Personal Branding is Key to MBA Application Success: Ex-Harvard Admission Officer

Personal branding is key to MBA application success: ex-Harvard admission officer

Do you want to know the secret for standing off the crowd for successful admission into the B-school of your dreams? As per an ex-Harvard admission officer, the key to this success lies in personal branding.

Humans have the habit of categorizing things into usually two groups. This happens autonomously almost unconsciously in our minds. But with the right personal branding this common habit of admission officers can be tackled with. As they often tend to pile students into two categories – the ones they want and the ones they do not want.

Understanding personal branding:


While the concept of branding is easy to understand in business as it is the way to properly summarize what a company does and how it wants to represent itself. For instance, when you think of Apple you immediately think of phones that are high quality, high end in pricing, graphical details of their phones and computers and the ease of use. And when you think of Nike you immediately think of sport shoes and other sporty apparel for everyday wear.

 But it is important to note in both cases that the company branding does not summarize all the important details of the company correctly. While one can speak a lot more about the brands Apple and Nike, branding only provides a small snapshot of everything the company does.

An MBA applicant can use personal branding in the same way. Most MBA applicants often get hung up on trying to summarize their whole life with the use of personal branding. But that is not what they should aim for. In fact this might even prove to be counterproductive as it will dilute their brand image. The way they should use personal brand is by telling people something that they must know about you to identify you with that brand. Think of how you may want the admission officers to describe you in just a sentence or two after reading your application and create a personal brand on the same lines.

Remember that while a personal brand statement is short but you will not be able to wing it and knock it out of the park within just one afternoon. In fact a personal brand is crucial to speak about you. Hence, a lot of planning and thought should go into it. Try writing several sample statements for your personal before you finalize the right one. A clear and concise personal brand will help to pave the road map for your MBA application and for your future endeavors.

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