Question: Why are you seeking an MBA? What are your plans and goals after your receive your degree? (500 words)
Having been a management consultant for nearly three years, addressing business issues in four industries, for seven clients, in five countries, I can confirm that I want to return to that field, but I also want to rank among the most senior executives at Fortune 500 companies. While I remain open to opportunities I may discover at the GSB, my present goal is to become a partner in a professional services consulting firm. To accelerate my achievement of that goal, I would like to complete a concentration in Strategic Management at the GSB.
Fundamentally, I seek the toolkit that will enable me to counter a complex business problem with a creative, outside-the-box solution. And when I can't come up with a solution on my own, I will need to assemble and effectively collaborate with a team that can. An MBA will give me the skills I need to develop my own innovative solutions, to recognize the talent I want on my team, and to lead even the most diverse group to success.
In the short term, the University of Chicago's Graduate School of Business (GSB) will provide me with unparalleled analytical skills. While I believe my undergraduate major in Finance has served me well thus far in my consulting career, I need more rigorous quantitative coursework to develop the analytical skills required for solving more challenging business problems. In addition, I look to the GSB to help me become a more effective manager. For example, I expect to implement such principles as set forth in the LEAD program as the managerial groundwork, the feedback approach, and the teamwork principles it sets forth. Therefore, the near-term reason for seeking an MBA is to enhance my analytical and managerial skills.
Now, as a woman with clear career and family goals, timing of the pursuit of an MBA is everything. I do not have the luxury of "letting things fall into place". If I wish a family and a career, I have to move swiftly, with conviction. I recognize this year as the right time for me for three reasons. First, I have gained extensive and varied work experience that will allow me to contribute in the classroom, as well as benefit from others' experiences. Secondly, I am no longer convinced that I can achieve my long-term career objectives within my company, given the changing focus of the company toward such areas as outsourcing and away from strategic consulting work. Finally, an MBA is a critical part of my personal development plan to constantly challenge myself by pursuing learning opportunities beyond those I have already encountered.
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