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am i falling for B school marketing?

 
#1 am i falling for B school marketing?
18/05/2006 00:01

artsgrad

Hello everybody.

I graduated with a degree in English from a very good (though not Oxbridge) UK university. I have five years' experience of turning round a very small, non blue chip company in Europe. I made it profitable for the first time in its 18 yr history and increased its turnover by 350%, in an environment where it was necessary to speak 2 languages with business fluency. Now I have a place at a top 5 UK B school to take an MBA. They tell me I would have a good chance of working for a good consulting firm afterwards. But before my five successful years in management I was a university lecturer for 7 years (in an arts subject), and there is nothing quantitative about my background whatsoever... though I have very good people skills.

Will my background really excite any big consulting firms or does the B school just want my money?? Many thanks for your help.

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#2 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
18/05/2006 10:30

qq

You are right that the business schools tend to apply their own own spin. The MBA will generally increase your chances of getting the job you want. However there is no guarantee and the consultancy recruitment market is a lot tougher the older you are (I guess you will be 35+ on graduation?). I suggest you send your CV to some consultancies now and discuss with them the value of an MBA with your backlground

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#3 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
18/05/2006 10:44

Jack

Let me lay it out:

Pros: Good business experience, Good degree. Cons: Age, possibly quant. ability.

Places at top consulting firms are competitive no matter which business school you come from. If you have a high GMAT score then you should have less to worry about. Age does matter slightly, as if u are 32+ then consulting firms may not be that interested. Does the B-School want u're money: Yes - the people telling you that you can walk into a consulting job post-MBA have'nt ever applied for one and made it thru themselves. My advice: research career areas (apart from consulting) you are interested in before u start the mba: e.g. develop contacts within a blue-chip company for a general management position. Get interviewed by that company during the MBA so that you have a back-up offer in-case you don't make it thru the consulting companies.

Bottom line: You need to leverage your strengths & MBA to your advantage, as every other MBA candidate will be at least as good as u during the job hunt.

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#4 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
18/05/2006 10:47

Jack

My previous posting:

"...If you have a high GMAT score then you should have less to worry about. .."

Correction:

I meant to say a high GMAT would imply a good quantitative ability.

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#5 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
18/05/2006 12:35

artsgrad

Thanks for your responses. Yes, I will be almost 37 when I finish my MBA, and though I have no problem with the quant required of general management (budget forecasts, financial stats, etc) I don´t have a particularly amazing GMAT score on the quant side (48 on the verbal side helped bump it up.)I'd love to hear from anyone with a similar background that made it into a good consulting company.

Many thanks again.

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#6 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
19/05/2006 09:15

James Crawley

Artsgrad,

Some very sensible commments here which I totally agree with. One area that has not been covered is what you consider to be a good consulting firm. I think there are two types of "Good" firm.

Good for the CV as in blue chip (i.e top strategy houses such as a Bain, Mckinsey and the major consulting firms such as Accenture, Deloitte etc)

Good as in the quality of the work they do - (i.e there are a number of much smaller, less well known but very high quality Boutiques who tend to operate in a specific area or industry group)

Given your years and level of experience you will probably find there is very tough competition amoungst your MBA peers for slots with the Blue Chips but you may find that some of the smaller boutiques prefer someone with a slightly broader profile.

My best advice to you would be to go to some of the consultancy careers evenings that Top-Consultant run and advertise on here and meet a few firms before you commit to your MBA

Hope thats helpful

James Crawley

Huntress Executive Search

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#7 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
19/05/2006 10:46

artsgrad

James,

Many thanks for this advice.

Unfortunately I will be outside the UK until my MBA begins in October (should I decide to take it). I assume that you represent a recruitment company, and therefore would like to ask: Do you think it is worth sending my CV to recruitment companies who recruit MBAs for a range of positions (in management consultancies and elsewhere), and asking their advice? If so, could you possibly give me the names of some good companies to approach? I have been offered some posts back in London, all around the 35-40k mark, but I would like to think that the MBA would give me a wider choice of industries, as well as a higher salary (either initially or in the long run). Of course, the idea that it will make be a better manager is attractive too.

Thanks again and regards.

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#8 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
19/05/2006 11:09

James Crawley

Artsgrad,

Simple answer - yes. There are a number of good recruiters who advertise on top-consultant who I am sure will be able to advise you - I would start with those currently advertising the sort roles you think you would be interested in, as they will have the most up to date market knowledge. Make it clear to them however when you send your CV that you are looking for advice as opposed to a current role and be patient and give them time to come back to you - these guys are all very busy at the moment.

JC

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#9 Re: am i falling for B school marketing?
19/05/2006 11:16

artsgrad

Many thanks James, I appreciate your help.

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