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MBA Essays: How to Write an Impressive MBA Essay

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  • By:CANAM Group
  • Updated On:Aug 11,2023 04:57 PM IST

The MBA applicant essay is crucial as it is an opportunity to present as a multifaceted candidate. Admissions committees seek to admit individuals with humanity and not just future leaders. Hence, MBA Essays play a pivotal role in the whole process. Read the blog to understand its significance and tips for compelling essays.

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MBA is one of the top programs pursued by students to widen their spectrum of job opportunities as it offers specialization in various fields. The MBA Essay is the most essential part of a business school application. Admission committees assess the candidate as a future leader and look for humanity.

Applicants should consider this as an opportunity to highlight their uniqueness, as it might be the only time to speak something directly to admissions officers. 

How Can An MBA Essay Be Exceptional?

Writing an essay for MBA aims to showcase oneself as a genuine human being. The following are some tips to consider while writing an essay.

1. Be Specific: One prevalent mistake MBA applicants make is to stay at a superficial level, making their writing inaccessible to admissions committees. Providing adequate information on personal experiences and reasons for choosing the program is vital to avoid this. Incorporating the STAR template (Situation, Task, Action, and Result) in the essay can allow the candidate to write about relevant context, discuss the challenges, highlight the actions and mention the outcomes of the efforts. 
2. Answer the Question: The candidate must answer the admissions committee's question. One might get carried away while writing the essays, but it is important to remember to answer the question. To make the process manageable, following the provided guidance and viewing the prompts as helpful guardrails for their writing is crucial. Staying focused and addressing the prompt directly ensures your essay aligns with the provided instructions. 
3. Get Vulnerable: MBA Essay prompts aim to uncover as much about the candidate as possible within the assigned word count. It also requires one to share genuine experiences. An effective strategy is to present something real. Admissions officers review several applications, and to stand out, candidates must be willing to share honest insights. Applicants should take the opportunity to captivate the reader by showcasing their actual self-bright, vibrant, and unique.
4. Don't Exaggerate:  Candidates should not exaggerate or lie about something, which can lead to rejection. Stay truthful and genuine, ensuring the claims are valid. It is better to present an authentic and honest portrayal of the candidate rather than jeopardizing the admission result. 

Significance of Storytelling in MBA Essays

Admissions officers look forward to understanding how the applicants approach the traits like leadership and commitment in the essay. It is essential to highlight the features that officers would want to see. Through storytelling, the piece becomes relatable and showcases the candidates' journey, life lessons, challenges, and growth. It helps humanize the application and increases the chance of successful admission. 

Also read: Why study MBA from Canada?

How to Start an Essay for MBA 

Framing the first sentence can be difficult. The trick is overcoming the hurdle by simply putting anything on the page. Keep writing one sentence after another, letting the thoughts flow freely. Employing the STAR technique (Situation, task, action and result) can help create a compelling essay. 

1. Situation- Describing the case, when and where it took place
2. Task- Explaining the task and the goal
3. Action- Providing information about the action
4. Result: Conclude with the development of the action

Tips and Tricks to Follow

Some tips and tricks to aid during the essay writing process are mentioned below: 

1. Taking Breaks:  When the candidate hits a mental block, it is necessary to take a break. Engaging in different activities or taking a nap can help refresh the mind and lead to unexpected inspiration. 
2. Reading out loud: Printing a draft and reading out loud can help identify the mistakes. The method helps in identifying spelling errors and awkward transitions. 
3. Seek Feedback: One must be confident of feedback. Share it with others and welcome the feedback to gather as much input as possible. A third party can provide valuable insights based on their observations. 
4. Try Completing it early: Students need to consider the timing as well. It is necessary to avoid last-minute mishaps. One must be proactive to ensure a smooth process.

Also read1 year MBA in Canada

Mistakes to Avoid While Writing MBA Essays

There are some common mistakes a candidate must avoid: 

1. Do not overcomplicate: The primary objective of the Admissions committees is to understand the individual rather than just a business professional. One must focus on expressing the ideas clearly and concisely, ensuring the essay is straightforward. Candidates are advised to keep the writing simple and avoid frustrating the committee. 
2. Overlooking the essay questions –Candidates should be prepared to answer MBA essay questions. Misreading the question might lead one to write a completely different essay and miss what the admission committee looks for. 
3. Initiating the process too close to the deadline -Starting the essay-writing process too late can lead to rushing. More time can lead to simple mistakes. To avoid this, starting early and having ample brainstorming, revising, and editing time is necessary. 

How To Frame An Answer To 'Why MBA' Question? 

One of the most common questions the admissions committee asks is why the students want to pursue MBA. The committees seek applicants who genuinely desire to pursue the degree and contribute. Reflecting on the question of 'Why an MBA?' provides a context to the candidates' previous decisions, such as job and career choices. 


Storytelling in the essay highlights leadership traits and commitment, connecting readers with the candidate's journey, challenges, and growth. It becomes important to showcase oneself as a genuine human being while crafting an MBA Essay. Hence, the success in the MBA application process lies in preparation and sincere self-reflection.

Also read: MBA in Canada for International students


The length of an MBA essay depends on the school. Some schools allow a candidate to write up to 500 words, and others want short and crisp essays of 150 words.
One can improve the MBA essay by reviewing grammar and spelling errors, as it acts as the foundation of good writing. 
A candidate completing an optional MBA essay should keep it as short and to the point as humanly possible. 
The admissions committee uses essays to gain insights into the personality, interests, career goals, etc., academically and professionally. 
Yes, candidates can use bullet points in MBA Essay. Bullet points help writers organize and emphasize information quickly and effectively.

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