Improving career prospects tops TopMBA poll

Improving career prospects is the most common reason for doing an MBA, a poll has found, with over half of MBA candidates making this a reason to attend business school. However, learning new skills and achieving a leadership position are joint and close second place in the list of MBA priorities.


Almost half of MBA candidates don’t want full time MBA programs

48% of respondents to a survey conducted by are looking for MBA courses that are not traditional full time programs.
In recent years business schools have proliferated their programmes to a great extent with better part time and, executive MBAs, for a more experienced age group but also largely part time.

Additionally, generation Y (15-30 year olds in 2010) have been using the internet for a majority of their adult lives and, as William McDonald of Thunderbird says, they have come to trust the Internet as a source of information. Let’s not forget that professors and academics at business schools are getting simultaneously more net-savvy and top business schools are advancing their distance learning MBAs with online modules in a more sophisticated way than could even have been imagined ten years ago.

The survey (see it here) is a multiple choice poll, allowing voters to choose as many options as they like. It shows that 52% of the 1,234 respondents, as I write, are considering a full time MBA programme. 25% would consider doing an online MBA (good luck with that!) while 15% consider distance learning as an option, with its proportion of the course that is on-campus. Part-time courses, meanwhile, only appeal to one in four of respondents with executive MBAs around one in eight, which sounds about right.

So what can be accounting for this downshift in popularity of full-time courses? The full time program has always been seen as the daddy of the MBA world, but is this changing? In my writing and meeting people interested in MBAs, one message is quite clear, that the latest generation of MBA candidates is concerned about the time and the cost involved, not just the fees of the course itself, but the cost of relocation, of being away from the workplace for too long and stepping away from their careers in such a capricious job market.

Additionally, they believe that they can get the personal networks, if not the diversity of a classroom, by studying off campus.

Finally, recruiters, traditionally resistant to the old correspondence course methods of teaching, are learning that distance taught MBAs have a set of skills (personal motivation and computer expertise for example) that are of great benefit in todays business world.

Whether or not this a long-term change is hard to predict. As the online generation of MBAs emerges into the workplace, their careers will be followed closely by the next. However, as online MBAs continue to develop their delivery techniques, who knows. Maybe campus-learned MBAs will become a thing of the past?

Why go to an MBA Fair?

Are MBA fairs worth it? Of course they are. What’s the worse that can happen? You go, decide it’s not for you and save yourself a lot of hard graft, not to mention financial outlay. Or you go, meet some people who can give you sound advice on how to go about getting into to their business school – or even tell you not to apply for them as you ought to be applying to a business school that fits you better?

The business schools love them. MBA fairs that is. Take a look at this video.

MBAs – showoffs or great teambuilders?! See this new cartoon

See more Michael Canine.

Germany: Europe’s locomotive

With unemployment across the Eurozone now hovering at just over 10%, more and more business school graduates in Europe are having a tough time re-entering the job market.

But a closer look at the figures reveals striking differences in rates of recovery across individual Eurozone countries and must surely be creating headaches for policy makers at the European Central Bank on how to set interest rates in the future. Take Germany, for instance.
While the unemployment rate in the Eurozone overall has increased from the record low of 7.2% set in January 2008 to over 10%, the German unemployment rate has actually decreased during this period, from 7.8% to 7.6%, equalling an almost two decade low.

“There is a very high demand for highly qualified managers in Germany these days, and this trend is likely to continue and even intensify”, according to Joerg Rocholl, Professor of Finance and holder of the Ernst and Young Chair in Governance and Compliance at ESMT.

In an article on July 28th in the Wall Street Journal’s “The Source” blog, David Cottle comments that the rise in July of another major indicator, BNP Paribas’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), was led by Germany. The PMI is an indicator of economic activity and reflects the percentage of purchasing managers in a certain economic sector reporting better business conditions than in the previous month. “This supports our long-held view that we will continue to see a two-speed euro area, with notable outperformance by countries like Germany, which continues to benefit from the strength of its manufacturing sector,” said BNP. This latest data shows that Germany is again assuming its traditional role of being the ‘locomotive’ of economic growth in Europe.

All in all, this is great news for business school students and graduates who are looking to study or work in Germany. At present the job market for highly qualified workforce seems to be very tight, working in favour of business school graduates with solid professional experience.

At ESMT European School of Management and Technology in Berlin, over 90% of MBA students who graduated in December 2009 were in employment by March 2010. Over 60% of these graduates found employment in Germany.

The graduates also benefited from ESMT`s powerful company network. The school was founded by 25 major German global players such as Allianz, E.ON, Deutsche Bank, Lufthansa and Siemens.

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Creating globally responsible leaders

CSR, sustainability and corporate ethics are all big buzzwords for the current generation of MBA candidates. But how can they turn their beliefs into becoming globally responsible leaders, in touch with the three Ps of modern business, People, Planet and Profit. Take a look here.

GMAT Analytical Writing Section

What is the GMAT AWA (Analytical Writing Assessment)? How does it function and how can you ace it? Good article found here.