Today it gets a little more personal. I would like to take you with me on my journey.
The will to get further, to know more and to be able to share it. To meet new people furthermore, to have a new goal. There are many more reasons why I decided to take the next step in my professional life.
I´m glad that I´m able to share my newest update from my working life. The ESMT(European School of Management and Technology Berlin) accepted me to the Executive Master of Business Administration.
18. months full of learnings and development. But the best about it, I want to take you on my journey and share my experiences with you. The study starts in October, but the whole process started much earlier…
Finding the right university
It really took me a while to find the right university. Partially I was so frustrated that I thought I need some months longer to choose one.
What are the tricky parts of finding the right one?
- There are definitely too many universities in Germany. Only in Germany, there are more than 100 different MBA study programs. That´s crazy!
- You only do the MBA once. (In the best case) I made plenty of research on the internet to find reviews and experience reports. In addition, fortunately, I had a contact who was graduating. I didn’t just want to study to get a degree, I want to get the best out of my “businesswoman-self”. Furthermore, I want to add value to the company where I work. To express myself more clearly here. I didn’t want just any course of study, I wanted one of the best so that I wouldn’t be able to say afterwards, “Oh, I wish I had.” Personally, I pegged it on the course awards, experience reports, and the course content itself.
- Do you want to have a specialization in your master’s program? For example, if you are in the marketing field, technology or medical organization anyway? I was looking at the Innovative, Technology Specialized Master’s, however, since I already successfully received my Digital Transformation Nano Degree, there would definitely have been some overlap here.
- Which time model fits best? For me, it was clear that I want to continue working. There are weekend courses or block courses, where you sometimes spend entire weeks in face-to-face classes. I am very grateful to be with PlusDental, an open company that makes it possible for me to attend classes on my days of attendance.
- Online study, mixed or pure presence study? I don´t want to purely learn something in addition I want to meet some new people. Having some more interactions.
- Check the accreditation. Avoid unpleasant surprises and check in advance which accreditations the university has.
After almost searching forever, you have to stop at some point and choose a university. Of course, this is not the end of the story. You don’t just call and say you’re registering with this. The application process is an experience in itself.
- Take advantage of the offer of the initial evaluation of your profile. In case you are not suitable, you don’t have to get false hopes.
- Get started with your application. Upfront I want to mention that I only applied at the ESMT, so I can only tell about this application process. However, I guess that the first part will be similar. You need to fill out general information about yourself, your work related experiences, your CV, two recommendation letters are needed, your vocational skills and four essays. In case you want to apply for a scholarship an additional essay is needed.
- First essay asked about the motivation, plan B, career vision.
- Second one is about the importance of failure.
- Within the third one you´re requested to write about a road trip
- At the fourth essay you need to write about your most challenging intercultural experience
- Afterwards, I had four weeks to do the BAT(business admission test). The GMAT/GRE test and the GMAC test are also accepted. The former is recommended for the more linguistically gifted, as it involves more complex vocabulary. I decided to do the BAT(business admission test)
- Lastly I had an interview which took I think 45 minutes. It was scheduled for the day after my test.
BAT Business admission test
Three reasons why I decided for the Business admission test:
- I only wanted to apply to the ESMT (other universities may not accept this test).
- It is much cheaper (only preparation material must be purchased).
- Additionally, it was designed specifically for graduate business programme admissions. In my opinion, this is a plus because I am already learning something and indirectly preparing for the MBA.
The test has five sections:
- Communication Analysis where you need to read longer texts and answer some questions.
- Critical Thinking which involves statements to find a definitive answer to a question or simply determine its solvability.
- Data Analysis tests for fluency and efficiency in use of business-relevant mathematics.
- Data Interpretation where both, standard mathematical logic questions, and multiple case questions where arithmetic and algebra are tested in the context of a business scenario.
- Case Presentation: Lastly you have 30 minutes to get your information about a company with specific questions to it. Within the interview, the interviewer will go deeper into this case.
The time of each section is calculated really short. You won’t have time to double-check your answers, on the contrary you should move on as soon as you realize that you can’t come up with the solution. I took the test online. That means I had my room, my ID card in advance, my screen and of course myself filmed the whole time. I have no idea who had to look at my shots, but I had incredibly strong dark circles under my eyes. The night before was unfortunately very short due to the excitement. And yet, I made it and was accepted. The sleepless nights were worth it.
Afterwards, the committee will meet periodically to review all available information and decide if you are eligible. It took no more than two weeks to get an answer there. It was such a relaxing time because I knew that now it wasn’t up to me.
Generally, the university answered to all my questions really detailed and have given me a very welcome feeling. Whenever I wrote a mail I received the answer within the next day.
The first stage is done, I was taken. Now it’s about learning, developing and just enjoying the time. I am excited about what time brings and look forward to taking you with me on my journey. Like Konfuzius said: “The way is the goal.” You only need to start.