Consulting at Top MBA Programs

MBA In Sight: Focus on Management Consulting - Click here to download your copy!Entrepreneurship is the sexy post-MBA job, but the reality is that less than 5% of grads from top MBA programs start a business at graduation. Per GMAC’s just released Prospective Students Survey Report, 34% of all graduate business students seek consulting positions after they earn their degree. My suspicion is that the figure is even higher among full-time MBA candidates. True, many will work as consultants for a few years, and then down the road start their own business.

If you are in that vast mass of MBA wannabes planning/hoping for a job in consulting immediately after you earn your degree, this ranking is for you! We’ve examined US Newstop MBA programs and the number of grads who have gone into consulting from each one. (The data here is from U.S. News.)

Schools Ranked by Percentage of Grads Going into Consulting

Schools Ranked by Number of Grads Going into Consulting

The biggest surprise is how low Stanford places on these lists. I would attribute that low ranking to the relatively high percentage of MBAs going into entrepreneurship (approximately 18%, the highest of any of these programs by far.).  Yale’s placement as #1 in percentage as well as Duke Fuqua’s, CMU Tepper’s and Emory’s as respectively #2,#6 and #8 on the percentage list also indicate real strength in consulting placement, which sometimes isn’t recognized.

Similarly Wharton’s #1 placement and Chicago Booth’s #4 spot in total numbers call into question the meme that these two programs are “just” finance powerhouses.

Certainly a high ranking in either of these lists indicates that the program has the recruiting ties, placement track record, and alumni network, as well as the curriculum, to support your consulting goals.  However, these numbers don’t tell the full picture. Dig into the schools’ class profile, placement stats, curriculum, extra-curricular activities and opportunities to determine which schools to apply to.

Ultimately you want to apply to programs that will take you where you want to go and that are likely to admit you.

Click here to download your free copy of Focus on Management Consulting

Linda Abraham By , president and founder of Accepted.com and co-author of the new, definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools.

FT’s Best Global MBA Programs in 2014

The Financial Times released its 2014 global MBA rankings! Read on for the list, the facts, the analysis, and the sources.

The List:

2014 Rank

3 Year
(Avg) 

School Country 
1 1 Harvard Business School USA
2 2 Stanford Graduate
School of Business
USA
3 4 London Business School UK
4 3 U Penn Wharton USA
5 5 Columbia Business
School
USA
6 6 INSEAD France/Singapore
7 8 IESE Business School Spain
8 8 MIT Sloan USA
9 10 Chicago Booth USA
10 15 Yale School of Management USA
11 12 UC Berkeley Haas USA
12 15 IMD Switzerland
13 11 IE Business School Spain
14 11 Hong Kong UST
Business School
China
15 15 Northwestern Kellogg USA
16 19 Cambridge Judge UK
17 17 Duke Fuqua USA
17 18 NYU Stern USA
17 19 CEIBS China
20 18 Dartmouth Tuck USA

To truly understand the rankings, much less use them, please see the methodology so you’ll know what’s being ranked. While there are twenty factors considered in the FT rankings, the FT methodology puts the most weight on increase in salary in $US PPP (Purchasing Power Parity) and weighted salary in $US PPP.

Poets and Quants criticizes the FT rankings for absurd results in calculating “Value for Money” as well as for having too many criteria and several criteria that really don’t reflect the quality of education. Others say that it is biased against U.S. programs.

Regardless of the criticism’s validity, the FT ranking is arguably the most cited ranking of global programs because it compares U.S. and international programs in one ranking and seems to do a better job of it than the alternatives. That prominence doesn’t mean these rankings are Gospel. It does mean you have a lot of data in a format where you can easily compare MBA programs from around the world on designated criteria.

The Facts:

Here are some fun facts about FT’s 2014 rankings:

• 7 of the top 10 and 12 of the top 20 programs ranked are US schools.

• Big jumpers this year include Boston University’s business school and Washington Forster, which each jumped 20 spots, to 75th and 58th place, respectively. Another big US jumper this year was USC Marshall which jumped 17 spots to 65th place. UNC Kenan Flagler jumped up 12 slots this year from its 3-year average rank, moving from #45 to #33.

• The biggest losers this year include Dublin’s Smurfit School (dropped 27 spots to 91st place) and Vlerick Business School (fell 16 places to 100th place), as well as the schools which disappeared off the list entirely: U of Iowa’s Tippie School (74th last year), Korea University Business School (86th last year), Incae Business School in Costa Rica (90th last year), Case Western’s Weatherhead School (94th last year), and others.

• Newcomers to the list include: UC Davis (98th), Wake Forest (94th), BYU’s Marriott School (93rd), and ESMT European School of Management and Technology in Germany (89th).

• In terms of geographic representation, the top 20 schools are all in the US, UK, Europe (France, Spain, Switzerland), China, and Singapore, but further down the list, other countries gain their spots: India comes in at 30th place with the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad; SDA Bocconi in 31st place represents Italy; South Korea appears in 45th place with Sungkyunkwan University’s GSB; Canada’s first school on the list is Toronto Rotman at 51st place; Portugal follows with The Lisbon MBA in 52nd place (new to list); South Africa’s U. of Cape Town GSB comes in at 59th place; in the 62nd slot we have Australia’s Australian Graduate School of Management; and Brazil’s Coppead is in 79th place.

•  The city with the highest concentration of schools in the top 100 is (of course) Boston with six top b-schools – Harvard (1), MIT Sloan (8), Hult International Business School (61), BU School of Management (75), Boston College Carroll (82), and Babson Olin (95).

The Analysis:

While it’s fun to look at the changes – who climbed and who sank – for me the real lessons from this ranking are:

1. The top programs move and change very slowly. That lack of drama in these rankings is a better reflection of reality than the gyrations one sees outside the top twenty. Significant change takes time so sharp jumps and dives probably mean nothing. Sustained change in ranking has greater credibility – if you value the same qualities as the FT.

2. The one point made repeatedly in the commentary on this ranking, and it is the same conclusion I draw from both the FT ranking and the Forbes ranking, which both emphasize ROI and increase in salary, is this: The MBA education at top programs provides a solid return on investment for most students. The MBAs surveyed for the FT rankings started their MBA in 2008, just as the Great Recession hit, and graduated in 2010. These MBAs still report on average a 100% increase in salary over what they were making before they started business school.

There are obviously critics of graduate business education, specifically the MBA, and those detractors either believe an MBA isn’t valuable or that the value has declined. I agree with the latter group. However, the questions for today’s applicants are:

1. “Given my current professional background and salary and my anticipated salary after I earn an MBA, do the anticipated financial rewards plus increased job satisfaction justify the investment (both out of pocket and opportunity costs)?” The fact that those entering b-school ten or twenty years ago could anticipate a higher ROI is irrelevant. It is merely a historical curiosity and for you an unfortunate one.

2. “Is the full-time MBA – or whatever flavor you are considering – the optimal way for me to attain my MBA goals?”

FT, to its credit, also has an article on those claiming the MBA is not worth the effort. Sometimes they are right. Each one of you individually needs to examine your circumstances and goals to see if for you the MBA is an expensive waste of time and effort, or if for you it is likely to be worth both. Clearly, most of the people surveyed by Forbes, the Financial Times, and GMAC are in the latter group.

In this video  Della Bradshaw, FT’s Business Education Editor, discusses the results of this year’s FT Global MBA rankings including the finding that MBAs in the class of 2010 are now enjoying salaries double those they were earning before they entered b-school.

The Sources

• FT Global MBA Ranking 2014

•  FT: MBA Ranking 2014: Key & Methodology

•  FT: Big Names Dominate FT MBA Ranking Top Spots

•  P&Q: Winners & Losers in 2014 FT MBA Ranking

•  Accepted: 4 Ways You Should NOT Use the MBA Rankings

•  Accepted: MBA Rankings: What You Need to Know

Learn how to evaluate your profile to determine the best business school for you!

Linda Abraham By , president and founder of Accepted.com and co-author of the new, definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools.

USC Marshall 2014 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

For more info about USC Marshall, check out our Marshall Zone page. What will you gain from your two years at USC Marshall, and what will the school gain from you during that time? These are the questions you’ll need to keep in the back of your mind as you prepare your USC Marshall application essays. The adcom wants to hear about how you will give and receive when you obtain your MBA from this top B-school.

Essays:

1. Introduce yourself. How are you a good fit for the Marshall MBA community? The Trojan Network is highly regarded worldwide, how do your professional and person goals add value to this expansive and collaborative brand? (500-750 words)

This question is multifaceted, and, frankly, a bit convoluted. It asks several things, but the key themes are fit with and contribution to Marshall. To answer it well, first discern what you consider to be Marshall’s character and culture, its “collaborative brand.” With those qualities in mind, “introduce yourself” by highlighting a couple of key relevant points about your life and career, and discuss your goals, in both cases underscoring congruence with the program. Don’t overlook the “worldwide” regard; if global experience is part of what you bring and/or is part of your goals, try to weave it in.

Optional essay: Here you may choose to provide additional information with regard to personal characteristics and/or challenges you have had which might enhance the diversity of your Class. (250 words)

Please see “The Optional Essay: To Be or Not to Be.”

Re-application Essay: Please describe any significant professional, personal, or academic growth since your last application to the USC Marshall School of Business. Discuss your specific professional goals and how the USC Marshall Full-Time Program will help you achieve these goals. (500 words)

The key to a successful reapplication is to show growth and that’s the job of this essay. At least one of the specific growth points you present should be professional – there are the obvious things like a promotion or a new project to lead, and less obvious things like new industry or functional exposure, informal leadership, a challenge or problem that “stretched” your skills and perspective. In describing goals, if they’ve changed from the previous application, note why.

If you would like professional guidance with your USC Marshall application, please consider Accepted’s MBA essay editing and MBA admissions consulting or our MBA Application Packages, which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the USC Marshall application.

Learn how to determine your MBA goals and then weave them into a compelling MBA goals essay.

USC Marshall 2014 MBA Application Deadlines:

Application Deadline Decision Notification Begins
Round 1 October 15, 2013 December 15, 2013
Round 2 January 10, 2014 March 15, 2014
Round 3 April 15, 2014 June 1, 2014

 

Cindy Tokumitsu By , co-author of The Finance Professional’s Guide to MBA Admissions Success, and author of numerous ebooks, articles, and special reports. Cindy has advised hundreds of successful applicants in her last fifteen years with Accepted.com.

MBA Applicant Blogger Interview with Bschoolgirl

bschoolgirl_avatarWe’d like to introduce you to Bschoolgirl, an anonymous blogger at Girl Meets B-School who will be starting her first year at USC Marshall this fall. A self-proclaimed non-traditional applicant, Bschoolgirl made it into one of her top picks, and shares lots of good advice about her admissions experience. Thank you Bschoolgirl!

Accepted: First, some basics: Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? And what is your favorite book (fiction or non-fiction)?

Bschoolgirl: I’m born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, and I majored in Cinema and Dance at San Francisco State University. In other words, I have the sort of background that makes MBA admissions officers scratch their heads in confusion.

Pride and Prejudice never fails to cheer me up. I listened to the audiobook over and over while waiting for Round 2 decisions.

Accepted: You mention in your blog that you were a reapplicant. What do you think went wrong during your first round of applications? And what did you do the second time around to improve your candidacy?

Bschoolgirl: By pitting myself against business and finance majors, I knew I would have to work harder to prove that I could keep up. Unfortunately I hadn’t taken a ton of quantitative courses and I was on the younger side, with only two and a half years of work experience and less than a year in management. So the first time around, I received three rejections and a waitlist.

In hindsight I’m glad that I failed, because I learned a ton about the admissions process. Admissions officers aren’t sadists. They truly want you to succeed in the program, and it’s your job to convince them that you will. I simply needed to provide more evidence that I had a plan for my career, that I could handle the quantitative coursework, and that I could lead people. I thought I wanted to get into marketing, so I started talking to everyone I knew in that field to learn what skills it would take to make the switch. I took additional courses in Finance and Accounting from a local community college. And I volunteered for a committee at work that involved training others on a new software program. By the time I reapplied, I looked like a totally different candidate. I was admitted to three of my four schools, and decided to attend the USC Marshall School of Business.

Accepted: Why do you think you are a good fit with USC Marshall?

Bschoolgirl: From the moment I stepped on campus I felt at home. Marshall students are diverse, dynamic, and entrepreneurial, which really appealed to me as a nontraditional candidate. The class size is ideal, not so big that I would get lost in the crowd or so small that I would lose out on the network. And with my background, I felt that it was important to be in Los Angeles and to attend a school with a great reputation in the media and entertainment industry.

Accepted: What are you most looking forward to this coming fall? 

Bschoolgirl: Of course I’m excited for the social stuff. I can’t wait to meet my classmates and get involved with some of the student organizations. And this might sound nerdy, but I’m kind of looking forward to the academics. I think taking Finance for the first time has awakened my inner Quant.

Accepted: Do you have any reservations – anything that you’re worried about?

Bschoolgirl: I’m a little concerned about managing my time. I have a tendency to want to get involved in everything, and I’ve heard it’s really easy to overbook yourself in the first year.

Accepted: What have you been doing since graduating college?

Bschoolgirl: I worked as a video editor for about a year after college, but the hours were long and the gigs inconsistent. My next job was at a media services company working with radio and television commercials. We handled distribution for everything from the infomercials you see on late night TV to Super Bowl commercials.

Accepted: Do you plan on staying in the same career post-MBA or moving to a new industry/function?

Bschoolgirl: I’m taking the hard road by attempting to switch industry and function at once: from media to high tech, and from operations to marketing. Marketing appeals to me because it’s both creative and analytical, and I’m completely fascinated by the ways technology is changing how people consume video. Did I mention that I’m kind of a geek?

Accepted: Why did you decide to blog about your MBA experience?

Bschoolgirl: I started my blog, Girl Meets B-School, because I literally ran out of people to talk to about the things that were stressing me out. Strangely enough, my friends and family weren’t interested in GMAT percentiles and notification deadlines. I try to keep it funny because the rest of the application process is so gosh darn serious. It’s been awesome to discover other MBA blogs and see people stumble across mine, and for a moment we can smile knowingly at each other with that fierce, tired glint in our eyes that says, “Sure, I survived application season. What’s next?”

Do you want to be featured in Accepted.com’s blog, Accepted Admissions Blog? If you want to share your MBA/EMBA journey with the world (or at least with our readers), email us at mbabloggers@accepted.com.









Accepted.com

More 2012 Economist MBA Rankings Data

MBA Rankings Data for 2012We already analyzed The Economist’s rankings of the top 25 global MBA programs; now we’re going to provide insights from the Poets & Quants article, “The Economist’s Winners & Losers.” In short, volatility is the name of the game.

  • 23 of the 100 top global MBA programs saw double-digit changes (jumps or falls) this year.
  • The awards for the biggest falls go to University College Dublin’s Smurfit School and Vlerick Leuven, both of which dropped 25 places.
  • In the U.S., USC Marshall takes the loser’s cake with a 21-spot drop from 22nd to 43rd place. Penn State’s Smeal School of Business dropped 18 places from 50th to 68th.
  • The Indian Institute of Management-Ahmadehad wins points for the biggest jump, going from 28th place in 2011 to 56th place this year (22 places). The next biggest jump was Lancaster University Management School which went from 100th to 80th place over the course of the year.
  • The biggest jumpers in the U.S. were Temple University Fox (89th to 77th), Cornell Johnson (25th to 15th), and Georgetown McDonough (44th to 35th).
  • Newcomers to the top 100 list include Arizona State (59th), Texas Christian (71st), the International University of Japan (79th), St. Gallen University (81st), WHU Germany (87th), the International University of Monaco (97th), and Case Western Reserve Weatherhead (100th).

Please see our article on The Economist’s top 25 MBA programs for 2012 for more information.

rankings-full-size


Accepted.com Accepted.com ~ Helping You Write Your Best