Most MBA interviews will remain virtual this year as well and your strategy will have to adapt accordingly. Harvard Business School MBA interview is conducted online, along with intake interviews for Stanford GSB, Wharton, and Yale SOM, among other top schools (including Wharton’s dynamic team-based interview).
It may seem that video interviews are a disadvantage, especially for the extroverts among us who are driven by sharing the energy of others. But the virtual interview has its advantages, along with unique considerations to prepare for a personal connection and positive impression.
Of course, there are additional pressures related to lighting, sound, internet connection, and / or technology concerns. Attention to commitment and the environment is also a must important preparation for the MBA interview you will conduct. Aside from that, what do I wear for the virtual MBA interview takes special consideration, as my Fortuna colleague Karen Hamou reported in her popular article.
With so much at stake, what can you do to ensure the best possible conditions for a great video interview?
I’ve come up with seven top tips to help you pass your virtual MBA interview Fortuna entries Colleagues.
7 MBA VIDEO INTERVIEW ESSENTIALS
- Embrace your ‘business mullet’ style.
I love this playful, honest emblem of our work in quarantine: The “little business girl” or “little girl outfit” is about Formal upstairs, party downstairs. Before reaching for your Zoom shirt, make sure to keep an eye on your audience and dress accordingly. Business casual should be the baseline, depending on school or professional interests, weird business formal (suit jacket and tie for men, jacket for women). “As illogical as it may be to dress in your living room for a call, you will seldom feel awkwardly OVER-dressed – but you may end up feeling awkwardly UNDER-dressed,” Karen writes in her related post. “The interview, however, is a search for authenticity. So if wearing a tie was bothering you to the point of distraction, go with your gut, ”Karen points out that you want to stand out from what you say – not what you wear. So save yourself the big fashion statements for a welcome week and stay on the conservative side when it comes to clothing and personal hygiene – at least from the waist down. (Nobody will be smarter if you’re still wearing pajama bottoms.)
- Stage your background.
Video is as much about what you see as what you hear. Make sure the space behind your camera is clear and uncluttered. If possible, film yourself against a plain wall to keep the focus where it’s supposed to be – on you. Any major shot of your room in the background should be clean and organized. No passing people, animals or distracting piles of laundry in sight. You can certainly have a small plant or frame to add a little personality to your shot. If you’re using zoom, experiment with settings such as zoom.
“I will never forget a specific Skype interview from my time at UCLA Anderson Admissions,” said Jessica Chung of Fortuna, former UCLA Anderson Associate Director of Admissions. “I don’t remember who he was, what he said, or what he was wearing, just that I couldn’t stop fixating on his messy, unmade bed in the background. This tidbit was included in my post-interview report. ”As with your clothes, you want to be remembered for all the right reasons.
- Give your face the best shine.
Do a test beforehand to make sure your lighting is strong – not too bright or too dark. Position yourself so that you are facing the light to give the interviewer the best view of your face. Try moving your screen to different places in your home for the best light. Some customers use small rings of light that can easily be placed near their computer camera. I had a customer who looked stubbornly sweaty, so I recommend blotting papers from the pharmacy. As already mentioned, when you are zoomed, you can use the “Improve my appearance” function (Settings> Video dialog> “Improve my appearance”). Speaking of glow, after Stichfixwho have favourited three colors that work for everyone blush, Red and blackalthough you can consult their practical guide to find the colors that suit you best.
- Optimize your technology.
With a good internet connection, you want to make sure that you have great sound quality. Find a quiet place and use headphones to improve the sound (they can block out unexpected background noise). Your voice should be the only one that can be heard in the interview. Your voice should be clear and easy to hear as you speak at normal pitch and volume. Make sure your computer settings are updated – Zoom, for example, makes frequent changes that need to be updated to function optimally. Test that your microphone is working properly and that your computer settings for audio have been updated. Either way, make sure the link works before trying to open it at the time of the call.
- Play the home advantage.
Write down a few bullet points or discussion points, or sketch out a quick structure such as: B. Main answer and supporting examples. but Avoid excessive scripting – You want to appear fluid and natural in front of the camera. “One big finding is that you have the ability to put things out of your interviewer’s field of vision,” said Sharon Joyce of Fortuna, former Associate Director of Admissions at Berkeley Haas. “You can have sticky notes with keywords or messages on your wall. Just a few ‘cliff-notes’ in the background to help you out if needed. ”However, remember to have a few eye-level post-it notes to refresh your memory or focus. You don’t want to read entire sentences from a prepared script or let your eyes wander around the room. The interviewer can tell if you are reciting which is undermining your authenticity.
- Communicate confident body language.
While most candidates focus too much on what to say, the way they say it – along with other nonverbal cues like maintaining eye contact – can have an even bigger impact on how you feel on one Leave entrance gatekeeper. Eye contact is very important – even if looking at yourself on the screen is tempting, remember to engage the interviewer by looking at the camera instead. Granted, it’s not easy. As you practice, make an inventory of your visual relationship – from your posture and expression to your breathing, gestures, and energy. Don’t forget to smile: when you’re having fun, it shines through and connects with the viewer (you’re in front of the camera, after all). You can also turn off self-view to decrease your self-esteem.
Play around with posture to see what is most effective for you. I am a fan of standing for more energy. Sharon is a huge advocate of adding two minute power poses to your pre-interview ritual, the one from. was made known HBS psychologist Amy Cuddy in her TED talk. Not only is it a setup for a more effective interview experience, but research shows that it improves your inner state by making you feel more powerful. Visualize the success. Are you wondering what is the most important thing I want my interviewer to remember about me?
- Make a note of yourself and course correctly.
Record yourself as you practice. What is your impression? Are you friendly and approachable? Would others feel comfortable working with you? Did you manage to avoid the overuse of “um”, “I like” and other filler words? If you are fortunate enough to have more than one interview, you can subtly record your experience to allow for a debriefing. “For some of my clients who were particularly concerned, I told them to record their MBA interview on their iPhone,” says Sharon. “We’ll listen to it together, and I can give really specific feedback before the next interview.”
Remember that one of the greatest advantages of having interviews with people around you is that you can create the conditions to feel more relaxed. (Nobody will be smarter if you are doused with soothing essential oils or the scent of freshly baked cookies.) Know that this year many students are experiencing the same thing – so definitely not a company schooling your application to take part in the interview punish remotely.
However, perform the usual pre-interview rituals – identify your key selling points to provide clear and concise answers, practice responding in front of the camera as naturally and confidently as possible, and stay grounded to make your personality shine bring to.
If you’re looking for extra help ahead of the big day, you can Register to prepare for the MBA interview with one of the former gatekeepers for the MBA admission at Fortuna Admissions. And don’t miss this article by Fortuna’s director of the interview practice, Malvina Miller Complainville, to learn more MBA interview tips, including insights into the M7 interview landscape.
Judith Silverman Hodara, EdD, is a director at Fortuna Admissions, an MBA admissions coaching company, and a former assistant director of admissions at Wharton. To get an honest assessment of your chances of successful admission to a top MBA program, sign up for. at free advice.