July 25, 2019

MIT Sloan School of Management MBA Video Prompt

MIT Sloan

Video Prompt

Please take a minute to introduce yourself to your future classmates via video. Include a bit on your past experience and why MIT Sloan is the best place for you to pursue your MBA. Videos should be a single take (no editing) lasting no more than one minute and consisting of you speaking directly to the camera. We recommend using an application such as QuickTime or iMovie to record yourself.

Upload the video file according to the detailed instructions within the application. We support the following file formats: .avi, .flv, .m1v, .m2v, .m4v, .mkv, .mov, .mpeg, .mpg, .mp4, .webm, .wmv

Should you experience difficulties uploading your file, please ensure that you’re using a modern web browser (Chrome, Firefox, or Safari) on the fastest wired internet connection available. An intermittent or slow internet connection can cause uploads to timeout.


How on Earth can you prepare for something so open-ended!? Well, lots of ways:

Step 1: Know Your Greatest Hits.What are the absolute best stories you have, lifetime, ever? Get acquainted with them according to category. Stuff like, what are my one or two best:

  • Leadership Stories?
  • Failure Stories?
  • Funny Moments at Work Stories?
  • Funny Moments Outside of Work Stories?
  • Stories That Capture the ESSENCE of who I am?
  • Business Ideas that would change the world?
  • People I admire?
  • Favorite Movies (or books or songs or bands)?
  • etc.

Step 2: Get a feel for what 1 minute is.
In fact, get a feel for what 50-55 seconds is. Answer some of these questions within that timeframe. Write out a response, look at it on the page. How many sentences is it? Get comfortable with 1 minute.

Step 3: Record yourself ten times, answering ten different questions.

How do you look? Are you looking at the camera? Or are you looking AT YOURSELF ON SCREEN WHILE RECORDING? Are you fidgeting? Are you moving your hands too much? Are you stumbling over words? Are you reading from a script?

Step 4: Get comfortable to the point where you no longer need to feel rehearsed, or nervous.

How do you look? Are you looking at the camera? Or are you looking AT YOURSELF ON SCREEN WHILE RECORDING? Are you fidgeting? Are you moving your hands too much? Are you stumbling over words? Are you reading from a script?

Copy a list of “interview” questions, keep them hidden, and then test yourself by revealing a question, give yourself 60 seconds to come up with a response, and then record a response in 60 seconds. Do this enough times, and you’ll start to develop “IQ” for “this kind of question.”

The worst thing you can do? Seem overly rehearsed. Meaning, don’t rehearse and deliver exact sentences. It will defeat the purpose of the ENTIRE experiment. The point is to relax the bad kind of nerves to allow your free-est self to SHINE. For some folks, this comes utterly naturally, and honestly, they can skip maybe all those steps. Others might benefit from some dry runs just so that there’s a better chance at real assertiveness and confidence on “the big day.”

So, once you’ve got the presentation down, on to the prompt. You’ve only got sixty seconds to introduce yourself, “include a bit about your past experience” (given the time constraint we’re almost certainly talking ONE fact/story) and explain why you’re picking Sloan. If that sounds challenging—yes, it very much is! But not to worry, you’ve got the written components of the application to convey all your accomplishments. Here, we want to establish a VIBE.

Do NOT try and shove a bunch of different stories in here—instead, focus on the ONE greatest hit that will get the adcom to LIKE you and WANNA GET TO KNOW YOU MORE because you come across irresistible in some way shape or form. This is 90% about personality, and 10% about resume. If we watch this video and say “wow, what an impressive person!” that’s a start. If, however, we say “holy crap I would KILL to meet that person” or “Man, I’d like to invite THAT person to a dinner party,” then congrats, because that’s the best possible reaction.

If you’re not naturally gifted in extemporaneous speaking, then there are things you can do to develop some of that swagger. Those steps above may be worth considering as a starting point.

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