You did it! After months of test prep, research and writing iteration after iteration of essays, you submitted completed applications to top MBA programs. Congratulations! Now you can breathe, sleep, and finally eat!! We’ve been there. Suddenly, you feel a little lost. The day after deadlines, you come home from work and have no idea what to do with your time! What did you do before application season started? Our clients often ask — well, what do I do now? Wait with bated breath for an interview invite? Well, that would be one approach. Here’s another.
- Week One: Breathe. Decompress. Reconnect with the friends and family you’ve neglected for months. Take a yoga class. Catch up on your DVR shows. Netflix binge over the weekend. Go for a long walk. Have dinner at your favorite restaurant. You deserve it.
- Week Two: First task, order gifts for your recommenders. Thank them for helping you achieve your goal. When I applied to business school, I only applied to two programs, and my immediate manager told me that it took him EIGHT hours to complete my recommendations. Someone sacrificed time for you — say ‘Thank You’ and say it well. My suggestion: Something thoughtful that will last. Second, stay off of the business school forums! Interview invitations will begin to roll out and nothing will add to your anxiety more than to see that someone else has received an interview invite before you have. Remember, admissions officers are literally sorting through THOUSANDS of applications. Perhaps your package is in the middle of the pile. Be patient!
- Week Three and beyond: Start researching and networking AGAIN! Why, you ask? You are not done. When your interview invitation arrives, you want to be prepared. Keep up with current happenings and the school’s social media pages. Continue to speak with alumni and current students and build relationships. When you receive your acceptance phone calls and letters, you’ll face yet another decision. Your ongoing research could help make that decision easier. If you’re wait-listed, the relationships you build and maintain could prove useful in getting off the wait-list and getting into the program. And, while we hope this won’t be the case, if you’re rejected, you’ll be better positioned for re-application.
Most importantly, pat yourself on the back and celebrate your massive achievement of completing the business school application process! You’ve invested in your future, pushed fear aside and taken the biggest step to becoming a part of the MBA Class of 2018!
Shaquita Basileo is Director of Social Media and Marketing and an Admissions Consultant with MBA Catalyst. Her clients have received acceptance and fellowships to top MBA programs, and many continue to seek her advice in their career searches. Shaquita is a 2007 graduate of Stanford Graduate School of Business and has experience in the IT consulting and retail industries. She lives in Falling Waters, West Virginia with her husband and her five year old daughter and teaches fitness classes. For more information about MBA Catalyst, visit http://www.mbacatalyst.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.