HBS invites about 1 in 5 applicants to interview and, typically, just over half of those interviewed are admitted. So, if you get an invitation, you’re in very good shape — but not completely home-free yet.
Veritas Prep’s No. 1 piece of advice if you’ve been invited to interview at HBS is be prepared. That’s pretty obvious, so let’s talk about how to prepare.
For any interview, you should know going in what you want to cover in the interview. What are the important things you want to convey? Are you going to expound on the passions that drive your life, the incredible achievements in your professional career and/or the countless extracurricular activities you’ve been involved in?
For an HBS interview, you should know that you will be interviewing with a member of the admissions board. The person interviewing you will have read your entire application before meeting with you (unlike some other schools, where the interview is “blind” and the interviewer only has your resume). Because the interviewer will already be familiar with your application, he or she will dive into topics that the admissions board wants to explore more deeply. Be prepared to answer questions about potential weaknesses they see in your candidacy or experiences you didn’t have an opportunity to discuss thoroughly in your application. These interviews can go in almost any direction, but you should prepare a number of personal and professional stories that exemplify topics of leadership, decision-making, overcoming challenging situations, working on teams, dealing with difficult personalities, and other topics. If applicable, use the Situation-Action-Results (SAR) method to organize your answer. Present the situation (S), discuss what actions (A) you took to achieve the result, and then summarize the results (R), or the impact, of those actions. Also be advised that your interviewer may throw you a question “out of left field”, like what books are you currently reading, to see your response.
Interviews can be nerve-wracking, but it helps to remember that the interviewer is never going to try to trick you or pummel you with tough questions. They are genuinely trying to learn more about you and how you might fit into the program and community.
For more HBS interview advice check out Veritas Prep’s Essential Guide to Top Business Schools. You’ll also find advice on the post-interview reflection. Spoiler alert: do not write it beforehand.
Need help preparing for your interview? Sign up for a mock interview session with one of Veritas Prep’s MBA admissions experts. Also, join Veritas Prep for a free webinar on February 7th at 5 PM Eastern on the Veritas Prep YouTube channel. They’ll offer interview tips and answer your questions. Sign up at https://www.veritasprep.com/business-school/free-online-mba-admissions-workshop/. As always, be sure to find Veritas Prep on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.
Veritas Prep is the largest privately-owned test prep and admissions consulting company in the world. Since 2002, Veritas Prep has helped thousands of applicants gain admission to their dream schools using its team of experienced consultants and a personalized game plan for each client.