It often happens that the very best of our competencies, strengths and creativities are brought to action when we willingly take on challenges. Right from my childhood, my parents taught me that whenever we face obstacles towards achieving a goal, there only two clear choices (1) to back out of goal-plans and stay in the comfort zone of being “reasonable” or (2) to take it on as a challenge, solve it and seize the opportunity to be in charge of destiny. I have always chosen the later.
As a teenager, I would read through the profiles of business leaders – successful entrepreneurs and top managers in leading corporations. It became increasingly clear that a strong majority of them started early in their business careers and with a marked degree of focus. Realizing my acumen for finance as a subject area, I therefore decided to “get my feet wet” soon after pursing my Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Mumbai (Bombay). Extensive efforts and networking lead me towards a golden opportunity with ABC, the Indian arm of globally reputed Investment Bank. I joined the ABC team as a Junior Analyst. The exciting role involved reporting to senior managers and working in the Capital Markets industry and developing competencies in cutting edge Financial Products and services.
At ABC, I realized that it does take a trained eye to read through different trades and analyze the logic and complexities behind them. The company turned out to be a world in itself! In the first three months (and as junior analyst), I learnt about the life cycle of a trade, the common terminologies used while trading and complexities involved in a trade, the final settlement processes and the nuances of reporting such details to senior management and clientele. I was then handed over the opportunity to handle such complex activities independently. At the company, Professional Trainers and guest lecturers have often been invited to train and develop personnel on various specialized knowledge areas. I thus had the opportunity to learn hands-on and in detail about Capital Markets, Futures and Options, Equity and Equity Derivatives, Foreign Exchange (Options, Spots and Forwards), Advanced Excel and many more knowledge and skill areas of finance.
Within six months of taking my taking charge, a record collection of Commissions of over US$300 Mn. (having no outstanding commissions more than 90 days) was achieved. I received appreciations from senior management, clients and counterparts for 100% accuracy in reporting. Within a year, I was promoted as Analyst and entrusted leading a team of 6 Junior Analysts. I was transitioned to the Foreign Exchange (FX) Settlements Team and developed competencies as a subject matter expert for the company’s operations with DEF. In August 2009, I received a quarterly award for outstanding performance.
Having proven my mettle in handling high volumes of trading transactions, instituting process and ensuring efficient execution, I was entrusted with a special project – spearheading the company’s strategic initiative of direct membership arrangement with ABC. We had, so far, been a “Third Party Member” the world leader in Foreign Exchange settlements. To ensure this prestigious alliance, I located more than 100 prospects (“counterparties”) who could gain by conducting transactions with our company. I pitched our services extensively bringing home the fact that we had emerged to world class standards in credibility, liquidity and credit line in the industry. The project’s fruition resulted in revenue savings in excess of GBP 9 Mn to the company. Having achieved this goal, I took the lead in development and execution of all sub-process of Foreign Exchange – thus ensuring superior service levels to clientele.
With nearly 4 years of success in investment banking, my post-MBA career goal is to grow to the position of a Senior Associate in the Capital Markets Prime Services division of a global Investment Bank. Such an experience will broaden my perspective to face challenges in the global financial services industry and bring in unlimited opportunities to innovate and add value. My long-term aspiration is to establish and operate a financial services firm that focuses on Investment management for Ultra High-Net-Worth Individuals and Enterprises and provide financial solutions to Governments, Corporations and Institutional clients. The firm will be focused on the leading edge in mixing asset classes to maximize returns while minimizing risk. The second phase plan includes setting up of a private equity firm that will help other entrepreneurs like me achieve their own dreams; this will provide me with utmost satisfaction.
A Global M.B.A program From ABC university – School of business is crucial towards achieving my career goals at this stage in my career. The School’s approach of cultivating intuition through case studies in finance, strategy and other application areas will help me strengthen my fundamentals and develop well-trained managerial and entrepreneurial instincts. I stand to gain immensely through participation in challenging industry/consulting assignments and thus widen my understanding to a global scale.
The other area of importance to my goals is leadership development. In a people-driven financial services enterprise, the greatest asset is people – their knowledge, enthusiasm, loyalty and cohesion with organizational goals. In addition to specialist courses/training in leadership development, ABC University provides the platform to interact with globally renowned faculty and a diverse student community and develop interpersonal skills and comfort on a global scale. It also opens up vistas for networking extensively with the vast alumni network and learning through seminars from global business leaders. ABC University is thus my most preferred destination pursing an M.B.A program.
A good or bad essay can easily make or break you.
You'll want to stand out, and the personal statement portion on the application gives you the chance to do it.
Jeremy Shinewald, former admissions interviewer and author of "The Complete Start-to-Finish MBA Admissions Guide
Here are 5 tips for getting it done the right way:
1. Show Your Personal Fit: "While you may not always be able to pinpoint aspects of a program that are entirely unique to that school, the key is to show a connection between the school's resources and offerings and your individual interests and requirements―to make the association very clear and personal. If you have visited the school or spoken with some of the alumni, students, professors or admissions staff, mentioning these personal connections can be helpful."
2. Keep Long & Short-term Goals Connected: "You must be sure to demonstrate a cause and effect relationship between your short and long-term goals. After all, your long-term goals are based on the assumption that your stated short-term goals will be reached; the position you will hold later in your career will be facilitated by those you hold earlier."
3. Don't Spell Out Your Resume: "Some candidates make the mistake of writing about their work experience for 75 percent of their personal statements, even though they are also submitting a resume with their application. This wastes precious essay space by repeating facts the admission committee already has elsewhere. When prompted to discuss career progress, limit your to approximately 40 percent of the essay length. If not, keep it at 10-15 percent."
4. Avoid Generic Statements: "Remember that admissions readers see thousands of essays every year—they are extremely experienced and can therefore tell what candidate is being sincere and when he/she is just trying to say the 'right' thing."
5. Tell Them Why You've Chosen Them: "A common mistake among applicants when responding to the question, "Why our MBA?," is to simply flatter the school. Explain how the school's unique characteristics and offerings meet your needs—by inference, no other school can meet these needs, because no other school offers the map."