Go to a better blog!

You can find a better version of my blog at http://www.adammarkus.com/blog/.

Be sure to read my Key Posts on the admissions process. Topics include essay analysis, resumes, recommendations, rankings, and more.

March 06, 2010

University of Michigan Ross MBA Interviews

This post is updated from last year.

Interviews for the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business are not particularly hard. Based on my experience as well as the reports found at accepted.com and clearadmit.com, I can say that they are generally seem to be friendly, focused on fit, and require the applicant to discuss the basics.

Ross interviews are conducted blind, but since what you say in the interview will be checked against what you wrote, make certain that your oral and written presentations are consistent, especially in terms of your goals.

My colleague, Steve Green, has compiled the following common questions:

  • Tell me about yourself. Walk me through your resume. What should I know about you?  *Probe resume: Cross-reference, push for details about why and how.
  • Tell me about your current position.
  • What do you do outside of work?
  • What are your career goals?
  • Why do you want an MBA?
  • Why now?
    Why Ross?
  • How will you be involved outside of class?
  • What will you do if not accepted to Ross?

  • How would you deal with a teammate who doesn’t act like a team player?
  • Tell me how you dealt with a team member who was under-performing.
  • Tell me about your role on a team.
  • Tell me about a time when your team faced a lot of obstacles? (WHAT LEARNED?)
  • Tell me about a time you showed initiative.
  • How do you manage conflict?
  • Please give me 3 examples of your leadership experience?
  • What does leadership mean to you?
  • What 3 adjectives would your friends use to describe you and why?
  • What makes you unique?
  • What was a challenging experience in your life?
  • Tell me about a time when you had a professional failure and what did you learn from it.
  • Tell me about a time when you received negative feedback from a supervisor and how did you respond.

Ross interviewers are admissions officers, students, and alumni and interviews can be in person or by telephone. Reported length for interviews is usually 30 minutes with some going 45 minutes and few lasting an hour (these seem to be an exception). Campus interviews will most likely be 30 minutes. Given that this is a short interview, I think it is particularly important that you have a very clear idea about what you want to cover. The most frustrating thing about such an interview could easily be lack of time to cover your own perceived key points, so make sure that when you think about the likely questions above, you have fully considered how you will use your answers as a vehicle to help your interviewer understand why you should be offered a place at Michigan. For more about strategy, see here.

If you are interviewed by a student, take it seriously! Apparently a sufficient number of applicants were not in R1 for 2010 admission because Soojin Kwon Koh, the Director of Admissions, posted the following:

I wanted to pass on a bit of advice to Round 2 (and 3) applicants based on some experiences during Round 1. It seems that some applicants view interviews with an MBA2 who is part of the Admissions Student Committee as less "serious" than an interview with an alumnus or staff member. Some applicants were a bit unprofessional, shall we say, probably thinking that an MBA2 is on the level of a peer/buddy rather than a bona fide admissions interviewer. Don't let that be you. 

Treat whoever you interview with equal seriousness.

-Adam Markus

I am a graduate admissions consultant who works with clients worldwide. If you would like to arrange an initial consultation, please complete my intake form. Please don't email me any essays, other admissions consultant's intake forms, your life story, or any long email asking for a written profile assessment. The only profiles I assess are those with people who I offer initial consultations to. Please note that initial consultations are not offered when I have reached full capacity or when I determine that I am not a good fit with an applicant.
Real Time Web Analytics