Essays play a pivotal role in your admissions decision, perhaps, more than anything else. Essays are the best place to talk about your accomplishments and goals. However, this is also the place where applicants make the most errors. Some of these errors are so common that they jeopardise your admission chances at your dream schools. The 5 most common errors that Indian students make on the MBA Admission Essays are:
1. Repeating your resume
For most Indian students, the essay must contain a professional success story. The idea of talking about a professional story is not bad except the fact that most students, instead of providing more details about the process to success, repeat what is mentioned in the resume already. On top, they even add the same industry jargon or pretentious language.
Always remember that you have submitted a resume to the school, hence, use the space in the essay to talk about HOWs and WHYs of your work then WHATs of the profession. Technical language, while appropriate in a resume, interferes the story on an essay. Poor word choice will lead your reader to miss the points that you want to convey. With so many essays to read, the admissions team can’t spend much time to read your essay, hence, write your essay to make it easy to read and understand.
2. Failing to answer why X program works for you
Most Indian students apply to a school because it is highly ranked in some MBA school ranking or is a brand name. That approach definitely doesn’t pay. The school knows its value, it wants to know the values you want to gain from the school. So, research well why a particular school fits with you and know what you need from it. Make sure you can point out a specific aspect of the skills that you need from the school. You must also tell them what makes you acceptable to the school by clearly showing what will you add to the mix. This will happen only if you have researched well.
3. Not answering the question correctly
Off-track essays are the most common first drafts. Hence, make sure that you grasp the essay topic well in advance. Don’t answer with “How” when the question asks for “What” or “Why.” Make sure to follow the directions carefully. Make sure to touch on all the points that the prompt makes.
4. Writing what you think the admissions team wants to hear
The goal of the MBA admissions essay is to show how introspective and interesting candidate are you. Hence, writing about what the admissions team wants to hear makes you miss on the point. The essay is the space to show how and why are you different from another applicant with similar credentials. Make sure that your essay is clear and concise and talks about what makes “you” “you.” Avoid general statements and say clearly what you want to say.
5. Explaining the negative
You have only so many words for each essay. Make sure to use them to portrait a positive picture of yourself instead of explaining a negative. Explain, in detail, why you are a good fit for the program and what will you do differently than other applicants.