HHL Winning Sample Essay-1
Letter of Motivation
I am an Electrical Engineer with more than five years of work experience in the Energy Transmission vertical of Siemens India. I have worked as on-site engineer of Extra High Voltage Substations and am presently working as a Technical Sales Support Professional for Engineering, Procurement, Construction of the Extra High Voltage Substations. In my current role as a sales professional, I have got an opportunity to work in a lot of tenders along with multiple clients where I have led contract negotiations and sales price discussions. This exposure to the leading teams and negotiations has formed a basis for my career aspiration to pursue an MBA, upskill my business acumen and develop my career as a Business Development Manager in the short term.
During my first two years in job at Siemens India, I worked as an on-site Engineer in Extra High Voltage substations. I was responsible for the Erection, Testing and Commissioning and Timely execution of the substation projects. This was my first experience of meeting clients, managing blue color manpower and planning project timelines.
In my role, I realized that I loved meeting with clients and working on client-facing problems. I pursued my interests and took a transfer to a new role within Siemens as a Technical Sales Professional which was a more client-facing role. For the last 3.5 years, I am working in technical sales for the Turnkey Tenders of Extra High Voltage Substations. In this role, I am responsible for the acquisition of the tenders from clients of the Eastern and Western parts of India. I have the responsibility to prepare the best-optimized offer which is both profitable and competitive and meets the client’s requirements. I lead all the negotiation meetings, collaborate with internal and external stakeholders, and perform competitive market analysis. In my role, I have been able to acquire projects worth 30 Million Euros for Siemens India and have been appreciated multiple times from senior leadership.
However, with the recent increase in my responsibilities to handle much bigger clients and projects, I have felt that I lack business acumen and networking skills to operate and work on global projects. I have realized that my engineering background has helped me succeed so far but in order to grow further, I need to upskill myself on the professional and personal front. On professional front, I need to acquire business knowledge which will prepare me for the bigger roles and develop further in sales and business development roles. On the personal front, I want to diversify my exposure internationally to handle global projects and negotiations. Markets are getting increasingly globalized and so far I have worked with Indian clients only, I do not have international exposure and i think it will be a key blocker in my career progress and an MBA is a perfect place to fulfill my gaps and achieve my short term goals.
After extensive research, I believe HHL’s MBA is in perfect sync with my targeted goals and desired learning from an MBA program in the below mentioned ways:
- Gain the global edge – The markets are being increasingly globalized, so my first and foremost desire was to pursue my MBA from a global B-schools. I realize having international experience can take me leaps and bounds ahead in my career. I want to improve my networking skills and get ready for the Global stage. I want to acquire learning and international exposure, which will help me to broaden my horizons and be an impactful leader. I believe, the ideally small, yet highly international, diverse and experienced cohort of HHL is a perfect atmosphere for me to share and learn from experience of my peers.
- Being amongst the best – Lastly, after working in a german company for 5 years, I have great admiration for German work ethics and culture. I feel I already know the culture to a lot fo extent and I have already learned a little bit of german. So Germany was my first choice when I started researching about an MBA and HHL has been consistently recognized as one of the best business schools in Germany. It has really accomplished teachers of management. I would love to study under the guidance of Professor Dr. Stephan Stubner to hone my management skills which can help me be a better Manager in the future.
- Outside the Classroom: Coming from a background of Energy Transmission, I would be really interested to be an active member of the Energy Club which will help me understand the hot topics of energy change and help me make some useful networks in the energy industry. Negotiation Challenge at HHL is an event that would help me hone my negotiation skills and teach me new strategies for effective negotiation in a global and diverse environment.
Overall I am confident that the HHL MBA program in General Management will help me achieve my professional goals of becoming a Business Development Manager, preferably in one of the Engineering and Technology companies and grow up to be a global strategy manager in the Long term.
Moreover with my present experience in client negotiations, while working in technical sales and turnkey projects, I feel my work experience is quite different from that of the Common IT pool. I can bring to the classroom discussions my experience of lessons learned from various projects. I strongly believe I can add value to my peers learning by sharing my learnings both inside and outside the classroom and help raise the bar for learning at HHL.
HHL Asia-Pacific Scholarship (full-time MBA) -1000 words max
I clearly remember how I have spent my childhood. There were financial challenges as my father was a single earning person in the family of four and that too with a minimal salary. There was difficulty in meeting family needs. My parents had cut down all the other expenses with the intention that my younger sister and I study well.
I come from a Tier 3 city in India. I started to understand the financial condition of the family after I was ten years old. I didn’t have good clothes to wear, no computer, no travel experiences while growing up. This somehow shattered my confidence level. I always tried to get confident in my early days, but somehow couldn’t as I felt inferior to my other classmates. I used to work very hard in my studies and entered a decent undergraduate university in India. My undergraduate degree was financed 30-40% by my father, and the rest of it was the education loan. I landed up at Siemens after completing my undergraduate degree. I repaid the education loan from my earnings. This job gave me confidence, and now I feel bolder than I have felt before in my life. Now, I want to continue learning new things and grow in my life. I want to experience traveling the world and the feeling of staying confident, which I missed in my growing days. I think a global MBA program such as HHL Leipzig would help me.
After MBA in the short term, I aspire to become a Business Development Manager. In my present role as a Sales support professional at Siemens India, I have got an opportunity to work in a lot of tenders and to face clients. This exposure has formed a basis for this goal of mine. If I get a scholarship, I would be better able to utilize my time in the HHL campus and even my free time. I will be able to maximize my experience at HHL through volunteer opportunities, German courses, and internships. These experiences with reduced burden by the scholarship will help me grow personally and expand my knowledge. I can select the work/ extra studies in my free time that adds value to my degree.
I believe the HHL MBA, with its course offerings such as Marketing, Strategy Execution, and Price Management, will help me expand my knowledge. I think the MBA thesis as a part of the HHL curriculum can provide me a safe space to test my real-life application of management concepts I have learned in the classroom. The learning at HHL in a global environment and a developed country shall broaden my horizon. I intend to work in Germany post -MBA for 5-6 years to understand the culture and processes in a developed economy as German economy. After that probably I plan to go back to India to apply my learnings here.
I believe three things that set me apart include the client Negotiation experience while working as a sales support professional, an Experience of Turnkey Projects, and an interest in cooking delicious Indian food.
Firstly, in my present role, I have handled extensive client negotiations. In the substations market, there are a lot of Chinese and Korean competitors such as Hyosung, TaiKai, TBEA, etc. which are setting up manufacturing plants in India, leading to a price war. Forex: In one of our bid negotiations at Delhi Transmission Limited, we managed to convince the client to get the Qualification Requirement of the tender changed to curb the Chinese competitors from participating in the bid due to significant quality concern. I can bring to the classroom discussions the experiences of the B2B industry and ways through which clients try to optimize project costs.
Secondly, Having around Five and half years of experience in Turnkey Projects business, I feel my work experience is quite different from the aspirants of the Common IT pool. Turnkey Projects business is risky, and each project is in itself unique. So, there are a lot of lessons learned shared with the team for each of the executed projects with a purpose that the same mistakes are not repeated in the future tenders. I can bring to the classroom the lessons learned from various projects.
Thirdly, I am fond of cooking. I can cook Indian cuisine quite well. Good delicious food has this unique ability to bring together all communities together and foster a great learning and sharing experience. At HHL, I want to be an active member to organize the Potlucks and spread the taste of Indian Cuisine in HHL.
Even after completing my studies at HHL, I want to remain in touch with my professors and the students at HHL. I want to visit HHL for seminars, case study competitions, recruitments, etc. I can guide the current MBA students in the right way also. I will always be ready to network with them.
One of my primary reasons for choosing HHL Full Time MBA is the low tuition fees of HHL and high return on, investment as mentioned in the various articles on the internet. As per my research and the information collected from HHL’s website, Tuition + Living cost of the entire MBA will be approximately € 45K.
To cover my tuition fees, I intend to apply for the various scholarships available to HHL students, such as HHL scholarship for the Asia-Pacific region. Getting a scholarship can help reduce my tuition expenses substantially. But, if these scholarships do not come through, I plan to finance my MBA education with contributions from my savings and an educational loan.
I will be able to cover at least the living cost of €10K with my savings and investments. For the balance €35K of tuition fees, I will apply for an education loan from prodigy finance. I have already checked my eligibility for credit from the organization mentioned above. Later, during my MBA, I plan to do a paid internship to support my expenses further.
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