María Trinidad Peró Vergara
IESE Business School
Hometown: Barcelona, Spain
Undergraduate School and Major: Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Commercial Engineer and Bachelor of Science in Business Administration
Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:
- Capital Advisors: Atton Hotels – Head of Strategic Planning (2015)
- Capital Advisors – Financial and Investment Analyst (2014)
- Housing and Urban Development Ministry, Government of Chile – Advisor to the National Reconstruction Committee (2013)
- Social Development Ministry, Government of Chile – Social Information Analyst (2012)
Recalling your own experience, what advice do you have for applicants who are preparing for either the GMAT or the GRE? For the GMAT: Practice, practice, and practice.
- There is a lot of material. You need to choose which one you are going to use, make a rigid study plan and follow it. You can easily get distracted with all the information available.
- Do everything online and, if you can, buy the yellow booklet for practicing in it. You have to study in a scenario as similar as possible to the real test.
- Work hard on techniques to answer quickly. Managing the time is the most difficult part of the GMAT. For this, you need to get used to answering under pressure, so ideally make every exercise with the time it requires.
- At the end of your study, if possible, buy some online essays to practice.
- In the test, try to remain calm and be confident, especially when you don´t know a question. Never get stuck in an exercise that you don´t not how to answer; there is no time for that. However, try to avoid answering wrong questions continuously.
Based on your own selection process, what advice do you have for applicants who are trying to draw up a list of target schools to which to apply? First, define what you want in every aspect. This includes the specialty you want to develop on; the industry you will like to work after the MBA; your most important values or principles in life; the things that most matter to you; and the kind of country or city where you would like to live.
Then study the alternatives and make a list with the universities that match with all of the above. There is a lot of material you can use (web material, talk to admission people, current students, alumni, etc.). That information will give you a pretty clear idea of the university, how it works, the things that they most value, the kind of people that attend to them, etc.
With all of that information, you have to make a list of the universities that you would like to attend and find out if your profile matches with them. You have to define a plan A, B and C (or at least A and B). Don´t close yourself to one university without investigating more alternatives. There are a lot of great possibilities out there and you have to try to find the one that fit best with you.
What advice do you have for applicants in actually applying to a school, writing essays, doing admission interviews, and getting recommenders to write letters on your behalf? First, take your time. It requires a lot of reviews, feedback and re-thinking with many aspects of your life.
- Start with the CV, it’s very important and it gives you an order.
- For the essays make a brainstorming of who am I, what I have done during all my life, and what I want to do after the MBA. Identify stories, things that happened to you that are funny or that somehow helped you to grow personally or professionally, as well as challenges that you had to face in some moment of your life.
- Take the stories and ideas that most help you to describe yourself, such as your motivations, ideals and dreams. These facts will help the admission group to understand your future plans and goals.
- Try to tell everything as if it were a story in the most entertaining and innovative way as possible.
- Choose some people that you know and trust, to show them your essays and CV. It´s very important to receive feedback.
- For the interviews, you need to be prepare. Try to know as much as possible about the university (about everything).
- In general, try to show yourself in the application in 360 degree. Try to tell something different about yourself in each of the instances of contact with the university (obviously with consistency) because you have a lot to say.
What led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA?
- The values and principles of the university. For me it was crucial that the university gives to social responsibility in business.
- The fact that the program has a lot of diversity in the students and professors. This will give me the possibility to meet people of many different countries and learn about their experiences, thinking and culture.
- The teaching method. I am sure the case method will help me to learn about different topics through the experience of the real world which I think is the best and most effective way to learn.
- The charming city of Barcelona, its surroundings, culture, places and the proximity with other European countries.
What would you ultimately like to achieve before you graduate?
- Have strong personal relations with friends from different parts of the world, not only build a network, but also make real friendship with different people.
- Develop my soft skills to be a good communicator, to learn to effectively express myself.
- Improve my hard skills and the way of analyzing and developing solutions to problems.