Welcome to week 7 of our weekly series of answering MBA aspirants' queries about the intense and challenging MBA application process. Their questions cover various aspects of the application, including their eligibility for the program, age, GMAT prep, GPA, waitlist, employment gap, academic gap, job switch, second MBA, and much more.
This candidate has a business background and asks about preparing for GMAT and applications in parallel and selecting/guiding her recommenders.
I did my bachelor's in multimedia from ____college in Amritsar. I have a GPA of 3.66. I have four years of work experience in the fashion industry. I need help with essays, the application process, and interview prep.
- I will be taking the GMAT exam by July end.
- Is it possible to start the process before I take the GMAT?
- My target schools are the top 5-8 MBA schools in Canada: Rotman, Schulich, Sauder, Smith, McGill, etc. Also, if GMAT waivers are possible in any of these schools, I would like to apply right away.
- Since I come from a traditional small business background, I do not have anybody to write the LORs. Most of my buyers and suppliers don't even have an email ID and can barely speak English. Can you please give your advice in this regard?
Please let me know your thoughts.
Thanks and Regards,
Riya (not real name)
Thanks for your email.
Here are answers to your questions (in blue font):
I will be taking the GMAT exam by July end. Is it possible to start the process before I take the GMAT?
I would advise you to focus only on your test prep for the next 1.5 months. In my decade-long experience, I have seen that working on applications and test prep in parallel doesn't work. Test prep and application building both are time-consuming and demanding projects that need your full attention, and people get overstressed when they decide to handle both.
Though schools offer test waivers, I would advise you to put your best foot forward and apply with a strong test score.
Since I come from a traditional small business background, I do not have anybody to write the LORs.
Many people from business backgrounds are applying for MBAs these days. Indeed, they cannot have a direct supervisor, but they do have clients, vendors, a partner, a long-time supplier, or a mentor who has worked with them closely and can comment on their professional and personal attributes and accomplishments. So if you have worked closely with one or more of these people who can vouch for your leadership, team-working, and decision-making skills, you can request them for a recommendation.
Most of my buyers and suppliers don't even have an email ID and can barely speak English. Can you please give your advice in this regard?
They can always create an email ID. Though they don't need to speak English, they must respond to the LOR questions in English. So if they cannot write English, they can take support of a translator.
For more help on LORs, please read the following blogs:
Stay tuned for another MBA query next week.
Links to previous weeks' blog posts:
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