Back to the grind

I was having a conversation with one of my classmates, in which she was telling me how behind she felt already, even though we had only been in school for one week. When I shook my head in agreement, she was shocked by the fact that she wasn’t alone in feeling that way. It’s not so much that I feel behind, just overwhelmed, exhausted, and unorganized all at the same time. Going back to b-school is a lot like starting a new job. You have the first day of class which is like the first day of any new job. It’s bright, filled with possibilities and lot’s of tell me about yourself type questions. So you leave class thinking oh this is going to be a breeze. And then…. you go to buy the course packet and it’s a five pound compilation of HBS’s greatest cases, then you look at the syllabus and realize that you have three cases to read for each class period and then finally it hits you that this isn’t the exception, it’s the norm for all five of the classes that you’re taking. And welcome back to b-school. So I’ve spent the last week and a day trying to juggle moving into a new apartment, figuring out my responsibilities for the three clubs that I’m an officer in, applying for jobs, and of course reading/studying and preparing myself for class. So how do you stay sane when you went from working 60 hours a week, in an internship or a job to being consumed by all things b-school? It’s called prioritizing and it’s a cool little trick that I picked up at some point last year. You can’t be all things to all people, and at some point you’ll have to choose between reading a case for a class and fine tuning your resume to make the deadline for your dream job. They’re not easy decision, but they are decisions that come with b-school, and everyone is making them. In the end (or in your second year), you’ll learn from your mistakes, and have some tried and true knowledge to share with your 1st year friends.

2nd year MBAs: Please email me with your words of wisdom so that I can post them for our 1st year MBAs and prospective students.