First, congratulate yourself! You have made it through one colossal hurdle. For most schools that interview, the MBA admissions interview invitation means the written part of your application was strong enough to take you to the next stage. (There is a small subset of schools that interview candidates on the bubble. You should find out in which group you fall by reviewing your invitation, contacting the admissions office, students, or alumni, or participating in Accepted.com chats.)
Next, take a deep breath. Regardless of the category into which you fall, you need to relax. Anxiety will not help you in the interview or for your next step in the process: interview preparation.
You must prepare, prepare, prepare. Get to know your resume inside and out. Review each detail and ask yourself the question, “What would not have happened, had I not been a member of (fill in the blank) organization?” Ask it again and again and quantify your results. Did you increase revenue? Decrease costs? Increase Efficiency? Decrease cycle-time? Increase market share?
Review the Accepted.com website for MBA interview tips, its interview e-course, and its MBA interview feedback database. Check out MBA I.V.: Mainline to Top MBA Programs — MBA Interview Questions and Tips in the Accepted.com bookstore.
Read the school’s website, speak with students, alumni, and faculty. Think about your desire to attend that school and why you would be a proud alumna of that program.
Create 3-4 examples for common questions on leadership, team experiences, and goals. Use the StAR (state your example, describe the action, and quantify your results) method to direct your answers.
Finally, don’t forget to schedule your interview. The admissions committee will never get to know how truly wonderful you are unless you schedule that interview.
By Natalie Grinblatt, Accepted Editor and former Director of Admissions at the Ross, Johnson, and Carey MBA Programs.