Early Decision: 04 September 2018

Round 1: 11 October 2018

Round 2: 08 January 2019

Round 3: 01 March 2019

Round 4: 07 May 2019


IESE Business School at the University of Navarra is a global MBA program that has a strong focus on developing international and ethical leaders. IESE’s application reflects this central interest by delving into more than just the career motivations of an applicant.

As you brainstorm potential approaches to IESE’s essays, pay special attention to the similarity of the first two questions: one should be answered from a personal perspective, the other from a professional. If you need help formulating this complex application, feel free to contact us.

ESSAY 1 – How do you expect to be changed by your experience at IESE and what impact you would like to make after your MBA? (word limit 300 max)

For this essay the terms change and impact are key. Let’s start by analyzing change. IESE wants to have an influence on you that extends beyond your career. Therefore, it’s important to spend some of your time trying to understand all the ways in which your future MBA could benefit you personally.

When it comes to impact, you need to think widely. IESE wants students who will have influential lives that will reflect positively on their program. Here you might be tempted to talk about your career objectives, however, that would be redundant with the second essay. Concentrate instead on identifying how your personal and professional objectives will affect those around you or society at large.

What are your short and medium-term post-MBA career goals and how will IESE help you achieve them? (word limit 300 max)

This question has two main components that you have to deal with: your post-MBA goals and what will IESE’s MBA do for you. When it comes to post-MBA objectives, you need to consider both realism and exceptionalism. Taking into account your professional history and upcoming education, you want to show that, while your goals are certainly trying, they are also realizable. If you’re unsure of how to choose your goals, research professionals who have had somewhat similar objectives to you: what sort of career path did they take?

For the second part of the essay, you want to focus on IESE. The program has so many amazing resources (courses, professors, extracurriculars, events, network, etc.). So, which should you focus on? The relevant ones—meaning those that will help you achieve your post-MBA goals. It might help you to begin by listing out all your needs relative to your short and medium-term goals, before matching them directly with IESE resources. Ultimately, you should choose to mention only those IESE attributes that are truly relevant to your objectives.

OPTIONAL ESSAY – I wish the admissions committee had asked me… (word limit 300 max)

Take a look over your whole application. What stories are missing from it? What strengths lie underdeveloped? What key parts of your character are unmentioned? This is a great place to highlight these positive aspects.

In fact, it might be the case that you have a long list of accomplishments you’d like to mention here. However, in most instances, it’s best to concentrate on a single story, as you might otherwise struggle to develop a deep and engaging essay.

Published On: October 29th, 2018 / Categories: Essay, IESE, MBA / Tags: , , , /