After you have been invited for an interview at your choice of MBA program and B-school, you want to be sure to ace the interview. For clearing the interview, you need to prepare well for your interview. These tips are appropriate not just for the MBA interview, but can be used for job interviews and other interviews as well.
1. Know Your Qualifications
Your interview will moist likely include a section about your strengths and weaknesses. You should decide which assets and difficulties you want to focus on and which ones to keep away from. You can guide the interview in a way that focuses on your strong points, using anecdotes to support them. Be sure that when you discuss a weakness you can talk about ways that you overcame or are working on overcoming it. Support your assertions with stories.
2. Know Your Experiences
Make sure that you know all the information on your resume. Your interviewer will have reviewed your resume and will have it at hand. You need to know dates, positions, responsibilities, awards and other things. Use stories and examples to emphasize important moments of your life and how those experiences furthered your goals and your decision to apply and attend to this MBA program.
3. Know Your Goals
Your interviewer want to know how you decided on your goals and exactly how you plan on achieving them. You should be able to explain how your college or extracurricular activities, current job responsibilities contributed to your goals and how an MBA will help your attain these goals. Give a lot of consideration to the answers to these questions. Your interviewer will want to see that you’re a person with a plan who is also logical and thorough.
4. Know What You’re Looking For
One of the jobs of the interviewer is to decide if you are a good fit for the target program. Be prepared to answer the questions like: Why is this the perfect b-school for you? What attracted you to this particular program? What special things will you bring to the next b-school class?
Research the curriculum, faculty, student life, extracurricular activities, and other things of the business school before your interview. This will give you the tools to articulate your special fit and what you will contribute to your target school. Take the time to visit the school’s website, communicate with alumni and students, and if possible, visit the campus.
MBA admission committee interview candidates individually, and do not delegate this task to alumni or students. Some schools that use this method include Harvard Business School and MIT Sloan.
In-Person Interview with MBA Student or Alumnus
This approach is a way to keep alumni engaged and involved with the school, and it gives students a voice in the admissions process. Some schools that use this method are Columbia, Kellogg and Duke.
Phone and Skype Interview
A phone interview is simply a conversation by phone. It is in real time and there is no visual component. A Skype interview is a conversation via Skype with video on. A Skype interview with video off is like the phone interview.
Phone and Skype allow to interview applicants in situations where it might not otherwise be possible. For example, remotely located applicant, sudden change in one party’s schedule, interruptions such as weather-related flight changes.
Why Do You Need an MBA?
The interviewer wants to make sure your reasons for getting an MBA match up with what the MBA degree will provide you. Most people look to get an MBA in order to move into a management role or to change fields.
Why Do You Want to Attend This MBA Program?
The interviewer wants to gauge the sincerity with which the candidate is approaching the business school. You need to make sure you show that your reasons for applying to the program go well beyond the obvious reputation, location or network.
Tell Me About Your Weaknesses
The interviewer wants to ensure the applicant is humble enough to recognize that nobody is perfect, and to see how introspective he or she can be in an assessment of oneself. This question requires some self-reflection.
What Questions Do You Have?
The interviewer wants to make sure the candidate has all pertinent information necessary about the school, as well as to confirm that he or she has thoroughly researched the program and consequently has thoughtful questions. Try not to ask a question that can be answered easily online.