Advice For MBA Applicants Looking To Change Careers | QS-LEAP

Many candidates pursue an MBA with the hopes of altering their career paths. While this is a valid strategy, applicants looking to change careers should put in some extra work now to show that your desired career is both authentic AND attainable.

Here are some easy actions you can take now and while completing your MBA application essays and interviews to increase your chances of success!

  • Do your research.

    Know the role and industry that you aspire to join and understand the skills required for success. All too often we read vague goals statements that show a candidate does not really know his future industry. Look up companies in the industry who are hiring and read the job descriptions. Check LinkedIn to see where MBA graduates are going and talk to friends or former classmates who work in the space. Understand the industry’s career pathing. The more you know about your future industry, the more authentic your essays will sound as you begin to articulate your goals.

  • Look for extra-curricular work in your target industry.

    Volunteering in your future industry or function can be a great way to not only solidify your interest, but also to show the reader that you have truly given this future career some serious thought and consideration. This will help add cohesion to your overall story. It is ok to think broadly as you consider related activities as long as you can draw a clear connection for the reader.

  • Seek out related projects in your current role.

    In some cases, this is easy to do. For instance, if you are a consultant seeking to transition to the technology space, ask to be staffed on a project in the industry. In other cases, you may have to be more creative. However, even experiences such as working on cross-functional projects or leading internal initiatives can exposure you to related departments, so do not be afraid to think outside of the box.

  • Make a personal tie to your future career.

    As you begin to explain your career aspirations, think about whether there is a personal connection you have with this career. Remember your applications should explain who you are as a person and what makes you unique, so your career goals can demonstrate a personal fit, even if the professional one is not immediately apparent. This is the type of one-on-one story telling we work on with our clients.

  • Point out similarities between your current role and future goals.

    It is important to show admissions committee members that you are set up to succeed. Even if you are not able to gain experience in your future industry, there are likely to be past experiences you can draw upon. Think about the most important criteria for success in your future role and point out how you have already developed and demonstrated these skills.

PMC specializes in providing its candidates with tailored advice, helping them to articulate their unique stories.

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If you need personal support navigating your MBA application, reaching out to Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach may be worthwhile. PMC’s comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.

This article has been re-published from Personal MBA Coach’s blog.

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