Showing posts with label business schools. Show all posts
Showing posts with label business schools. Show all posts

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Business Schools that Exceed Market Expectations

Meeting and exceeding standards are two different things. Fostering business schools requires meeting expectations and then moving beyond these expectations to create higher levels of performance. According to a paper in the Journal of Business Studies Quarterly there are 10 things business colleges can do to enhance their performance.

  1. Look beyond today’s practices and standards and move toward future trends in business education.
  2. Applying knowledge management practices to create value.
  3. Acting in practice and philosophy.
  4. Accept risk when moving beyond theory and practice.
  5. Hire faculty and deans who think outside the box.
  6. Follow Kaizen philosophy.
  7. Understand the educational needs of the market.
  8. Stay ahead of the market and be read to change as needed.
  9. Develop a unique value proposition.
  10. Listen to the needs of stakeholders.

It matters little if you are discussing a business school or any other type of school. Many of the ideas would apply to almost any business. Moving beyond standards requires finding ways to meet minimum qualifications and then push for growth. By looking to match company development to market needs and ensuring you have the right staff in place to make that happen is half the battle. The other half is getting everyone focused on the same goals.

McFarlane, D. (2014). Contemporary barriers to excellence in business education. A Journal of Business Studies Quarterly, 6 (2).

Monday, November 24, 2014

Are U.S. MBA Schools Losing their Positions?

U.S. schools have long been known as a place where higher education excels. Over the past decade European and Asian MBA schools have started to take preference and superseded many American schools. A study by Collet & Vives (2014) discusses how the face of the American university has changed and why European and Asian schools are starting to reach top spots in business education.

Business schools have not always been part of the American landscape like many other programs. By the 1980’s MBAs were in hot demand and graduates could expect to earn around 2X what the average person earned in the country. The MBA is, and was, a significant sign of achievement among academics, and holding a degree from one could lead to faster promotion and higher pay.

As the interest on MBA grow so did the interest of business oriented media that desired to rank the schools for their readers. Publications like the Financial Times used three criteria to rank Global MBA schools by 1. Faculty demographics; 2. Publications faculty product; and, 3.) the amount of international students.  Each measurement lends some support to the interest and quality of the school.

Faculty publications help understand what is being produced within a school and how it is contributing to the intellectual capital within its field. When faculties are publishing new findings and material they are growing and developing the intellectual knowledge of their related interests of study.  Students are naturally attracted to producing faculty.

The other measurement is the amount of foreign students attracted to particular schools. As an MBA increases in market value international students are drawn to such colleges in order to give themselves the best advantage they can within the market. A strong reputation furthers that interest and draw interested parties through its high quality degree programs.

The authors found that the U.S. is losing its prestige in business education.  More Asian and international students are migrating to Europe to earn their degrees. Graduates of these schools are earning high wages compared to the general population. This is occurring despite the higher economic growth rates within the U.S. that should be a draw for students seeking an education and an opportunity.

Collet, F. & Vives, L. (2013). From preeminence to prominence: the fall of U.S. business schools and the rise of European and Asian business schools in the Financial Times Global MBA Rankings. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 12 (4).

Friday, January 17, 2014

Improving Business Education through Industry Connections

Business colleges have developed over the past few decades. According to Xie and Steiner (2013), not all of these changes have been for the better. The authors argue that traditional business education has damaged the overall business community and narrowed people into irrelevance. They provide some possibilities for improvement of business colleges within their paper. 

They offer a couple of solutions that include connections between business and business schools, new business education models,  as well as joint creation of knowledge management. Their reasoning is that student’s knowledge should broaden perspectives beyond simple tools of management and should include the overall human elements that enhance understanding further than number crunching. 

Collaboration between Business Schools and Business: In the older models, students were apprentice oriented. Business colleges should make stronger connections to the business community in order to create higher levels of relevant education. The traditional educational model has separated itself from the needs of modern day business management. Professors should be seen as professionals with certain codes of ethics and standards.

Joint Creation of Management Knowledge: There is practical knowledge and academic knowledge. Even though these two forms of knowledge can overlap, they have become more separate in recent decades. Practitioners and academics should work closely to ensure that knowledge is practical and applied in nature. Education should focus on solving practical problems for business managers. 

New Educational Models Revisited: New business education models need to develop that bridges the gaps between traditional education and modern business needs. The student should learn new concepts that applied practically in the real world. Colleges should focus on teaching those skills that are most relevant within the modern business market. 

Interestingly, the report highlights the concepts of the practitioner-academic that creates new knowledge but does so in the context of applied usage of knowledge. Business education and business management should be intertwined to create relevancy in the modern day work place. Data crunching is important but the understanding of human behavior is a primary function of management. Data crunching and soft skills of human management are important co-complimentary skills. Colleges should seek to foster both.

Xie, C. & Steiner, S. (2013). Enhancing management education relevance: joint creation of knowledge between business schools and business. Business Education & Accreditation, 5 (2).

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Business College Students Seek Opportunities of Self-Ownership

The value of a college education cannot be underestimated in an increasingly complex world. Business education is important in fostering new minds that will go forth and try out their ideas in the international market. Research helps highlight how a simple majority of business college students seek to develop their own business operations but feel as though these opportunities may not be forthcoming.

In 1865 Horace Greely stated, “Go West, young man, go West and grow up with the country.” The commonly used quote is deeply rooted in the psychology of young people who desire to flap their wings and seek their fortunes. The nature of business is about flapping wings and trying to get off the ground. Many do, many more do not, but it is the journey that takes precedence.

One of the reasons why young business students are so eager to start their own entrepreneurial endeavors lays in the uncertainty the recession has created over the past decade. They were reared in an era where corporate shifts, layoffs, and the movement of jobs overseas were common. In their effort to create some level of personal stability they seek the path of self-determination.

According to Summ, et. al. (2001), “Labor market conditions for most demographic groups of U.S. workers have been quite weak in recent years (2008-2010) due to the adverse employment impacts of the Great Recession of 2007-2009 and the anemic job recovery during the first 18 months following the trough of the recession in June 2009.

As this group of students were attending high school and thinking of long-term opportunities the economy took a “nose dive”. While moving into college this same group of students hoped for business glory but suffered from declining opportunities. Despite the difficulties such students face they still seek to brand their mark on the global world and college continues to be an important learning avenue to allow that happen.

A study conducted by Tomkiewicz, Bass, & Robinson (2012) surveyed a total of 123 students in an AACSB mid-eastern accredited school.  Students were in attendance of the college of business and part of either a Fundamentals of Business course or a Strategic Management course. Participants were asked to consider their current station in life and determine where they would like to work in the future. Each student also completed the Fear of Success and the Fear of Appearing Incompetent instrument as part of the study.


-55% of students wanted to have their own business.

-Only 34% of those who wanted a business felt they actually be able to do so.

-45% of students had a preference for working in organizations. 

-100% of those who had a preference for working in organizations stated that they are likely to have an opportunity to do so. 

-Males were more enthusiastic about starting their own business.

-Comparing graduating students with new students found that both had similar preferences for owning their own businesses but fewer graduating students felt they would have an opportunity to do so.


The information from the results indicated that the majority of students had a preference for working within their own business while a far majority felt that they would not have an opportunity to do so. The study helps highlight how business college students have a desire to be independent in their work habits and control the nature of their work. However, as they become more aware of the trials, depth, and financing needed to run their own businesses such expectation declines. 

Sum, A., Khatiwada, I. and Pahna, S. (2011). The continued collapse of the nation's teen summer job market: Who worked in the summer of 2011? Center for Labor Market Studies Northeastern University, August.

Tomkiewicz, J. Bass, K. & Robinson, J. (2012). Student propensity toward business ownership. College Student Journal, 46 (4).