Part 2: You Have Been Summoned…
Now, if you have finally gotten the fantastic news that you are invited to interview with the school of your dreams, here is what I recommend you do:
- Respond quickly to the invite to set up a time to be interviewed. You don’t need to be interviewed immediately, but you should respond ASAP.
- Know your work experience. Be ready to walk through your resume in 5 minutes. Most schools ask behavioral based questions, which means they want real examples of how you dealt with challenges (and challenging people) in your current and past professional experience.
- Google your interviewer. If your interview is with an alum, look them up so you can ask them questions about their professional background and how their MBA helped them. But don’t be creepy. You don’t need to stalk them on FB, find all their exes, and read their last Yelp review. But look them up on Linkedin and disclose that in the interview.
- Be prepared. This means at the very least being able to answer basic questions like, why do you want an MBA? Why do you want one from our institution? What are your post-MBA goals? You will not believe how many candidates are baffled by this question. You can’t submit an application for an MBA , get an interview for an MBA and then be incapable of explaining WHY YOU WANT AN MBA! The notes the interviewer is write when you are flustered by these questions is “DO NOT ADMIT THIS PERSON”.
Don’t over prepare. Now this is a know thyself moment. Some of you do exceptionally well when you write out every detail of your responses to possible questions. But my experience has shown that most people do worse when they have a heavily scripted dialogue because they forget one word and then their entire train of thought goes out the window. They also become real stiff and impersonal in the interview. Before the interview (days in advance) have bullet points with specific examples for potential questions about your background and practice responses hitting important points . Practice enough so you aren’t saying umm, like or dude too many times. And yeah–a candidate once called me dude in an MBA admissions interview.