Kellogg MBA 2017-2018 Application Essays Analysis. Essay Tips.  

Kellogg MBA 2017-2018 Application Essays Analysis

Kellogg MBA essays for 2017-2018 admissions include all elements of traditional motivation letter:


  • Background (academic and professional )
  • Achievements
  • Short-term and long-term goals
  • Motivation (reasons) of Kellogg choice

This year Kellogg breaks down all 4 elements into 2 topics:

  1. Kellogg’s purpose is to educate, equip & inspire brave leaders who create lasting value.  Tell us about a time you have demonstrated leadership and created lasting value.  What challenges did you face, and what did you learn? (450 words)
  2. Pursuing an MBA is a catalyst for personal and professional growth. How have you grown in the past? How do you intend to grow at Kellogg? (450 words)

Essay#1 on leadership experience requires to select the case/episode from background, where an MBA candidate has achieved effective/impactful outcomes as a leader. Some examples of such cases can be:

  • Facing and resolving a conflict situation, when you took a leader’s role (either formal or informal) to communicate, negotiate and present a compromising/winning solution to both conflict parts
  • Taking up a new duty or task, which demanded to act as a leader (e.g. build a team, convince an audience, launch new strategy etc.).
  • Spearheading initiative or new project – the case, where core leadership skills, like presentation, communication, expertise, strategic planning etc. must be applied.

There are no good examples of cases, because each example should refer to a particular candidate’s personal characteristics, professional career and personal development. Just remember to follow the logical links and structure to get out the main message: Challenge – Your Action – Result.

As for Essay#2 analysis, it comprises best achievements from the past and motivation to choose a specific way of further progress at Kellogg. Do not be trapped or blocked with the information from your CV to escape repeating the same things in different documents. If your CV states a specific achievement, you are particularly proud of, you may include it in your essay only in case it has a catching story/example, which would be interesting to share with Kellogg. Of course, there are not boring stories. But! Bear in mind that your story can seem to be similar to the hundreds of other ones, so select such an example, which will be unique and might have happened to you only. The second criterion of a good choice is its relevance to the Kellogg’s preference. Some examples can be:

  • You describe how you adapted and led a new product’s marketing campaign, having revealed your natural-born talents and skills in convincing, analyzing and being innovative/creative. You  are also admired by the Kellogg’s  Center for Global Marketing Practice activities and opportunities, because it is the unique feature of Kellogg and it perfectly meets your interests and ambitions.

Here is no good example or bad example, as well. The more relevant and authentic is the story about your growth, the stronger motivation to study at Kellogg appears in the end of the essay.


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Author: Victoria Dudka, MBA Strategy Consultants Team Lead

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