Harvard | Mr. Policy Player
GMAT 750, GPA 3.4
MIT Sloan | Mr. Healthtech Consultant
GMAT 750, GPA 3.44
NYU Stern | Mr. Army Prop Trader
GRE 313, GPA 2.31
Harvard | Mr. Software PE
GMAT 760, GPA 3.45
Kellogg | Mr. Social Impact Initiative
GMAT 710, GPA 3.1
Chicago Booth | Mr. Unilever To MBB
GRE 308, GPA 3.8
INSEAD | Ms. Spaniard Consultant
GMAT 710, GPA 8.5/10.00
Rice Jones | Mr. Carbon-Free Future
GMAT 710, GPA 4.0
London Business School | Ms. Private Equity Angel
GMAT 660, GPA 3.4
Harvard | Mr. Navy Nuke
GMAT 710, GPA 3.66
Duke Fuqua | Mr. Salesman
GMAT 700, GPA 3.0
NYU Stern | Ms. Entertainment Strategist
GMAT Have not taken, GPA 2.92
Wharton | Mr. Future Non-Profit
GMAT 720, GPA 8/10
Chicago Booth | Ms. Indian Banker
GMAT 740, GPA 9.18/10
London Business School | Mr. FANG Strategy
GMAT 740, GPA 2.9
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Indian Dreamer
GRE 331, GPA 8.5/10
Wharton | Mr. Hopeful Fund Manager
GMAT 770, GPA 8.52/10
London Business School | Mr. LGBT Pivot
GMAT 750, GPA 3.7
Kellogg | Mr. Defense Engineer
GMAT 760, GPA 3.15
Harvard | Mr. CPPIB Strategy
GRE 329 (Q169 V160), GPA 3.6
Rice Jones | Mr. Student Government
GMAT 34 (ACT for Early Admit Program), GPA 3.75
Chicago Booth | Mr. Healthcare PM
GMAT 730, GPA 2.8
Kellogg | Ms. Sustainable Development
GRE N/A, GPA 3.4
Stanford GSB | Mr. Army Engineer
GRE 326, GPA 3.89
Kellogg | Ms. Big4 M&A
GMAT 740, GPA 3.7
MIT Sloan | Ms. Rocket Engineer
GMAT 710, GPA 3.9
Harvard | Mr. African Energy
GMAT 750, GPA 3.4

Confessions of an MBA Recruiter

THE CANDIDATE WHOSE FAVORITE CLASS WAS ‘TOUCHY FEELY.’

“Tell me about your favorite class,” I always ask, and the answers never vary much. At HBS the students mostly talk about the various finance courses in the elective curriculum.  At Stanford, there is one well-known finance professor who everybody worships, and his name comes up over and over again. There has been one glaring exception to this rule: one man told me his favorite class was called “touchy feely,” all about interpersonal relating and the soft skills. I was impressed by his answer and curious about the class but even as I asked him about it I knew he would be unlikely to fit in at my heavy-finance private equity employer.  I also always ask what the candidate’s favorite book is, and mentally take off points if the answer is a business book. This is a place to demonstrate that you are a well-rounded person with various interests, though a meaningful number of people don’t manage to do that.

Over the years I’ve had a great many unimpressive interviews, and only a few stand out vividly in my mind. Usually these were the people who went on to do well in our process. I’ve hired from both HBS and Stanford over the years, and I can’t draw a single obvious conclusion about quality, smarts, or overall success orientation. Because at both schools I see such a small, specific group of students I imagine that the differences I see are like the point of a triangle. I imagine that deeper into the student body the differences are more pronounced, and furthermore my impression is that extrapolate from the nuanced distinctions that I sense.  People are endlessly fascinating to me, and I feel lucky to have made my career in a field where I spend most of time getting to know them.

For years, “anonymous” has recruited MBA students from Harvard and Stanford for a brand-name firm that many candidates would do nearly anything to work for.