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Tips for Handling Recommendations - Part 2

Round 2 applicants, now is the time to reflect on the questions common to all letters of recommendation: strengths, as compared to those in a similar role, and a story about receiving constructive criticism. More and more programs are moving towards the Common Letter of Recommendation. Identify the stories you want to share and outline them in STAR format for the first 3 questions, then consider ideas your recommender might include for the “anything else” area.  

 

Find Part 1 - Execution here.

 

1. You want a recommender who has witnessed you demonstrate those all-important attributes – teamwork, leadership, and problem solving, just to name a few.

 

What content will they offer? Is it in line with how you want to brand yourself? The content is far more important than their status at the company.

 

2. Speak with a couple of select individuals regarding your plans to attend business school and gauge their reaction. If they are enthusiastic, keep the conversation going. And if you decide someone is right for the job – make sure to ask them about work travel and vacation plans. It’s best to be in close contact around the application due date.

 

3. Only bring in recommenders willing to work collaboratively. At minimum, willing to think jointly about the anecdotes you plan to share. Optimally, willing to have an editor review their draft for clarity to make sure what they write is consistent with the rest of the application. You have invested a lot of time and money into this process and need transparency into the application.

 

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