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Frustrated!

 
#1 Frustrated!
07/10/2010 18:06

Frustrated

I know this is a forum for consultants and wanna be consultant but I have a different kind of frustration to let out :) so I apologize up front.

I came into top MBA program in Europe from consulting and I am extremely frustrated at how things are done so far. Can't name which program, but it is one of the big ones. Three things frustrate me: a) overwhelming competitiveness which seems so much over the top and faked. I think none of those people are so much competitive, and are really good guys, but they think that showing competitiveness will get them places.

b) quality of some of my classmates in terms of what they did in their previous work, how they did it, how much they can actually contribute to the class is way beyond my expectations. I wanted to learn something from my classmates but it seems that it won't happen.

c) so far, i have not learned anything I didn't already know, other then meeting bunch of CEOs and doing the so-called networking which seems to lead nowhere, as it all appears to be part of machinery which is incredibly impersonal and forced.

I was even thinking about dropping out, but I don't know if that is such a smart thing to do?!?!?!?!

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#2 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 18:07

Frustrated to Frustrated (#1)

Correction in line 8-way beneath my expectations!

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#3 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 18:19

Happy to Frustrated (#2)

Well, there are only two big programs in Europe, so which one is it??

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#4 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 19:40

Ambivalent to Happy (#3)

It could be either, from what I've seen of them

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#5 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 20:40

anon to Ambivalent (#4)

I have always insisted that doing MBA without quality work experience is just a waste of time and money.

As for the CEO networking, that's just a window dressing - nothing ever comes out it except of course sandwitches and orange juice!

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#6 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 21:34

Frustrated to anon (#5)

There are more then just two top European MBA programs.

I have relevant work experience but some of my cohort don't seem to have it. I find it frustrating, as I mentioned already.

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#7 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 21:40

go on ... to Frustrated (#6)

start your own business school

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#8 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 21:49

Happy to go on ... (#7)

I'm afraid there are really only two top business schools in Europe, as I mentioned already - if you are not at either of those then this would explain your post and your frustration

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#9 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 22:18

Frustrated to Happy (#8)

The worst thing is when those without any knowledge but theoretical prejudices start making claims. Man, you suck.

The school I go to is at the very top where it almost doesn't go higher then this. This makes my frustration even stronger.

I do however recognize that there are other top business schools in Europe as I have friends and colleagues who attend or have attended these schools and who are working their derrieres of to get into these schools. Your response is not what I was looking here, so please feel to say something smart or zip it.

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#10 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 22:30

Happy to Frustrated (#9)

Erm, sorry sugar, no predujice here - you inferred in an earlier post that you are not at LBS or INSEAD. It is fairly common knowledge that these are by some margin the best two schools in Europe, so the rest of your post about 'almost not going higher than this' rings a bit hollow.

Sorry if that is not particularly constructive, but if you are as stellar as you make yourself sound, then you would have worked this out by yourself before you applied. And if you come from a top firm then they would only have let you attend one of two schools.

So, to get back on topic, what is your question, or are you just venting?

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#11 RE: Frustrated!
07/10/2010 23:33

anon to Happy (#10)

The question was in the last line of the original thread post. Not much point going to LBS/INSEAD if you cant work that out.

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#12 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 00:02

Frustrated to anon (#11)

As much as I would like to indulge you in your shallow curiosity, I am not going to divulge the name of the school nor shall I pursue this argument any further, as I seem to be discussing, what was supposed to be pure venting, with clueless children. What a joke you are.

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#13 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 00:13

b to Frustrated (#12)

Given the tone of your responses, I am not surprised that your attempts at networking haven't worked out!

You might have great work experience on your CV, but your interpersonal skills need a little work!

I don't care what school you went to, but I don't think that stating its name on this forum is going to hurt you....its not like your cohort would be able to identify you from just one that fact alone.

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#14 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 00:54

Alex to b (#13)

Just to clarify what seems to be one of the points of discussion here. Top MBA programs in Europe are:

-LBS

-INSEAD

-IMD

-HEC

-IE

-IESE

-OXFORD

-CAMBRIDGE

They all carry almost equal amount of prestige. LBS and INSEAD probably ring the most bells at most people but are matched by the rest in the eyes of recruiters.

As to your frustration, I can only say that I feel for you, sort of, as I have experienced major ups and downs when I was doing my MBA. First few months I thought were a complete nonsense and thought me nothing new. It all sorted itself out towards the end of the program. So, be patient. Cohort was, well, so and so. Definitely could have been better in terms of their actual contribution to the class and their previous work references. As to the networking, never expected much, never got much from it. Landed a job with a company of my first choice and to whom I have only introduced myself by saying "hello" at our dinner session. Didn't have a clue at the time that I would at all want to work for them. So, don't worry, don't drop out and enjoy the time before you actually get back to the work.

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#15 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 07:03

Happy to Alex (#14)

Alex, your point about pure prestige is just not true, and neither is the one about recruiter views. Certainly not in terms of getting the supposed 'high prestige' jobs.

Having said that, you seem happy, like me, so that's good. And it's good that you also were much better than the 'so and so' people at your school. Have a good weekend.

So what is the point of this thread? Is that genuinely a question in the first post?

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#16 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 08:16

Mars A Day to Frustrated (#1)

Hmmm...Frustrated in one sentence you denounce the overwhelming competitiveness of your classmates and then..start telling us all how you are already better than them, not learning anything new from the curriculum etc. If you are actually as good as you imply them why did you bother with the MBA in the first place? It's a fair question.

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#17 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 08:37

Happy to Mars A Day (#16)

Well, I would say nothing wrong with doing an MBA. Even the most stellar of people may find it beneficial, although that doesn't seem to be the case here.

The really pertinent question to me is why someone so good did not get into a school where the class mix was of a better standard.

Frustrated, what was your pre-MBA consulting experience?

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#18 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 12:14

Frustrated to Happy (#17)

I already said what my pre MBA experience was, but I'll elaborate again some points. My pre- experience is from top MC. I never said I was better then my class mates. What I said, if you read more closely, is that they are all nice guys but pretending to be overly competitive thinking that if they show their competitiveness, they will get places. Its fake and counter-productive. I spoke to few of them privately and they seem perfectly fine.

What I also said was that although some of them probably have genius minds, some of them, not all of them, certainly lack work experience or any practical experience to equally, and in any other meaningful and productive way, contribute to the class and group projects.

Frustrating.

Alex, thank you for your comments. I agree with you on MBA programs with one exception in that bunch of which I know can't be compared to the likes of some others you mentioned.

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#19 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 15:14

Happy to Frustrated (#18)

I understand exactly what you are saying, and I agree that it might be frustrating to be in that situation. At the same time I am enjoying being provocative.

I still maintain my point that there are only really two top schools in Europe. If you were at one of them or a top US school then you would not have this problem. But it's also fine for you and Alex to believe otherwise. I am Happy either way...

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#20 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 15:31

anon to Happy (#19)

" there are only really two top schools in Europe. If you were at one of them or a top US school then you would not have this problem."

Actually, the situation described in this thread is exactly typical of these schools - overly competitive candidates, many with poor self-awareness, little experience, and suddenly realising that the MBA isn't going to magically transform them into the business superstar they pretended to be on their application forms.

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#21 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 15:38

Frustrated to anon (#20)

Happy, I may as well be at one those two top schools that you are referring to, but I won't confirm it nor deny it as it is besides the point, and if you were any brighter you would have probably guessed by it by now.

How old are you, I wonder, and what school did you go to?

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#22 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 15:48

Patricia to Frustrated (#21)

Frustrated, get on with it, maybe you will find it better as you go along. If you have top MC consulting background, it doesn't matter what you really learn, you are only doing it to go back to consulting to become associate, right? :)

As to the top MBA program discussing, there is nothing worse then bunch of kids under influence by silly internet forums who claim to be perfectly aware of, and pretending to know all about, top MBA programs whereas they have no real backing for their distorted views. Not only that they will never see the inside of LBS or Insead, but they won't even get near equally selective, but in their minds, less valued IMD, HEC, IE and etc., because they are just brainless little snobs.

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#23 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 15:50

Happy to Frustrated (#21)

"Actually, the situation described in this thread is exactly typical of these schools - overly competitive candidates, many with poor self-awareness, little experience, and suddenly realising that the MBA isn't going to magically transform them into the business superstar they pretended to be on their application forms."

Ok, I will grant you that this is true. But it is not a binary effect, it is a scale, and you will see this to a greater effect at lesser schools

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#24 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 17:57

someguy to Happy (#23)

So you started an MBA program and are frustrated by the alpha-dog competitiveness. Funny, I was just saying to my acting classmates the other day that I was really getting sick of all the dramatics...

Friday response for a Friday thread...

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#25 RE: Frustrated!
08/10/2010 20:36

PAer to someguy (#24)

How does the OU MBA match up to INSEAD? PA have said they will sponsor half my fees

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#26 RE: Frustrated!
09/10/2010 10:30

Frustrated to PAer (#25)

What is OU MBA?

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#27 RE: Frustrated!
09/10/2010 14:19

Polish Plumber to Frustrated (#26)

What is PA? Personal Assistant?

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#28 RE: Frustrated!
09/10/2010 21:23

Delboy to Polish Plumber (#27)

Just thought i'd mention, this online 'Frustrated' persona of yours is a major douche; I can only hope it isn't much a reflection of reality.

As per the 'question' at hand: grow a pair mate

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#29 RE: Frustrated!
10/10/2010 21:13

gooner to Delboy (#28)

OU = Open University

PA = PA Consulting

"PA have said they will sponsor half my fees"

With all respect for the Open University, this pretty much sums up the calibre of people at PA consulting...

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#30 RE: Frustrated!
10/10/2010 21:30

Corona to gooner (#29)

Have to agree with the above. I think the Open University is great for some people, but a relatively decent consultant should be setting their sights a lot higher.

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#31 RE: Frustrated!
10/10/2010 22:01

pedantry to gooner (#29)

@ gooner, i think that was someones bright idea of a joke...

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#32 RE: Frustrated!
11/10/2010 10:34

Shoe Polisher to pedantry (#31)

I am the first one to actually agree with Frustrated on a couple of points?

I always have a bit of a quiet snigger about the contrived competitiveness of the MBA candidates. Its almost like they have to say it be on-message, but you know its not real.

As for the LBS/Insead snobbery what absolutel trolleybosh. Thats just like saying OxBridge or nothing. Absolute crap.

A top MBA candidate is a golden nugget from wherever (within reason, of course).

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#33 RE: Frustrated!
11/10/2010 14:48

Alex to Shoe Polisher (#32)

Top MBA programs are all equally interesting to recruiters because there is only so many top MBAs that LBS and INSEAD can deliver each year. But some kids are clueless and pretty narrow minded that its kind of funny to see them argue about it. :)

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#34 RE: Frustrated!
12/10/2010 07:16

Happy to Alex (#33)

Can't let this one die...

Alex, your statement is just not true. Or if it is then please explain why the most sought after recruiters (the top consulting firms and I-banks, PE firms and hedge funds) manage to fill the vast vast majority of their interview slots and MBA positions from a couple of European school and 5 or so US schools.

And of those that the McKinseys of the world take from the lesser schools, any thoughts on what % are returning to their pre-MBA firm and what % are new hires?

Further down the pecking order of recruiters (industry, niche consulting firms, Big 4 etc) then I partially agree with you, as these firms need to expand beyond the top schools to fill their quota and once you have an interview your school is largely irrelevant.

To Shoe Polisher, I am not saying LBS/INSEAD or nothing. It is certainly not binary, more like a scale

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#35 RE: Frustrated!
12/10/2010 10:04

Alex to Happy (#34)

Happy, you should really let this one go. You may live blissfully in what you think you know about the real world. I certainly don't intend to pursue this argument any further. If you are happy, I am happy too, and I wish you lot of luck. You will certainly need it.

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#36 RE: Frustrated!
12/10/2010 10:15

Shoe Polisher to Alex (#35)

Happy, I actually agree with your scale comment. If I am brutally honest, I probably feel the way I do because I have little if any choice.

I have never had the big name and big promise behind me to attract the top 2% so have to try and vie for the top 10%, which believe me is still a tough sell.

To be even more brutal, I sometimes look with an envious eye at some of the big undergrad programmes knowing i have to sweep up a little. I'm not talking 2:2 in Waste Paper Basket Management from Merton Tech, but I think you get the picture.

But here's the thing; even if we did go after these elite, I'm not sure the culture of our business would benefit from them. We're just not that way...

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#37 RE: Frustrated!
12/10/2010 10:23

Sebastian to Frustrated (#1)

Frustrated,

I am so happy to have come across your thread here. :) I know exactly how you feel. I am in somewhat same, or at least, similar situation. I recently started a masters course at a top school in the USA, top ivy league school, as they call them here, hoping to get into consulting in the UK or elsewhere in Europe when I graduate. So far, the things I learn and how we learn has been a major let down. I find most things that we do so hard to be applied in real life and in practice, that I sometimes think its a waste of time. I know that it isn't, at least I will have masters degree from a top US school, but its hard to be doubt free. Some of my classmates agree with me and have expressed the same concerns, but the alumni from our course and from the school is doing exceptionally well so its more the concern about actually learning something then with what to do next. Some of my classmates suggested that in consulting, everything is somewhat vague and based on theory. Consultants don't actually implement any of their strategies. You probably know this better since you are coming from this industry. And yes, the networking thing is over emphasized. I recently had a conversation with a person from top MC at our school's career fair and it was a pretty long, very friendly and engaging conversation, which I thought would lead to something more promising, but guess what. At the end, I was warned by this person that the deadlines for autumn 2011 are approaching fast and that I should carefully complete my application on-line. Haha. Thanks. I think I know how to read that much from your web site. :) Anyway, I just wanted to share my experience and there are, I believe, plenty of us in the same boat.

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#38 RE: Frustrated!
12/10/2010 11:21

Happy to Sebastian (#37)

Shoe Polisher, that's absolutely fair enough. It's horses for courses, no? The World is basically a bell curve whether you are talking about salaries, weight, height, prestige of MBA courses, whatever. There is always a top 10%, a bottom 10% and a whole lot in between.

I don't come here often but I do on occasions pass by and try to offer some advice - I was fortunate enough to fall in that top 2% range in terms of undergrad and work experience and MBA, and I am now some years post-MBA and post-consulting so I have some idea at least.

I find it irritating when people misleadingly try to justify why the 10% to 20% range are actually in, or the same as, the top 1-2% range. This is not due to elitism or snobbery, it is because for the many people that come here looking for advice and guidance on how they can get their dream job in a McKinsey or a BCG, this is the sort of misleading information that can derail their careers and cost them a lot of money

Best of luck with finding the people you need for your business, it sounds like it might be a far nicer place to work that many of the more touted consulting firms

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#39 MC wannabe Frustrated!
18/10/2010 14:28

UM to Happy (#38)

i have always wanted to work for a top tier MC. I was able to get interviews at 2nd tier MC (think ATK etc) but didn't get an offer. I have been thinking of doing an MBA but this thread makes me wonder if I should do something else. I have a Masters degree from Imperial and currently working in a quant role (risk management). Any tips of getting into a top MC will be appreciated!

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#40 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
18/10/2010 18:17

Alex to UM (#39)

I thought we were done with this thread :)

What school for MBA are you thinking about, UM?

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#41 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
18/10/2010 21:27

anon to Alex (#40)

Frustrated, how are you feeling now? I guess it'll still be a great feeling to have a top MBA, even if some parts of the day-to-day experience aren't absolutely top-notch? And presumably you'll still get a great job, so just enjoy, I would say...

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#42 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 10:17

UM to Alex (#40)

I was thinking of INSEAD (top choice), IMD (doubt they will take me as they tend to pick people with 6+ yrs of experience), Chicago Booth and IE Business School.

But I don't have the money- will need to take out a loan. Its a big career step for me as I want to move on from the pure quant-based analytical roles I have been doing the last 4 yrs.

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#43 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 11:04

Alex to UM (#42)

All those schools are good, but I its really your choice which one to pursue and if to pursue MBA at all. People have different expectations and different experiences. I think those that come from certain jobs to which they plan to return to are often content with their MBA, as for them it is one step up. Those that want to make a radical career change move sometimes end up a little disappointed, but its not a rule nor exception. Its all about you and how much you make out of it. You won't get a firm advice here and I don't think that anyone here is competent enough to give you advice. Only suggestions.

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#44 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 11:05

Happy to UM (#42)

INSEAD and Booth v good choices, less so IE, which will not help you to nearly the same degree if top MC is your goal.

If you are happy to go to the US, then I would add a couple more top US schools instead of IE.

Many many people take out loans - that's no drama

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#45 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 11:28

UM to Happy (#44)

Alex I agree completely. MBA has such a high opportunity cost- so its not an easy decision.

Happy, what other schools would you suggest?

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#46 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 11:49

Happy to UM (#45)

Kind of ironic this:

In your first sentence you 'agree completely' with Alex that 'nobody here is competent enough to give you advice' and that it is your own decision.

And then in your second sentence you ask me which schools I would suggest.

My suggestion would be the top schools

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#47 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 12:21

UM to Happy (#46)

Happy I know this does sounds odd! What I meant was despite the high opportunity cost I do believe an MBA will add value. However, other than the usual monetary issues, family issues have made it very difficult for me to make a final decision of what I should do.

But I do want to keep my options open at this stage e.g. I have been talking to different MBA schools.

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#48 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 17:51

anon to UM (#47)

Happy, how would you rate the Oxford MBA for a move into MC?

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#49 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
19/10/2010 18:22

Happy to deleted (#0)

Well, look at the employment report. Not many people seem to go into consulting from SBS, I think its focus is elsewhere.

And when you compare the top consulting companies against the report, only McKinsey and Booz appear.

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#50 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
21/10/2010 11:24

KC to Happy (#49)

MBA is overrated. Top 10 business schools pick the best people, you can expect the people admitted to these schools to find work in the best places (MBBB)- self-fulfilling prophecy?!

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#51 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
21/10/2010 13:37

someguy to KC (#50)

the MBA cert may be overrated from an academic standpoint, but you gotta admit, it's good at what it's meant to do - separate rich achievers from their money and efficiently herd them into consultancies and IBs.

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#52 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
21/10/2010 20:44

Alex to someguy (#51)

I pity the fool who believes that the only way to make money, or achieve something superior for that matter, is to join a top MC or an IB.

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#53 RE: MC wannabe Frustrated!
22/10/2010 15:14

ex MBA now consultant... to Alex (#52)

My advice is to go to:

- a top school near the alps if you like the mountains

- a top school near the beach if you like surfing

- a top school in france if you like food

- a top school in the US if you like paying twice as much as anyone in Europe

- a top school linked to China and Asia if you really want to be relevant in the future

- a top school with a 2 year programme if you'd like to spend time doing a pointless project without being paid more than a token amount

And understand that your CV before the business school will be what makes the difference when it comes to getting the job. Not whether it is INSEAD or Oxford.

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#54 RE: Frustrated!
30/10/2010 17:28

Jo to Alex (#14)

I agree do not drop out, I have just finished my MBA and some of my class mates just turned up to get the letters. They would have bought one if they could, I sent out with the intention of getting a first as and did, you get out what you put in and I found it very benefical. I am presenting the results of my research at two major congresses so my advice is keep at it

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#55 RE: Frustrated!
30/10/2010 17:50

This is Sparta to Jo (#54)

Frustrated,pray tell why are you posting such drivel in this forum? My guess is that you're a bit of a chump who thought thast an MBA would allow you to re-enter business a couple of grades above where you left.

So the other children aren't playing nicely - so what? You pay your money and thats what you get. How did you expect them to behave? Did you think they'd all bow before some two bob consultant?

Now be a good boy and bore off back to the theory and send in an application to Goldman

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#56 RE: Frustrated!
01/11/2010 19:35

Frustrated to This is Sparta (#55)

I am glad to see my thread is still sort of active :) I didn't expect such response. Well, just to give you an update. MBA is still sort of disappointment, and I am not the only one who thinks so. Spoke to few of my fellow MBAs and they share my feelings. I did notice, however, one interesting thing. For those who left their jobs and came to do their MBA, hoping to do some networking and meet the right people, it is turning out to be pretty good, although, not as good as they probably thought it would be. For those who have jobs waiting for them, including myself, MBA is turning out to be just current and passing necessity - get it over with and go back to work and get a salary increase. Exactly as someone mentioned it above, get back in to the business couple of grades above where you left.

I'd still recommend it to others, as long as they have someone to finance it, and as long as they maintain some decent levels of reality check.

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#57 RE: Frustrated!
02/11/2010 10:29

This is Sparta to Frustrated (#56)

My, my Frustrated, you appear to have changed your tune somewhat. Did someone take your soapbox away.

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#58 RE: Frustrated!
02/11/2010 14:43

Frustrated to This is Sparta (#57)

What do you mean?

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#59 RE: Frustrated!
06/02/2011 19:38

Den to Frustrated (#58)

So glad I came across this post - I thought there was something wrong with me, but it appears I am not the only one :)

Came into top European MBA from industry and it has been a major disappointment - regret every penny I spent so far and I wish I could turn back the time or at least get my money back as I don't care about these three letters any more - what a joke!!! To anyone out there considering MBA - really think hard if you need it and if you will learn anything from it - its a lot of money, but for what?

I wonder if the original poster would care to share his experience since he wrote this - any improvements or has it gotten even worse?

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#60 RE: Frustrated!
06/02/2011 22:28

one of the eldest at 28... to Den (#59)

I don't often take positives away from someone else's misery, but I'm also on an MBA but couldn't afford the 40k+ of the 'top' schools ( I often use this excuse to avoid the fact that I probably don't have the intellect also!), but my school is ranked 4th in UK, and it's....well....very young! At the ripe old age of 28 I'm amongst the eldest and my massive 5 years of experience is amongst the longest on the cohort....

I'm still very much enjoying it as I'm learning a lot...just not from fellow colleagues. I have no idea what the young(er) guys are taking away from it as surely they can't relate the theories to personal experiences?? I think b-schools should have a duty to advise students that the initials are not enough for an automatic invitation to the boardroom? Some on my course genuinely believe scraping through an MBA is a golden ticket to fortune....

My opinion, for what it's worth....

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#61 RE: Frustrated!
07/02/2011 09:51

Den to one of the eldest at 28... (#60)

I feel the same about my colleagues - they are convinced that three magic letters from top business school will bring them fortune - its pretty naive to think that. At the age of 30, I'm considered one of the young guys in my MBA class, but it seems that the more experience they have, the less satisfied they are with their MBA experience.

However, its exactly those theories that you mentioned that are completely pointless, in my opinion - theories that really can't be applied in the real world, or have no relation to the real world, and it makes one wonder what exactly are we being thought here?!?! Not surprised that many of them want to go into consulting.

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#62 RE: Frustrated!
07/02/2011 16:53

anon to Den (#61)

So Den, even if you don't think that much of the course, don't you think that you'll end up with a great job at completion (and significantly enhanced long-term career prospects)?

Those are the most important aspects, aren't they?

I ask as a prospective MBAer myself.

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#63 RE: Frustrated!
07/02/2011 17:33

anderson22 to Frustrated (#1)

Unfortunately, that's what the business world is like, but it's reality. People are always going to be competitive, but I wouldn't be discouraged. Networking really is the key, but you also would need experience and skills. I thought about dropping out of http://www.marketingdegree.net/ but stuck with it, but my competitors were actually in programs with classrooms and knew who their competitors were. I had NO clue who I was up against, since I was just studying alone, but now I regret not knowing who I'm up against. So view it as a way to seeing what is in store for you in the real world!

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#64 RE: Frustrated!
07/02/2011 20:45

Den to anon (#62)

Anon, I would suggest you really think hard whether or not to pursue your MBA - unless your company is going to sponsor you and pay for it.

Yes, I've heard so much talk about connections and building up your network, but its so robotic and mechanical - those events - I imagine it is like speed dating, if you have ever tried it. Staying at your job and making connections within your industry or expanding your network from within one's job is far more effective then doing it all via MBA route - in my opinion.

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