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Video Essay and Interview Tips (And - Kellogg, INSEAD, and Yale Questions!)

INSEAD, Yale, Kellogg, Georgetown, and Sloan are just a few of the business schools that have video essays and/or interviews. In a post-Covid world, we could even see more schools adopt video, especially interviews.


While the specific format (like how much time you get to prepare or answer) might vary, preparation is the same across the board. These tips will help you put your best foot (face, really) forward.


  • DO brainstorm content for each question and sketch out your main points. For example, write out something like, “discuss Nepal story and (fill in the blank thing I did) to keep my travel group safe during a blizzard”.
  • But DON’T write out a detailed script that you read from or worse, memorize, which only makes you sound like a robot.
  • Put your ideas to the test. Record yourself several times. Iterate. One of the most difficult things is getting into a rhythm of the timing and knowing what 60 seconds feels like. I have my candidates record themselves, upload to YouTube, and send me the link so I can coach them around it. If you’re not working with a coach, at least get a trusted friend to have a look.
  • For the “give me an example” questions, deliver responses in problem/solution format. I usually like the STAR format; however, it simplifies things in your mind to stick with just 2 steps: what was the problem and how did you fix it?
  • Make little grammatical mistakes – they’re charming – but eliminate “ums” and other filler words. Be willing to have silence in between words, it shows confidence.
  • Be as natural as possible. That’s the key to doing well.
  • Remember your basic interview proprieties: dress well, check your wifi connection, have good lighting, and be aware of your backdrop (no embarrassing posters).
  • Last but not least, smile!


Kellogg has 3 standard questions, while INSEAD and Yale are random. The questions for INSEAD and Yale are listed in chronological order; you may want to start from the bottom. It seems some questions have been rephrased; I’m including everything just in case. INSEAD’s list has the most questions – I would suggest reviewing them as potential questions regardless of which school you are applying to.


Kellogg Video Questions


Kellogg offers practice video essay questions – highly encourage you to use them, as you will NOT be able to re-record your official answers. You will have 20 seconds to prepare and up to 60 seconds to answer.


Video essay 1: Please introduce yourself to the admissions committee.

- Consider this your opportunity to share what you would want your future Kellogg classmates and our admissions committee to know about you. What makes you, you?


Video essay 2: What path are you interested in pursuing, how will you get there, and why is this program right for you?

- This is an intentionally broad question so you can answer honestly and meaningfully. We want to know why you’re pursuing an MBA and why you’re choosing a particular Kellogg Full-Time Program


Video essay 3: 2020 has been a year of seismic disruption — fighting the global COVID-19 pandemic, tragic deaths that have brought systemic racism and social justice issues to the forefront of long overdue conversations, and economic and political divides that are growing deeper and deeper. How has this unprecedented year challenged you and how have you faced that challenge?



INSEAD Interview Questions


The INSEAD video interview is basically (or eerily similar to) the TOEFL Speaking section. I recommend you review the questions below and come up with an idea for each one. There are 4 questions, and you’ll have 45 seconds to prep, 60 seconds to answer.


  • Tell me about a time when you had to speak with someone that had an accent or couldn’t speak the same language as you. How did you adapt?
  • What makes you a good candidate for INSEAD?
  • Describe a time when you got negative feedback from a supervisor/professor. How did it make you feel?
  • What is a risk you have taken that backfired?
  • What challenging goals have you set for yourself during your first year at INSEAD?
  • How has your decision to work in corporate diversity positively or negatively impacted you?
  • Describe a time when understanding someone’s perspective helped you to understand them better.
  • How would an INSEAD MBA help you in your career objectives?
  • What are you expecting to learn during your INSEAD MBA?
  • How would you fight stereotypes in a work environment?
  • What was the most interesting project you have worked on? Why was it interesting to you?
  • Why INSEAD?
  • How would you establish the foundations of your company?
  • What is your management style?
  • How did you build your international experience?
  • What is diversity, according to you?
  • Describe one situation where you faced an ethical dilemma. How did you resolve it? What factors did you consider while resolving it?
  • One project which interested you the most and why?
  • If you could teach a class on any topic, what would it be and why?
  • Tell me what you like most about INSEAD.
  • Give me an example of how you convinced your other team members.
  • Give me an example of how you were attracted by culture from other countries.
  • What are 3 key successful factors to be an entrepreneur?
  • If you had an extra hour every day, what would you do with it?
  • What word describes you best and why?
  • Tell us about the first job you ever had.
  • What’s the best book you have ever read and why?
  • When you have a problem, who do you approach for advice and why?
  • What accomplishment are you really proud of?
  • What’s the best piece of advice you have ever received?
  • If you could witness any event – past, present, or future, what would it be?
  • Tell us about an organization or activity in which you have dedicated significant time. Why was it meaningful to you?
  • What have anyone done good for you and how did you feel about it?
  • Tell us about the most interesting place you’ve traveled to. What did you enjoy most about it?
  • What invention during your lifetime has had the biggest impact on you and why?
  • If money was not a concern, what would you do?
  • What is the most meaningful thing anyone has done for you in your life?
  • If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
  • What food do you like? Would you be able to eat that food every day?
  • How have you changed in the last 5 years?
  • Who do you respect most and why?
  • What is your favorite motto or quote and why?
  • What risk have you taken and what did you learn?
  • What impact do you have on your co-workers?
  • Describe someone you know who lives a meaningful life and why.
  • Have you ever faced discrimination? How did you react?
  • How do you keep track of your vision and the vision of your company?
  • How do you keep abreast on the latest about INSEAD?
  • You are leading a group project with a team who have never met each other and are from diverse cultural/professional/educational backgrounds. What is your strategy for how to foster a collaborative environment?
  • How do you stay focused on your company’s vision?
  • What skills do you think are necessary for an entrepreneur?
  • What are some stereotypes about your culture and how do you feel about them?
  • What do you do when someone comes to you with a problem?
  • What’s your understanding of the INSEAD’s MBA program you are applying to?
  • Describe a time when understanding someone’s culture helped you understand their perspective better.
  • Your new boss from a different culture is being offensive in the local culture. What will you do?
  • Have you been criticized for a job you thought you did well? How did it make you feel?
  • How would you approach your classmate who is having a hard time adjusting to a new culture?
  • What are the challenging goals you have set for yourself during your year at INSEAD?
  • How is the diversity situation in your current company?
  • How meaningful should your career be to be considered successful?
  • What will INSEAD give you that no other MBA program will?
  • Describe a situation where your family/company has adopted something from a different culture and how has it impacted you (positive/negative).
  • Why should INSEAD offer you admission?
  • How would your colleagues describe your leadership style? Give an example.
  • What are the most important values and ethics that you demonstrate as a leader? Give me an example of this in practice?
  • In one minute tell me how INSEAD fits into your career plan?
  • What do you feel is the biggest challenge when dealing with people from another culture?
  • Tell me about a time when you received criticism on a piece of work you feel you have done very well. How did the criticism make you feel?
  • Tell me about a time when you had to deliver bad news. What was your strategy?
  • Tell me about a time you had an argument due to different culture. How did it make you feel?
  • Describe a time when you creatively solved a situation.
  • Why is cultural awareness so important in the workplace and the community?
  • How do you challenge yourself at work?
  • What will you do as a team leader, when a member continuously undercontributes to the team?
  • What is “meaningful life” to you?
  • Tell me about when you understand others’ perspectives by understanding their culture.
  • What are the most important factors for successful entrepreneurship?
  • What value in society is most important to you? How do you incorporate it into your daily life?
  • What are 3 characteristics of INSEAD that attracted you?
  • Tell me about an experience living, travelling, studying or working abroad. What was this experience like for you?
  • Tell me your views on shareholder wealth as a measure of a company’s success.
  • What makes you better than other candidates?
  • What are the keys to establishing and running a successful business?
  • Describe a time you had culture shock.



Yale SOM Video Questions


Yale also has a practice tool. Use it! Two questions give you 20 seconds to prepare and 60 to answer; the third gives you 30 seconds to prepare and 90 to answer.


  • What qualities would your friends use to describe you?
  • Please respond to the following statement: “Without Arts, an education cannot be accomplished” Do you agree or disagree? Why?
  • Please respond to the following statement: “As businesses become more global, the differences between cultures decrease.” Do you agree or disagree? Why?
  • Tell us about a challenging work experience and how you handled it.
  • Tell us about how you engaged with a community or an Organization.
  • Tell us about your leadership style.
  • How did you contribute to your company/organization?
  • Please respond to the following statement: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” Do you agree or disagree? Why?
  • What accomplishment are you most proud of?
  • Tell us about a difficult decision and how you handled it.
  • Tell us about a creative solution you designed.
  • How will you resolve a conflict with your future classmates at the program?
  • What would you say is the biggest challenge facing leaders today?



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