MBA programs. Also, top European schools offer the opportunity to learn a new culture, language and provide a diverse experience of 80+ nationalities in a single intake.

Opportunities at IE

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by sharma_anruag » Tue Aug 18, 2015 5:10 pm
Hi,
Just came back from a GMAT exam with a disappointing 710 (Q49 V38). Would like some help in deciding the next steps.
Key questions I am looking help on are:
1. Whether to retake GMAT ? (I felt quite rushed in the test, maybe due to not enough test practice)
2. Is this score good enough to apply to my target schools (INSEAD, Duke, Darden, Tuck and Ross), given that I dont have the most solid CGPA (6.1/10)

Background information:
Indian Male, 28 yo, engineer.
Have been working in consulting (Data analytics) for the past 5 years, with the same firm. two promotions. 1 relocation to UK. Working out of London for the past 1 year and will mostly work out of US after Dec.

Have led multiple team since last 2.5 years. Was managing 3 separate engagements totally amounting to a total of million dollar revenue for my firm.

Have been an above average student till my undergrad where I did not do very well but have a couple of start up attempts to speak of.

Not much in extracurriculars since work is very hectic but founded clubs in my firm and university for activities pertaining to debates, book discussions, etc. National level debater at school.

Thanks