the trials and tribs of an MBA hopeful!

Come join me in coffee shops, hiding in conference rooms at work, and generally giving up my entire social life as I work on my MBA applications!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Kellogg interview: unplugged

When you are interviewing, ever feel like you are having an out of body experience? You are talking, but at the same time the voice in your head thinks, "what am i saying?! how can i make this stop????" Or, if you're lucky, "WOW - i just sounded so intelligent. GO, ME!" In my case it was pretty much a combo of the two. So, here's an account of the questions that were asked, and my in-the-moment thought process:

1. We had some awkward chats waiting for coffee. "How was your day." Me: "you know, normal." (really? normal? that's the best i could think of??? nice start, my friend. Interviewer - 1; MBA babe - 0)

2. So, tell me about yourself. (Wait - is this the walk me through your resume part or is she just being friendly? probably resume as we're certainly not on a date! Why did I just start with my current job?? Is it ok to backtrack???)

3. What are your career goals? Why do you want an MBA? Why now? Why Kellogg? (so many questions! i had prepared these separately. I hope she doesn't fall asleep as I talk for 10 minutes straight. Career goals? hmm she seemed slightly confused. Why MBA? check. Why now? check. Why Kellogg - i only got out 1 out of 4 reasons...oops. ran out of steam i guess)

4. Looking at your resume, can you elaborate on how you led this team, what are the details? (this is the 4th bullet down - definitely was not expecting this. hmm, coming out ok though surprisingly! niiice!)

5. Tell me about a time you were on a team that did not go well. (omg - why am i talking about this experience? i didn't resolve anything here at all. shoot, think quick on your feet. nope...got nothing. dammit! *excuse the language - it was much worse in my head*)

6. Tell me about a time you failed. (no prob! i even have a story w/ a happy ending)

7. What would you contribute to Kellogg? (rambling, rambling, make it stop! make it stop!)

8. How would you be involved? (oooh - nice way to fit in my community service achievements as an opener)

9. How are your strengths conducive to your career goals? (ok - rambled a bit, but got my points in)

10. Question time! (She was a big talker, LOVES kellogg, so no prob here. i'm a chatter too - think it ended on the right note)

Being my first interview in over 4 years - (yikes!) - I think the best thing I can do now is evaluate how it went and how to improve from here. First, I should have done more formal prep. I used the same gestures over and over (did you really just make the quotations gesture again??) and felt like I was rambling a bit at times (stop talking!!!) However, the interviewer was very informal and friendly so she made me feel like I had done ok. It's just so hard to tell! Should that elusive interview invite come from harvard, i will definitely start my prep much ahead of time.

Overall: 7/10.

20 Comments:

Blogger inblue said...

quite an experience ! I can understand how that must have been. May be in those shoes next week or so with my Chicago interview.

11:36 PM  
Blogger Forrest Gump said...

looks like you did pretty ok. good luck for a positive decision.

12:31 AM  
Anonymous Hobbes said...

ha ha ha! MB, u have quite a way of putting up these things! :) It seems to have gone well :) Good luck for this and HBS invite too! :)

12:52 AM  
Blogger Iday said...

A 7 on 10 performance is pretty neat. Looks like both u chatters had a nice time :)

Congrats on the good show!

2:34 AM  
Blogger mba_salsera said...

I know exactly what you mean. I have the same problem, I think I ramble on too much and then I'm thinking in my head how I can just shut up and not sound abrupt. Ugghhh. I must prepare better for those interviews that matter the most. Nice post and sounds like you pulled out of it alright! Good luck!

9:13 AM  
Blogger MBA babe said...

@inblue - good luck w/ your chicago interview!!

@forrest gump - thanks - i will keep you posted :)

@hobbes & iday - :) thanks!!

@mba salsera - Thanks! definitely will prepare more next time. let me know how your next interview goes :)

4:08 PM  
Blogger MBABlogger said...

Wow this was a good one :) Good luck

7:21 PM  
Blogger StressTensor said...

That was a very good replay. Thanks for posting the questions and your spontaneous reactions.

All the best!

8:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

sounds like you had good rapport with your interviewer. not sure I can say the same... proof is in the pudding I suppose.

1:10 PM  
Blogger MBA babe said...

thanks everyone! i am feeling a lot better about the interview :) Good luck to you all in your upcoming interviews!!!

2:55 PM  
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