Category Archives: General

B-School Profs Offer Strategies for the Networking-Averse

Everyone knows that a huge part of the b-school experience is creating a network that you’ll be tapping into for the rest of your career. But what if you’re naturally shy, or simply hate the …

Shy guy

Everyone knows that a huge part of the b-school experience is creating a network that you’ll be tapping into for the rest of your career. But what if you’re naturally shy, or simply hate the idea of networking because it makes you feel phony, opportunistic, or just plain “dirty”?

The majority of international students at U.S. MBA programs come from Asia, where the cultural differences related to networking are stark. Even European students often find it awkward to send introductory emails or chat up strangers at networking events. Career centers in turn worry these cultural differences put international students at a disadvantage during their internship and job searches.

In the May issue of Harvard Business Review, professors Tiziana Casciaro of the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, Francesca Gino of Harvard Business School, and Marvam Kouchaki of Kellogg School of Management share strategies for making networking not only more bearable, but perhaps even enjoyable for the networking-averse among us.

The quickest way to flip the switch in your negative mindset about networking? Stop making it about you.

For example, at a networking event, take the focus off of yourself and instead focus on the other people at the event. The researchers discovered that when people focus on how they can help others — instead of how others can help them — the act of networking suddenly takes on a different tone.

“When you think more about what you can give to others than what you can get from them,” they write, “networking will seem less self-promotional and more selfless — and therefore more worthy of your time.”

The professors offer other strategies to help recast networking in a more positive light, including how you can make the focus about learning, identify common interests, or assign a higher purpose to the practice. Take a look at the original article on Harvard Business Review and see if their tips alleviate some of the discomfort you’ve been feeling up til now.

You may also be interested in:

Use Your Network to help You Get Into Business School
3 Ways to Get a Head Start When Building Your B-School Network

Image credit: Amir Kurbanov (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Posted in General | Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Ross MBA Admissions Director Shares Her B-School Comparison Spreadsheet

Now is the time when many potential business school applicants are neck-deep in the school research phase of the MBA admissions process. With that in mind, we’d like to share this excellent video posted by …

Now is the time when many potential business school applicants are neck-deep in the school research phase of the MBA admissions process. With that in mind, we’d like to share this excellent video posted by Soojin Kwon, director of MBA admissions at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.

Kwon, who always appears so down-to-earth and approachable in her videos, celebrates the “nerdiness” of applicants who create detailed spreadsheets to compare and contrast the various business schools they are considering…and she shares her very own that you can download and start using today!

As Kwon points out, by looking at the career opportunities, learning experiences specific to each program, and culture of each school, you’ll be several steps closer to making the right choice for you when deadlines hit this fall.

You may also be interested in:

Reputation and Rankings Trump All in B-School Selection
Tips on Finalizing Your B-School List
How to Narrow Down Your B-School Application list

Posted in General, Michigan Ross Advice, School News | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

HEC Paris Posts January 2017 MBA Application Deadlines

HEC Paris has posted the MBA application deadlines for the January 2017 intake. The admissions process at HEC Paris is conducted on a rolling basis throughout the year, and the dates listed below reflect the …

HEC paris application deadlines

HEC Paris has posted the MBA application deadlines for the January 2017 intake. The admissions process at HEC Paris is conducted on a rolling basis throughout the year, and the dates listed below reflect the possibilities for Full-Time and Part-Time applicants.

Application Deadline: May 1, 2016
Decision Date: June 3, 2016

Application Deadline: June 1, 2016
Decision Date: July 8, 2016

Application Deadline: July 1, 2016
Decision Date: July 29, 2016

Application Deadline: August 15, 2016
Decision Date: September 16, 2016

Application Deadline: September 15, 2016
Decision Date: October 21, 2016

Application Deadline: October 15, 2016
Decision Date: November 18, 2016

Application Deadline: November 15, 2016
Decision Date: December 16, 2016

For more information, please visit the HEC Paris admissions website.

Posted in General, School News | Tagged , ,

Columbia Launches First Student-Run Portfolio Fund

Columbia Business School has launched its first student-led value investing portfolio, known as the 5x5x5 Student Value Investment Fund. The fund, named for its innovative structure, gives students the opportunity to connect value-oriented investment theories …

Columbia student investment fund

Columbia Business School has launched its first student-led value investing portfolio, known as the 5x5x5 Student Value Investment Fund. The fund, named for its innovative structure, gives students the opportunity to connect value-oriented investment theories to real-world practice as they apply their classroom learning to the management of this fund.

“Five by five by five arose from my long-held belief that students ought to have an opportunity to derive deep and lasting lessons from student investment funds,” said  Thomas Russo, who has funded the gift and is also an advisory board member for the Heilbrunn Center for Graham & Dodd Investing at Columbia Business School.

The biggest lessons occur over time. The fund is trying to get investors’ horizons stretched out beyond five minutes, five days or even five quarters. I want the 5x5x5 portfolio to succeed and underscore the message that long-term investing is actually a worthy and profitable pursuit, Russo says.

Investment ideas for the portfolio are submitted by students in the School’s Value Investing course taught by Professors Bruce Greenwald and Tano Santos, faculty directors of the Heilbrunn Center for Graham & Dodd Investing. Each year, five students will be selected to participate in the management of the fund based on the strength of their proposed investments.

Companies pitched should be capable of delivering compound returns over a five-year holding period and students must provide no more than five clearly expressed, understandable, and brief reasons for their selection. The top 15 student recommendations will be submitted to the fund’s investment board, which will vote each year on the five new investments to be included in the portfolio.

Five new investments will be added yearly and by the fifth year, the fund will be comprised of a total of 25 investments. At the end of the five-year holding period, each selected investment will be liquidated to provide capital for future 5x5x5 fund participants to invest. The monetary amount will be increased to adjust for inflation, and the remainder of any gains will be used for student scholarships.

Each student participant has been requested to make a five-year commitment to return to Columbia each year to personally interact with the new student managers. “Each new class of student investors will have the benefit of hearing from the original sponsors of earlier portfolio selections why investments have or have not performed according to expectations,” said Meredith Trivedi, administrative director of the Heilbrunn Center.

Russo’s desire to help form and nurture the next generation of value investors prompted the donation. “I wanted to respect Columbia Business School with this gift for the great education that has been offered to so many people I have revered within the value investment community over so many years.”

Posted in General, School News | Tagged , , , , , ,

Choosing Among Multiple Offers of Admission

Round Two business school decisions have come pouring in and some MBA applicants face not just two, but three or more offers of admission from their target schools.  Despite the adage, “You can never have too much …

multiple admissions offers

Round Two business school decisions have come pouring in and some MBA applicants face not just two, but three or more offers of admission from their target schools.  Despite the adage, “You can never have too much of a good thing,” in reality, multiple b-school acceptances can produce a lot of anxiety in candidates.

If you find yourself with this enviable problem, consider the following when weighing multiple admissions offers. Forget about rankings and reputation and think long and hard about the other particulars of each school, such as size, academics or location

Does your desire to live in an urban setting outweigh a preference for a smaller class size? Is there a financial incentive that puts one school in the lead? Is the diversity of the student body important? Is the academic focus on case studies, or more experiential?

You might not have had a strong preference before, but you should tally up the different characteristics to see which way the wind really blows.

If you haven’t already visited the campus as part of your application process, now’s the time to do so. Sit in on a class, chat with students and professors, hang out on campus and generally soak up the atmosphere. This is where you’ll be spending the next two years of your life, so making sure the program is a good fit for you academically and socially is imperative.

Even if you have already toured the school, consider visiting again to attend events designed for admitted students so you can scope out your potential classmates. Fit is very important, and these people will become a part of your future network, so it makes sense to test drive your comfort level with them prior to committing. After all, if you just don’t  click with them now, how will you make those solid relationships that will serve you throughout your career?

Talking to alumni is another great way to guide your decision. Make sure the school graduates people who are working in your target industry, and who are excited about sharing their experiences and advice with current students.

The decision of where to pursue an MBA is a weighty one, so do your homework and understand the strengths and potential drawbacks of each of your options. But in the end keep in mind that there’s rarely a “wrong” choice to be made.

Posted in Application Tips, General | Tagged , , , , , ,