Great Moments in MBA Desperation

It’s long been assumed that applicants to MBA programs are possessed of a certain desperation. After all, the upside to admission in a top program includes the very real prospect of an enormous annual salary and the chance to swap places with the managers who have been making your life so miserable.

And so it comes as no surprise that an investigation by Bloomberg into the most egregious actions by prospective MBA students finds human dignity placed on the back burner in exchange for the chance of making a lasting impression on an admissions officer. Here is a selective list, based on true-life events, of the things Bloomberg counsels would-be executives against trying (we’ve supplemented some case studies with our own insight):

  • Sending a self-portrait that demonstrates your skills with a bazooka (applicants would be wise to heed former Goldman Sachs’ CEO Henry Paulson’s advice on bazooka discretion)
  • Proposing marriage to an admissions officer
  • Stalking the admissions committee or demonstrating stalker-like tendencies by continually calling and emailing. This is not a romantic comedy
  • Turning on the water works during an interview
  • Bribery — you’re not running a business yet, so don’t get precocious about greasing the skids
  • Dishing on your coke habit — it goes without saying applicants have had, or currently have, a coke habit

mtaylor [at] observer.com | @mbrookstaylor Great Moments in MBA Desperation