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Archive for the ‘interview’ Category

So many things troubling me over the last few day… I’m becoming an angry young (old?) man now!

First my LBS interview schedule finalization. Its just not getting finalized. LBS took more than 3 weeks to assign me an alum, and you know what – he’s from a competing consulting firm! So that gives rise to two BIG problems:

  1. First, our travel schedules don’t match! days when he’s traveling and other days I am, compounded by the fact that LBS has given us time till Friday 6th (a princely 9 days including the weekend, since they assigned the interviewer). I still have no clue whether this is possible at all, and even if LBS gives us grace period beyond the timeframe, I’m traveling abroad this Saturday. Distressed? Irritated? this is just the start…
  2. Provided the IV does happen, I’m not sure how much detail I’ll be able to go into regarding my career history /projects. With client confidentiality paramount, I cannot share much on what initiatives I’ve done and how that generated results. With an adcom, its fine as they probably do zillion interviews, and the info is not directly usable for them, but with a principal from a competing firm? Maybe not! Dilemma – and no way to get out of it, except for stating such groundrules upfront. Dont know how he’ll take it though…

What else? Did I mention work? That’s getting irksome, and how… first no one wants to take decisions and move forward, not my boss, not the client people, no one – hey! my deliverables are at stake here! if that wasn’t enough, I’m overloaded (which in part is why my LBS interview scheduling is being hit). Mostly due to the fact that I’m flying overseas and won’t be back for a couple of weeks – part work/part leisure !

Which brings me to my planned US trip next week. I’m excited I’ll be able to take some time out for a ChiGSB visit, as my work is in Chicago itself. I’ll most prob also be visiting Wharton as I might be able to squeeze out a few days leave. Lets see! I’m hopeful of getting into both schools (optimism = the greatest cure for anxiety!) & possibly the luxury of choosing one of them 🙂 so these visits will be paramount in the absence of a welcome weekend visit – too costly, that…

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Wharton, Jackie & me

Had the Wharton Hub interview yesterday, so another quick recap :

WHO: I interviewed with Jackie Zavitz – yes, the adcom’s face on s2s, she’s conducting all interviews for the India Hubs

WHAT: Again, a ‘typical’ admissions interview, with the usual suspects

  • Walk me through your resume (ok… press the ‘play’ button)
  • Career goals – this was explored a bit with some followup queries, but nothing tangential
  • Why MBA? Why Wharton? (yes, this was again a single question, great!)
  • What do you do in your after-work spare time? (Spare time? didn’t she know I was in consulting? we just travel! and learn to see that as an ECA
  • Any questions for me?
  • Any changes / Anything else you have added to your profile post the submission of your application? (Err no…. I’m still into the same job routine)
Very tight 30 min interview – about 25 min to answer her questions, and another 5 for mine – I hardly had any, because bw their website and s2s and my alumni friends, I think I knew enough; and I didnt want to ask just any question to score some marks.

BOTTOMLINE: I am  pleased with my performance, though I wish I had some more time. I probably remembered only about 15 points I wanted to say, once I got back home 🙂 But then, the interview was conducted in a very ‘to-the-point’ and under tremendous time-limitations that I couldn’t really afford to digress much!

PARTING SHOT: “You’ll hear from us on March 21st now” (read as – “pls dont keep asking us when the decisions are coming out, can they be released earlier, etc” – makes sense!)

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ChiGSB & me : The interview

Had the Hub interview a couple of days back, and here’s a quick recap for those of you who’re still to meet them:

WHO: I interviewed with a very sweet adcom director (Andrea Schmoyer)

WHAT: The ‘typical’ admissions interview, with the regulars like

  • Walk me through your resume
  • Career goals
  • Why MBA? Why GSB? (yes, this was a single question, good for me!)
  • How will you be part of GSB? (don’t remember the exact wordings here)
  • What was the biggest challenge you faced?
  • What are you most proud of?
  • Any questions for me?
It took me about 20-25 min to answer her questions, and another 10-15 to discuss the queries I had.

BOTTOMLINE: I liked the interview and am pleased with my performance. Though like everybody else, I remembered 20 points I wanted to say once I got back home

More thoughts later, after my BigW interview!

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Invited again!!!

A slightly belated Valentine’s day present from Wharton, here it is!

Dear Oops,The status of your application has been updated and you have been invited to interview with the Wharton MBA Admissions Office. (Please look for the link to the letter inviting you to interview located at the bottom of the main page of your online application account.)

Please log into your Wharton account and select “Search” in the Events box to the right on the main page. Next select an interview type (On-Campus, HUB location or Alumni) and proceed to schedule your interview. Please read the instructions given for each type of interview very carefully. If scheduling an on-campus interview, select the date you are looking for and proceed. If scheduling a HUB location interview, select the location, and proceed to schedule your interview.

We look forward to meeting you in the near future.

Sincerely,

Wharton MBA Admissions Office

Dont know what to say, too overwhelmed… mucho work on the cards!

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Invited to interview by ChiGSB!

Dear Oops,
Congratulations, we have evaluated your application and are extending an invitation for you to interview with us as the next phase of the admissions process.

I am so relieved… and excited… and thankful to God – my parents always told me if He closes one door (Tuck?) then He makes sure another one opens for you.

They have 3 options for interviewing: (1) On-campus – which they have noted as being the preferred form (2) Off-campus/Hub (3) Off-campus/Alumni

To be sure of getting my preferred location/dates/timeslots, I have blocked my date/time. Thankfully this would be face-to-face. I am not too confident of telephonic interviews, you never know which way your discussion is going…

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Tuck & Darden

Two schools I had applied to purely because of their culture and my fit with them were Tuck & Darden. I had received very high opinion of both these schools, though in slightly different areas. Some Tuck alumni I knew convinced me about the close knit community at Tuck. This is really in line with my own priorities in life and career. No, it was not because I can get a response from 99% Tuck alumni in 1-2 days and this would help my networking. Yes, thats important, but the BIG reason is that I strongly believe that business is about people. (If it weren’t, then soon computers would rule and business skills will not be required.*) Even  If I can spend 2 years with people who care for each other, I would learn more than if I got 25 of the best faculty in the world!With Darden, it was a similar reason. The feedback was again high on community, though less than Tuck. The added part was case study and extreme academic orientation. This interested me since its been ages since I last stepped into a classroom, and I think I have decent work experience. Grounding myself with the theoretical frameworks is what I want now, and Darden fit the bill in that respect.

My thoughts are differing now, although I’ll say its biased because of their respective adcoms. I’ve written about Darden’s adcom & policies before, but I’ll add a few things:

1. After deeper thought, I understand some of the issues are natural (delay in interviewing, etc), this being the first year they’re inviting people to interview & all. But… they should keep people informed. That, I believe, is the first rule of people management.

2. Even if they’re not hyper-active in communication, the least one can do is to reply to mails. I’ve myself sent in 4 mails over the last 1 month, 2 each to the adcom & my account manager, but have not even received an automated acknowledgement (I hate that stuff actually) leave alone a response.

Now compare this with Tuck! Every mail I’ve sent (including some idiotic queries, which I wish I could recall! Or maybe erase from their memories like the Haitian does in Heroes) has been replied to very politely, and very promptly.

And sample this… the email I got 2 days after my interview:

Dear XYZ, Thank you for interviewing with Tuck. We hope you enjoyed your experience. If you have additional questions about Tuck or the application process, please do not hesitate to contact us at Tuck.Admissions@Dartmouth.edu.All the best,

Tuck Admissions Team

I thought it was a really nice gesture on the part of Tuck adcom to send this mail. Really! they didnt need to…Small thing probably, but finally its the small things that matter in life, isn’t it?

I know one shouldn’t judge a school by the adcom, and like m@ pointed out “it’s more like marrying someone when you don’t get along with your new spouse’s ex-husband”. But if the ex-husband is deciding who’s coming / not coming into the spouse’s life, then who’s the real husband??? 😉

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* Will computers take over our business decisions soon? I have some thoughts which I’ll gather & post soon…

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Tuck interview update

A recap of my Tuck interview…
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I had a telephonic interview with a second year Tuckie in the first week of Jan’08 – what a way to start the new year 🙂 After the pleasantries, we moved on to the expected “take me through your resume” question, which flowed into the Why MBA and Why Tuck threads. Frankly, I dont know why these took as long as they did, but the interview lasted about 40 min!
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I think I did okay on the main resume question, as well as the Why MBA part. I’m not too happy with my answer to Why Tuck, as there were so many reasons, but I ended up giving only one – the people, and digressed…. I’ve heard this ‘fit’ is the most important question, so that scares me a bit, but otherwise it was a nice interview on the whole.
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I guess now its a wait to Feb 8th, to see how nice …

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