MIT Sloan | Mr. Surgery to MBB
GMAT 750, GPA 3.4
Wharton | Mr. Global Perspective
GMAT 750, GPA 3.6
MIT Sloan | Mr. International Impact
GRE 326, GPA 3.5
IU Kelley | Mr. Businessman Engineer
GMAT 690, GPA 7.26/10
Stanford GSB | Mr. 750
GMAT 750, GPA 3.43
Wharton | Mr. Data Scientist
GMAT 740, GPA 7.76/10
McCombs School of Business | Mr. Military 2.0
GRE 310, GPA 2.3
Stanford GSB | Mr. MBA Class of 2023
GMAT 725, GPA 3.5
Duke Fuqua | Mr. Tech Evangelist
GMAT 690, GPA 3.2
Harvard | Mr. Investment Banker
GMAT 750, GPA 4.0
MIT Sloan | Mr. Hopeful CXO
GMAT 750, GPA 3.56
Stanford GSB | Mr. Deferred MBA
GMAT 760, GPA 3.82
Duke Fuqua | Mr. National Security Advisor
GMAT 670, GPA 3.3
Chicago Booth | Mr. Inclusive Consultant
GMAT 650, GPA 6.7
Kellogg | Mr. Engineer Volunteer
GMAT 710, GPA 3.8
Stanford GSB | Mr. Techie Teacher
GMAT 760, GPA 3.80
Berkeley Haas | Ms. Midwest Startup
GRE 328, GPA 3.51
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Emporio Armani
GMAT 780, GPA 3.03
McCombs School of Business | Mr. Consulting Analyst
GMAT 700, GPA 7.7/10
Stanford GSB | Mr. FinTech Engineer
GMAT 760, GPA 3.8
Harvard | Mr. Bangladeshi Analyst
GMAT 690, GPA 3.31
Yale | Mr. Fencer
GMAT 740, GPA 3.48
INSEAD | Mr. Indian In Cambodia
GMAT 730, GPA 3.33
Kenan-Flagler | Mr. Top Three
GRE 310, GPA 2.7
Tuck | Mr. South African FinTech
GMAT 730, GPA 3.08
London Business School | Mr. Green Energy
GMAT 710, GPA 3.1
IU Kelley | Ms. Marketing Manager
GRE 294, GPA 2.5

How To Select An MBA Admissions Consultant

  • Do your due diligence. Ask past applicants what they have to say about working with the various firms.
  • Consider the professional associations to which the consulting firm belongs. These organizations (e.g., IECA, HECA, NAGAP, AIGAC, Better Business Bureau, etc.) have strict membership requirements and ethical standards that confirm the quality and trustworthiness of the firm and its consultants.
  • Have a direct conversation with the head of the consulting firm to align your goals and expectations. Be sure that you and the firm share the same view on your MBA admissions potential — before you sign up and pay.
  • Consider value even more than price. Saving a few hundred or even thousand dollars won’t be very comforting if you get second-rate service and fall short of your goals. Hourly services may look like a bargain, but a comprehensive consultation ensures that you discover and address all of your weaknesses.
  • Expect personalized advice that’s customized and shared with only you.
  • Trust your gut: the way the firm treats you as a prospect is indicative of how they will treat you as a client. Are they prompt, professional, empathetic, accessible, and responsive? Do they understand you and believe in your potential for admission?
Chioma Isiadinso, co-founder of EXPARTUS

Chioma Isiadinso, co-founder of EXPARTUS

Isiadinso, meantime, offers these guiding principles for those in the hunt for a good consultant:

  • You should start by vetting the admissions consultant. Find out who started the company, what is his/her role, how are consultants hired, trained, and what is the background/experience of the consultants?\
  • Find out who you would be working with and what their success track record is.
  • Stay away from the “fly by night” entities that make outlandish promises or have ethical flags (writing application essays, recommendations, etc)
  • Research different consulting firms to see which ones would be the best fit. Every firm is different in its approach, culture, focus. Some focus on strategy, some on essay editing/writing and others on both.
  • Have a preliminary call with the firms you are considering and assess the quality of the feedback they provide you (this can give you a clue to the quality of work they do)
  • Getting a referral from a friend or trusted colleague can be a good starting point so ask people in your network if they have any experience with the firms you are considering
  • Be clear on what you need. Have a realistic picture of what kind of candidate you are.

DON’T MISS: LEADING FIRMS IN MBA ADMISSION CONSULTING or THE COST: $6,850 THE RESULT: A DREAM B-SCHOOL

About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.