After a lot of contemplation, I decided to not use any MBA consultant services. Don’t get me wrong, I am sure they have helped thousands of candidates in the past, but I had some strong reasons.
- It was too expensive and a financial burden for me with my current income in Indian rupees. The most well-known consultants have exorbitant fees. I have very little savings already and can barely purchase a plane ticket to America! 😛
- I decided I wanted to apply to several schools to increase my odds of success. Application costs are very high, I would rather use the money I save in consultant services on a few extra applications! (Especially since my recommenders seem very enthusiastic for me and don’t seem going through the recommendation process multiple times – I double checked with them to make sure they were okay with recommending me to several schools – All good! )
- I’m more of a DIY person. I decided to take the pains of going through tons of information myself. Since I’m investing so much time and money anyway in the MBA, setting aside time for researching programs should be something I am willing to do. There is TONS of information out there, including:
- Poets’ and Quants Website
- GMAT Club
- MBA Crystal Ball
- MBA Blogs of other candidates
- Linkedin! – Yes, I have been searching profiles to figure out the kind of jobs people get in my target industry at my target schools! Also, to get a sense of how competitive my profile is compared to admitted students from similar backgrounds (Asian-American, Indian undergrad schools, Early career candidates or Tech backgrounds!)
Also, 2 awesome things happened!! I posted my profile for a free evaluation on both MBA Crystal Ball and Poets and Quants : Handicapping your elite MBA odds.
P&Q featured my profile and Sandy Kreisberg predicted my odds. Also, Sameer Kamat, founder of MBA Crystal Ball spoke to me answering all my doubts! It was extremely helpful since they gave me an honest assessment based on their experience and I got a more realistic picture of how adcoms might view me.
Additionally, Since out of tons of requests, my profile was noticed by them, It gave me some much-needed confidence. If I can stand out from others with similar backgrounds (Indian origin IT engineers – the most overrepresented cohort), then maybe I will be able to stand out at the time of admissions too! Fingers crossed! 😀