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Kellogg / Northwestern MBA Interview Questions & Report – Round 1 / Alumnus / Off-campus

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I was invited to interview on 09/23 with a recent alum in my city. I reached out to the alum by email and scheduled the interview one afternoon (about 1 week after receiving the invite) at a local coffee shop, which was quiet given the meeting time. The interview was blind, and the alum only had access to the resume that I sent him via email.

Overall, the interview was very relaxed and conversational, and it was clear that my interviewer was very passionate about Kellogg. We talked a bit about his background and my recent visit to Kellogg before getting to the formal questions.

Questions he asked included the standard “Walk me through your experience,” “Why MBA?”, and “Why Kellogg?”, and he asked follow-up/clarifying questions to understand my experience. Obviously, these questions should be second-nature to you when prepping for interviews and thus weren’t all that surprising. He also asked a few behavioral questions, including “Tell me about your leadership style,” and “Tell me about a time you had to lead a team and something went wrong.” Again, very standard questions.

He threw a few curve-balls in the mix, like “What would your biggest champion say about you?” and “What would your biggest critic say about you?”, but I realized these were largely assessing strengths/weaknesses and answered accordingly.

The alum seemed to reinforce the idea that the MBA should be a time for uninhibited exploration, which I appreciated as a likely career-switcher. This really added to my positive opinion of Kellogg, which is known for its community-focused learning style. He offered me a chance to answer anything I thought wasn’t conveyed through his questions, and then I asked a couple of questions about his journey since graduating and how Kellogg benefited him personally (in addition to professionally). In the end, the interview was a very positive experience, and I’m so thankful that my interviewer was so earnest and passionate about the school (he even said he’d do it again and pay for it again if he could, which is always a good sign!).

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