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, December 06, 2006

harvard interview: unplugged

Quickly bouncing back from an overdose of karaoke the other night, I have spent the last 3 nights prepping for the big day today. In retrospect, I wasn't too happy with the Kellogg interview, and wanted to do better for HBS. (I realize I rated the Kellogg interview a 7/10, but let's be honest, that's 70%, a C-. And when did anyone ever walk out with a C- and feel happy about it?)

Anyhoo, the interview wasn't exactly how i expected, but i felt very very prepped, and definitely felt like it went well!!! Here's a recount of the questions that were asked (although many were experience-specific), and my thoughts as it was happening.

1. We had some friendly conversation as we sat down in her office. (We are sitting, we have talked, and i didn't shake her hand OR ask her her name!! My mother would be ashamed! ) "Sorry, i don't think I caught your name...?" (Ahh, nice recovery!) Then she told me she thought my app was interesting and unique - yay!

2. She asked a specific question about one of my accomplishments. I started to answer, then promptly forgot exactly what she asked. I actually still can't remember, but i'm pretty sure it wasn't what i answered...oops! oh well - still 25 min left to recover!

3. It's obvious you've done a lot of research. What concerns do you have about Harvard? (hmmmmmmm...didn't prepare this one, but thought of 2 quickly, both of which she responded thoroughly)

4. Why HBS? (um, do i lose points if i say the same thing i wrote in my essay? luckily i had the class visit to talk about!!)

5. What do you want to do in your internship, right after business school? How did you get there? (think this came out ok! Managed to throw in a few "here are my strengths so of course i want to do XYZ")

6. What are the challenges in your current role? How do you handle them? (hmmm - what is the nicest way to say the group i support is insane, and they are sometimes kinda mean to me b/c i'm in finance without sounding like i'm about 5 years old?)

7. Then, out of left field, "What book are you reading right now?" (hahaha - as if any of us applicants have time to read? is this a trick question? Anyway, i had actually prepared this one - there is a large potential it sounded rehearsed, but better than trying to remember back in the summer when i had this activity formerly known as "free time.")

8. Do you have any questions? (Well sure, i did, but we have already addressed them in the "concerns" portion of this interview. Why don't you want to talk about me any more?)

We ended after 30 minutes pretty much on the dot. The interviewer took notes almost the whole time, but she was very warm & friendly, and made me feel comfortable right away.

So, overall i felt good walking out, although that status does get worse by the hour (damn you, overanalyzing mind!) I was surprised she didn't ask more about my international experience or my community service. I was thrilled she didn't ask the dreaded question: "Why should we choose you?" Most importantly, the voice in my head kept thinking "wow - these answers are actually coming out sounding pretty ok. GO YOU!"

so happy to be done!!! let the waiting games begin :)

28 Comments:

Blogger Iday said...

damn you, overanalyzing mind!
yeah. Damn them :(

The interview looks good to me. Congrats :)

Good luck for the results.

10:44 PM  
Blogger Alex said...

Congrats, sounds like a well done interview

3:29 AM  
Blogger rungee582 said...

haha... yes, go you! :) Nice to have that out of the way, and with a good result no less!

4:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent interview! It had "flow" (like Eminem's songs :-) ) and that's the best thing. To interact smoothly with your interviewer. When you get your accepptance note, just let us know... :-)

9:25 AM  
Anonymous leoaueb said...

Excellent interview! It had "flow" (like Eminem's songs :-) ) and that's the best thing. To interact smoothly with your interviewer. When you get your accepptance note, just let us know... :-)

9:25 AM  
Blogger Linda Abraham said...

It sounds to me like it went well. If you have a couple of minutes and would be willing to also share your interview experience in the MBA Interview Feedback Database, (http://accepted.com/mba/interviews/interview_TEMP.asp?bhcp=1 ) it would be appreciated.

Good luck!

10:59 AM  
Blogger Linda Abraham said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:00 AM  
Blogger Forrest Gump said...

sounds pretty darn good. all the best for the admit.

5:43 PM  
Blogger MBA babe said...

thanks everyone!! I'm feeling pretty good about it still, but mostly relieved that it's over! (as are my friends and family who have been forced to mock-interview me everytime they call to say hello) :)

8:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had a similar experience with an alum.

he said my application was great!And everything went perfect from then on, didnt try to put me under stress at all. We talked about 1 hour.( he shared insights about HBS etc for 35mins). He replied to my thank you note as well.

It is really tough to wait till decision date. Very hard to concentrate on other applications when you feel like you are already in at HBS.

10:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congrats! :)

Did you have your interview with the adcom or alumni? I am from SF as well, and I was just wondering if we had the same person interview us! :)

6:23 PM  
Blogger MBA babe said...

@anon #1: glad to hear you had such a positive experience, too! Not sure if i feel exactly like a shoo in, but at this point i can sleep well knowing i did my best in my essays and interview. hopefully that is enough!! Good luck to you! :)

@anon #2: i interviewed at the research center down in menlo park - is this where you had yours as well? (ie. in the middle of nowhere) :)

6:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yep, I had mine at the research center as well! I believe the interviewer's name was Hilary... very friendly woman. She was super easy to talk to! I hope we get in. Best of luck to you!

8:13 PM  
Blogger MBA babe said...

@anon - yep - that was her! speaking of, did she by any chance give you her email address?? (how did i manage to walk out w/out getting her card...ugh)

anyhoo - i hope we get in, too :) good luck!

12:48 PM  
Blogger Hilibilly said...

I came in late here. So tell me, do you think repeating yourself from the essays makes you lose points? I repeated my long term goals verbatim from the damn essays:(

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