3 B-School Application Mistakes to Avoid

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3 min read

Your b-school application is your key to entering business school. If you follow the directions provided by your school regarding how to submit your application and what components to include in your package, you should be on your way to MBA success. However, double- and triple-checking your MBA application would be prudent, especially if you’re applying to multiple programs. You’re competing with qualified applicants from all over the world for a spot in your school’s class. To make your application stand out, it’s important to avoid application mistakes—including submitting your first draft and missing the application deadline.

Looking to secure your spot in your desired b-school? Keep reading to learn three b-school application mistakes to avoid.

B-school application mistake #1: not doing your research

It’s important to develop relationships early on with the schools you’re especially interested in attending. So, speak with someone—ideally in person—from the admissions office of your prospective schools. Before initiating a phone call or meeting, ensure that you’ve performed exhaustive research on the school. Don’t ask an admissions officer questions you can find the answers to on the school’s website, such as:

  • Do you offer an executive MBA program?
  • Do you accept either the GMAT or the GRE, or both?

However, you could ask an admissions officer questions specific to your situation, including:

  • Based on my years of work experience, would a part-time program or an executive MBA program be a better choice than a full-time program?
  • In your experience, which types of students perform better on the GMAT or GRE?

Show that you’ve done your homework on the program you want to apply for, so that you’re using the conversation to not only gather information, but to also present yourself as a prime candidate who is ready for business school.

[RELATED: 3 Ways to Prepare for a Business School Interview]

B-school application mistake #2: submitting the first draft of your application

The first draft of your b-school application should not be your final draft. Before you click the submit button, have at least one other person read your entire application and make notes, at minimum for typos that spell check missed. Having multiple sets of eyes on your application can help reduce the risk of mistakes. It’s key to submit an application that has been thoughtfully constructed. Double-check all application requirements to ensure you’re submitting a complete application that can hold up against the others.

[RELATED: 4 Steps to Take Today to Prepare for B-School]

B-school application mistake #3: missing the application deadline

It’s vital to submit your application by the due date. That being said, it’s also important to submit your application when it’s ready. These two recommendations are not at odds with each other, but they do require planning. Depending on whether you’re applying in Round 1, Round 2, or Round 3, work backwards from the deadline to schedule what you need to get done. Filling in the standard forms, crafting your essays, and managing your recommendations all take time and energy. Therefore, allot the necessary days, weeks, and months on your calendar to complete your package to the best of your ability by the deadline, so that admissions officers can assess your finest work.

[RELATED: Everything You Need to Know About B-School Admissions Rounds]

Applying to b-school can be fraught with stress, anxiety, and long nights. However, with strategic planning, you can make your MBA application process smoother. Build cordial relationships with admissions officers at your schools, ask for help in proofreading your work, and submit your application on time. By taking these steps, you’ll improve your chances of succeeding during b-school application season.


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