Need help with an international business personal statement?

Many students are at a loss when it comes to writing an international business personal statement. Indeed, it’s not just would-be students of international business courses who don’t know how to even begin to write a personal statement. It can be difficult to strike the right note when writing about your aspirations, dreams and hopes. You don’t want to sound over-confident, but you do have to sell yourself to the university you are applying to. You also have to be specific and not over-generalise what you wish to achieve.


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When you have decided which universities offer international business courses, and to do this, you will have to read through a number of prospectuses, you will need to tailor your personal statement to the specific questions asked by the international business department. You can’t simply use the same personal statement for all applications. Different universities have different requirements when it comes to personal statements. You need to analyse the questions asked and address them.

Sometimes there aren’t any questions to answer, and you are simply asked to write a personal statement. This gives you more freedom to write about yourself.

When you write your personal statement, remember that there is a word limit, which is usually about 47 lines long. You are not writing a book, but you do need to include as much relevant information as you can. You need to be precise.

Before you sit down to write your personal statement, there are several questions that you need to think about.

  1. What makes you unique?
  2. What have you achieved that makes you special?
  3. What events, or personal history have influenced your choice to study international business?
  4. When and why did you first start to take an interest in international business?
  5. What research have you done into this subject and how has that stimulated your desire to study it further?
  6. Have you studied the subject at evening classes, or have you read a lot about it, or spoken with people who have studied it, or who are working in this field?
  7. If you have had any work experience, how has this helped with your personal growth?
  8. What exactly would you like to do if you succeed in getting on to an international business course?
  9. Do you need to explain any gaps in your CV or resumé?
  10. Has life tested you in any way?
  11. What personal qualities do you have which will help you in your chosen profession?
  12. What life skills do you have that will be an asset?
  13. Why do you think you would be an ideal candidate for an international business course?
  14. What can you say about your application that would interest the selection committee so that they would prefer you to other candidates?

Here are some hints regarding answers to the above questions:

  1. You need to explain precisely what makes you stand out from other candidates for a place on an international business course.
  2. Have you had any personal problems that you have overcome? Help the selection panel understand what distinguishes you from the other applicants.
  3. Explain exactly why you believe that you would be ideal to work in the international business field and say what you have come to learn about yourself.
  4. State when and why, precisely, you became interested in the subject so that the selection panel can evaluate your suitability for the course.
  5. Have you studied the subject and how did you go about studying it? For example, have you attended seminars which you found interesting and stimulating?
  6. Detail what you have done to further your knowledge about the subject,
  7. Perhaps you have developed leadership skills that have assisted your personal growth.
  8. Be as precise as you can to demonstrate that you have thought long and hard about your future career.
  9. If you have taken a gap year, for example, you should explain what you did and why during this time. Also, if your grades fell during your period of study, you should provide reasons for this.
  10. Perhaps you have a disability, or suffered financial hardship, or perhaps you had family problems.
  11. If you have had problems, you clearly have persisted, as you are actively pursuing your dream of working the international business sector. Persistence is a virtue, as are integrity, and compassion. Think how best you can demonstrate these personal qualities by means of examples to impress the selection panel.
  12. You might be a very good communicator or leader, so you should mention these life skills.
  13. You need to explain why you are a better candidate for a place on the course than other applicants.
  14. These are personal, and every candidate will have different answers to this question. You need to make your case compelling.
  • Read the questions you are asked very carefully and be specific.
  • Don’t be boring. Illustrate your answers with personal anecdotes and make your writing dynamic and fresh. Tell your story in a way that commands attention.
  • Don’t write anything that you can’t support or justify.
  • Find a ‘hook’ that is attention-grabbing.
  • Take time composing your opening paragraph. It is this that is most important as a reader will either continue reading or decide your life story is banal. The opening paragraph is the framework for the rest of your international business personal statement.
  • There are some things that are not suitable for inclusion in personal statements; for example, don’t mention any potentially controversial subjects, such as your religious beliefs or lack of them.
  • Research the university and the course you are applying to join. You might want, for example to go to that university because of its geographical location, or because of the distinguished professors in the department of international business studies.
  • Make sure you proofread your statement meticulously before submitting it; check it several times.
  • You need to demonstrate your originality, so don’t resort to hackneyed clichés

Your personal statement should say a lot about you and your suitability for the course you are applying for. If you are asked to attend an interview, you should sell yourself in the best possible way.

It is always possible that you will be feeling stressed, or under par on the day of your examination. If your grades are not up to those required, your personal statement could rescue you, and you might be offered a place on the course regardless of them. If your statement shows commitment and a lot of enthusiasm, your chosen international business department might still accept you.

If you are invited to attend an interview, read your personal statement carefully, so that there are no discrepancies between it and what you say in the interview.

Before attending an interview be sure that the course on offer is precisely the one you want to do. If, on reflection, you think that it is not really the one you want, decline the interview and give your reasons. That way no one’s valuable time is wasted.

Don’t be in too much of a hurry to finish your personal statement. Be prepared to write several drafts. These can be much longer than required, but finally you will have to produce a précis of the penultimate draft. Keep going over the statement and make improvements to it until you are completely satisfied that it is a true reflection your abilities, personal qualities and of your strength that are relevant to the course you are applying for. It is always a good idea to show your statement to your tutors or teachers and ask them for help and guidance. They should be only too happy to be of assistance. Teachers always want their students to do well. Their achievements reflect on the teachers and the quality of their teaching.

If, even after this helpful advice, you are still concerned about your ability to write your personal statement, don’t despair. Contact us and avail yourself of our services. This is not cheating, as if we supply you with one personal statement, you can use it as a model and tailor it to suit your other applications, to different international business departments. Of course, we would be happy to supply you with other personal statements. The model statement will give you some useful vocabulary and demonstrate how to put one together in a logical way. With a model personal statement to guide you, we are sure you will be more confident when you write your own. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you think that you would benefit from our professional help.

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