Seemingly straightforward questions require a great deal of introspection.
Keep a notebook and jot down anything interesting that comes to mind.
An inspiring lecture, a disappointing performance review, an enlightening conversation with a friend, a travel experience, running a marathon, a stimulating book—all of these can be terrific material for your essays.
How does this decision relate to your career goals for the future?
Throughout my life, I have observed two distinct career paths, my father's and my uncle's.
My father completed his engineering degree and secured a government job in India, which he continues to hold to this day.
My uncle's path began similarly; like my father, he earned an engineering degree.Ask someone to review your essays, look for typos and tell you if you are hitting all of the points in the right way. Do you seem too humble, too cocky, too serious, not serious enough?After you have been buried with your essays for weeks, a fresh perspective can often help you see the application as an admissions-committee member does: for the first time.Even with lots of content, when you are faced with answering a question such as “What matters most to you? Here is an exercise that stops you from over-thinking: set your alarm clock for 3am. The first thing that comes to mind might surprise you.Do this for a couple of nights and you may come up with a few options or find that you are building a consensus around a certain topic.Enlist someone who knows about the application process and make sure they are not just reassuring you that all is well, but are actually giving you some quality feedback.More from our application special How to find the right MBAPhilip Delves Broughton: Why you shouldn't bother with an MBAApplication dos and don'ts Video: What does a business school look for in an applicant?You may require six weeks, or you may even want 12. They can sit at the computer for hours, unable to generate that “perfect” essay, rewriting so furiously that they don't get past the first few sentences. 7 It is essential that you research your target schools and understand how to appeal to each of them. There are certain qualities that all business schools want to see in a successful applicant: Just saying “I am a strong leader” is not enough.Each will have a slightly different ethos and look for something different in their students. Every claim you make must have supporting stories that help the reader believe you.2 As you begin to approach essay-writing time, consider putting together a “brag sheet”.Write down all of the things about you that would not necessarily appear on a résumé: languages you speak, all extracurricular involvements, family traditions and more. 3 Once you have the essay questions in hand, there may still be a few stumpers.