November 9, 2007, 7:00 am

Mid Session MBA Report

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Career,MBA
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When I woke up last Friday to go to school, I realized something. When I signed for my MBA program a few months ago, there was a little annexe at the end of the document. It mentioned something in regards to selling your sleep time to the devil. So by signing, I acknowledged that I was giving all my possible sleep time to the devil in returns of sufficient energy to study until 1 or 2 AM every day. I also noticed in the Wallstreet Journal that Starbucks was expecting sales records as we were experiencing inscription records to MBA programs in North America.


After Cookie-Monster, I met with Time-MonsterMan,


this thing is time consuming you would not believe! Some people would tell me that it is because I made a commitment to work-out three times a week or that I decided to keep up with my blog and even added my Saturday Financial Ramblings or because I now have two kids. You know what? you might be right! Nevertheless, the MBA is sucking my valuable time away. Reading and team meeting are definitely the biggest obstacle to obtain this 11” by 11” piece of paper!

The MBA in numbers

– 2 hours of work a day: This is counting week days, weekends, birthday, wedding anniversary. Even if you little one is throwing up the whole night, you must stay awake and work hard. You are a soldier of knowledge afterall!

– 150 pages to read a week: Small characters, nothing to few pictures or graphs and you must add internet researches on top of it.

– 100 pages to write per session: I am talking about pages to be written individually if everybody do their shares of work in your team. Most assignments are done among your team so you have to trust them as they trust you. The good thing about it is that they are all there to succeed.

– 1 weekend every three weeks for classes.

– 2 weekends every three weeks for team meeting: Wait, if you combine the previous point with this one, it leaves no room for free weekends to spend with your friends or family? You got it right boy!

However, the MBA is also:

– 35 professionals working for different companies and different industries.

– 315 years of experience reunited together (the average is 9 years of experience in my class).

– 2 years of hard work that will lead to priceless amount of knowledge and connections.

– 1 phone call away from a promotion: You get to know so many people and the MBA title is well appreciated by several companies.

– 1 great sources of motivation.

– An endless sources of information, knowledge and experience.


I would be lying if I would say that it is easy. However, I think that I receive much more in term of knowledge, experience and networking that I have to give in term of time and energy. It is definitely worth it if you want to go higher up in the ladder of success 😉

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I’m fully researching MBA programs right now, and this is such a great help! To know the workload, expectations, and what I’m getting myself into upfront is invaluable.

Please keep it up!

Wow, I have a lot of admiration for your work ethic & drive. Keep it up!


I have had a relatively good experience with my program; I’m a few months from completing after 4 years at it. What I’d say though is to seriously consider going full time to a top tier school if you truly want to get the most out of a program. I’ve been going part time at night while working. Although my program’s top 30, the caliber of the students and the professors at the part time campus isn’t quite what I expected. My undergrad in Chemical Engineering was much more challenging. It really just comes down to a lot of time with two kids and a full time job. I’ve learned some good stuff in the Finance classes and it has benefitted my posting at Everydayfinance, but for the most part, I came into the class and continue to know more about personal finance and investing than most of my peers in the classes, so I haven’t benefitted as much as if I’d gone for a Wharton or Harvard. Anyway, my 2 cents. As long as your employer’s paying for it though, might as well do it while you’re young!
Dan at everydayfinance.

by: The Financial Blogger | November 10th, 2007 (10:34 pm)

I have more post scheduled on my MBA program. I’m getting closer to the end of my first semester and I am starting to get a good idea of what it is.

FP, thx for your kind words. I do all of this in a very simple target ; offering my wife to stay home! That would be the best gift I would ever be able to give her!

Dan, I wish we had more time and money and do a full time MBA at a super great university. However, life being what it is, you have to establish your priorities in a good order for yourself 🙂

As a MBA graduate… I always like to ask why? Why is it that you decided to take your MBA?

There is a growing sentiment led by guru Henry Mintzberg that MBA programs create just that… people with MBAs. Look no further than the current rankings of B Schools and the explosion online and EMBAs to realize that getting that piece of paper has become extremely profitable for educators.

However, competent managers are not guaranteed at the other end of the program. Don’t get me wrong, those little letters help your career and your ego. However, does it make you a more competent manager? Not really.

As Mintzberg argues, much of an MBA business education can be learned almost anywhere. What can’t be learned is how to deal with people, how to steer and organization successfully through tough decisions and situations.

If you’re lucky enough to have a mentorship or management/leadership development program at your work perhaps this picks up some of the slack. However, in my opinion too few people realize that an MBA is just that… a piece of paper with some letters. Those MBAs that get paid significantly more and make the biggest difference in the business world are the ones who have been lucky enough to learn those “extra” things not taught at B School. This is because B Schools produce as Mintzberg has said, “MBAs, not managers”.

Oh, I almost forgot. George W. Bush has a Harvard MBA…

Are we in good company? Would you want him running your organization (or country)?

by: The Financial Blogger | November 12th, 2007 (8:33 am)

Hey Drewp,

I don’t think that I will become a better manager with a MBA. I don’t think that being better in what you do is not link to the diplomas you are getting. However, the MBA will give you a great opportunity to meet with other manager from other companies and you can share your experience, compare your ways of doing things and learn a lot from each other.

I also find out that you can learn a lot from the assignments you are given to do. It is not the book itself that will teach you something, you have to read books and try to apply it in your daily life.

I wanted to do a MBA because I am young and eager to learn. I think I can learn more from others experience than from book but there is no other association like the MBA to gather 40 managers in the same room.


I agree. Managers, like many other professionals, need a forum to discuss their methods with others if they are to improve.

After you graduate, and assuming your contacts at B-School head in various different directions (finance, marketing, strategy, operations, etc), where will you continue to discuss these methods with like-minded others?

I think there is a gap in the number of forums available to do this. I also this that some managers or organizations worry about revealing information. So, I ask you, how do you ensure maximum learning as a professional if your are insulated by your organization and have less of a frame of reference with your past B School chums? Maybe there is a new business venture/opportunity in this.

by: The Financial Blogger | November 12th, 2007 (6:19 pm)


I think I will have to register for another class 😉

Seriously, I really think that managers should have access to more forums so they can share experience and improve 🙂

[…] much things by looking at what others have done in the past. As I previously mentioned in my last MBA posts, I just got access to 315 years of experience in my class. This is in addition to all the theories […]

Congratulations on working on this MBA. It can pay off in droves. I don’t know what school you go to but in my industry virtually everyone with any clout has an MBA from a top school and they’re all earning at minimum mid-six figures and most are earning 7-figures. Even an average MBA will help you a lot. I have a lot of friends I grew up with who went to work at typical large corporations and then got “average” MBAs from state schools and it gave them considerable promotions at work. They may not be making the kind of money people in my business make but going from earning $70K per year to $120K per year after two years of schooling is a good deal. More importantly it pays off at the upper ends of your career. At the upper management levels an MBA is almost a neccessity. You will always find people who argue an MBA isn’t worth it, there is a big move in this world for people to play down the importance of education simply because they’ve gotten to a point in their lives where they can’t change their education level and want to convince themselves it doesn’t matter. Don’t be fooled. You will always find exceptions here and there, but by and large the top of the corporate ladder is filled with MBAs.

by: The Financial Blogger | November 28th, 2007 (6:30 am)

JD, thx for the kind words, I will print your comment and read it when I have a rough time!

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