At mbaMission, we engage in thorough brainstorming with each candidate, as unique ideas are at the foundation of every essay. We challenge candidates to examine their experiences from many angles, as a “hidden” story can often be the most distinct.
By way of example, a college baseball player may be inclined to tell the story of a home run that he hit in the bottom of the ninth inning in a crucial game, and this may indeed be an excellent showcase for his talents. However, because this experience is so powerful and brings the candidate so much pride, he may overlook the fact that he mentored a younger player athletically and academically, helped recruit a top coach to the team, worked with the school to access funding for facilities or formed a players’ committee to address team needs. While the first story is a clear and obvious “winner,” the remaining stories may reveal unique aspects of this candidate’s personality and experience, none of which are implied in the fact that the candidate played college sports.
So, because stories often lurk beneath the surface, whether the candidate is an athlete, banker, entrepreneur or all of the above, we challenge candidates to consider each dimension of their stories before settling on the one to use to set them apart.