January 28, 2008

Waitlist - Best Practices

Can you grovel your way off of a business school wait list?...well the video below answers the same:

If you have been put on waitlist then this does not imply that you have been rejected. It is neither yes nor no but may be situation for you. It basically means that you fulfill the criterion that the school is looking for, but still there are some other factors because of which you may have not been admitted. In short the admission committee is not fully convinced about giving you admit in their school, but yes is willing to give you a chance.

Every school has its own differing attitudes on the wait-list policy. For example Harvard does not use the wait-list to reevaluate credentials and Wharton has "no additional materials" wait-list policy. However, few B-schools do invite additional information from wait-listed applicants such as new GMAT scores or a promotion at work. Some schools even provide the feedback on weaknesses and gaps in the waitlisted candidate’s applications. If you have been wait-listed by the latter category of school make sure that you do not ignore the instructions provided to you by the same. For example if in its feedback the school says that you have low GMAT score then they expect you to give the GMAT again and improve your score. If you have been put on wait-list by more than one school, then in such a case you should re-examine your application. Consider applying to other schools that may have a different take on your application.

The competition for getting to a b-school is very intense these days as the number of applicants are growing each year. For example MIT Sloan waitlisted about 150 applicants which is 5% of the total application pool—50 of whom were ultimately admitted, according to data the school provided to BusinessWeek.com. Quoting from BusinessWeek.com: "At B-schools such as Darden that have multiple deadlines, being put on the waitlist is often more like a deferral—waitlisted candidates from Round 1 are considered along with the rest of the applicant pool from the next deadline, becoming, in effect, Round 2 applicants. Schools with rolling admissions may waitlist more people early on in the process until the admissions office has a better handle on what the entire applicant pool for the year will look like". Wharton evaluates R1 waitlist with R2. In case you are a strong candidate when compared to the R2 pool then you would get an admit. So basically some schools may use wait-list policy as a yield management tool, while others may consider it as a we may consider you list.

Treat the wait-list as an opportunity since it is not a “no”. There are large numbers of applicants who are admitted off of the waitlist in most schools. Schools have varying policies, but in most cases, submitting a higher GMAT score, a letter updating them on your progress, visiting the school campus etc can really help getting in. It’s important that you convey to the school that you remain interested and would attend if admitted.

"The 9 Mistakes you do not want to do when on an MBA Waitlist"- Linda Abraham founder and president of Accepted.com

1. Ignore the school instructions on how to improve your profile.
2. be modest about your recent achievements.
3. Hide your genuine interest in the school
4. Don't seek expressions of support (read:unsolicited recommendation letters)
5. Plan a one-time deluge of correspondence
6. Fail to re-assess your profile and/or act on re-assessment
7. My favorite sin: Complain to the Ad COM about the agony of being waitlisted
8. Accentuate Ad Com's attention on weaknesses of your profile or apologize profusely for the mistakes in your application
9. Play schools off against each other

Some good links you should visit:
Business week's
survey of top b-school waitlist practices: How to survive the waitlist
MBA Podcastor: Getting off the Waitlist: How to Improve Your Chances of Getting Accepted
Accepted.com: Waitlisted

January 20, 2008

MBA education in India

The other day there was an article on the group : World class fits for new India school

On going through this article and comments from various GMAT aspirants few questions popped up. After discussing these questions with few MBA professionals, this is what we concluded:

Ques 1: What is the overall thing missing in Indian MBA education system?

Ans: It is very difficult to pin point a single reason here. Few main aspects that can be pointed out are:
i) Faculty - Today, the faculties in MBA colleges are paid poorly (apart from say top 20 colleges) - Why would a good teacher like to teach at low salary in these institutes. Only the very passionate, or the biggest fool (pardon my language) would like to venture. The institutes make good amount of money - but the share going to the teachers is very less, and they do not have any skin in the game too.
How about something on the lines of ESOPs? Or Salaries linked to the placements? In that case, there will be some linkages to the remuneration earned by students - and possibly help in getting good teachers.
ii) We do not see any linkages between the industry and the institutes. The institutes go their own way and the industry goes its own. In fact, most of the MBA colleges do not have campus placements - even without campus placements there are enough/ many takers.
iii) Expectation Setting - In a country of poor people, if one gets to earn twice his father - he/ she feels that they have reached their goals. So, if I am earning say 5,000 per month prior to MBA, and after paying a fees of Rs 2 lacs, I get to earn say 30,000 per month - it provides an ROI of 150% - that is enough of an incentive (more so, if I am earning more than any one in my neighborhood). So, beyond a point, the students also do not try very hard to excel.

Well, one can go on and on... still we will not reach a point of conclusion. I see a good opportunity for someone to set up a management school with a difference.

Ques 2: Do we need foreign universities in India?

Ans: The foreign universities may make some impact on the management education in India. These universities will certainly charge higher fees and some of it will trickle to the teachers, and some, some more professionals may think of taking up teaching as a career. So, foreign universities may serve as a trigger - beyond that how much it will impact is a question. The demand for education is so high, that even if another 100 institutes come up - the existing ones can remain complacent as ever.
In the past there have been foreign institutes coming in different forms - how much they have succeeded is a question. Have you heard of Thunderbird? (They hold some semesters in India and some in Canada and they offer degrees from Canada). Similarly there is Manipal Ohio - in collaboration with the Manipal University. How much impact have they made to management education is an open question. Barring ISB - the foreign universities have made no real investments in facilities or the hard infrastructure. Most will offer course materials, case studies etc - the real investment is zero, as these investments are just incremental - but they will always put a value. So, many universities will like to partner with some entity here and would like to have a chunk of the brand.

Going beyond the discussion - Maybe the new Indian Universities be a reasonable bet to start with.

Ques 3: With high GDP growth why there are less employment opportunities? Is underemployment the factor here?

Ans: Firstly - There is something called "jobless" growth - when the productivity growth is more than the GDP growth. Thus, with the new enhanced machinery - we can produce three times more, whereas people needed are just another 50% more. An example maybe - implementation of IT systems - it does not necessarily lead to employment of extra people. Railways may be issuing 5 times more tickets - but today, thanks to Online Reservation, Automated Platform Ticket vending machines etc. the number of people manning the counters has not increased in that fashion.
Secondly, the cost of capital has come down in the last 10 years. Labor and capital are substitutable - so if cost of capital comes down, we employ more capital than labor. An example is - earlier, we required more people to lay roads - but today we substitute labor with productive machines.
Thirdly - In the last few years, the number of hours being put in by people has been steadily increasing. Thus, the companies do not necessarily hire to meet the shortages. Labor being inflexible resource to an extent - once hired it takes a while to remove it, even if the firm does not do well.

Underemployment is a big issue. Many people would not like to take up jobs in BPOs, but Retail is opening up. The MBAs - all they want to join the big companies - and there, you won’t get major opportunities to make much difference. The real opportunities for MBAs lie in the smaller firms that wish to grow and they need the managerial talent

Most of the MBAs in India are getting underemployed - today MBA is becoming like an entry ticket to a career like being a graduate say 15 years back. It is becoming a minimum entry criterion for jobs. In smaller colleges you will find that most of the students do get placed in banks, insurance firms - and they invariably start as Customer Service Executive! And we all know what the job involves.

Ques 4: Will the improvement in the quality of colleges help?

Ans: The quality of colleges will be of help - because, some firms which do not wish to go beyond certain colleges - may venture beyond the set. As of now, as the supply of good MBAs is limited, it dictates the price differentials between the leading and lagging institutions. Today, the lower rung MBAs have started joining the entry level jobs at ITES firms. They do not bring the skills to be deployed at leading firms.

Ques 5: Will more MBA colleges help in agriculture or in the other problems like education, health care that India is facing? Do we need Whartons and Harvards to churn out more CEO’s?

Ans: Actually, more number of colleges will certainly not be of much help - as long as we keep churning the same material - we do not really do any major value add over the basic graduation courses they have done. What we need is possibly a stress on entrepreneurship. Apart from the very top institutions (that too doubtful) very few take the road to entrepreneurship. We have to have the programs made in such a manner that much of the uncertainties of entrepreneurship has to be taken out - how many institutes ever help a student to make even a simple business plan. There is so much of Government support in the form of subsidies/grants/loans etc. - if the youngsters are trained to build upon that - we can solve a big problem. In the current context, the MBAs are only feeding the industry - and there is no incentive for the corporate to promote entrepreneurship - they want more employees.
If the MBA students, during the course of the program are made aware of opportunities in different domains - and how to go about it, I am sure we will make a difference. We spend so much time in preparing for some course requirement contributing to 1% marks - but do not invest in some thing having more impact as a business plan.

Secondly, there is a do we need more Harvards and Whartons to create more CEO’s. What we need is more enterprises - CEOs will follow.

An interesting development in this area - Art of Living is launching mini MBA of 3 month duration. For small ventures - with medium complexity, one does not need a 2 year education. So, one can conceive of a management education of 3 months, focused on entrepreneurship and duration of 3 months - to be run with military discipline! Some of the essence of good management begins with getting up early and managing your day well - and rest will fall in place!

January 19, 2008

China Europe International Business School (CEIBS)

China Europe International Business School (CEIBS)

Average GMAT: 687
Range of GMAT: 640-740
Average Age: 29.5 years
Average work exp: 5.9 years
Average starting salary: $20,000
Full time MBA program length: 18 months

International Exchange

Class Profile 2007
Recruiting Companies


January 17, 2008

Reasons for Rejection!

Know the reasons to why the applications get rejected. The panel of admissions experts divulge some of the reasons why applicants are rejected. Many of the reasons you can prevent...

INSEAD France/ Singapore

INSEAD France/ Singapore

Average GMAT: 702
Range of GMAT: 650-750
Average GPA: 4
Average Age: 29 years
Average work exp: 5 years
Average starting salary: $106,043
Full time MBA program length: 1 year

Participants Profile
INSEAD Campus Exchange
INSEAD MBA admission chat at accepted.com
INSEAD Career Report 2006

INSEAD Singapore July 2006

January 12, 2008

HEC School of Management - Paris

HEC School of Management - Paris

Average GMAT: 670
Range of GMAT: 590-750

Average GPA: 3.6

AverageAge: 29 years

Average work exp: 6 years

Average starting salary: $100,568

Full time MBA program length: 16 months

9 Double degree programs available

Participants Profile
Power point presentation
HEC Paris representative Interview
HEC Bloggers

HEC MBA Tournament (MBAT) 2006 (extended):

January 7, 2008

Career Launcher to open B-school in Greater Noida!

Career Launcher, which has been primarily training aspirants of Masters in Business Management (MBA) for entrance exams, is all set to launch the Indus World School of Business (IWSB). The residential B-School will kick off at a six-acre campus in Greater Noida. CL will give away a two-year MBA degree from Punjab Technical University (PTU) and a diploma from ISWB, upon completion of the course..Read more on the link below:

Career Launcher to open B-School in Greater Noida

January 4, 2008

PGP Admission Process for IIMB Batch of 2008

For the first time IIM has disclosed its selection process. Ever wondered what will get you in bschools? What role is played by GMAT; CAT scores, academics, group discussions, interviews etc....

Details on IIMB official site at the link below: