I always ask my clients to state their long and short-term goals for me on our first meeting. Eighty percent of the time I hear the response, “I want to be an entrepreneur.” So I begin to peel away at the onion.
• What problem is your business going to solve?
• Why is it different than a solution that exists today?
• Is there a market for the goods or services you plan to sell?
• How big is that market?
• Who is your competition?
• Can you patent your solution?
• What will your margins be?
• How will you finance this business?
• What is your expected return on investment?
• What is the exit strategy?
You can’t just say, “I want to be an entrepreneur” and leave it at that. You also can’t just have an idea or concept. You need to have the skeleton of an actual business plan if you want to credibly declare yourself an entrepreneur in your MBA application.
By Natalie Grinblatt Epstein, an accomplished Accepted.com consultant/editor (since 2008) and entrepreneur. Natalie is a former MBA Admissions Dean and Director at Ross, Johnson, and Carey.