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        MBA Application: How To Use Real-World Finance Experience To Your Advantage

        Whether in a startup or a multinational, experience in finance can boost an MBA application

        At the world’s top-ranked business schools, MBA admissions are as competitive as ever. Applicants need to stand out and demonstrate the right skills, attitude and knowledge to be accepted.

        One of the best ways to do this and enhance any MBA application form is through real-world experience in the financial sector.

        The first step is to try and acquire an internship or few weeks of work experience in finance. This could be in anything from stockbroking to banking or even a financial help center, depending on what kind of financial work you are interested in.

        If you are a current student and have time before applying for an MBA, then this is a must. Not only will it help improve and widen your skillset but the real-world experience shows you are driven, seriously interested in this world of work and capable of working in a professional environment.   

        Creating your own small start-up is another great way to quickly increase your financial knowledge in a real-world setting. Whether it’s simply dealing with the accounting side of a start-up or making and managing your own financial investments from home, these both demonstrate the entrepreneurial drive that many business schools look for.

        They allow you to put existing knowledge to the test and quickly learn about the financial world, from chasing up payments to seeking out the best future investments that will help you or your start-up profit. It may not have the professional backup of an internship, but it is still great experience that shows you’re willing to take on new challenges.

        Here's three ways to use your finance experience to your advantage in your MBA application:

        1. Backup Your Skills Section

        The best way to provide authenticity for any claims about your skills is to back it up with examples from real world applications. Being able to say that you possess good analytical skills is useful and essential for any MBA application form, but being able to back it up with examples from your time investing will stand you in better stead.

        Trading and investing in the markets displays a good knowledge and the skills to use different pieces of IT software, for example. Highlight any successful tasks you completed when doing an internship, what you learned and how these skills were applied to really impress on your application.  

        2. Get Reliable References

        References from previous employers and lecturers are great, yet getting a reference from someone in the industry is even better. If you do an internship or work experience for a professional company in the financial sector, then be sure to ask for a reference or if someone would be willing to be a referee at the end.

        They can act as a solid foundation to back up the tasks you claim to have done while doing work experience and for any skills that are mentioned on your application. Those considering applications are far more likely to trust references from professionals working in industry than a lecturer or someone known in a more personal capacity.  

        3. Pack Out Your Resume

        Real world financial experience is a great way to flesh out a resume as well. If there are large gaps elsewhere then this is a great area to expand, by going into greater detail about the experience, what you learned, how you applied yourself and more. Gaps weaken any resume and even if you gain an interview, they may be picked out and have holes poked in at a later stage.

        When it comes to applying for an MBA, ensure you have as much real world financial experience as possible and that it is included on your form in these effective ways.