[MBA] Some pre-arrival ideas before starting the HEC MBA (specially if moving with family)

I am certain most MBA students feel the need over-prepare before starting the program, especially when you get a folder of courses and docs from the previous intake. I had the same feeling… which quickly faded as time wasn’t available for such pre-reading.

Instead the pre-arrival preparation, not only mandatory, but worth doing is related to career management. The preparation of the CV and the tools to identify possible career paths are great, even more when considering a career transition, where there are more questions than answers. I took to heart the CV preparation, reviewing accomplishments and trying to identify quantifiable results, something that to date is hard to do. I am looking to the first sessions of the orientation weeks where I will get to review my CV from a new perspective.

Another pre-arrival task was identifying clubs and activities. Went through most of the web site looking at clubs’ description, some tap on direct interests as energy but others are more to expand and develop skills as luxury and consulting. Will wait until the respective session for final decision as I will not have unlimited time to do everything.


  1. Hello Timo ,

    I have a couple of questions .
    Do you think that an engineering or arts student for example needs to take some business courses pre-arrival in order to be able to catch up and be on the same level with the business students ?
    How about the courses and study material from previous intakes , is there a certain website that can provide these ?


    1. Hi Elie,

      Thanks for your questions.

      In regards to the course materials, usually the previous intakes share them online (dropbox or similar) with the next intake, but I don’t think anyone had the time to start reading prior to the MBA.

      I do think having some basic understanding of Present Value formula, and intro to finance (Betas) helps to have a better foundation. The same for other courses as microeconomics. This would make the transition much easier taking into account that there is a lot of contect for the time each core lasts. Also it might be better to take advantage of the professors to ask more clarifying answers.

      What I did was take some courses on coursera and Kahn academy to get a feeling for the subject. It helped me a lot specially for financial markets. I still go to those courses when something in class is still confusing.

      Lastly, although some participants have good admin background not all MBA participants are at the same level, many come from marketing, engineering or others.

      Hope my answer help, and let me know if there anything else.



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