Iese Mba Essays Tips

Average GMAT Score690GMAT Range550-780
Total ApplicantsAcceptance Rate
Class Size350Average Work Experience60 Months
Applicant DeadlinesR1:17-Oct-2017
Decision DatesR1:15-Dec-2017
Length of Program19 MonthsPlacement Information

Key Points for IESE Business School:

  • IESE was founded in 1958, and comes under University of Navarra. It has campuses in Barcelona, Madrid and New York and has teaching facilities in Munich and Sao Paulo.
  • Barcelona has 45,000 square meter campus,Madrid has 11,000 square meters and New York has 25,000 square meter campus. These campuses have state of the art facilities with latest in multimedia learning technology.
  • Jordi Canals is the present dean of IESE business school where he is also a professor of Economics and General Management.
  • IESE programs and courses have been often ranked among top 10 in the world. Financial Times ranked it No 1 in 2015/16 for executive education programs. The Economist in Global MBA ranking 2015 ranked it No 3 in Europe.
  • There are 45,000 alumni worldwide who excel in their respective fields. They are based in 129 countries and represent wide range of business.
  • IESE campuses are in some of the world’s largest most developed cities. Large number of Fortune 500 companies are headquartered in New York. Some of these are Verizon, JP Morgan, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, American Express ,IBM.
  • Companies in Madrid are Vodafone, Canal+ , Orange, Zeltia, Turner broadcasting and many more.
  • Employment placement report for 2015 batch: Consulting 24%, Finance 17% and others 59%.

IESE MBA Essays for 2018-19:

IESE Essay 1:Please answer any ONE (and only one) of the following two questions. (400 words)

  1. Please describe a time when you had an idea that had a positive impact.
  2. How do you develop yourself? What do you see as your development areas now?

IESE Essay 2(Optional):

I wish that the application had asked me…
This essay can be submitted either written (200 words) or as a video (max 2:00 minutes total in length).

IESE MBA Essays for 2015-2016:

IESE Essay 1: In the style of a “Tweet”, sum up clearly and concisely your post-MBA goals. (Maximum 280 words)
IESE Essay 2: Describe a recent professional situation (1-2 years ago maximum) that demonstrates your fit with IESE’s mission and values (Maximum 300 words)
IESE Essay 3: I wish that the application had asked me..(Maximum 200 words)



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IESE MBA Essay Topic Analysis 2017-2018

For those aspiring to join IESE, here is the Essay Topic Analysis for the IESE MBA essays of 2017-2018.

2017-2018 IESE Essay Questions

Let’s take a closer look at each prompt.

Essay 1

Please answer ONE (and only one) of the following two questions. (300 words)

  1. If you look at yourself in the mirror, what do you see? Please give examples of both your strengths & weaknesses.
  2. Describe a recent situation (1-2 years ago maximum) that demonstrates your fit with IESE’s mission and values.

Structurally, it would make sense to dedicate more than half of this essay to your strengths. After all, you want to put your best foot forward. Then, save about 100 words to comment on your weaknesses.  Before we delve into weaknesses, however, let’s focus on your strengths.  Given that each category is plural, you’ll want to highlight at least two strengths, possibly three if you have a particularly demonstrative anecdote.  The most important thing to keep in mind is that you do not simply want to rattle off a list of your strengths, but rather show them by accounting for how you have exercised and demonstrated your greatest qualities.  Perhaps you motivated a struggling team, and also provided some underlying analysis that ultimately supported an impactful solution—there are multiple strengths to be found there.  It may, in fact, help to work backwards—figure out your greatest accomplishments and then determine what qualities they show about you.

In regards to discussing your weaknesses, this is not the place to talk about a low GMAT score, a low GPA or insufficient work experience.  The adcom is not asking what is weak about your application to IESE – they are asking about your personal weaknesses.  Timing is important, because you want to show that you have been making efforts to improve upon your weakness.  In other words, you should not be pulling feedback from a performance review that took place yesterday or last week!  Reflect on your earlier career and think about how you have progressed thus far.  Be sure to wrap up this answer with some evidence of how you have been able to improve as well.

In admissions jargon, certain missteps are termed “red flags,” or small mistakes that reveal an otherwise qualified applicant to be a high-risk proposition.  For example, admissions committees are particularly wary of excessively confident applicants, so, if your “weakness” implies that you are so smart that you are sometimes intolerant of inferior colleagues, that will likely not play well.  Other weaknesses to avoid include being a perfectionist or working too hard.  These are “veiled strengths,” and are sometimes seen as an effort to dodge the question.  Impatience can be an acceptable weakness when expressed with the right intentions, such as wanting to do more for your company.  Perhaps you are impatient to take on more responsibilities or to assume a position in which you can make a greater impact.  No matter what weaknesses you select, it’s important to end on a positive note of improvement.  Share with the interviewer both your recent and your intended future efforts to continue growing as a professional.

In regards to Option 2, IESE has made it clear that they want to see more about your recent accomplishments and that you will be a good fit with the program.  To start, familiarize yourself with IESE’s mission and values.  Then, reflect on your achievements and how they reflect the school’s ideals.  IESE seeks to develop leaders who will have a positive and lasting impact on business and society, so consider the extent of your impact – did you go above and beyond the requirements of a finite project and leave a legacy?  What lasting impact did you have on your organization?  Don’t feel pressured to share such grand ideas, though.  Perhaps you have a more personal story about empowering an employee or bringing an intern up to full-time status.

Once you’ve decided on the anecdote you want to share, consider using the STAR method (situation, task, action, results) to structure your response.  In line with this method, you will want to first set the stage quickly.  Then, explain what you did, identify the exact impact, and then move on to how this experience aligns with IESE’s values and mission.

Essay 2 (Optional)

I wish that the application had asked me…

This essay can be submitted either written (200 words) or as a video (max 2:00 minutes total in length). We are aware that you are not a media professional.
This leading prompt appeared on IESE’s application last year, but the adcom has added the option of a video this year.  In regards to content, this question provides candidates a chance to briefly explore an important aspect of their candidacy not mentioned in their data forms, résumé, or other essay response.  Unlike most optional essays, this is one that makes sense to complete in order to round out your application.  For applicants from oversubscribed groups in the applicant pool, this essay could offer a great opportunity to truly stand out from the crowd by sharing an unusual hobby or an interesting anecdote.  Potential topics could be a time you demonstrated leadership, ethical behavior, entrepreneurial spirit, or persuasion skills, as these are all topics that are often of interest to admissions committees.  Whatever topic you select, it would be ideal to link this quality or fact to some element of your intended experience in the MBA program and/or future career.

As for medium, the video option has become quite popular across business school applications, and provides an opportunity to make a vivid impression through visual communication. It also shows the admissions committee that one is willing to invest the time and effort to create something just for the IESE application, underscoring one’s investment in gaining admission to IESE. Applicants whose leisure activities or workplace roles lend themselves well to film might do well to consider the video option.

Clear Admit Resources
Thanks for reading our analysis of this year’s IESE MBA essay topics. As you work on your IESE MBA essays and application, we encourage you to consider all of Clear Admit’s IESE Business School offerings:

Posted in: Essay Topic Analysis, Essays

Schools: IESE


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