Category: Evening MBA (page 6 of 24)

To Quit or Not to Quit? Deciding Between a Full-Time or Professional MBA Program

To Quit or Not To Quit Your Job to Return to SchoolYou may be one of those people who are trying to decide between quitting your job or not to go back to school and get your MBA. Rest assured you’re not alone. There are some basic questions I ask folks who are grappling with this decision.

1. What do you want to do with your MBA?

The answer to this question can help determine whether one program makes more sense. The majority of Texas MBA students want to switch jobs, and the majority do. Our working professional MBA programs – Texas Evening MBA (in Austin), Texas MBA at Dallas/Fort Worth, and Texas MBA at Houston – are an excellent fit for those looking to switch to a career in consulting, or to move into a different function within the same industry (i.e. finance to marketing or vice versa). The strong general management focus of the curriculum in the working professional programs give graduates the tools they need to run a company, whether it’s their own or someone else’s. And hands-on experiences through the MBA+ Leadership Program offer students the opportunity to work on a real-time consulting project to add Continue reading

7 Resume Tips (That You’ve Probably Heard Already But Are Worth Mentioning Again)

Seven Tips For a Better Resume

As an MBA career management advisor for the past three years at McCombs, I’ve seen my share of bad resumes. With that in mind, below are some basic tips I typically suggest to students that will quickly help you to enhance your resume and the value it has to potential employers.

1. Tailor Content – You may have heard the old adage that your resume should be tailored to your audience, which is true. But does that mean each resume requires a complete overhaul? Absolutely not. Customizing your resume may simply entail reordering or swapping out bullet points. Remember, a resume is a summary of your relevant experience, not necessarily all of it.

2. Emphasize Results – Simply put, your resume is more than just a summary of what you’ve done in the past. A recruiter wants to know not only what you did, but whether or not you generated results from your work. Therefore, stay away from bullet points that read like job descriptions and input results wherever possible. If the person replacing you in a previous job of yours can copy and paste your resume bullet points to their resume, that’s probably a sign Continue reading

Letters of Recommendation: How to Leverage the “Third” Person

If you’re like me, asking your supervisor or your colleague to write a letter espousing your virtues makes you feel incredibly uncomfortable.

Sure, you’ve worked hard over the past few years and have earned a good praising, but why must you have to ask for it, and in writing? Well, the answer is easy: as an Admissions Officer, I need perspective on your business acumen, your personality, and your leadership and teamwork skills. You’ve already written essays and submitted a resume explaining these things first-hand and you may have also been interviewed. Now it’s time for a third party to weigh in and offer us a new perspective that will hopefully add depth and value to your overall application.

The best letter of recommendation will come from a Direct Supervisor. Nobody knows your capabilities in the business world better than the person supervising you in your current role. There are of course some exceptions: Perhaps you’re new to the position, or your Supervisor may be new. There may also be a conflict of interest, for example if your Supervisor is also your mother. Lastly, there may be another situation that complicates you asking your supervisor: they could be opposed to you leaving your position for an MBA, or in rare situations, you may not have a healthy relationship with your supervisor or you may feel that asking your Direct Supervisor for a recommendation to business school would jeopardize your opportunity for promotion or a raise. All of these are valid excuses you may want to include in the Optional Essay, to give us context.

Other good letter of recommendation options would be a former Supervisor (especially en lieu of a current Supervisor, if you cannot ask them), or a professional colleague. You may also consider a business client if you’re in a career such as consulting or advertising. Remember that whoever you choose needs to be able to discuss with us in detail your qualities, skills, and virtues. We’ve read enough letters of recommendation to know when somebody knows you, and when they KNOW you.

Some final tips: Make sure to let your recommenders know way in advance you are going to request their help. I would even suggest letting them know a good three months ahead of time if possible, so that you are not rushing them if they haven’t completed it a month out, and you start getting concerned they won’t submit the letter on time. It is also a good idea to meet with them, let them know what your short and long-term goals are and why McCombs is the best school for you, and offer them a copy of your updated resume. That way they can talk about their belief in your direction and goals with an amount of knowledge. And most importantly, make sure to ask people who actually like you. You would be surprised how many candidates have letters of recommendation submitted by people who really just don’t care.

Good luck preparing your application! We look forward to reading it soon.


Which Round Should I Apply? Advice on When To Hit Submit

Applications Rounds - When To Submit Your ApplicationBefore pen meets paper, smart MBA applicants take the time to develop an overall strategy to tackle all the elements of the massive MBA application – What are my strengths? What’s my message? But one thing that is often forgotten is not what you submit, but when. Timing is a key factor in your overall application strategy: so when should you hit “Submit”?

EARLIER IS BETTER (sort of): At first thought, you might stick with tried and true “early bird gets the worm” strategy. You might be tempted to think about the applicant pool in terms of pure numbers and assume that the best chance of your application being ruled upon favorably is to submit when the maximum amount of spots are available. But there’s a caveat – you should NEVER rush to submit your MBA application. Imagine this: you’ve heard that applying in Round 1 gives you a better likelihood of getting accepted so you skip taking a formal GMAT prep class, take the test and end up with a score you aren’t exactly thrilled with. In this case, submitting in Round 1 might not be a great idea, especially if you know that you can improve your score. Waiting to apply until all aspects of your application are strong is the best approach.

…BUT LATER IS OKAY TOO: There is a reason we have three rounds. If we filled up the class in Round 1, the admissions committee could just kick back for the rest of the year on a beach somewhere and sip fruity beverages with frilly umbrellas. But (unfortunately for us) this is not the case, as many strong applicants apply in later rounds. So if you read the above “Earlier Is Better” and thought that it means final round folks don’t have a fighting chance, or at the very least have a much smaller chance of getting in, it is not exactly black and white. The truth is that a strong application will stand out in any round, anytime. Remember that if you scramble to throw together your essay to get in your application by the first deadline, how can the admissions committee know that normally you are an eloquent and concise writer if what you’ve written doesn’t reflect that?

SOME DON’TS: We are committed to courteous and fair consideration for all applicants, and therefore, there are a few things we just can’t allow when it comes to the timing of your application submission. Obviously, we are not able to accept applications submitted after 11:59pm CT on the day of the deadline. Also, we aren’t able to look at any “works in progress” before the deadline, meaning we can’t read drafts of your essays, give feedback on your resume and work experience, or tell you who to choose to write your letters of recommendation. The purpose of these policies is to ensure that everyone has a fair shot and is considered by the admissions committee on even ground. Check out our website for more common admissions questions.

So remember; if your application couldn’t possibly smell any sweeter, submit in Round 1. But if you aren’t ready yet (you need to retake your GMAT/GRE, rework your essay or wait for that promotion at work to come through), don’t risk it – wait until you’re 100% confident in your application before hitting the “Submit” button.

5 Things To Do Before Leaving Your Job (That Your Company Won’t Tell You)

5 Things To Do Before Leaving Your Job (That Your Company Won’t Tell You)Leaving a job to attend business school can be a very exciting yet overwhelming life transition. While you may be looking forward to your future education, building new relationships and exploring new career paths, you may also be experiencing concerns about leaving your current employer.

At McCombs, our full-time MBA students enter the program with an average of five years of work experience, having already learned valuable skills and built strong relationships with employers that will play a vital role in their future job search and career. Before leaving their job, we advise them to take the time to reflect on their experiences and what they’ve learned and achieved. Most importantly, we tell them to think about whom they have gotten to know and who has gotten to know them.

Are you looking to come to business school in the future? If so, you’ll likely find yourself in a similar situation at some point. Take a look at the tips below to ensure that you end on a good note with your company and don’t leave anything valuable behind.

1. Collect important contacts. You will no longer have access to your firm’s internal company directory so make sure you have all of the names, emails and phone numbers of the people you want to stay in touch with. Save org charts or other resources to remind you of people’s titles and roles within the organization. You will be surprised how quickly you forget this information if you no longer have access to it.

2. Save performance reviews and feedback. If allowed, be sure to take with you any performance feedback that you have received during your tenure. This information will become incredibly useful when trying to develop answers to typical interview questions such as “what are your strengths and weaknesses” or “what would your previous employer say about you?” If you do not have any official feedback paperwork, ask your supervisor if he or she is willing to have a final feedback meeting with you and ask them to honestly reflect with you on your work. Take notes. Supervisors are always impressed by employees who seek feedback in order to improve themselves and their work. You might also learn something about yourself that will surprise you and serve as beneficial in your future career.

3. Record your current job description and make a list of your tasks and accomplishments. One of the most difficult things when preparing for a job search is trying to remember all of your roles, responsibilities and achievements from a job that you were in years ago. Make sure this doesn’t happen to you by keeping a copy of your job description and making note of your primary tasks, actions and accomplishments. Where did you make the most impact? What were you the most proud of? Be sure to collect any quantifiable results whenever possible. This will not only be helpful when trying to construct your resume bullets but also when answering interview questions or explaining your past work experience to future employers.

4. Ask supervisors for recommendations. It can be awkward to reach out to a previous supervisor to ask for a reference or referral, especially when you haven’t worked with them or even spoken to them in years. Avoid this by asking your supervisor or other teammates if they are willing to serve as a future reference for you, and suggest that they write one for you now while you are still fresh in their mind. They will certainly thank you later. You can also request that they recommend you through LinkedIn (and offer to do the same for them).

5. Send thank you notes. Everybody likes to feel appreciated. Be sure to send thank you notes to the people you have worked with (both colleagues and clients) and make them personal. Don’t be afraid to be nostalgic or even “cheesy”. Thank them for their hard work, support and friendship. Be sure to let them know where you are going and send them your personal email so that you can stay in touch. Try to say “goodbye” in person to as many people as possible and always keep things positive. You will be most remembered for the last impression that you make.


Related Posts:

Letters of Recommendation: How to Leverage the “Third” PersonRecommendation Letter Tips Interactive Map: Where Did Texas MBAs Intern This Summer?MAP: Texas MBA Summer Internships To Quit or Not to Quit? Deciding Between a Full-Time or Professional MBA ProgramFull-Time MBA vs. Part-Time MBA Five Tips for Writing a Successful MBA Application EssayWrite A Successful Application Essay


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