If updating your resume for your MBA applications is one of the last items on your application checklist, it’s time to reorder your priorities!
The resume’s significance in the MBA admissions process cannot be overstated, and, with fewer essays, the resume’s importance is only growing.
Strong candidates might be overlooked if their resumes don’t do them justice. Worse yet, some promising applicants lucky enough to receive an interview invitation from a top business school end up being derailed when an interviewer, working from a poorly designed, generic resume, dubs them a “bit player” based upon that document and spends the interview confirming that first impression.
Winning the Job of “MBA Student”
Resumes are the places where we communicate our “brand” to both employers and MBA admissions boards; they are the tools we use to compete for coveted positions, and, in the world of MBA admissions, that coveted position is being a student at a top-tier MBA program. As a “job-placement tool,” the MBA applicant’s resume must be designed to secure two jobs at once: that of MBA student and your first job after graduating. The key to getting “hired” by a gimlet-eyed admissions officer is creating a document that showcases authentic successes—personal, professional, and academic—along with palpable leadership potential. Furthermore, your resume will be examined in light of your stated career goals, and if the admissions office is not convinced that a recruiter will be excited about interviewing you based on your resume, then your chance of admission will be seriously diminished.
Resume Content for MBA Applications
The qualities of a would-be business leader should jump from the page. These include strengths like analytical intelligence, self-awareness, and a teamwork orientation. MBA applicants need a resume that exemplifies academic excellence and demonstrates a track record of going above and beyond the call of duty professionally. The well-prepared resume writer has a strategy before he or she begins crafting the resume; the plan includes featuring the qualities that make him or her a fit at a given program. Admissions departments aren’t shy about publishing the qualities that make their students unique, and they expect applicants to demonstrate their fit in their resume. Keep in mind that a great resume will “show” how you fit because just telling the admissions committee you do will not be appreciated. The skills and qualities a candidate possesses shouldn’t appear as bulleted items at the top of a resume. Rather, they must brought to life in the presentation of accomplishments by your bullet points.
To the untrained eye a bullet point is a bullet point. You will want your action verbs to pop and your achievements to be memorable, like the summary of exciting short stories. You’ll leave the admissions committee wanting to read more. Every industry has its expected roles and responsibilities and standard metrics for measuring success. Use these to make sure your results and impact are quantified in your bullet points whenever possible. Sales increased, customers won, savings delivered are all the more credible and memorable when numbers are attached.
Resume Formatting for MBA Applicants
From a distance, recommended formatting of a resume for your application to a top MBA program is not remarkably different than your job resume: a single page, clearly written, error-free, with just the right amount of white space, ensuring readability without sacrificing quality content. Contact Info sits atop the document followed by Professional Experience and Education sections. The “Additional” category is one thing that sets the MBA application resume apart because it helps communicate what separates you from the other bankers, consultants, and software engineers against whom you are competing. Following reverse chronological order is expected, so list your most recent undertakings first.
Resume Editing Services for Your MBA Application Resume
MBA Prep School’s team of expert resume editors understands the unique challenges of MBA application resumes. Their experience will give you an edge in this critical aspect of your application. Because they’ve “seen it all” they can help your resume stand out from the competition. MBA Prep School’s editors will recommend specific, targeted ways to improve the quality and content of your resume. For information about our MBA Resume Editing Service visit our website: MBA Prep School Resume Editing Services
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