The Secret to MBA Applications in 2022 | Why This Year is Different

The path into business school in 2022 is a little different to ages past. The world needs leaders to make a positive impact, and business schools know this. At the same time, those prestigious MBA-spots are more competitive than ever and the MBA cost continues to rise. But don’t panic! This week, Angela Guido lays out how that affects your MBA applications in 2022, and how you might beat the odds to get into your dream business school.

YouTube video

Prefer to read? Here’s the transcript:

Welcome back to season 3 of MBA Monday. I'm Angela Guido, the founder of Career Protocol, the web's most refreshing destination for no-nonsense career and MBA guidance and coaching. In keeping with the theme of no-nonsense nonsense, today I'm helping you tackle your MBA applications in 2022 while focusing on what really matters and jettisoning all the nonsense that's going to hold you back.

Okay, in this video, I’m going to kind of try to give you the lay of the land. Of all the resources we have on this channel, we’ve been going for a couple of years now, I’ve talked about dozens of MBA topics, so consider this video your orientation to MBA Monday with a focus on 2022. In the first couple of videos this season, we talked about is an MBA even worth it in 2022, and helped you think through whether you’re ready to apply or whether you might be looking at the MBA for one of the… let's not call them wrong reasons, but one of the reasons that makes it important that you do a little more work before you pull the trigger on applications.

Create A Solid Career Game Plan

The most important thing to understand about MBA applications in 2022 is that the cost of the MBA is climbing higher and higher, and MBA post-MBA salaries are climbing, but not at the same rate. What does that mean for your application? It means that schools are even more carefully scrutinizing your career game plan because the last thing they want is for you to get into school, pay all that money, and not get what you want out of your career. So more than ever in 2022, your career goals, your vision for your future, and the reasons why you need this specific MBA program that you're applying to are going to be in the foreground of your MBA application. So given that most deadlines are still really far away, take the next several months to do some soul searching to do some structured inquiry about who you are and what you really want in your career, so that when you put your applications together, your career game plan shines like a bright, shining star. We have so many resources on this channel to help you. Here's one video. Here's another one. Look at this one. Look over here. There are many more. Peruse the whole forest of MBA videos for any time we're talking about goals or the career game plan, I promise you you'll be glad you did.

Show Heart

The second big trend in 2022 MBA applications is heart. In case you hadn't noticed, the world is going through something. It's been a minute since things were normal and since everyone felt great about their daily lives. With all the various social movements and the pandemic and just general climate change and everything that's going on on this planet, making our daily lives more harrowing, more challenging, and more anxiety-ridden, it is more important than ever that you present a platform for ethical, heart-centered leadership in your MBA application. Everyone wants people to rise to positions of power who have the best interest of others at the center of their ambition. So schools are going to look at your character, they're going to look at your values, and they're going to look at your vision to understand if you're seeking an MBA just for your own gain – not that there's anything wrong with that, but it needs to be paired with a genuine desire to make the world a better place in a concrete way that matches your own values. So again, back to what I said before. It's time to do some soul searching to really figure out what impact you want to have in your career, so that you can present that in your applications. But that's just the career game plan. When you move into the essays – and we're going to talk a whole lot more about essays on this channel this season – but before you move into thinking about how to answer your essays, you need to get ready to tell epic stories about your life and about where you've tried to make the world better for others. You need to go through the process of discovering your experiences, your stories and your values. We have this amazing process that we call You Discovery that is a part of our entire MBA application package. It's the foundation of the success of all of our clients. It allows them to really look at themselves in the mirror and discover the parts of them that are the most noble, the most generous, and the most driven to create positive change in this world. So don't overlook that step. Don't submit an MBA application that doesn't include at least a little bit of how you are already and how you want to make the world a better place. It's just a just a sine qua non in 2022. So if you want more videos about epic stories, we've got a lot of them here on this channel. Check out some of these other videos. We'll also put the links down in the description.

Diversity & Inclusion

The third big trend in MBA applications for 2022 is diversity and inclusion. We saw this already in 2021. Many schools introduced questions specifically about the skills of diversity and inclusion, asking for examples of when you included others, or when you bridged cultures, or when you managed difficult conversations. I expect to see much more of this in 2022. And whether it's consciously on the surface, or if it's latent and implied, schools really want to know that you are adopting and embracing diversity as part of your ambition and part of your leadership style. So, there's still time. If you've not made any efforts to mentor people different from you, to include others, to have rich communication with people from different backgrounds, and even different geographies work to do that in the next six months before you apply. See if you can cultivate a little more compassion for people who are different from you, even if you consider yourself already very compassionate. This is a really great experience set to move the needle on before you apply. I want to talk about one of the downsides of diversity and inclusion, and that is the effect that it has on the candidate portfolio, the student portfolio that schools are assembling. This is really good news if you are from a background that we would call diverse. If you're from one of the minority groups of candidates who apply to and enter MBA programs, you know what they are. If you're not from one of those diverse categories – and you know who you are if you're not – then be prepared for extra pressure to be placed on your grades and scores, your GMAT, your GPA, and all of the sort of like measurable parts of your application. They're going to be that much more important in driving your success in the MBA application process. If you're from one of the large categories of applicants where schools see hundreds and hundreds, if not thousands of people from those categories. So get your grades and scores tight, is what I'm saying. Diversity inclusion I don’t have any videos about…

Make Every Small Detail Count

The fourth trend – the last trend – in MBA applications in 2022 is the T's and the I's. It's the finite detail. The MBA application process is getting more and more competitive. Application numbers are going up, but it's also true that strong candidates are seeking an MBA now just as much as they always have. What that means is, if you want to compete at the top, top schools, every single word of your application has to be tight. It has to show who you are. It has to convey meaning. It has to not waste words and not accidentally create the wrong impression about your goals, about your experiences, about your challenges. What this means is that you need to take the online application form really seriously. A lot of people think of it as a throwaway, it's something they do in the last minute. At Career Protocol, we actually put a lot of attention on the short answers with our clients because, believe it or not, I can tell why someone got rejected from Harvard by the third page of their application when I'm just looking at their rationale for pursuing an MBA, and how they describe their work and their biggest challenges. Every single word matters on your application. So take every part of it seriously and use the whole package of your application to make sure that you're conveying an amazing career game plan, your inspiring vision for heart-centered leadership, and that you are someone who is going to expand opportunities for others, including people of different backgrounds, in your application.

All right, that's your 2022 guide to Applying to Business school. I hope you will stick with us on #MBAMondays. We are going to be here every week spinning the NBA hits. Just hit the subscribe button. Ring that bell so that you get all the notifications and you don't miss a minute of MBA Monday in 2022. I'll see you next week!

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Angela Guido

Angela Guido

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

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