As this is not a political Blog, I will refrain from sharing who I voted for. Without question, this is indeed a moving time for our country and global allies. I was certainly moved last night and continue to be throughout this morning.
Throughout the last several weeks, I was keenly aware of how Obama, Biden, McCain and Palin represented themselves and held up under numerous interviews. MBA candidates would do well to learn from their mistakes and strengths.
1) As Palin showed us, don't open your mouth about material you have no idea about and don't try to impress your interviewer to make them think you are smarter than you are. In Palin's interview with Couric earlier this year, we see a woman who made herself look like a fool by generalizing material she had reviewed when she really hadn't. She also lost her way several times as she answered some questions. In my opinion, Palin never recovered from this disasterous interview. Don't overlook this point. Palin is an experienced public figure and she clearly walked into an interview thinking she could outwit her interviewer. (Do a search on youtube for Couric and Palin interview and you'll see the disaster I'm referring to.)
2) McCain lambasted Obama over and over again throughout the last few weeks of his campaign. He made up some negative remarks that were highly debatable and to anyone who has a brain... completely wrong. For example, he called some actions by Obama socialist traits. The bailout package that McCain signed off on is clearly a socialist action by the government. The point I'm trying to make here is that one cannot think that saying negative things about another persons actions can be a good thing when one does not know the complete background knowledge of the one interviewing you. You could look really dumb. Always be careful when talking about the actions of someone else.
3) Be an amazing and astute listener. Obama showed himself to anyone who interviewed him to be a very good listener. When asked a question, he answered the question and went on to answer the intent of the question that showed his brilliance and tact. I can't say the same thing about his debating skills as I don't always feel that he answered questions well. But I can say that his personal interviews were models that all MBA candidates would be well advised to follow.
4) Give the interviewer a clear summary of who you are. Both McCain and Obama struggled very hard the entire campaign to help people understand what they are about and how their background shows the kind of person they will be in the future. McCain did this by using the term Maverick and using his war experience. Obama did this by telling you of his community outreach and why he was compeled to do it despite his Harvard background that would have easily led him to elitest. When admission folk refer to you in the future... they will be more compeled to support you if they believe in your compeling story. A story and not a list of your achievements is far more impactful.