MBA Heroes


How to Apply to Harvard Business School’s MBA Program

Earning an MBA from Harvard Business School (HBS) is a dream for many aspiring business leaders. HBS is renowned for its rigorous academic program, world-class faculty, and its ability to shape future industry leaders. To secure a spot in this prestigious institution, one must navigate a highly competitive application process. In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to apply for an MBA at HBS and the requirements you need to meet.

Application Process

The HBS application process consists of the following steps:

  1. Resume:
    • Your resume should provide a comprehensive overview of your professional and academic background. Be sure to highlight significant achievements, work experience, leadership roles, and any extracurricular activities.
  2. Essay:
    • The essay is a crucial part of your application. It offers you an opportunity to showcase your personal and professional journey, motivations, and aspirations. HBS provides specific essay prompts each year, so be sure to check their website for the latest guidelines.
  3. Two Letters of Recommendation:
    • HBS requires two recommendation letters from individuals who can provide insights into your character, achievements, and potential. Choose recommenders who know you well and can speak to your qualifications for the MBA program.
  4. Transcripts:
    • Submit transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions you have attended. HBS requires official transcripts, and you should ensure they reflect your academic performance accurately.
  5. Test Scores:
    • HBS accepts both GMAT and GRE scores. You are required to submit one of these standardized test scores, which help assess your quantitative and analytical abilities.
    • If English is not your native language, you must also submit English language proficiency test scores. HBS accepts TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, and Duolingo scores. Ensure you meet the minimum required scores for admission.
  6. Interview:
    • If your application is shortlisted, you will be invited to an interview. Interviews are typically conducted by HBS alumni in various locations worldwide. It is a chance for you to further demonstrate your fit for the program and engage in a conversation about your goals and experiences.
  7. Post-Interview Reflection:
    • After your interview, you will be asked to submit a post-interview reflection. This is an opportunity to reflect on the interview experience and provide additional insights into your candidacy.


Videos: Info, Application tips

We share several links on different tips for applying to IESE. The first link talks about Harvard HBS Adcom Q&A. In addition, it discusses the following topics: Imposter syndrome really exists at HBS?, Is there a typical profile of a HBS student? and The HBS case method.

The second link talks about How To Get Into Harvard Business School. In addition, it discusses the following topics: Start by reading to you the email, Prepare for Harvard MBA Application, Demonstrate your analytical aptitude, Highlighting those types of projects on your resume, Discussing business issues with the greats of your generation and How to write the Harvard essay.

The third link talks about How to Fill Out HBS MBA Application Form. In addition, it discusses the following topics: Instructions, Permanent Addresses, Geographic background, App free waivers, Need-Based free waiver, Your Family background, Resume, Minimum work experience, Employment section, reason for leaving, Post MBA Goals, Career Aspirations, Education, Transferring Gpa, Non-degree coursework, Activities, Essays and If someone gets an award for consecutive years does one mentioned as two separate awards.

The fourth link talks about Harvard Business School Essay Sample. In addition, it discusses the following topics: How do you write a standout HBS admissions essay?, What is the HBS essay question?, HBS essay example, Key takeaways from the HBS essay sample, Writing with honesty and simplicity, Showing growth in your HBS essay and More HBS application essay example resources.

The fifth link is about How to Get Into Harvard Business School | HBS Application Tips. In addition, it discusses the following topics: Intro to how to get into Harvard Business School, What makes an HBS MBA applicant stand out?, How to write a great HBS application essay, Three approaches for your HBS essay, Our word limit guidance for your Harvard Business School essay (Note that as of 5/1/22, HBS added a word limit of 900 words for its application essay), Do you need to write about your goals or “Why HBS”? and mbaMission Harvard Business School Resources.

The sixth link is about:HBS: Everything You Need to Know About the Harvard MBA. In addition, it discusses the following topics: Harvard Ardvard Aardvark, HBS Culture.

The sixth link is about:HBS: Everything You Need to Know About the Harvard MBA. In addition, it discusses the following topics: Harvard Ardvard Aardvark, HBS Culture, HBS Essay / What Do YOU Want US To Know, HBS Interview and What Makes a Good Harvard MBA Candidate?.

And finally, the last link is about Watch John Byrne’s “Mock” Interview With A Former HBS Interviewer. In addition, it discusses the following topics: What is anxiety-producing about the HBS interview?, What are the myths surrounding preparation and the interview itself? How can someone prepare? Isn’t it hard to know what’s covered? What does it mean to be authentic in the interview? Does your interview have to be perfect for you to be accepted? What if you feel like you messed up an answer? What is HBS really looking for in the interview? and Can it make or break someone’s candidacy?


Summary of HBS Essay & Analysis 2023-2024

HBS Essay 1

This essay is your chance to tell HBS “what more” they need to know about you that is not already covered in your other application materials. It is important to choose a topic that is meaningful to you and that highlights your leadership qualities, analytical aptitude, and engaged community citizenship. Be sure to write a succinct and well-crafted essay that is specific to HBS.

HBS Career Goals Short Answer

In this short answer, you will need to explain your post-MBA career aspirations in 500 characters or less. Be sure to be specific and realistic in your goals, and explain why they make sense for you. You should also highlight the impact you hope to make in your chosen field.

HBS Post-Interview Reflection

If you are invited to interview at HBS, you will be asked to write a reflection on your interview experience within 24 hours of the interview. This essay is your opportunity to emphasize the key attributes of your candidacy and to address any topics that you may not have had a chance to discuss during the interview.

Tips for Writing HBS Essays

  • Be specific and provide examples.
  • Be honest and authentic.
  • Be concise and to the point.
  • Proofread carefully.


Letter of recommendation questions

Summary of Harvard Business School (HBS) MBA Recommendation Questions 2023-2024

Recommender Information

Recommenders are asked to provide basic information about themselves, their relationship to the applicant, and the context of their interaction with the applicant.

Candidate Evaluation

Recommenders are asked to rate the applicant’s leadership attributes and skills on a scale of “No Basis for Judgment” to “Distinctive” and to provide comments on their ratings.

HBS MBA Recommendation Upload

Recommenders are asked to answer two open-response questions in a single document:

  1. How does the applicant’s performance, potential, background, or personal qualities compare to those of other well-qualified individuals in similar roles? Please provide specific examples. (Recommended: 300 words)
  2. Please describe the most important piece of constructive feedback you have given the applicant. Please detail the circumstances and the applicant’s response. (Recommended: 250 words)

Optional Question

  • Is there anything else we should know? Please be concise.

Tips for Writing HBS Recommendation Letters

  • Be specific and provide examples.
  • Be honest and authentic.
  • Be concise and to the point.
  • Proofread carefully.

HBS values recommendations that provide specific and insightful information about the applicant’s leadership potential, academic ability, and personal qualities. Recommenders should take the time to write a thoughtful and well-crafted letter that will help HBS make an informed decision about the applicant’s candidacy.


Admissions events in your area

All the information you need is in this LINK.

If invited for an interview this resource is useful: Interview reports submitted by interviewees

All the information you need is in this LINK.