GMAT 720 | Second MBA | IESE admit and program experience | Ankush’s story!




Experts’ Global: Hi Ankush, thank you for talking with us today! Could you kindly share your story in your words?

Ankush: My MBA journey began in 2019, prior to which I had seven years of work experience as well as a preliminary management education from IMT Ghaziabad. Deciding to complete an MBA that would give me global exposure, I gave the GMAT and applied to several schools, eventually securing admission to the IESE MBA in Barcelona.


Experts’ Global: In your opinion, what actions of yours made all the difference?

Ankush: At the start of the application journey, the entire path before me seemed quite overwhelming. Shifting my perspective to look at each task and step along the way as its own unit helped me in this regard. For the GMAT, I created a six-month prep strategy to optimize my studies alongside my work responsibilities and used a good GMAT online course too.

After taking the GMAT, I shifted to researching my targeted schools and reaching out to alumni and current students from the same. Networking and building relationships during this time helped me identify colleges with the best ROI for me, and gave me insight into which school’s culture would best fit me.

Experts’ Global: Looking back, what mistakes did you make along the way?

Ankush: Starting with my GMAT prep, there were days when I got caught up with other things and skipped studying for the test. Thankfully, I realized early on that I could not do this. Also, had I networked with greater intensity and started my outreach earlier than I did, I think I could have gotten more insight into a greater number of my targeted schools.


Experts’ Global: What common mistakes would you counsel all GMAT and MBA aspirants to avoid?

Ankush: Above all else, adopt a structured approach toward the many different tasks and steps that make up the application process. About the GMAT, make sure to analyze the GMAT mocks you take, and pay attention to the errors you make and how you could have done better.

While working on your application materials, try and solicit feedback from current students and alumni of your chosen schools. This can also help you in the MBA interview. Try and keep your list of targeted schools in the early tens at most, otherwise, your attention will be pulled in too many different directions.


Experts’ Global: What lessons did you take away from managing the application timelines?

Ankush: Getting started early is a huge boost. Do not get fixated on the GMAT alone, and try to make time for networking as soon as you can. Understanding your profile’s fit for each college and forming relationships with alumni and admissions committees will provide insight into how your essays are to be developed, and beginning early with outreach will benefit even your first essay drafts.


Experts’ Global: How would you describe your business school interview experience?

Ankush: My IESE interview in particular stood out to me. While I had my MBA interview prep well in hand, I was still nervous about the kind of conversation I would have. The process involved an interview and an assessment day where you work on case studies with other candidates and get a sense of the sociality of an MBA class.

My interview was with a member of the admissions team at IESE with whom I had already connected earlier, and the questions she asked me were mostly behavioral and examined my post-MBA motivations and expectations from the program. For the assessment day, I traveled to Singapore and worked with some of my MBA peers-to-be on case studies, and was able to get a sense of the rigor expected in the actual program.


Experts’ Global: How has your MBA experience been?

Ankush: My MBA experience was in-person, and what stood out to me early was the case-study-driven academic approach at the school. The idea was about examining fundamental business concepts and getting different perspectives on the same from the variety of professionals in the MBA class itself. Often, I have had my classmates share insights that have completely altered my life-long outlook on certain ideas.

Furthermore, getting to have personal conversations with individuals from such a variety of cultural backgrounds has been deeply transformative for me. The city of Barcelona is beautiful and provides a good escape from the hustle of the MBA sometimes. My IESE tenure has also helped me understand that alongside seeing the ROI and placement figures of colleges, one must also pay due attention to the ethos of a school.


Experts’ Global: How was your post-MBA job search, and what advice do you have for others about the same?

Ankush: The MBA application process is good practice for the post-MBA job search as the latter also requires you to start early and begin networking with the organizations that appeal to you. Better than sending out a CV and cover letter to a huge mailing list of potential hirers is to target around 10 companies and try and build relationships with professionals therein.


Experts’ Global: What lessons have you taken from the pre-application process and MBA into your post-program life?

Ankush: Working with MBA admissions consultants Experts’ Global, I was able to have a very meaningful pre-application experience. Introspecting considerably about my reasons for an MBA, my ambitions in the years ahead, and my professional and personal trajectory helped me figure out what my story was.

In the MBA too, having a sense of my motivations helped me figure out more quickly where I had to focus my energies concerning relationship building, academic effort, and employer outreach. The good thing is that the community in a business school is always intensely collaborative. There are a thousand different events going on on campus at any given moment, and there are always peers and professors with interests that align with yours on whom you can lean for support.


Experts’ Global: What is your final advice for our readers?

Ankush: Break down the journey into small sections. For the GMAT, plan your prep based on how much stamina you have to study intensely. Take a free GMAT practice test to understand what your extant level of understanding is. With the application process, try to select schools based on their ROI and cultural fit for you, instead of only focusing on rankings. Reach out to alumni and get an understanding of how each school’s community functions. Having this information in hand will make things easier when the MBA begins!


Experts’ Global: Listening to your story has been truly inspiring, and thank you for sharing it with us, Ankush!

Ankush: Happy to help!


Experts Global

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