How to Choose A Career–Tips from the MBA Application Process

Here’s a career idea that can be another aid in helping you choose a career, even though it is intended for a more narrow purpose (where it’s also useful).

Yesterday, I posted links to a Wall Street Journal study about the finanical value (or lack of it) for an MBA.  Here’s what I think is a very cool follow up.  It’s from the University of Virginia B school, but here’s the thing.  What she’s saying on this video is is ALSO relevant to ANYONE thinking about career choices in general–not just about MBA programs.

For instance, she talks about asking people who know you when they’ve noticed that you were most excited or most frustrated in the past few months.  She suggests that applicants use this as a way of writing a good MBA application essay (and not bore the heck out of the readers). 

But don’t be fooled.  You can also mine this information to help you find what you have real passion for doing and what is challenging and what is just not your cup of tea. 

Others can’t tell you what you should be doing. Tests can’t tell you.  Even career coaches, all knowing as we (think we) are, certainly can’t.  However, people who know you CAN give you concrete examples of what they’ve seen that can help you get clearer about what kinds of things you consistently love.  It’s up to you (with the further support of friends, family, and possibly career coaches) to see how to tap into those situations to decide what kinds of careers match those situations. 

In other words, you are a detective and these are clues about your happiness.  Sure, the exact thing that you were passionate about may not be the career you will choose (say teaching your girlfriend how to ski).  But it may well give you info about how much people interaction you want, how much you want something where learning or teaching is important, etc.

So watch the video and see if her essay suggestions spark some good thinking on your part or that of your friends and relatives.

If you want me, your friendly career coach, to write more about how to use your passions to determine your career, post a comment or send me an email.  

If you want some info about career coaching, also send me an email or check out my business site

So here is the YouTube video from Sara Neher, Darden’s Director of MBA Admissions (University of Virginia)


Comments are closed.