Postgraduate Personal Statement Example: Management

With so many university personal statement examples available, how do you know if you’re reading a good one?

Examples of personal statements can be valuable when applying to a university or college course. After all, personal statement examples can teach you how to write and structure your application, and you can quickly learn how to write a personal statement by examining others.

But wouldn’t it be helpful to know what was positive and negative about the personal statement examples you’re reading?

Here’s my critical analysis…

Postgraduate personal statements should highlight relevant academic and practical experience, research skills and ambitions and their suitability for the course. This postgraduate personal statement example for Management clearly illustrates these three critical elements.

I’ve broken down this personal statement example section by section, with a commentary on each element. 

That way, you’ll see its strengths and weaknesses and get some inspiration for your own personal statement.

Once you’ve read the personal statement example and analysis, you’ll be able to download a pdf of the whole document, to use as inspiration for your own!

Postgraduate Personal Statement Example: Management

Personal Statement Example: Introduction

“My interest in studying Management was sparked when I worked as an intern at the Slater Investment Corporation. Seeing how the Integrated Strategies Group worked with the Real Estate team to trade a live deal and how global offices collaborate across a large multinational company, I realised the importance of effective management within an organisation. Given the ever-changing nature of globalisation, particularly in the context of unpredictable market conditions, learning how to establish profitable and motivational management mechanisms within a corporation is a concept I find compelling. Consequently, I aim to develop a career as a portfolio manager in an investment management company, and I am confident that this MSc is a critical next step in my professional development.

Marshall’s educational philosophy, which holds that theory and application go hand in hand, particularly resonates with me, and as a research-oriented university, Marshall is at the centre of both quantitative and qualitative innovations in management. The complexity of management makes it both unpredictable and alluring, and I am particularly interested in studying the Business Research module. I am eager to investigate business issues by conducting academic research, reading and developing case studies and designing and elaborating new business plans. Gaining knowledge and experience in research design, business plan design, data collection, data analysis, synthesis and reporting will allow me to understand how managers develop and manage corporates. Equally, by studying Decision and Risk Analysis, I will learn how to make business decisions rationally, communicate reasoning structures to meet competitive challenges and make presentations that illustrate evidence of thorough analysis. Importantly, I will also strengthen my practical skills by applying financial ideas and principles in the context of work-based scenarios when using the knowledge gained from the Financial Frameworks course. I aim to utilise my graduate studies to develop my capacity to critically analyse and evaluate the theoretical underpinnings and the outcomes of practical applications. I find Professor Jackson’s research into Strategic Performance Management and Coaching particularly interesting and hope to discuss with her how to reform, innovate and create greater corporate profits using management and coaching methods.”

Commentary and Analysis 

This personal statement introduction begins extremely positively. The writer immediately evidences relevant knowledge and links the example they have chosen with their personal experiences, rather than falling into the trap of making it too abstract. They show a strong understanding of the sector they want to work in and link their goals clearly with the course content. 

This is an excellent approach for a postgraduate application.

The writer then goes on to give evidence of research into the university, and links the findings of that research with their motivation for study, making a convincing argument. This shows a potential reader that the writer has a sound understanding of the course and is likely to remain dedicated throughout their studies. They specify modules available on the course, outline their value clearly, and identify a desire to work with a particular faculty member, which is an outstanding strategy as it adds validity and purpose to the personal statement as a whole. 

If you’re struggling with your personal statement introduction, check out my article on how to write perfect opening paragraphs here.

Personal Statement Example: Academic Background

“I have built a solid economic and financial knowledge foundation as an undergraduate. To develop the knowledge gained during my internship at Slater, I studied the Advanced Corporate Finance module in my final year. This course provided a theoretical and empirical perspective on some of the core decision-making issues in corporate finance, including raising capital, capital structure decisions and the ‘agency problem’ effects of conflict which can be understood by different types of stakeholders within an enterprise. Teamwork was an essential aspect of the course, and I took the initiative to become a group leader. Through active communication and group meetings, I distributed the workload of each group member according to their relevant skills and experience, maximising our strengths. We also created a detailed weekly schedule to avoid any delays in progression, significantly improving our ability to collaborate and manage our strategy. Consequently, I gained a deeper understanding of using financial instruments and models and learned how to analyse company statements and data whilst improving my collaboration and communication skills. Although my undergraduate studies have prepared me well for the discipline of Corporate Finance, which is a core module in this master’s programme, the teaching and learning approach was more analytical than mathematical, with the intuition behind theoretical concepts emphasised throughout. Consequently, I intend to join the Finance Pathway of this MSc and gain experience in applying quantitative methodologies, such as real options analysis, to manage and develop companies.”

Commentary and Analysis

The writer then immediately refers to their undergraduate education, which is a logical progression within a personal statement. They don’t give details of many courses and move straight to the last year, referencing their internship and a module which is particularly relevant. It’s likely that there are academic and transferable skills developed as an undergraduate that would have been of added value here, and it is always worth including them.

The focus then moves to skills and experiences developed, which will prepare them directly for the master’s course. There’s also a sense of reflection regarding strengths and weaknesses, and in this case, a lack of experience is used to make a positive point. By admitting a lack of knowledge in a particular area, the candidate has made a strong case for study on a specific module. When admissions readers can see the tangible value of the course to an applicant, they are far more likely to make an offer. This whole section is relevant and compelling and has a mix of knowledge and aspiration which reads convincingly.

If you’d like to learn more about how to structure your personal statement or statement of purpose, check out my awesome Personal Statement Template eBook here. It’s full of detailed examples of what to include!

Personal Statement Example: Practical Experience 1

“Understanding that to become a professional portfolio manager, I need practical experience as well as academic theory, I undertook several additional internships during my undergraduate degree, enhancing my skill set and developing my professional potential. During my internship at Slater, I worked with teams in the London, Singapore and New York offices on three live deals. One of these involved DEXOPHARM, a leading international platform for well-established branded medicines which received growth capital of €550 Million from Slater and another leading global investor in October. My responsibilities included using CapitalIQ to extract financial information, using SOTP to make valuations, understanding the reasons behind the evolution of historical capital versus investment expected and contributing to the trading team’s decision to maintain or exit the investment. This internship helped me understand the factors that large investment institutions consider during the investment process and how different groups work together before making an investment decision. These are valuable contextual insights relevant to my master’s degree and subsequent career.”

Commentary and Analysis

Another convincing paragraph that not only shows the writer’s experience in the industry but also outlines their responsibilities and gives a clear sense of their dynamism and initiative. The more the writer offers new and relevant examples of their progress towards their goals, the more the reader can see how studying on the postgraduate course will fit with their ambitions.

Check out lots more examples of personal statements here, and see how they can inspire your application!

Personal Statement Example: Practical Experience 2

“Serving as the Head of the Secretarial Department of the Students and Scholars Association whilst an undergraduate allowed me to collaborate with peers, enhance my ability to cope well under pressure and develop my management skills. Leading a group of 13 students, my current responsibilities include planning for the staffing at regular events, arranging different tasks according to the qualities of the group members and reviewing the results. I have organised four recruitment cycles in the past two years, including reviewing over 500 applications, interviewing over 100 people and making final decisions on appropriate recruitment into the association. Additionally, I have organised 15 new student welcoming meetings over two years. I was responsible for coordinating the staffing, supervising the progress and resolving any urgent issues that arose. Thanks to this leadership experience, I can quickly adapt to changing environments and make decisions proactively and without procrastination. I am confident that these transferable skills will be of significant value to my graduate studies.”

Commentary and Analysis: 

This is a strong paragraph as it shows how transferable skills, such as responsibility and organisation, have made this candidate highly suitable for their intended course. It also paints a broader picture of the writer, showing that they have interests beyond the curriculum. That’s important because universities are keen to recruit candidates who have the life skills, social confidence and the maturity to manage in a competitive academic environment.

The one thing that all successful personal statements have in common is that they are concise, engaging and accurate in spelling, punctuation and grammar. Consequently, I always recommend Grammarly to my students and clients. 

It’s an outstanding tool for ensuring your personal statement is rich with detail whilst hitting those all-important word limits. Check out the free version of Grammarly here, or hit the banner for more information.

Personal Statement Example: Conclusion

“After graduation, I aim to work for one of the world’s leading sovereign wealth funds, such as Buckley Bank Investment Management, the LLA Investment Board or the Bloom Investment Corporation. To further my goal of providing better investment advice to clients, I intend to gain experience handling complex cases, improve my analytical skills and prepare for further qualifications such as the CFA. Moreover, since my undergraduate and graduate studies focus on economics and finance and I have lived and studied in an English environment for a long time, I would like to use my bilingual background to work on global investment projects.

This MSc in Management is a practical, comprehensive programme. I am confident that my internship, extracurricular projects and the courses I studied during my undergraduate degree will help me transition into the course successfully. With access to Marshall’s comprehensive management programme and world-class faculty, I hope to gain an integrated and holistic approach to private equity investing, which will help launch my professional career. I look forward to playing a positive and engaged role as a valued member of your learning community.”

Commentary and Analysis

The writer manages to explain their goals whilst adding further evidence of their values and capabilities in this conclusion. By outlining their ambitions against new examples of previous achievements, they add depth to their writing and also help to convince the reader of the validity of their application.

The final summary reiterates their knowledge of the course and suggests ways in which they would be able to contribute to the community, which is a vital element. Universities are keen to identify candidates with something positive to contribute, rather than students who simply want to take what the university offers.

In summary, this is a strong and effective personal statement example that balances experience, ambition and relevancy well. You could argue that evidence of academic skills is lacking, but the writing instils confidence in the reader throughout.

For more great advice, check out my article on writing an excellent final personal statement paragraph here.

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I hope this personal statement example has been helpful, and I wish you every success in your academic career. 

If you’d like to work with me to develop your personal statement 1:1, I’d be delighted to hear from you. 

Find out about my personal statement support services by clicking here or on the image below.

Research and content verified by Personal Statement Planet.

David Hallen

I've worked in the Further Education and University Admissions sector for nearly 20 years as a teacher, department head, Head of Sixth Form, UCAS Admissions Advisor, UK Centre Lead and freelance personal statement advisor, editor and writer. And now I'm here for you...

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