MBA hiring is waste of money

There are various discussions about MBA. Many hate MBAs like anything. 2 days back I got a call from Silicon Valley, where an Indian venture got funded and wanted to do some web marketing. During the conversation I said, we have MBAs in our team and the guy just shifted the conversation from “Why Choose TechShu as a web marketing partner” to “How MBAs are useless”. He said, “Man! I don’t give any s*** to MBAs” and the whole conversation went to a different direction. I had to pull it back to web marketing. This is common discussion point. On the other hand, there are people who like to work with MBA teams. Recently, during one of our consulting session with a Large SEO company, I suggested them to hire some MBAs, they were hesitant but later tried with 3 and in few weeks they were going for more MBAs.

Now are MBAs good or not? My take on it is, depends on whom you are hiring and for what you are hiring. MBA degree alone is neither good or bad, it is about people. Any HR is a raw material and one need to see the ROI out of it. Some of them can make them profitable and some can’t. The most offensive video about MBA

If you remember my old post “mba waste of money” (which does bring me some good visitors every month as it ranks for MBA waste of money and surprisingly many are searching for this keyword). Let’s see a video before going further:

Confidence: What I like about MBA culture from AIMK is “Nothing is impossible wala confidence!”. They will like to make things happen in any time. Be it a presentation or a program, they will not complain that “only 5 mins for it”, they will jump in and make it. I remember the days when we had to finish few of the programs and then few presentations along with other parties. We made the presentations in less than 1 hour and were on stage. This confidence always helped me. I have made presentations during my travel to client and was never low in confidence. This confidence matters a lot in every field. But was it about MBA, no, not at all. Though a good MBA institute will give you enough challenges that you will feel confidence in almost everything. Some of our papers by Arnad Laha Sir, 100% open book, open discussion, open internet and had to answer 1 question out of 10 to get 100% marks :)Recently when I was interacting with 2 interns from IIMs and 2 interns from 2 other MBA interns from different Schools, I could see the difference. After every class the other MBA interns will come and complain with low confidence whereas IIM guys made an amazing (very useful) Internship study.

I must also accept that sometimes they fail to show this confidence


Less prepared for failures:

As the above video was explaining us about failures. Fresh MBAs have always seen the big dreams but when reality hits them, some of them do lose their confidence but many do jump back. But they have big things to lose when compared to others. A person coming out of a normal college can risk a Rs 20k job per month but when a top insti MBA has to risk Rs 100k job per month, it hits them bad.

I was talking to a fresh MBA passout who is doing a different job (which is considered low grade job) but the industry is so unorganized that a person who organizes it can mint money. but then this guy is teased few times more than others for being a loser. If he can come out of it, better things for company and him.

“I know things, I have learned it”, marketing is P for … P for …. P for …
Copying something from FB “gujarati friend told me MBA means Mane (I) Badhu (everything) Aaavde (know) !! seen people with less ideas and more actions in their life get more successful!”
Learning is good but remember those are just alphabets the company is going to form some new sentences, so be open to learn more. Teachers are gonna be different here.
Most of them are extremely talented. I have worked with many of them from our college, they are so wonderful, I will say the around 30% of them are amazingly good (I don’t know their grades, certainly they are not always the top 30% as per grades)
Sometimes the theoretical talent is different from practical talent:

But when these talented people enters the world where things are less theoretical, they find it difficult. What I like about AIMK was that most of them were from Army culture who have visited many cultures and knows why people are different from others. Most importantly why they are different from you :).

MBAs are Good at analysis. From SWOT analysis to BCG matrix to maslow’s hierarchy of needs, they know almost all analysis methods. It is good. It does allow you to keep things under control and make logical decisions. But business is sometimes illogical too.
Just copying something from Facebook again where the discussion is about a Jargon “‘give peanuts and u will get monkeys’…sure…Ram got across to Lanka thanks to only monkeys. If he had hired MBA’s, they would still be presenting him a 60 slide plan in a PPT…and charging him for it in advance… “
When Ram asked his MBA manager -what are my chances of getng sita back
Hey Ram, its only 20% or less
Because u don’t have enuf resources, the market cap and valuation of Ravan is tooo high, so don’t even think abt it
-What if we hire monkeys?
Don’t even think abt it as you don’t have budgets!
And Ram never got sita back thanks to his mba manager

(Sometimes it is so true, this happens when your analysis becomes paralysis 🙂 )
MBA gets you opportunity: May be too early sometimes: Sometimes people are not prepared for some of the realities.
Perfection is defined in MBA, everything taught there is perfect Perfections needs to be redefined with speed and reality.
MBA gives you tool and its manual, you have more tools Real experience teaches you on what tools can be used
MBA gives you many more options and tools Don’t forget the paradoxes of choices and the factors associated with it
MBA gives you wider examples, wider views and generalized methods.

Remember how Google was created, remember the Microsoft policy & the Apple disasters … etc

Sometimes it is important to know in and out of business at minute level: I remember working with a top Guy from one of the top 3 institutes of the world. He has designed the interface for one of the Linux flavour. He is great guy, great talent. He came in and without even studying the business he started making changes, some of it were good but I knew it is not going in right direction as he missed the strength of our business. In 2 months time we let him go.
MBA sometimes makes you follow things, which are good as you are safe In current world the biggest risk is to be safe
Most of the MBAs from good schools have good communication skills and varied knowledge, so they can be trained for better sales representation. Sorry if you have hired them to become Evangelists for your product. Converting sales team to Sales team to Evangelists is company’s job.
Last point: MBA is about knowledge and tools Real world is about wisdom and execution.
MBAs charge more as they understand business better. I liked this sentence from the conversation “Ram Got Sita, what did Monkey got?” … it is important to share good % of revenue with the team. The other aspect is that sharing is good but what if Ram does not get Sita but still he had to pay money in advance, may be sometimes that is too heavy for startups or SMEs, even for clients. I agree with the fact that if you don’t demand the money you don’t get it easily. You be good (which MBAs have proved so far by being in the top lists), charge good and continuing doing better to charge even more. Nothing wrong in it. A person should be paid really high if the person is creating high value for the company.

Last point

MBA is about knowledge, efficiency and tools, Real world is about wisdom, effectiveness and execution. Now its your take, does more knowledge, efficiency and tools make you wiser, more effective and profitable? We have recruited many MBAs as we want them to be the pillars of the company in long run. They have the tools and the knowledge, its our time to help them use it wisely and effectively.