Getting an MBA degree is one thing. Getting one that is respected and will make a difference to your career might be altogether different. Many of us just want an MBA degree from a decent university. That’s it. But remember, almost everyone does MBA only once. So it becomes all the more important to keep certain factors in mind before applying to a school. Application process is expensive and time consuming. Back of the envelope calculations – USD 28 for another 20-25 USD for courier etc. and if you have a consultant then add another USD 200. So, getting the right set of schools is very important. Here is what you should do:
1) Talk to other aspirants and alumni : Get information on the strengths of the school, placements statistics, alumni network etc. Take advantage of the info sessions which schools organize and the various communities to interact with other aspirants. e.g. Many ISB aspirants interact with ISB alumni through www.goISB.com
2) Check the rankings of Schools which rate schools on different parameters. This is valueable information for you to decide the right mix ( may be two top schools, one easy one and one where you are sure to get through ( just as a backup) ). Don’t just look at the ranks but also at other parameters like no. of students placed in consulting etc. and avg. salaries.
3) If you happen to be in the same city visit the school. This will give you lots of insights which others wont have and a great point to write in the essays.
4) Filter schools by the broad criteria – e.g. expenses within 30 lacs, one year, good finance placements etc.
5) Make a correct peckiong order of schools depending on the application deadlines. Sometimes deadlines also alter the list of schools you want to apply to. You can get details on school deadlines etc HERE