Statement of Purpose (SOP) has become a standard pre-requisite in most institutions of higher learning, or even corporations for recruiting champions…
The purpose of seeking an SOP, is to assess the articulation of purpose and vision of an individual for his life and career, with cogent arguments and see the individual’s fitment with the institution’s purpose and vision, and what does that individual gain from being a member of the family and what one can contribute to the ecosystem.
Only when you know what is your purpose of life, what is going to be your arena excellence, the destinations you have in mind, what you want to achieve, will you be able to plan, organize self and can launch your journey of assault!
Know your 6W1H – What, Why, Where, Which, When, Who, How? ‘How’ is the last in the list and not the first. Make note!!
If your purpose is to climb Mt. Everest, your 6W1H will be different from that of yours if you want to swim across English channel or wish to go on an Antarctic expedition
Similarly, what do you wish to impact? In the space of sustainability and environment, Healthcare and wellness, Transportation and mobility, Education-skills-livelihood, Financial inclusion and Wealth creation, Energy self-sufficiency……sports excellence and talent management…? there are innumerable areas…
Now do not tell me, ‘Technology’ unless you are going to be in Inventions and Innovations of new technologies…..Understand, technology is only one of the catalysts or meàns in progress in all the aforesaid sectors, industries or areas. Every person who wants to excel and impact in life has to have not only an understanding of a few bleeding edge technologies, but mastery in one or two and know how these technologies are going to be in 2050, 2030….
You will be able to create your purpose and vision only if you know yourselves first. If you have clarity and conviction on 6W1H, only then you will be able to share that conviction to any one, let alone the panel.
Kindly go through the article on Ikigai, for knowing your purpose, creating your vision.
SOP – Essential Elements and flow….
Start with the end goal. Vision for self – life, career. Be more specific, which industry/which sector excites you, even if you want to be CTO, sure you may not like to be in mining sector!
[Better know how the industry/sector will be, say 2030, 2025; what will be the developments, technology disruptions, transformations; market dynamics; players etc. This will help you in envisioning your goals, help in planning, realizing what all you need to equip yourself with’]
Then talk about what all needed to excel in such a sector by 2030, 2025.
Then take stock of what all you already have – knowledge, tools, skill sets that you are good at.
Then what will you gain from an MBA? Especially from that particular institution (or organization) that you aim to join.
Lastly, what you can add to the institution / organization!
—— What is the homework to be done before writing the SOP
– first be good at everything you have touched, or done; everything that has touched you.
– know WHAT you want to be, then WHY, WHERE, WHEN…..Have clarity of VISION, as specific as possible. This will help you dive deep to ONE industry/ sector to have greater knowledge to engage productively and impactfully. DO NOT BE LAZY.
– Then think about what all traits, skillsets, tools you need to succed in such a pursuit. What all you already have, what more do you need to add?
HOW will you gain all you wanted? Then why MBA, where does it figure in the scheme of aspirations and equipping self? Why from that particular institution? Go into their website, dive, find courses, professors and their work, if any in your sectoral interest. Read the papers published if any…
MBA is not a degree or passport for higher salary! Perhaps one of a kind program where you will find 50 year olds too and 20 year old too, people from every kind of education, industries, experiences! It is about gaining as well as adding value to each, the network that lasts for life time.
What you invest will define not only what what you reap, but also generations that follow you…
——- IIMB SOP guidelines…… Possible flow…
IIMB SOP seeks only one 500-600 words essay ..
Now how you narrate it to generate curiosity and eagerness is the key…
Have you gone through the WAT PPT. Kindly click on the link go through…..
Always start any write up, here SOP, in such a way, with hooks, that it creates curiosity…..
If we see our lives as analogous to a tree, how the ROOTs are the starting point, (values for humans, that start from home) go deep and get richer as they penetrate deep to become the source of nourishment…..foundation to build …
Start with values with a statement said in such a way that hooks. You can use a good line of poetry/saying/statement of famous person…, Speak about family, upbringing…..how roots are strong…
Then the STEM, with explorations, experiences with vagaries of weather takes the shapes that become strong TRUNK…..share, classified by school, college, work experience….in POINTS crisply, with experiences, achievements how your strengths got shaped and achievements have enabled to gain your purpose and vision for life….
STATE IN BOLD IF CLARITY IS HIGH…Vision 2050, 2030 that I have been talking about must come here, if you have narrowed on the industry/sector, impact you foresee…Vision can have multiple areas you wish to impact…
Then to bear such fruits that could be of value to you, family and society, what more you wish to nourish yourself with….WHY MBA, How IIMB is going to be of value…comes here….(read the IIMB website well, about profs/works in your area of interest, to add a sentence or two)
Finally, what do you see you adding to the ecosystem of the institution (know the various activities, clubs, ….) that you can enrich, to enhance the ecosystem…..
This anology of tree is one thought process, you may use your own….
B. Could be a rocket launcher that soars high,…..
C. Could be a fruit or a Particular tree you like..
D. Could be motherhood, as I see woman as nurturers of humanity…
E. An animal or an insect of great value to society…and how you visualize yourself to be that animal…..(I had once written an SOP, about being an ant – purpose, passion, perseverance…..)
——— IIM Lucknow SOP ——–
As I have been giving feedback, always share every things in a classified manner….School, College, Work, Other significant achievements….categorised by Academic/Research/books or articles published/ co-curricular/extra-curricular/activities/sports/
Question 2. SOP…
Build it in a logical manner, crisp, in points and sub points, just like the previous answer….
Start with values…akin to roots…from home..
Character and Personality akin to trunk….shaped by your activities, explorations, experiences and achievements…Since previous answer has, everything about awards, achievements you can just allude to major ones….
How these created the purpose and vision for life….vision 2050,2030…solid articulation…
Why soaring towards MBA, ….what all things you are wishing to gain from MBA to make your progress towards realizing your vision.
why IIM Lucknow…..
Go through their website…Know about profs, their works in your areas of interest. May add a sentence or two…
Also add, what you can contribute to the institution….
Hope I have been able drive home my point. If it has opened doors and windows of your thoughts, imaginations and for action, or if you need me address more leave a message in the comment box.