How To Get Into Harvard Business School | Tips & Tricks From An Admissions Expert

Have you always dreamed of going to Harvard Business School? Are you 

planning on doing an MBA in the future and Harvard is one of the business 

schools you're considering?

Angela Guido is about to let you in on a few secrets about the Harvard MBA 

admissions process that you can’t miss if this is one of your dream schools! Even if you’re not currently applying, this #MBAMonday video offers great tips on getting ahead now if you’re thinking about applying in the future. And let’s face it, any extra advice for one of the top business schools in the world is welcome! 

Start your journey to Harvard MBA success now!

#MBAMondays #HarvardMBA #HBS

For more information and tips for Harvard MBA success, be sure to take a look at this article on why everyone is crazy in love with the Harvard MBA:

Check out our Special Harvard Brainstorming Exercises:

And read more about our recommended approach to the Harvard MBA Essay:

Check out the Ultimate Guide How to Get Into Business School:

Get Our Comprehensive MBA Career Report:

YouTube video

Prefer to read? Here’s the transcript:

Should You Apply To Harvard Business School? The Answer Is Yes!

The answer is yes! This is the first line of the email you're going to get if you're admitted to Harvard Business School. I'm Angela Guido. This is MBA Monday.

Harvard is everyone's favorite MBA program, Harvard gets more applications than any other school, it's the one school that people can almost never say no to. They have the highest yield, one of the largest student classes and one of the best reputations, the best reputation worldwide for all MBA programs. So, no one would blame you for wanting to get into Harvard. And in fact, my personal philosophy is you should just go ahead and apply to Harvard, even if you're not a strong fit, even if some of your statistics are out of whack. It's the best school in the world. Give it a shot! The worst they can say is no. Today, I'm going to tell you three big secrets. Secrets. There are no such things as secrets. I'm going to tell you three insider tips. I'm going to give you my take. Guess I should just go with secrets, right? I said just I should just own it. Secrets, secrets. Three secrets.

3 Tips For Harvard MBA Success

All right. I'm going to start by reading to you the email that you'll get if you're admitted to Harvard:

“The answer is yes. We see in you a leader who will make a difference in the world. I hope you feel happy, proud and excited to read this letter. Please thank your family, friends and colleagues who have helped you to this point.”

If you read between the lines of this email, Harvard is really expressing their values very clearly. Now, of course, you won't get this email until you get in, but let me dissect it for you.

  1. We see in you a leader who will make a difference in the world. This is the first secret of Harvard MBA admissions, and it's unfortunately something that you really can't fake. They are looking for people who want to lead positive change in this world. Full stop. That means that they're looking for people who are already seeking to make a difference in the communities that they're a part of. So, if you're watching this while you're still in college or early in your career, the best thing you can do right now to make yourself a great candidate for Harvard is to care. Care. Care about the people around you, about the community that you're a part of, about the organizations that you're in. Seek to make a difference. Try to take initiative. Make things happen for others. Be a mentor. Be a teacher. Be a guide. Be a leader of events. Be someone who is making good things happen all around you for everyone else. That's the number one thing that you can do to prepare for a Harvard MBA application. And if you're just seeing this six months before you apply and you haven't already been doing that, it may be too late. So that's really a piece of advice for the younger people who are still building their profile. As you are growing as a professional and building out your profile, make positive change and contribution be your guiding principle.
  2. Here's the second thing you really need to know about the Harvard MBA. The educational pedagogy is almost completely the case method. That means that in your first year, for the most part, you're going to be thrown right into the deep end alongside people who've been investment bankers, private equity analysts, management consultants and entrepreneurs, people who have already been running serious companies. And you're going to be asked to do all of the analysis and learning on your own on a given case, then come to the classroom and be ready to debate and participate with all of your amazing classmates who are incredibly experienced in business. What this means is that if you don't have a business background or if you didn't major in business or something quantitative, if your career has come up through education or nonprofit or in any area that's not hard-core business, you're going to need to show that you are ready to hang in that challenging classroom environment. So that means, first of all, be sure that your quantitative statistics are squared away. Ideally, your GPA, your GMAT  or GRE score are strong. You might even consider taking extra classes. APX Core is a very good one to consider. But also look for subtler ways to demonstrate your analytical aptitude and appetite. Things like having your recommenders speak to quantitative and analytical work that you've done, highlighting those types of projects on your resume, making sure that the Harvard admissions committee has no reason to doubt that you are absolutely ready to get thrown into the lion's den and win on class participation, discussing business issues with the greats of your generation.
  3. So I already said you need to care. That's important. That's about how you live your life and how you build your career. What I'm talking about now is how you show yourself in the essay. They ask this really great essay question: “What more do you want us to know?”, and I'm telling you right now that the biggest thing that you are going to want them to know is who you are on the inside. It's your character, it's your values. It's what drives you. It's what motivates you. It what it's what makes you ambitious to lead positive change in the world. So we have a lot more content on how to write the Harvard essay. There's a post on our blog that you can check out in the description. We have other videos on our YouTube channel which talk all about how to tackle that Harvard essay and really show heart in your application. But that is, in fact, what you need to do. You need to show them that you're someone who is going to make them proud as an alum because of the values you already hold.

Either Way, The Juice Is Worth The Squeeze

That's it. Three simple secrets. Care, take care of your analytical profile and show heart in your application essays. If you do those three things, you still may not get into Harvard. It's one of the most competitive programs out there and most people don't get it. But if you do all of that, you're maximizing your likelihood of success. And I really recommend you go for it. What have you got to lose? The worst they can say is no. Most people don't get in, but most people find that the process of applying to Harvard is rewarding in and of itself. Good luck. I know you can do it!

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Angela Guido

Student of Human Nature| Founder and
Chief Education Officer of Career Protocol

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Additional Resources:

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