are MBA students giving up on big business?
In their second study of prospective MBAs, CarringtonCrisp, education marketing and market research specialists, in partnership with ABS and EFMD have found a growing demand for entrepreneurship in the MBA curriculum. Entrepreneurship is now in the top five most valuable pieces of content according to a study of 476 prospective MBAs in 79 countries.
In the report, Tomorrow’s MBA 2011, CarringtonCrisp found other signs that enterprise is on the rise. Career progression is still the number one motivation when thinking of studying for an MBA, but students recognising the changing job market are putting skills ahead of salary.
Andrew Crisp, one of the authors of the report, commented, “There’s evidence in the rankings that salary increase post-graduation is becoming less of a distinguishing issue between schools. Students are reacting to this and the downturn in financial hiring in recent years has forced students to look at other career options. Whether they want control of their own careers by starting their own business or recognise the need to be able to manage a variety of projects in a large business in order to move up in their careers, entrepreneurship skills are increasingly valuable”.
Eric Cornuel, Director General and CEO of EFMD added, “Entrepreneurship in people and society is vital for future competitiveness. From new venture start-ups to the largest companies, having entrepreneurial skills mixed with the core components of an MBA enhances the value of the qualification for both students and employers.”
Other trends highlighted in this year’s study include:
- Most valuable course content among prospective MBAs is Strategic Management, Leadership and Managing People and Organisations.
- Less than 10% of the sample have become more negative about the MBA qualification over the past year.
- Only in North America do more than 50% of the sample indicate that they want a traditional 2 year MBA programme. Across the sample, more respondents want blended learning rather than traditional academic terms and office hours.
- When asked what had the greatest impact on their perception of the MBA, the answer was most likely to be people, either when visiting business schools, meeting MBA alumni or working with MBA graduates. Information gathering may be dominated by electronic media, but decision making still tends to only take place after a conversation with an alumnus or school staff member.
- There is a continued focus on embedding ethics and CSR rather than teaching as stand alone components of a MBA
Data for the study was gathered in November/December 2010. A total of 476 responses were received from prospective MBA students in 79 countries. The sample was 74% male, 26% female. The majority of the sample were post-experience candidates; 40%, have 2-7 years work experience. 29% of candidates have already made applications to business schools and just over 60% want to start their studies in the next 12 months.
The Executive Summary of the report is available on www.efmd.org