Tips to Build a Solid Business School Application Resume – Expert Speak

Confused over how to improve your Resume to get into the b-school of your choice?

We had Mansie Dewan, founder of Mansie Dewan Consulting and author of the bestseller: Destination MBA: Showing You How to get There, discuss questions related to resume building. With professional experience of over 7 years, Mansie is an expert at guiding students towards their MBA dreams.

 (Image courtesy: collabal.com)

What would be the ideal MBA resume for an engineer?

A business school resume for all kinds of professionals should reflect and highlight achievements and the positive impacts on one’s organization. A business school resume is different from an employment-seeking resume: the latter should highlight your technical expertise, skills and industry specific know-how. The purpose of a B-school resume is to provide a short but power packed summary of your career progression and achievements. It also shows that your work and other experiences relate to your post MBA goals.

Some pointers to keep in mind for a business school resume:

  1. – Restrict it to one page unless your work experience is more than 8-10 years
  2. – It needs to be easy on the eyes. So keep the fonts simple and ensure adequate white space
  3. – Avoid technical jargon
  4. – Highlight leadership roles and responsibilities taken
  5. – Begin each point with an action verb
  6. – Give maximum importance to your most recent experience
  7. – Education comes after Professional Experience

Are there any particular types of extra-curricular activities that b-schools look out for?

There are no set rules for this. It depends entirely on what your interests are. Extra-curricular activities show that you are a well-rounded person with diverse interests. They show that you are more than just your academic and professional experience.

How to devote space for work experience if you’ve worked in multiple companies?

Devote maximum space to your most recent experiences. Your current experience relates best with your post MBA goals and these are the very experiences that help you describe and present yourself. Use space for earlier stints judiciously and do not devote more than 2-3 bullet points for each one. If you’ve recently changed jobs and do not have much to speak about your current employer, then it’s fair to dedicate more space to the earlier experience. However, the key is to talk about achievements and impact.

 

Can we make up for a weak Extra-curricular Activities section if we have a strong Work Experience?

A lot of successful MBA applicants do not have strong Extra-Curriculars. That is because business schools understand that sometimes, applicants are strapped for time with their academics and professional lives and may not get time to pursue other activities and interests. Lack of Extra-Curriculars can be compensated by other aspects of your profile like quick career progression and growth as well as demonstrated leadership potential.

If you are engaged with an NGO or a voluntary not-for-profit organization, is it worth mentioning in your main application essay?

That depends on the kind of work you’ve done for the organization. If your contribution has been consistent, meaningful and impactful and also shows the strength of your personality, then you may use it in one of the essays. Otherwise, a mention in the online application will suffice.

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