MBA

Now Chicago Booth is a couple months into the school year, I have had dozens of coffee chats with first-year students who want to start businesses during and after business school. Since I am focusing on entrepreneurship, I have taken many of the classes under that umbrella, and I have been able to advise first-years on how they might plan their MBA experience.

While Booth has many incredible entrepreneurship-specific courses, I encourage all those wanting to found a start-up to take some of Booth’s VC classes too. Some people are surprised when I suggest this. They do not see how building unit models will help them build businesses. But the truth is, MBA entrepreneurs should take advantage of VC courses because they help scrutinise a business plan, delve into the mechanics of fundraising, and develop networks with early-stage financiers. Read more

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I did not plan to be in my thirties, taking on student debt, worrying about what to wear on my first day of school and cycling to class with a heavy bag. But here I am –with more than 300 other MBA students from around the world. Read more

One of the highlights of MIT Sloan orientation week was playing the “beer game”, a role-play simulation that provides a glimpse into supply chain challenges that managers in the real world often face. Hosted by Professor John D Sterman, the game (sadly) involves no real consumption of beer, and instead simulates the production and distribution of beer from the manufacturer to the end customer.

The objective of the game is to meet customer demand for cases of beer through a four stage supply chain – the manufacturer, distributor, wholesaler and retailer – with minimal expenditure on inventory and backlogs. The challenge for the students managing each link in the chain is to fulfill incoming orders of beer by placing orders with the next upstream party, with inter-party communication and collaboration prohibited. Read more

Doing an MBA is one of those things that will develop my skills and my career. What I have been less prepared for is the wider impact of what I am doing.

In the second semester last year, I did a unit called Managing People and Organisations. It focused on diversity and the future of work. The unit’s main group project was to identify a diversity goal for an organisation and propose a plan to achieve it. My group focused on my workplace and how it could increase gender diversity in its pipeline to senior management. Read more

Maybe some of you have already heard about or even used the business-model-canvas, which was invented by Alexander Osterwalder and his fellow colleagues. For all of those who have not heard about it until now, here is a short video which gives you a brief overview.

With his great analytical mind, would Sherlock Holmes have made a good MBA candidate  © Image by Getty

Heading to the City of London’s Old Billingsgate Market on my first day as a London Business School MBA, many thoughts ran through my mind. What would the students there be like? Was I skilled and experienced enough to bring valuable insight? If so, how would I be able to adapt my unusual background to business situations? I went over my time in the military and tried to convince myself that all the soft skills I acquired would help me contribute to the LBS community. Read more

Artisinal coffee

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When I first moved to Sydney, I was amazed at how particular people were about their coffee, and everyone had their favourite barista. The simple process of ordering a coffee was complex – do you have a flat white, cappuccino, piccolo, short black, soya latte etc? But what I found most surprising was how much money people spent on coffee. Read more

Silicon Valley: trek's to places such as the west coast are just some of less traditional ways MBAs secure jobs  © Image by Getty

Historically, business schools have had very structured recruiting processes. Mainstream employers, including investment banks, consulting firms and large corporations, would invest heavily in organising on-campus presentations, hosting mixers and invite-only dinners at fancy restaurants and the occasional handing out of doughnuts and apple cider in between lectures, all in an effort to win students attention and create goodwill. Read more

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When starting your MBA programme, week one is something you expect to be memorable. Various thoughts run through your mind: will I get off on the right foot? Will I like my classmates? What did I get myself into? I got this. It is a right of passage. You introduce yourself a million times and put your small talking stamina to the test. Read more

Was I mad to start an executive MBA in the exact same week as a new job? After the first five days running marketing at a PLC, I definitely needed a lie-in. Instead, my alarm attacked me at 5am, set at that ungodly hour so I would have time to get to Surrey for the degree’s induction weekend.

By the time the evening lecture took place on the Saturday, I was struggling to stay awake. And so I committed an act that any self-respecting student would consider shameful on their first Saturday: I slipped off to bed at 9pm. Read more

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As you would expect, there is a steady stream of guest speakers leaving their impression upon eager MBA students at Warwick Business School – and no doubt across the dozens of other schools offering similar programmes. Read more

MBA students at Imperial will use a Fitbit Zip to record the steps it takes to get to Hanoi and back before their MBA is over

Then we heard something a little unexpected: “So we thought it would be really nice if you, as a class, ran to Hanoi.” Read more

Rockclimbing is just one of the activities used to test Durham's new MBAs

After months of anticipation, my MBA programme at Durham University is finally underway. With an intensive week-long induction, the class of 2017 started to make the transition from the business world to the classroom. Read more

Edinburgh Castle  © Image by Getty

Having moved my life 5,000 miles across the world to Edinburgh to sit in a classroom for the first time in six years, so I knew starting an MBA would be daunting. Read more

Small change can come from coaching sessions  © Image by Getty

I have just finished an intensive unit on coaching and performance management and it has been a revelation. Hands on from the start, students were required to have a “live coachee” for the six weeks of the course. Read more

Facebook and WhatsApp are good for group conversations among students  © Image by Getty

Our personal lives are more digital than ever before. I am reminded every day when I look at how both my daughters – two and four years old – intuitively and naturally engage with my smart phone and iPad. This is the technology that has become part of our lives, and my children do not know a world without it. Read more

The process helps to reflect on professional life if enough time and effort is invested into the questions Read more

Going through the process of writing my MBA application essays was a journey of self-discovery.

Having spent the previous four years in fast-paced and demanding work environments such as consulting and ecommerce, I had not had the chance to step back and think about where my professional career was going. I had paid a lot of attention to my mid-term career plans, but not to where I wanted to be in 10 or 15 years’ time. Read more

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Since I have moved to Chicago for business school, the first thing my non-Chicago friends ask, long before they ask about Booth, is whether or not I like deep-dish pizza. Deep-dish is Chicago’s signature and gooey take on the otherwise thin and crispy student staple. The inhabitants of my native New York City tend to look down on deep-dish as an imposter, a bread bowl filled with tomato soup hiding in a pizza box. My diplomatic response? I like deep-dish, but I do not think of it as pizza. Read more

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One question I get more often than any other is why I chose an online programme over on-campus. Read more

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This summer I got the ball rolling in preparation for my MBA at Copenhagen Business School with a little inspirational book reading. Read more

High risk: Wharton encourages agressive ambition and is the ideal place to test your limits

“How much did they pay you to give up on your dreams?” This quote from the film Up in the Air, staring George Clooney and Anna Kendrick, poignantly sums up so many of our situations. I am an abstract, creative thinker by nature. My goal was to work in an area such as advertising. However, when recruiting season began at university, I saw that full-time positions in my industry opened the following May, while all my classmates aiming for other industries secured jobs in October at twice my target salary. Read more

Talking with graduates of your preferred school can help you avoid unnecessary mistakes Read more

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During my time in Africa, I had a lot of time to think. It is a continent of waiting: waiting in traffic; waiting in lines; waiting to get things done. I knew this when I decided to come here. But I did not understand how much waiting there would be. Read more

Donald Trump is a controversial, but he excels in developing unmistakable personal branding  © Getty

When reflecting on my experience of writing application essays I immediately remember struggling to reach the word count. Read more