Do we need an MBA?

This post is dedicated to Corporate Interface Team, SIBM. Great job guys!

180807, we had Endeavour 2007. An entrepreneurship meet at SIBM. There was this one speaker - Mahesh Murthy (Passion Fund) who had absolute disregard for all MBAs. Imagine a guy standing on the stage and telling some 500 odd MBAs to take a hike. Boy, did he have balls!

What he said (asked) was in many ways true. Do we really need an MBA? The only reason why we have B-schools is because, business houses don’t want entrepreneurs, they want workers. So they just keep feeding the fire. More and more money is showered on MBAs to kill that desire to start a business and make it big, because at the end of the day, everyone is competition. So one might as well get them young. Sounds like a conspiracy theory but there did seem an ounce of truth in it. I mean we keep saying, we would like to start something in the coming years but how many actually go on to follow that dream?

The second important thing that he mentioned was, for a startup to be really successful; one needs to start a trend and not follow it. If telecom is hot in India now, its best not to join it. Instead, if i feel that there is a huge potential for say holidays on the moon, I should actually start a trend and be the market leader. Sounds very radical, but it makes sense to a great extent because for the Venture capitalist, returns need to justify the investment and if the company cannot go public in some years then whats the point? The same reason was pointed, when asked why VCs were not funding traditional businesses like hospitality and so on. There is no potential to find a buyer for the shares. A public company would fetch far more equity than a private business house on getting listed.

I was doing a person search for Mahesh when i hit upon some quotes. I am adding them here. Read on.

business schools reward difficult, complex behavior more than simple behavior, but simple behavior is more effective.“- Warren Buffett

I don’t think an M.B.A. matters very much for starting a company. A much better educational background is an engineering degree. You can always hire MBAs, but if you don’t have the ability to conceptualize and deliver a product, you’ve got nothing.“- Guy Kawasaki

Now that you have an M.B.A., you will never be as successful as me!” - Larry Ellison

Life is not divided into semesters. You don’t get summers off, and very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself.” - Bill Gates

The steps you have to take, the risks you have to take — I don’t think in a million years you can teach it in a classroom.” - Paul Fleming

I went to night school to get an MBA. I should have utilized that time to set up more businesses. True entrepreneurs get out of school as fast as they can and get on with life.” - Jon Huntsman, Sr. , founder of multibillion-dollar Hunstman Corporation

It’s a very hefty investment of money and opportunity for anyone who already loves their job.” - William Gordon, co-founder and CCO of Electronic Arts

innovation is not going to come from people who sit in the classroom and undergo an organized thought process. An MBA stunts creativity.” - Arthur Taylor, former president of CBS

When I go to the Harvard Business School, I talk to them about the real world. At business schools they live and think in terms of organizational charts. But life is a spiderweb; everything crosses at odd angles.“- Ross Perot, former presidential candidate and billionaire

The M.B.A. trains the wrong people in the wrong ways with the wrong consequences. Using the classroom to help develop people already practicing management is a fine idea, but pretending to create managers out of people who have never managed is a sham.” - Henry Mintzberg, internationally renowned academic.

6 Responses

  1. satish Says:

    mahesh Murthy is an a** h***

  2. Vijay Abraham Says:

    Vineet- Interesting readings specially enjoyed the variety. The whole Mahesh Murthy phenomenon should also be dissected from another less obvious angle. Most people who claim MBA is absolutely pointless do it only after they become successful. For one successful Murthy there are a thousand failed ones. Each of us has a dormant dream within us which suddenly sees the light of day when radical speaker inspires us but I believe that an entrepreneur with or without an MBA would still chase his dream. Its the other “in-betweens” that desperately need the degree to catapult him.One should not confuse a speakers irreverence for brilliance. Mr Murthy is a successful man but for 16 years before he became an entrepreneur he did work for others.period.( no prizes for guessing what i think of the lecture :) )

  3. Su Says:

    excellent collection :) Am a big fan of kawasaki :) have u read his blog ? it’s awesome.

  4. fali Says:

    mahesh talks in circles
    *personal experience*
    i seriously think he needs to read kotler 9e :D

    *yeah personal experience*

    on a serious note, we are paying 3 lacs in 2 years to get an 8 lac pa job
    sounds like a decent deal no?

  5. cit Says:

    Thanks a lot for your comments. If everyone’s enjoyed it, that’s all we need.

  6. Robert Morgen Says:

    I think that an MBA can be great to help you run someone elses business and pretty good to help you run your own.

    I also agree that I’d rather put my time into actually starting and running a business, especially at the small level with which I’m working, rather than getting an advanced degree that’s mostly focused on bigger business.

    I’m always a fan of more education, but I also think that there’s a lot to be said for getting in there and DOING it.

    Robert Morgen :)

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