Admit: INSEAD and LBS

I was referred to Sam by a friend of mine who had received really helpful career advice from Sam. I  came to Sam with two particular problems: I had done really well with  my European MBA applications (receiving a scholarship from INSEAD) and  not well at all (dinged without interviews) with my MBA application in  the US despite high expectations there. This difference in outcomes left  me wondering what could explain the difference and whether I should  consider reapplying. I also was left in a very tricky situation in  deciding between INSEAD and LBS and negotiating scholarship money with  LBS (my preferred European school) – this is an extremely delicate  conversation and I wasn’t sure exactly how to manage it without damaging  the relationship.

Sam  had a much more meaningful understanding of what European schools look  for (than some US-based advice I had received) and why my profile was  naturally better suited to them which helped bring me closure and decide  between a 1-year programme vs a 2-year programme. When I followed his  advice I received a very decent scholarship offer while maintaining a  good relationship with the admissions committee.

Three things stand out for me with Sam:

1.  Breadth of knowledge: Sam has a level of knowledge of the US MBA  programmes comparable to the best US consultants, but has a *clearly  superior* knowledge of the European programmes. This means he is much  better able to match specific individuals to the best MBA programmes in  the top 20, which includes several European schools.

2.  Integrity: While it may very well have been in Sam’s interest to  recommend that I reapply with him (and I was definitely prepared to do  so), he put my interests before his own and recommended against  reapplying, given my outcomes because, ultimately, it was the best  choice for me.

3.  Time: time is money for consultants. With other consultants (I’ve been  around the block), I had a distinct sense that I was up against the  clock. This left me feeling uncomfortable probing the advice I had paid a  lot of money for in any depth. Sam was comfortable running overtime  when I had important follow-up questions about his advice that hadn’t  been answered yet, which left me feeling a far more satisfied client!

I would highly recommend Sam to anyone who is considering applying to both US and European schools.