Hire an MBA by the hour

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Tired of getting gouged by consulting firms? BusinessWeek recently profiled a new site called Skillbridge where you can engage consultants by the hour or on a flat fee basis for prices that are much more reasonable than firms like Bain or McKinsey. Or, you can rent out a qualified candidate as opposed to hiring a new employee.

A growing number of companies are using freelance MBAs to access the same brain power they might find at a top-tier consulting firm. The demand has given rise to online marketplaces that are a cross between executive search agencies and freelance job sites—where the featured contractors are skilled at financial modeling, competitive analysis, and marketing.

The site claims that every consultant is screened and has a minimum of two years’ experience. For small companies and startups, this looks like a nice option to have.

It also offers a nice career option for consultants who are sick of the long hours and endless travel.

  

Interested in a career in business development?

If you think you might be interested in a business development career, or if you’re not sure what a business development professional does, check out this article for an excellent overview about this potential career path. Topics discussed include how to prepare for such a career, including how an MBA or a JD degree can be very helpful. Bus dev guys put deals together, and knowing how deals are structured is essential. You can learn quite a bit by getting an MBA or JD, but frankly hands on experience doing deals is the most important factor.

  

3 Things A Business Degree Student Could Learn From Silvio Berlusconi

Silvio Berlusconi. REUTERS/Remo Casilli (ITALY – Tags: POLITICS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Everyone needs an icon, an inspiration, someone who shows just how much can be down and how well. Not necessarily a role model, because the most successful people tend to have extremely negative qualities, but even the most evil character can teach some important lessons. For example: Darth Vader teaches you the value of presentation, black is always in fashion, and don’t jump uphill at a man with a light sabre, you idiot.

But since the dark lord of the Sith isn’t a great exemplar for business degree students (the profit/loss sheet on the Death Star is horrifying), we’ve looked for a more down to Earth villain. Italian ex-prime minister Silvio Berlusconi is a glory of capitalism. He is at least four different male fantasies crammed into one body. He’s made more money than Midas, twisted the law into shapes which would confuse Escher, and scored with more women than the entire population of several colleges.

What lessons can a business degree student take from this mastermind?

Networking

The single most important lesson in any business degree is networking, and Silvio masters this the same way Genghis Khan mastered making first impressions: way harder and better than anyone had ever dreamed possible, and than most people had even had even had nightmares about. Mr. Berlusconi has a more powerful network than most Yakuza and uses it much more blatantly.

If you don’t make connections during your business degree it might as well be a piece of novelty toilet rule. Luckily modern technology means you can mingle without ever having to stand up, which is great, because when you work online you can take the time to craft the perfect image. Or, like Silvio, you can just own most of the TV stations and tell them to do it instead.

Think Big

No-one gets a business degree because they want to be a faithful secretary. It’s more a Gordon Gecko without the bad ending thing, power and riches and most importantly the feeling of doing something worthwhile with your time. This means you have to aim high and just keep climbing, an no-one solved his problems by aiming higher than Silvio. When his businesses were under legal investigation, he became the government and changed the rules. When Medusa cinemas were investigated for embezzling five million Euros, the judge decided that Silvio probably had nothing to do with it because the amount is too small. When you’re excused on the grounds that you couldn’t be bothered with a paltry seven digits, that’s the success of thinking big.

Understand The Rules

The most important thing in any project is a clear understanding of the rules. Some will say that this is to make sure you obey them, but come on, we’ve already mentioned Gordon Gecko and Silvio Berlusconi in this article. Sure, Berlusconi might have been finally forced to resign as prime minister, but he still has more money and sex than everyone you know put together.

The real reason you need to understand the rules is to succeed as quickly as possible. The hardest work in the world doesn’t necessarily, or often, lead to a the best reward. That’s why you’re studying a business degree instead of bomb disposal. A clear set of guidelines means clear targets and knowing exactly what you’re allowed – or able – to do to get what you want. When you study for a business degree you’re practicing dealing with the real world by getting ready to do the same. You have a clear set of tasks and courses to complete and, by far the most importantly, you have total command of your own time and resources to do so. That benefit cannot be overstated. So many jobs are based on sitting down and doing what you’re told – you want to be master of your own destiny. And like Silvio Berlusconi, you want to fill that destiny with money and fun.

  

What can I do with an MBA Degree?

MBA degrees have become the gold standard of the business world. More than 62 percent of all CEOs hold a MBA or higher from an accredited program. Why? An MBA opens up more doors in the business world than any other type of degree. Not only this, but an MBA fetches higher salaries, excellent advancement opportunities, and a chance to become an entrepreneur. Its no wonder an MBA is one of the most attractive degrees in the world.

An MBA (Master of Business Administration) can prepare you for a lucrative career in upper management, portfolio management, or consulting. You can also establish a career as a marketing director, human resources manager or CEO. In an average market, an MBA holder has the potential to earn $100,000+ per year working in just about any industry. At the highest levels, a Fortune 500 CEO earns an average of $800,000 per year, plus bonuses and other perks.

Top executives are everywhere. In fact, there are more than 2,133,500 million in the business and management field today. This includes 400,400 chief executives and 1,733,100 general and operations managers.

To become a member of the top executive club, it takes dedication and hard work. It takes a minimum of six years to earn an MBA, beginning as an undergraduate. A traditional MBA degree program requires successful completion of:

  • -Accounting
  • -Business Strategy
  • -Economics
  • -Finance
  • -Human Resources
  • -Marketing Management
  • -Manufacturing and Production
  • -Operations Management
  • -Statistics
  • -Technology and Information Systems

The core curriculum accounts for 40 percent of the degree requirement. Specific course may include leadership development, global economic environment, social networks and social capital, managerial statistics, operations strategy, financial planning and analysis, strategy structure and incentives, financial accounting, marketing strategy, and managerial economics. 

Most undergraduates interested in pursuing an MBA typically earn a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), a Bachelor of Science in Business (BSBA), or a Bachelor of Management Studies (BMS).

An MBA program should include the classes listed above, along with an internship. Most MBA programs follow the traditional curriculum, while some programs, such as online programs, may differ slightly. The best thing to do when searching for a quality MBA program is to make sure the program is accredited by a recognized agency such as the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). You should also compare the curriculum to a top ten MBA program such as:

  1. 1. Harvard Business School 
  2. 2. INSEAD (France)
  3. 3. IMD (Switzerland.)
  4. 4. MIT: Sloan School of Management 
  5. 5. Stanford University Graduate School of Business  
  6. 6. University of Pennsylvania: Wharton Business School
  7. 7. University of Chicago Graduate School of Business  
  8. 8. Columbia University Graduate School of Business
  9. 9. London Business School   (UK)  
  10. 10. Northwestern University: Kellogg Business School   

There are hundreds of quality MBA programs in the U.S. and abroad, so just because you didn’t graduate from a top ten program doesn’t mean your chances of making it are any less. Most MBA programs are challenging, competitive and rewarding, so give it your all and you’ll go far.

To review a list of recognized accrediting agencies visit the U.S. Department of Education website at www.ed.gov for details.

  

Best Business Schools

BusinessWeek is out with its new rankings of the best business schools. It’s a good place to start if you’re considering an MBA.

  

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