MBA stuff Re: NYTimes.com Article: Google Names Chief Executive

Mike Masnick mike@techdirt.com
Wed, 08 Aug 2001 16:30:13 -0700


Okay, what you've written below might be reasonable for undergrads, but has
little to do with an MBA education.  You mentioned undergrad graduation
rates, which are completely different than MBA graduation rates.  The
process for getting in to an MBA program involves a hell of a lot more than
getting a good score on the GMAT.

Also, (and here I can only speak for Cornell's MBA program), unlike
undergrad programs, most of the people who attended in my business school
class were there to learn - and not to just get a degree that they could
flaunt.  Most of the students I knew (and we have a small class, so I knew
a lot of them) took their education very seriously which actually
influenced some of the slackers to take their education more seriously as
well.  Undergrads often go to college because that's the thing to do - so
in that case I can understand your question mark on percentage graduating.
Weeding the bad seeds out is more important.  But, for b-school, I don't
see how it applies.  People who go back to business school do so as much
more a conscious choice.

Just because more people flunk out, does not mean that the graduates
actually learned more.  In fact, I could easily argue (and actually
believe) that in cases where more people flunk out in a business school it
means the professors are awful teachers.

Hey, I'll be the first to admit that what you learn in business school
isn't rocket science (or, for that matter, computer science).  I think just
about anyone with the proper amount of effort and willingness can learn
most things that are taught in business school.  That doesn't mean that
it's useless to go there.  And, at Cornell, at least, they believe that by
hiring good teachers who could help the students learn that material well,
they were doing a service.  I learned some very difficult things from some
very good teachers.  Should I be upset that most of my classmates were able
to learn the same thing as well because the professor was skilled at
getting ideas and concepts across to us?  Was I challenged?  Sure!  But did
I eventually learn those concepts?  You bet.  I'm thrilled that I did, and
I'm thrilled that those professors were there to teach me.

So, I'm sorry if I bought my MBA by going to a school that graduated most
of the people they let in (though, I have to admit, my class did *not*
graduate the guy who was accepted, but who killed his wife as he was
packing up to head to orientation in Ithaca :).  And, no, I wouldn't hire
everyone that I went to school with.  However, I wouldn't discount anyone's
education just because they attended a school that (1) graduated someone I
had a bad experience with or (2) actually graduated most of the people they
let in.

Anyway, I find it hard to take anyone too seriously who bases their opinion
of someone's work ability entirely on where they went to school.

 -Mike

At 03:16 PM 8/8/01 -0700, rudy rouhana wrote:
>Perhaps it is those schools that attract the types of individuals that feel
>they are "owed" something.  Hell, maybe they are owed something, they did pay
>$30K+/year!  I've either pitched to, raised money from, sold to, employed or
>fired MBAs from all the schools that I've mentioned.  I do my best to judge
>people as individuals. My opinions are based on what I observed, not a
>predisposed bias. I am human, and thus fallable (unlike MBAs from the
schools I
>mentioned, who never admit mistakes ;) and recognize that I may be wrong in
>judging myself.
>
>This isn't my only criteria, but one of the things I look for to see if
degrees
>are "purchased" is the graduation rate of a school.  Most of the Ivy League
>schools boast +90% (Harvard had a 97% Grad. rate in 1999) graduation rates
for
>undergrads.  An arguement can be made that since the acceptance criteria
is so
>high, everyone that gets in gets out with a degree.  That theory doesn't hold
>water with me.  I graduated high school with a 3.2 GPA, but busted a high
score
>on the SAT and was accepted to Brown.  Point being, it's not that hard to get
>in, just get over 1300 on a single test.  I took the SAT one time.
However, if
>I wasn't so bright and REALLY wanted a Brown degree, I suppose I could have
>paid a bunch of money to Kaplan and re-taken the exam until I achieved the
>score necessary.
>
>Then again, maybe it wasn't the SAT score that got me the acceptance
letter at
>all.  Perhaps the "background" questions on the application where I
mentioned I
>wouldn't need financial aid because my family had a few dollars bought me the
>letter.
>
>Either way, I thought $30G's a year was a bunch of bullshit to get an
>education.  So, I went to a school that had a low barrier to entry cost wise
>(With a merit based scholarship, it was free) and faced incredible challenges
>academically due to competition.  In fact, there was this damn red-head'd
16yr
>old that fuxored the curve in Calculus my first summer there.  I think he's
>working at KnowNow these days...
>
>Summary: I think a lot of distiction is given to these brand name schools
that
>is undeserved.  The reality is, you get what you pay for.  Shell out the big
>dollars and you'll get the GPA and diploma that you want.  Fabulous.
There are
>jobs waiting for you at Mackensie, KPMG and any other "consulting" firm that
>needs to resell you.  However, when I'm hiring, I want someone who will
>actually get something done, and will look elsewhere.
>
>Side note, when visiting my g/f at Stanford (I won't hire, but I'll sleep
with
>grads from those schools...), I was told that their mechanical engineering
>department is "ranked best in the country" or some bullshit like that.  I'll
>put money down any day that someone from Cooper Union, Rose-Hulman, Harvy
Mudd,
>Purdue or my own school could out engineer a Stanford ME.
>
>-Rudy
>
>--- Mike Masnick <mike@techdirt.com> wrote:
>> I'm no apologist for bad and annoying MBA graduates, because there are
>> plenty, but I'm curious how you determine which schools are the ones where
>> people earned vs. bought their degrees?
>> 
>> I, for one, am happy that I got my MBA.  I thought it was a great
>> experience in a lot of ways.  I thought that Cornell did a great job
>> preparing me, and really prides themselves on building a program that the
>> students find useful for many years after they've graduated.  
>> 
>> I've had both good experiences and bad experiences dealing with MBAs from
>> any number of schools.  In general, (like just about anything) it reminds
>> me that it's usually the individual that determines my opinion of them,
>> more than the program they came from.  The people who feel they're "owed"
>> something or that they're better than others because they have an MBA (no
>> matter where they got it) are the ones who have always troubled me.
>> 
>> However, I've met enough people from most of the top MBA programs
>> (including the ones you've mentioned) to suggest that it's possible to get
>> a completely useful education from any of them.
>> 
>>  -Mike
>> 
>> At 12:58 PM 8/8/01 -0700, rudy rouhana wrote:
>> >No,
>> >Actually those three schools stand out the most to me.  I pretty much
>> >consistently run into the biggest jokers from those schools.  The other
high
>> >point scorer on my bullshit chart is Kauffman Fellow title.
>> >
>> >Krannert grads (Purdue) do well in my book.  As do grads from schools
>> where you
>> >earn vs. buy your degree.
>> >
>> >-Rudy
>> >
>> >--- Mike Masnick <mike@techdirt.com> wrote:
>> >> *cough*
>> >> 
>> >> Another FoRKer with an MBA (from Cornell) right here.  Also glad not to
>> >> have gone to a school mentioned below, but I'm sure Rudy would have
>> >> included just about any MBA program in his list.
>> >> 
>> >> Glad to see that random generalizations about folks with MBAs haven't
gone
>> >> away.
>> >> 
>> >>  -Mike
>> >> 
>> >> At 12:09 PM 8/8/01 -0700, James Hong wrote:
>> >> >good thing i got my MBA at Berkeley, as did the only other FoRKer i
know
>> >> >with an MBA.
>> >> >
>> >> >cheers,
>> >> >james
>> >> >
>> >> >----
>> >> >XMethods web service listings - http://www.xmethods.net
>> >> >
>> >> >
>> >> >----- Original Message -----
>> >> >From: "rudy rouhana" <webtagz@yahoo.com>
>> >> >To: "James Hong" <jhong@xmethods.net>; <FoRK@XeNT.CoM>
>> >> >Sent: Wednesday, August 08, 2001 11:54 AM
>> >> >Subject: Re: NYTimes.com Article: Google Names Chief Executive
>> >> >
>> >> >
>> >> >> Remember, it's not how well you perform, it's how well you're
>> perceived as
>> >> >> performing (via www.bobpatternsononline.com) .... that seems to be VC
>> >> >criteria
>> >> >> for CEOs.  I'm sure Mr. Schmidt is perceived as having done well
>> >> >previously.
>> >> >> Kleiner is just as susceptible to bad judgment as any other VC, which
>> >> >means
>> >> >> VERY susceptible.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> The Bob Patterson program is probably better than an MBA ;)
>> Actually, I'm
>> >> >> quite sure that it is given the quality of the
Wharton/Kellogg/Stanford
>> >> >MBAs
>> >> >> that I've been exposed to.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> -R
>> >> >>
>> >> >> --- James Hong <jhong@xmethods.net> wrote:
>> >> >> > it makes them more suitable to go public, or raise more money at a
>> >> >better
>> >> >> > valuation?
>> >> >> >
>> >> >> > cheers,
>> >> >> > james
>> >> >> >
>> >> >> > ----
>> >> >> > XMethods web service listings - http://www.xmethods.net
>> >> >> >
>> >> >> >
>> >> >> > ----- Original Message -----
>> >> >> > From: "Jim Whitehead" <ejw@cse.ucsc.edu>
>> >> >> > To: "Rohit Khare" <rohit@knownow.com>; "FoRK" <FoRK@xent.com>
>> >> >> > Sent: Wednesday, August 08, 2001 10:29 AM
>> >> >> > Subject: RE: NYTimes.com Article: Google Names Chief Executive
>> >> >> >
>> >> >> >
>> >> >> > > So, why is this a good thing?  As near as I can tell, his
tenure at
>> >> >Novell
>> >> >> > > did not fundamentally alter that company's position.
>> >> >> > >
>> >> >> > > - Jim
>> >> >> > >
>> >> >> > > > -----Original Message-----
>> >> >> > > > From: fork-admin@xent.com [mailto:fork-admin@xent.com]On Behalf
>> Of
>> >> >> > > > khare@w3.org
>> >> >> > > > Sent: Monday, August 06, 2001 10:46 PM
>> >> >> > > > To: fork@xent.com
>> >> >> > > > Subject: NYTimes.com Article: Google Names Chief Executive
>> >> >> > > >
>> >> >> > > >
>> >> >> > > > This article from NYTimes.com
>> >> >> > > > has been sent to you by khare@w3.org.
>> >> >> > > >
>> >> >> > > > What a shock! Sounds like an excellent match, though... Doerr
>> >> >> > > > done good? :-) --RK
>> >> >> > > >
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>> >> >> > > > ----------------------------------------------------------/
>> >> >> > > >
>> >> >> > > > Google Names Chief Executive
>> >> >> > > >
>> >> >> > > > By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
>> >> >> > > >
>> >> >> > > > Internet search-engine company Google named Eric Schmidt as the
>> >> >> > > > chief executive officer Monday, replacing co-founder Larry Page
>> at
>> >> >> > > > the helm of the company
>> >> >> > > >
>> >> >> > > >
>> http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/technology/AP-Google-CEO.html?ex=9
>> >> >> > > 98163173&ei=1&en=75fa4f644a4d9c40
>> >> >> > >
>> >> >> > >
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