Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Climate Change

The MBA is very intensive but some extraordinary people still find the time to do other activities. That is the case of one of our class members, who is organising an international summit on Climate Change and Renewable Energies. The summit will be held in late September, so the next intake can take the opportunity to attend it.
Here’s the link. Check it out...it will be a big and great event!



The last weeks have been very hectic, therefore the lack of posts in my blog. There are many things going on at the same time. Job hunt, Individual Project hunt, assignments to do, presentations to make and plenty of sports.

And today I want to focus in one of the most important sporting events in the MBA Calendar: The MBA Tournament (MBAT). The MBA is a tournament held in HEC, France and brings the Top European MBAs together to compete in many sports. The event lasts for 3 days and it is lots of fun.

Obviously, being one of the smallest MBAs, Cambridge still has little chances of winning the whole thing, but our participation was very decent. We ended up in a mid of the table position after having very good performances in sports like rowing, sailing and even football (we reached the quarter finals!). But more than sports, the MBAT is a great networking event where we can meet people from the top MBA schools in Europe.

It also translates de philosophy of some schools. LBS is clearly there to win and they look very professional in their impeccable matching uniforms. They had more than one team for most sports! Rotterdam school of management is very colourful and cheerful. Cambridge is very collaborative. Even though we didn't practice for most sports, everyone was willing to play everything and help each other out in forming teams for all sports. Most of us played more than one sport and believe me...that was tiring! Oxford is…well…I’m not talking about “the other place”! :)

Rivalries and jokes aside, I highly recommend attending the MBAT. It’s great fun, very healthy and a fantastic break from the crazy world of the MBA. And if you go you might see some of the most amasing live salsa performances that you will ever see. I still can’t figure out how on earth do they have time to practice and become so good! If you like, check some of the following links. They are very worthy!

LBS: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0iRW0zjgtU
SAD Bocconi (The winners): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YecYyGnK1E

Thursday, May 1, 2008

International Worker’s Day

Today is the International Worker’s Day or Labour Day, celebrating the achievements of the Labour Movements. To be able to fully appreciate all the fights for better labour conditions and the eight hour working day you must have something very basic: a job.

Today seems to be the perfect day to talk about something I’ve been asked many times by prospective MBA students: jobs and how the job market is. Jobs are a crucial part of any MBA, as most people do an MBA either to change jobs or to get promoted. As the MBA reaches its final stage, everyone is pretty much focusing their energies in finding a job. But the important question everyone who’s thinking how doing an MBA is: how is the job market?

Sadly, I have to tell you the job market is not doing very well. In particular, the investment banking industry is not recruiting as it did before. Due to the credit crunch, many investment banks are actually downsizing and, obviously, not recruiting. This is particularly relevant as a significant part of the MBA students aspired to get a job in this industry. The other main destination of MBA students is consulting. Consulting is not suffering as much as banking, however some of the main consulting firms are recruiting less or postponing their recruitment agendas. Again, these are not great news for MBA students.

Despite the not so encouraging news from these industries, it seems like there are still many opportunities out there to be harvested. Most MBAs get a job from the open market and not from the MBA Leadership Programmes so not everything is bad. If you like statistics, I’d say by now around 20% of our MBA class has secured a job. It’s not a great number but there’s still plenty of time to go and most jobs are actually found closer to the starting date. As far as I know, it’s a bit below last year’s number, but not dramatically below. So it seems this is just the way it is.

I’m part of the group that still doesn’t have a job. However, I think the open market should not be underestimated. Like I said, most MBAs get their jobs on the open market and not on the fancy programmes that recruit on campus.
Does this mean this is a bad time to do an MBA? I would say there is no bad time to do an MBA. Some years ago getting a job would probably require less effort than it requires today, but it seems like an MBA is still a very valuable asset to have and the networks that are built here should not be underestimated either.

So using my own medicine, now is the time to apply massively to the open market, be patient and be prepared for when the opportunity comes!