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which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?

 
#1 which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
25/01/2009 19:08

Nik Pearson

Hi,

I am currently reviewing the possibility of taking a MBA course in autumn 2009.

I have 5 years work experience - all in sales and marketing, but across two industry sectors (FMCG and Automotive).

My aim is to gain entry into one of the major consulting houses (AT Kearney, Bain, PA etc..) after graduation.

With that in mind - i have a shortlist of two schools in mind to choose from:

Bath Business School

Warwick Business School

Do these institutions hold sway with this class of company? Or would it be more appropriate to aim towards Judge/Said/LBS?

Any help/guidance you can give me on this would be most grateful.

Are

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#2 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
25/01/2009 20:32

Sultant to Nik Pearson (#1)

Can't comment on Warwick but I can on Bath Business School. It is set in a really lovely area of the country that is truly gorgeous.

I spent some wonderful years in Bath and remember many a joyous morning waking up to a beautiful sunrise (yes I woke up rather early!) and taking really lovely walks during the evening.

I suggest you go with Bath as I am sure the beauty of the nature there rivals what can be had at Warwick. You are surrounded by the serenity of the West Country :)

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#3 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
25/01/2009 22:15

WBS Alum to Nik Pearson (#1)

All three of the target firms you mention have recruited from WBS in the past couple of years. I'm sure this year will be (a lot) quieter but the WBS MBA will stand you in good stead.

I can't honestly say Bath got onto my radar when I was looking at B-schools - it seems to be more of an undergraduate than an MBA school. I also read on the FT site that Bath's standout academic, Andrew Pettigrew, has just quit. WBS seems to have a larger range of international-standard academics. However, your mileage may vary - great minds are no good if you can't get on with them or if they aren't interested in the same topics you are.

I recommend doing a quick search on LinkedIn or another of the business networking sites to see how many alumni of each school end up in your target industries/roles. At the end of the day, that counts for more than aggregate league-table scores. Also, try to sit in on a lecture at each school - you can often do this as part of an open day.

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#4 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
26/01/2009 09:39

fdf to WBS Alum (#3)

For the likes of Bain and ATK you will be very lucky to even get an interview from either. Maybe if you have absolutely stellar work experience you would be ok, but these schools are internationally relatively unknown and are nto core schools for consulting recruiting at the top end. Can't speak wrt PA.

If you are serious about working at one of the top firms, then you need to go to LBS or INSEAD, particularly if the current recruiting environment continues beyone 2009.

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#5 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
26/01/2009 11:16

Gunslinger to fdf (#4)

agreed with the above reviewer: the top MC's very strongly prefer brand name ( i.e. top ranked) business schools such as LBS.

I would suggest asking the career services dept of the prospective schools you are targetting as to your intentions ( working with top MC after grad) and asking them if they have grads/alumni there , and also if they come onto camput to recruit. If they dont give out this info ( and some dont- they may say that their employers have requested to remain confidential), take it as a red flag because the answer is probably no. If so, then ask what they would suggest would be the best way for a grad at these schools to get a job with these companies you have mentioned. By their response alsone, you can judge how good/helpful the career svcs dept is.

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#6 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
26/01/2009 17:32

Olivier to Nik Pearson (#1)

Hi,

I did my MBA at Warwick and had interviews with ATK, Oliver Wyman, ADL, OC&C (all in London).

A friend who graduated with me had interviews with McKinsey.

It was in 2005-06, maybe it would be more difficult now.

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#7 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
27/01/2009 11:29

fdf to Olivier (#6)

Everyone knows of someone that had interviews coming from a non-traditional school. The problem is that they are exceptions rather than rules - and in the current climate it just won't happen as some London offices are looking to recruit just one or two people

To maximise his chances the OP has to consider the most prestigious schools, and in Europe that is really only LBS and INSEAD.

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#8 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
27/01/2009 18:38

JJBB to fdf (#7)

Again, this is only valid if you have three of fewer years of work experience, or do not have managerial experience going into your MBA. The selection criteria for experienced post-MBA Associates at MBB are different, so plan accordingly.

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#9 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
27/01/2009 22:24

Evil Consultant to fdf (#7)

In general I'd strongly agree with fdf's sentiment - the higher the school is ranked, the better your chances of ending up working at one of the top consultancies. This is pretty indisputable; however it does not mean that if you do not go to INSEAD or LBS then you have no chance.

That said, I work for one of the kind of consultancies you're talking about and I turned down an offer at LBS to go another less highly-ranked school because the overall package that I got at the school I eventually attended was much more attuned to my needs.

Decide why you want to do an MBA and what you want to get out of it. If that is a job at MBBB, PA, ATK, RB etc... then your best bet would be LBS or INSEAD in Europe.

EC

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#10 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
28/01/2009 14:24

mba0809 to Evil Consultant (#9)

Would be wise to look at the fee to.

If you look at LBS it's over 40k , Cambridge and Oxford around 30s.

The second rung schools, Warwick, Cranfield, Lancaster are cheaper and rated high. Have a look at FT 2009 rankings.

However if you want to aim for Bain, McK and AT&T, LBS and INSEAD would be the safest bet.

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#11 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
28/01/2009 16:24

fdf to mba0809 (#10)

Don't agree with that at all - I think it would be entirely unwise to look at the fee.

If the goal is to get into a "top strategy firm" and schools A and B give you a half-decent shot, whereas schools C and D give you virtually no chance, then why on Earth would I care about saving £10,000??

I think that, particularly when you conisder that it is amortised over c.10 years, I could justify taking the hit on that one...

To use a puerile analogy, it is like buying a bike to cross a river because it was cheaper than buying a boat.

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#12 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
28/01/2009 16:26

Cynic to mba0809 (#10)

Personally, I'd just pocket the £40K and earnings that you will otherwise lose during the time you're studying, and get a job that doesn't put you on a direct path to a stress-related nervous breakdown.

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#13 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
28/01/2009 16:32

someguy to Nik Pearson (#1)

If you believe the BW rankings, IE (Empresa) has just leapfrogged INSEAD and others and is your #1 choice for an MBA in Europe. Other than that I agree that brand name and league tables do count for first impressions, but the real selling point of an LBS is its alumni (for the connections) and its placement programs (who will open the doors to more milkround interviews, Bath or LBS? duh)

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#14 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
28/01/2009 16:46

anon to someguy (#13)

MBA doesn't have to lead to high stress lifestyle.

There are some very well paid jobs in industry in corporate and business development which are are 10x more interesting than tedious Big 4-esque consulting and without the hours of MBB-esque consulting.

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#15 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
29/01/2009 17:05

anon to anon (#14)

Bath is an excellent school, in one of the most pleasant learning environments that you could wish for, to study an MBA in !

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#16 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
29/01/2009 17:42

agreer to anon (#15)

I don't think anyone is disagreeing with that.

But if you ask the question:

"Is bath excellent enough to fit the career goals of the initial poster?"

then the answer is almost certainly no. There are degrees of excellence.

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#17 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
30/01/2009 22:33

eurox to agreer (#16)

My 2 cents: I work for McK, not the UK office. Most of the people with European MBAs we hire come from either Insead, LBS, IE or IESE. The rest come from top US schools: HBS, Stanford, Columbia and MIT are the top four I would say.

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#18 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
31/01/2009 11:57

Revit to eurox (#17)

Top 5 schools for McKinsey globally:

INSEAD - 3%

Harvard - 3%

Wharton - 2%

Kellogg - 2%

Stanford - 2%

So, a slight lead by brand-name schools, but by no means a dominant one. Also, what these statistics don't reflect is employees' prior background. People going to brand-name schools are more likely to have prior consulting or blue-chip experience and are pre-disposed to be attractive to consulting recruiters, regardless of where/whether they do an MBA.

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#19 RE: which business schools cut it with the big consulting houses?
31/01/2009 14:07

sfjsg to Revit (#18)

A slight lead for the "brand" business schools over what? There is no comparator in your post.

What do the percentages mean? They are pretty useless without some context. Are you comparing like with like?

What is the relevance of the comment on people's prior background? What point, if any, are you trying to make with this? Anything beyond the spectacularly obvious??

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