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HOW TO ANSWER THE 'FAILURE' ESSAY QUESTION

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HOW TO ANSWER THE 'FAILURE' ESSAY QUESTION

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Many MBA applicants get stuck on the popular "Describe a failure or setback..." essay question.

Vertias Prep's Scott Shrum (author of the top selling YOUR MBA GAME PLAN) had a great quote in Forbes magazine early this month .

Don't be afraid to address mistakes in your essay... The trick is to frame it in the right way.

"I don't know anyone who is flawless," says Scott Shrum, author of Your MBA Game Plan and a consultant with the M.B.A. admissions firm Veritas Prep. "If someone says they are, we're not getting an accurate version of them. It's OK to talk about failure, but you need to discuss what you learned from it. How did you become stronger for it?"
(Forbes, 8/21/08)


Remember, the key is address your failure or setback, and then discuss what you learned from the situation. AdCom wants to know: How did the experience make you stronger and/or more prepared for the future? How did the experience build your leadership/managerial/team-work skills?

Using an example of making a spreadsheet error and then spending 2 all-nighters fixing the problem is not enough. Go deeper and highlight the experience as a lesson learned.

Good luck!

NP

_________________
Nikhil P. | Admissions Consultant | Veritas Prep

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