As you prepare for the big day, go through each of these questions and list out concrete examples to help prove your points.
Tell me about yourself.
Introduce your personal brand and highlight the professional and personal themes that you want to address.
Why have you decided to apply to business school?
Be clear and concrete. You should be able to outline a practical career trajectory and articulate the advancement you expect from your MBA.
Why does this MBA program appeal to you?
Show that you have done your research. Have three or four very specific reasons and highlight any unique resources that you are particularly interested in.
There are so many qualified applicants. Why should we admit you?
Your personal brand is what differentiates you. Focus on your brand themes when answering this question.
What are your short and long-term goals? How do you plan to use your MBA?
Your short-term goals should be concrete and achievable, and your long-term goals should fit well with your passions and personality.
How will you contribute to our campus?
Mention clubs and leaderships opportunities that you are interested in, and highlight any unique passions that you would bring to the student body.
What is your biggest strength? Your biggest weakness?
Choose your weakness carefully. You want it to be genuine and believable, but not so detrimental that it will hurt your candidacy.
What kind of team member are you? Can you give an example?
Come prepared with several examples of how you have successfully worked in teams.
Tell me about a time where you overcame a particularly difficult challenge at work. How did you add value?
Think of an unusual challenge, and be able to explain it concisely, without getting too lost in the details.
What kind of leader are you? Can you give me an example of a time when provided extraordinary leadership?
Again, have several leadership examples ready to go. Ideally, these will be action-based, with tangible results that you can easily prove.
How would you colleagues describe you?
Highlight both professional and personal characteristics that will give an indicator of what kind of classmate you will be.
How would your supervisor describe you?
Remember that your supervisor, in all likelihood, wrote your recommendation. Your response should dovetail with their comments to paint a genuine picture of what you are like at work.
What are you most looking forward to in business school?
This is a great opportunity to show that you are ready for the challenges of business school and that you have thought about how you can use your time wisely.
What do you like most about your current work?
Showcase your passion. What do you absolutely love about your job?
What has been your most challenging or rewarding academic experience so far?
Again, this is a great opportunity to turn the conversation towards something that you are genuinely passionate about. Think about favorite professors, classes and research projects.
Why did you choose to attend your university?
Don’t give a generic answer here. Focus on concrete reasons, and then highlight how your university experience shaped you.
If you are admitted to our program, what do you think your biggest challenge will be?
Prove that you’re aware of the demands of an MBA. Be candid and then explain how you’ll address your new challenge.
Describe a time where you had to adapt to a different culture.
MBA classes are typically very diverse – show that you’re comfortable working with many different types of people and embracing unfamiliar cultures.
Describe a professional failure and how you overcame it.
Pick a legitimate failure – admissions officials do not expect you to be perfect. Then, focus most of your answer on how you overcame that failure. Always end on a positive note.
What are your hobbies?
Be ready to talk about what you like to do outside of work. Admissions officials want to get to know as a person, not just a worker.
What would your friends say about you?
Use this opportunity to highlight the character traits that you most value in yourself and others.
What do you think about [national or international current event]?
It’s always a good idea to read up on current events before an interview, so that you can converse fluently if called upon. Be careful not to get too political- just express an opinion politely and move on.
If you could change one thing about your professional life, what would it be and why?
Keep your changes within the business realm- perhaps a different industry or team within your firm. You do not want your interviewer wondering why you even entered the business world at all.
What do you want to be known for in life?
This is a pretty broad question; use your personal brand themes to anchor your answer. And above all, be sincere. Canned answers will not get you anywhere.
Do you have any questions for me?
This is your chance to address any concerns that you have about the program. You should have at least 2-3 specific questions prepared.
Personal and personality-based questions:
- Tell me about yourself/What would you like us to know about you that is not mentioned in your resume?
- What are the three most important events/incidents of your life?
- What are your three major accomplishments/achievements in life?
- Where did you grow up?
- What were you doing during this gap of time that is mentioned in your resume?
- What is that one experience in your life that you would want to go back and change?
- Describe yourself in three words.
- How would your friends describe you?
- Have you set any new goals for yourself recently?
- What are your five to ten year career goals?
- What are your career and educational goals?
- How would you like your lasting impression to be?
- What are your career options right now?
- Do you have a final statement?
- What are your career options right now?
- How do you think you have improved your career path?
- What does ‘success’ mean to you?
- What does ‘failure’ mean to you?
- What is more important to you: money or the type of job?
- Who do you admire? Why?
- What are you passionate about?
- Who is your hero and why?
- What are your strongest abilities?
- What is your biggest weakness?
- Give an example of something that you have done that shows initiative-taking ability?
- What have you disliked in your past jobs?
- What is that one quality that makes you stand out among your peers?
- What major problem have you encountered and how did you deal with it?
- Have you ever faced any failures? What did you learn from them?
- Can you work on several assignments simultaneously?
- What has been your greatest challenge?
- Are you creative? Give me an example. What have you done that you consider creative?
2. Management and Interpersonal skills based questions:
Management and leadership skills:
- Define leadership.
- Give me an example of a leadership role that you have played when not everything went as planned.
- Why management? Why this institute? How do you know that management interests you?
- Can business and ethics go together?
- What qualities should a successful manager possess? Do you have these attributes?
- What is management?
- How do you think it will help you? What are your career goals?
- Tell me how it will help you in business decision process?
- Suppose you have an assured monthly salary because of which you don’t face any compulsion to work, what would you do then?
- With management you are closing options and you will be serving only the corporate section?
- Would you still like to do an MBA?
- Have you ever managed a conflict? How?
- What kinds of people do you like to work with?
- Define cooperation.
- What kinds of people you cannot work with?
- Have you ever spoken before a group of people? How large?