Typically, MBA students and alumni are introduced to philanthropy in either of three ways. One is when an alumnus makes a significant gift to the university and the act is highly publicized. Another is when the graduating class raises money that is then gifted to the MBA program in the class’s name. Finally, almost all graduates receive that annual letter or phone call asking them to support the annual fund-raising campaign by making a donation. While these activities serve a very useful purpose, they unfortunately target individuals who are paying large amounts of money toward tuition and fees or are trying to pay off student loans incurred while attending the program. Introductions of this nature do little to foster a spirit of helping to make the lives of others better which is what philanthropy is all about. Nor do they help establish a habit of giving. I believe an alternative approach is needed—one that engages MBA students and alumni in a way that adds very little financial pressure to their already stressed financial situations and allows them to see how their efforts can help make the lives of others better. Let me share with you a recent experience of mine to describe what I believe could be a viable alternative.
Your Internet identity – what others see when they “search the net” using your name – is a function of what the search engine can find that relates to your name and also importantly how the results of that search are then displayed. This means that results from such a search will often display items that relate to individuals with names similar or the same as yours or information that is no longer relevant, either socially or professionally. As a result, the search engine is managing your Internet identity, and it will continue to do so unless you become actively engaged in its management. Internet identity management is not complex; however, it does require some time and effort to regularly execute a few action steps that are tailored to meet your individual needs. This article identifies some action steps.
A recent Wall Street Journal (WSJ) article on how people make decisions caught my attention, not because of the headline or topic but because of the number of Tweets – more than four thousand. This seemed like a large number for a “Life and Culture” section article in the WSJ. However, after reading the article, I could see why – it focused on couples and how their decision styles can affect their relationship and happiness. Changing the focus from social to work, I want to suggest that decision styles can also play a role in the relationships of people working in teams or work groups.
Most of us, MBAs included, never developed good study and learning skills during our primary, secondary or undergraduate education. Moreover, we tend to associate these skills with the formal education process and not often enough with career success. However, discovering how to study and learn can be of benefit, both academically and professionally. Fortunately, it is never too late to learn the techniques and methods that can help us improve how we study and learn which, in turn, can help improve our overall wellbeing and career success. The following is a brief discussion of the role effective studying and learning skills can play in an MBA’s life.
MBA students typically have a gap between the time they earn their undergraduate degrees and when they start their MBA programs. When the gap is years, MBA students often forget there are benefits available to them because they are students again. Sometimes, these benefits are unique to a program, college or university, while other advantages are available to any MBA student – no matter what his or her program affiliation. Accordingly, the following may serve as a useful reminder to current MBA students – or anyone contemplating enrolling in an MBA program – of the benefits that are available to them while they are MBA students.
MBAs will play many different roles during their lives. However, there is one role all MBAs have in common, one they play every day whether they want to or not. They serve as role models for others. In a previous MyeEMBA article, I suggested that knowing what roles people play provides a useful starting point for managing the daily and weekly activities of their lives so that there is a higher probability that they will achieve the things that matter most to them. However, most of us would not include being a role model as one of our priority roles. While we may have no choice about the people who select us as their role models, we can decide how we will behave when interacting with them. Intentionally deciding which behaviors to exhibit can have a significant impact on one’s career. This article describes two ways to proactively manage the behaviors that will make a difference.
Most MBA alumni realize their degree increases in value when their program’s image and reputation grows. However, many of these same alumni do not realize how they can contribute to their program’s image and reputation growth. I believe that engaged alumni contribute that growth while unengaged alumni actually detract from it. Alumni engagement varies from program to program and individual to individual, and I think engagement and degree value will increase if MBA alumni do any of the following ten things: