This is a guest post from Brett Ethridge, the founder of Dominate the GMAT.  

[one_half last=”no”]Think about Pictionary for a second. You know the game. It’s the famous family board game where you have one minute to draw a picture representing whatever word is one the card you just drew (e.g. Dictator) and your teammates have to guess the word, based on your drawings, in the allotted time. 

What makes Pictionary challenging?

In my opinion, it’s the time element.


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Sure, for some people it may be hard to actually draw illustrative images of any kind. We’re not all artists, after all. But let’s be honest, you don’t have to be an artist to be good at Pictionary. You just have to be creative. In fact, given enough time, we could all probably come up with some compelling way to illustrate the word dictator. Heck, give me 20 minutes and I’ll definitely be able to get you to guess it correctly!

But give me just one minute? Now I’m in trouble. My mind starts racing. I start freaking out. It’s as if the second that timer turns over and I can see the sand starting to slip away, I can’t think clearly. Later at night, long after the game is over, I think of all sorts of creative ways to draw dictator. But in the moment? There’s something about time constraints that makes an otherwise easy task so much more difficult. The same, of course, is true on the GMAT.

Keys to a High GMAT Score

There are two crucial components to scoring well on the GMAT:

1)  Knowing the material well enough to actually answer the questions correctly

2)  Doing so in the allotted time

Component #1 is obvious. If you’re asked to answer a GMAT math question asking you to find the area of a trapezoid, for example, and you have no idea what the formula is for the area of a trapezoid, you could be in trouble. I could give you an hour to work on the problem, and you still probably wouldn’t be able to get it right because you simply don’t know how to do it. First and foremost, therefore, you’ve gotta know your stuff.

But knowing your stuff isn’t enough. You also have to learn how to apply that knowledge into getting right answers in the allotted time. On the quantitative section of the GMAT where you have 75 minutes to complete 37 questions, that works out to almost exactly 2:00 per question. On the GMAT verbal section where there are 41 questions in the same amount of time, it’s closer to 1:50 per question.

Much like in Pictionary, it’s easy to start panicking on the GMAT — especially later in a section — when you see the time ticking away and an otherwise doable question becomes seemingly impossible when you think about having to do it in under two minutes.

So…what to do?

Learn this 700+ GMAT Time Management Strategy

People manage their time and score really high on the GMAT every day, and so can you. It takes a little bit of practice for sure, and it also takes thinking about the time management aspect of the GMAT a little bit differently than maybe you currently are.

Here’s a video (below) that illustrates a powerful GMAT time management concept that you’ve likely never thought about before, and it’s one that will enable you to crack 700 on the GMAT if you learn to apply it properly. Enjoy!

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 Brett Ethridge is the founder of Dominate the GMAT, a leading provider of GMAT courses online and topic-specific GMAT video lessons. He has taught the GMAT for 9 years and loves working with students to help them achieve their highest potential. Brett is an entrepreneur, a triathlete, and an avid Duke basketball fan.