Category Archives: MBA Recruitment

Job market stabilizes for MBA students at the end of ‘a pretty short tunnel’

NYT, March 7, By Robbie Brown (extract) — Last year, Mr. Yankson (UV Darden) was turned down for summer internships by about 15 recession-plagued banks and ended up working for an education nonprofit organization. This year, as he sought a full-time job, Wells Fargo quickly gave him the response he wanted: When can you start?

“The banks this year kept saying, ‘It’s a good year,’ ‘We just approved a lot of hiring,’ ‘The market is clearing up,’ ” Mr. Yankson said. “It was a completely different experience.”

With banks climbing out of the recession, more business students across the country are finding banking jobs and internships, enrolling in finance clubs and going on class trips to Wall Street, universities say.

… On a recent interview day at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business, students in pinstriped suits and polished shoes waited anxiously for meetings with representatives from J. P. Morgan and BB&T Capital Markets.

The competition would be steep — with dozens of students applying for each internship — but less selective than in 2009. The number of banks interviewing at Darden this year increased 20 percent, and the number of job offers so far has risen 33 percent, the school said.

“There’s reason for students to be optimistic,” said Tracy Handler, a spokeswoman for the M.B.A. Career Services Council, an association of business school career advisers. “Any signs of recovery are modest. But business schools are looking ahead and seeing a light at the end of what is now a pretty short tunnel.”

Full Story in the New York Times.

The MBA, the chief executive, and the long-term value

There’s a heartwarming story for MBAs and MBAs-to-be in yesterday’s Financial Times by Herminia Ibarra, Urs Peyer and Morten T. Hansen, professors at INSEAD. (I must say, surely only among academics does it take three (3) people to write one short Op-Ed piece in the FT, but I digress.)

They say: “The global recession may be almost over but the debate rumbles on. How much were MBA-trained executives really to blame? As MBA professors, we heard arguments that we had been teaching the wrong models, neglecting ethics, forgetting common sense, sitting in ivory towers made of spreadsheets and generally nurturing greed. We listened to the charge that business schools were guilty of short-term thinking, especially when evaluating leadership. MBA graduates, so the argument went, were looking for quick riches.

“So, when we came up with the idea of a ranking of chief executives based on performance over an entire career, we also decided to check the myth of the value -destroying MBA against a large and meticulously compiled data set.

“When you rank the top chief executives in the world, based on return on shareholder investment and change in market capitalisation over their entire time in the job… four of our top 10 have the letters M, B and A after their names. Could it be possible that this much-criticised degree helps a business leader to add long-term value after all?

“Our analysis of 1,109 chief executives from 1995 to 2009 found that those with MBAs performed, on average, better than those without. The difference was not large but it was statistically significant. When we drilled down one more level, we discovered that those who had reached the position of chief executive before the age of 50 benefited particularly from a business school education. In fact, on average, having an MBA sends such individuals a full 100 places higher on our list.

“Of course, the term average is important. There are many high-performing chief executives without an MBA. But the overall tendency among the business leaders we analysed is for an MBA to correlate with a higher position in the ranking, especially for those who get the top job at a comparatively young age.

“Our data set does not explain why this should be the case but there are some obvious benefits to going to business school: an MBA gives you better all-round skills; it buys you credibility and it allows you to build a personal power alumni network.”

Full text here.