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Managing the Blink factor in MBA admissions

The impact of your first impression can never be overlooked. The decisions we make at the first instance or the judgments we take at a blink usually produce better, more accurate conclusions than decisions made by way of thorough investigation. Whether you agree to this or not, the first impressions we have certainly provide an important basis for decision making. The inference in MBA admissions is that, while the Admission officers of all schools assert that they rigorously analyze the strengths and weaknesses of each candidate, there is still also a considerable “Blink” factor involved in how they choose one applicant over another.

Every member of the Admission panel, the essay readers, the interviewers and the committee members are deliberately involved in the admission process to avoid making vague judgments. They aim to impartiality, development and firmness. But they will also definitely be picking up their first impressions at every turn and these can heavily reflect on their admissions decisions. After all, they have to make a big decision about you and your future prospects, which is a very intricate decision to make and they need to do it fairly. The admission committees have got very less time in hand and they don’t actually have that much ceremonial bits and pieces to go on. So the “Blink” factor counts for a lot in any MBA admissions.

Before the admission officers move on to consider an applicant’s grades and scores, performance metrics, and work history, they would have already formed an impression from the ?rst things they have seen in the applicant. It’s quite impossible to know what panel members will notice ?rst in you, but possibly it can be your ?le data, resume or cover letter. During the interview, the interviewers form their own Blink impression, which gets reflected in their report. As they make the first impression about you, they will continue to absorb their ?rst impressions in almost each part: in your essays, particularly their structure and intellect; the pitch and warmth of your recommendations; and lastly, making Blink judgments about your traits, impulse, willpower, personality, team direction and overall prospects.

If you have a poor ?rst impression, you can always slowly win them over with reasons to admit you. But better to get the Blink factor on your side to start with. The best way to deal with the Blink factor is, to realize it’s existence, that it is there, and always will be, and it will certainly provide ways for admission of?cers to use this approach while judging you. Take care of everything that you submit. Cross check if it is cautiously checked and complete. 

First impressions count. It’s always easier to establish a first good impression rather than trying to grind down a bad one.

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