Sample Recommendation Letter

How long have you known the applicant and in what capacity?

I have known the applicant since 2006, as his undergraduate degree capstone project and master degree thesis advisor, and also as his supervisor at Accenture. Philip has demonstrated his exceptional attributes in academic as well as professional arena. As a student, he excelled in my Valuation course. His capstone project on estimating the Catholic Church market value and his master degree thesis on the Brazilian short-term interest rate were original, effective and impactful. Certainly, he belongs to the top five percentile among all the students and employees I have already supervised. As a consultant at XXX ( name of company), he demonstrates excellent analytical capabilities and strong leadership skills. Also, he has been responsible for several initiatives under my direct supervision.

What characteristics or attributes best describe the applicant?

As mentioned before, Philip combines excellent analytical capabilities with strong leadership skills. He is also very self-motivated. In our last project, he was the only full-time consultant allocated to the client, so he kept himself and the client team engaged, managing most of the interaction with the client with minor supervision. Philip has demonstrated strong leadership skills and emotional intelligenceinthe projects we have worked together. He acted as a project leader, coordinating teams composed by Accenture and client team members. He also developed an excellent relationship with the client’s team, formed mainly by public servants with years of work experience in the public sector, establishing proper communication between our firm and the client. When he joined our team, I warned him that we were facing a relationship gap with the client’s team. He was able to address this situation by building rapport with key contacts on the client side, and succeeded in resolving friction with the client, delivering high quality solutions in the scheduled time and forecasted budget.

In what area is the applicant most exceptional?

Philip has strong interpersonal skills. He is our focal point for the client and solves issues related to the interaction of both teams. With his positive attitude and intellectual curiosity, he copes well with the common pressure in consulting for fast results. For example, as soon as he arrived at the project, he had to develop a new model for estimating the aggregated credit risk of a special portfolio in just two weeks. He was able to handle this situation, suggesting a Bayesian model and comparing it with a baseline model to show the potential gains in forecasting performance. Besides that, he noticed that the client team was inexperienced in Bayesian models, so he offered a workshop to transfer knowledge.

In what area does the applicant need the most improvement?

I consider that Philip must continue improving in keeping the models simple. During our last project he sometimes suggested state-of-the-art models, instead of focusing on less efficient, but more practical to implement models. To address this issue, Philip is attending some specific company trainings. He is aware of his potential point to improve, and I believe he will be able to address this gap shortly.

How well do you feel the applicant handles disappointment or differences of opinion?

Regarding disappointment handling, I have seenPhilip several frustrating events, from not being allowed to take some elective courses to being offered an initial salary at XXXX a little lower than in his previous job. What was common to these situations was his determination to find alternatives to reduce frustration and, when there were no alternatives, his resilience and maturity to deal with the situation.

Please indicate to which group you are comparing this candidate (i.e., co-workers, MBA graduates, etc.)

With co-workers, undergraduate students and graduate students (PhD and MSc), asI have known Philip as a professor/advisor on undergraduate and graduatestudies, and also as a direct supervisor while working at XXXX.

In terms of the qualities listed below, please give us your appraisal of the applicant:

Exceptional(Top 5%) Outstanding(Top 15%) Above Average(Top 1/3) Average(Middle 1/3) BelowAverage(Bottom 1/3) Unableto assess
Intellectual ability
Analytical ability
Ability to work with others
Oral communication
Written communication
Managerial potential

Overall Rating

Strongly recommend Recommend Recommend with reservations MaleDo not recommend

Other comments

I believe Philip has the skills needed to attend well the MBA Program at Goizueta, combining technical knowledge with managerial capabilities on a high level. It is important to highlight that as a result of his strong performance he was rated as an “above performer” in his first year as consultant at Accenture, something that is really uncommon. My final comment is totally based on our experience together, in different contexts both in academia and industry. Therefore, I strongly recommend his admission into Goizueta MBA Program.