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What exactly is "good" work experience?

EngineerjwEngineerjw Registered User Posts: 1,136 Senior Member
edited July 2010 in Business School - MBA
I mean, what would be the ideal work experience for the "average" applicant?
Post edited by Engineerjw on

Replies to: What exactly is "good" work experience?

  • BedHeadBedHead Registered User Posts: 2,730 Senior Member
    Leadership = good
    Progression in field, the more rapid the better = good
    Experience in a "sexy" or vital field = good
    All the above together = priceless
  • lkf725lkf725 Registered User Posts: 4,781 Senior Member
    Hey Engineerjw, I just wanted to let you know that my son got into an MBA program with nothing more than engineering work in summer internships (same company every year). At first, they didn't seem to really like that, but he had a 4.0, >700 and identifiable contributions to the business. I don't know if he is the average applicant, but the business school sort of made him feel like they were doing him a favor. The engineering school (dual degree MBA/MSEngr), however, seemed very happy to have him.

    If you want to go, just take the GMAT and give it a try!
  • EngineerjwEngineerjw Registered User Posts: 1,136 Senior Member
    Wow, that sounds great. I assume you're talking about a top top B-school, right? I want to be prepared when I go to college so I can get a good MBA no matter where my undergrad is.
  • JuggernautCos0JuggernautCos0 Registered User Posts: 163 Junior Member
    2+ years at a single job, means you can hold down a job.

    @lkf725 What school did he get his MBA at?
  • BostonEngBostonEng Registered User Posts: 342 Member
    you can figure out what work experience is appropriate by looking at the stats/history of the current students at the schools you are looking at.

    if you are looking at the top-top mba programs, the breakdown is 1/3 management consulting, 1/3 i-banking, and 1/3 other.

    if you get into management consulting or banking (which is pretty hard in and of itself) you are in pretty good shape for mba admissions. as long as you check the right boxes you have a good chance.

    if you are in the other one-third, it is a competitive bracket. many in there had impressive non-profit backgrounds, international business experience, or went through their company's flagship "leadership program".

    if you are going to a non-elite undergrad institution, your best chance is to demonstrate leadership while you are on campus (student govt, athletics, whatever) and try to get into a management/leadership development program. these are usually BS but they look good on a resume and will help for b-school. i say this because banking/consulting are very tough fields to break into unless they recruit at your school (around top 25 institutions i believe).
  • JuggernautCos0JuggernautCos0 Registered User Posts: 163 Junior Member
    Consulting can be very tough to break into but when I graduated I already had multiple free lance consulting experience.
  • intlhawaii15intlhawaii15 Registered User Posts: 2 New Member
    I found this topic very useful and wanted to ask another question about "work experience." Help please!!

    My circumstances are a little bit different. I went to a decent private institution that would have given me an exponentially higher probability of getting into a great graduate school, but I had to transfer and settle with a "non-elite" because of financial reasons. Finishing my third year of undergrad, I was recently offered a full-time position at an international luxury brand company in their operations/management department, with the intent of continuing school full-time. I wanted to know: is it worth the struggle going to school/working full time if I plan to get into a top tier MBA program in the future? I question this because I know they look at >>post-grad<< work experience and weigh this very heavily.

    In response to BostonEng's post:

    "if you are looking at the top-top mba programs, the breakdown is 1/3 management consulting, 1/3 i-banking, and 1/3 other."

    I'm assuming that my work experience would fall into the 1/3 "other." I think my concern boils down to my attempt to "stand out," coming from a non-elite school.

    Please help, and any help will be greatly appreciated. :)
  • EngineerjwEngineerjw Registered User Posts: 1,136 Senior Member
    So even at a state school, it's basically just become a leader on college campus, and then get some sort of job for 2+ years.

    Okay, question. What if I graduate as an engineer and then just get generic, but good, job. Like a starting level QA guy. Or a random engineering position. Or maybe just some sort of assistant HR guy or something. Can generic jobs get you in if you hold them down for 2+ years? I mean, not everyone is lucky enough to get great jobs out of college.
  • DawgieDawgie Registered User Posts: 1,576 Senior Member
    Work experience and demonstrated leadership much > Some college campus stuff. If you are still in school worry about your GPA and solidifying a good job.
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