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Posted by Chioma Isiadinso
Applying successfully to London Business School (LBS) can be challenging not only because it is a top ranked MBA program worldwide but also because of the application hurdles that applicants have to scale when applying.
While many of the US schools have reduced their number of essays and word count, applicants to LBS still have quite a few essays to tackle, six to be precise.
Here are some practical tips for MBA applicants planning to apply to London Business School:
1. Nail the career goals
Consider the fact that the first two admissions essay questions are career-related.
Career goals matter a great deal to this school and it is looking for candidates who embody maturity and have well-thought through career plans.
This is not the school that will tolerate fuzzy or general career aspirations.
Be specific and show that you understand what the school is about, its strengths, and communicate why your background will be a good fit for the career path you plan to pursue in the future.
Also be clear on your short and long term goals. Be sure to connect the dots of your past experiences, how you will get from where you are now to your ultimate career goal.
Question 1 (500 words)
In what role or sector do you see yourself working immediately after graduation? Why? How will your past and present experiences help you achieve this? How will the London Business School MBA Programme contribute to this goal?
Question 2 (200 words)
Where do you see your career progressing five years after graduation and what is your longer term career vision?
2. Show that you are more than your job
A great work profile and career goals are important. But so is showing that you are a well-rounded leader who can contribute in any setting you are a part of.
Do your homework on LBS to be able to pinpoint precisely the areas within the school community where you will contribute and lead.
It is helpful when you can show continuity or previous interest (ideally even leadership experience) in the same area to give credence to your essay.
Question 3 (300 words)
Give a specific example of when you have had to test your leadership and / or team working skills either professionally, or outside of work. What role will you play in your first year study group?
Question 4 (300 words)
Student involvement is an extremely important part of the London MBA experience and this is reflected in the character of students on campus.
What type of student club or campus community events will you be involved with and why? How will you contribute?
3. An international mind set as well as self-awareness is vital for success at London Business School
It is not surprising that the school asks applicants to address their global exposure and awareness. To handle these two questions successfully, you have to exercise good judgment.
The operative word for question 5 is “significant experience outside your home country” (articulate why the experience is significant to you).
Don’t forget to show what you gained and what it will add to the school.
The last question, a new one this year, also tests applicants’ judgment and self-awareness. Who you choose matters (don’t just select a well-known person.
Make your decision based on genuine interest in the person, having followed the person’s career and have concrete reasons why you have made your selection.
This is your opportunity to share your opinion about a business leader you admire for the impact he’s had in the world of business. Why you admire that person will show a lot about you as a person.
Question 5 (150 words)
London Business School offers a truly global and diverse experience. Describe any significant experiences outside of your home country or culture. What did you gain and how will your experience contribute to the School?
Question 6 (300 words)
Give an example of a person who, in your opinion, has made a profound impact on the way the world does business. How will this person influence your contribution to your MBA Programme at London Business School?
4. Deciding on how to tackle the optional essay
You do not have to write an optional essay simply because the option to do so exists.
If you have holes or gaps in your profile or if you have something that you need to further explain, then it may make sense to use the optional essay to address it.
To add more color to it which you haven’t addressed anywhere else in your application. But if you must answer the optional essay make sure to keep it very brief.
This is not a compulsory essay but please complete if you would like the opportunity to clarify or expand upon any information submitted in your application.