Thursday, December 2, 2010

The MBA Show Episode 12 - B-Schools Figure Out What Women Want

(0) CTA: iTunes

(1) Headlines: Business Schools Accepting Nerds

Miro: Kaplan surveyed 288 business schools and 39% now accept the GRE up from 24% last year. Some top schools accepting it include: HBS, Stanford, Columbia.
You know what this is about tom?
Tom: What?
Miro: getting more female applicants.

That’s what I’ve been doing wrong!  Ladies, TheRealTomRose is now accepting the GRE.  Aaand, that doesn’t make any sense at all.

So follow my convoluted logic here.  Its used to be that Bschools looked for 5 years experience.  But at 27, women are thinking about having kids soon, so the math for getting an MBA doesn’t make sense.  So to get women, schools need to go younger and that’s where you find the GRE.

So you think that the GRE is a weapon being used to get women applicants.

Yes. bababa

So let me see if I can summarize your point!  Damnit!  Is nothing sacred.  Is there no point place men have an unfair advantage anymore?  I want to pee standing up.  I want to get paid more for the same damn job.  And I want to get and MBA and look down through the glass celing as those baby crazed hippies and their GREs!  Is that your point?

My point is, If you want more women applicants you have to recruit younger.

So ETS isn’t just selling the GRE.  They’re selling a product bundle.  For one low fee, you get the GRE, an MBA and... a baby!


We are announcing the first quantitative measure of MBA Exuberance, conducted by The MBA Show.  We are tracking across the country, how MBAs feel about their job prospects.  We asked people on a 0-100% scale how confident they are that they will receive a satisfactory job offer. (100% meaning they already have one. 0% meaning they are hoping to become a VC.)

Why does it matter how exuberant we are?

Well, we all know that MBAs really care about getting jobs.  But one thing they care about even more is whether their peers are getting jobs before they are.  

Well how do they feel?

The current number is 79.  Wooo hhooo celebrate:

Miro: [Taps tom] What does that mean

Tom: Could you imagine the disaster if it has been a suicidal 77?  Or the coked out euphoria of an 81.  

Miro: But how can you possibly distill all the emotion of the job search into a single number.

Tom: But isn’t it basically the job of an MBA to take an extremely complicated set of data and distill it down into a single meaningless value that can be presented to the Board of Directors.   

[Awkward pause, followed by laugh.]

One thing you really want to do here is compare the MBAEI against schools.  For example, Harvard students report an average MBAEI of a dismal 73 compared with Tuck students who report an average MBAEI of an exuberant 90.

So, we want to hear from you!  Visit and click on MBAEI to take the survey and add your data to the national results.

(3) Jargon: “HHI” - Herfindahl-Hirschman Index

HHI is a measure of market concentration.  You have heard about this in Econ class and Strategy class.  The number varies from 0 to 10,000.  10,000 is a high concentration market (monopoly), and 0 is a low concentration market (perfectly competitive).

So higher is better?  

Yes.  If you’re a business owner, you want to be in a highly concentrated market so that you can command higher prices.

But what if you’re a consumer?

Well that’s just rediculous..If you are a CONSUMER, you want a low-concentration market so that competition keeps prices down.  And in fact, people have heard about HHI because of anti-trust cases.  The feds use HHI to judge whether a merger will make a market too concentrated.

So the federal gov’t is deciding whether to prosecute based on a spreadsheet.


And companies will run this on a merger to see whether they are stepping on any toes?

Yes. 100% of the time.  It’s like a pregnancy test.  If you think you might need to know, then you definitely need to know.

"HHI" means the Herfindahl-Hirschman Index, a commonly accepted measure of market concentration. It is calculated by squaring the market share of each firm competing in the market and then summing the resulting numbers.  For example, a market with only one firm would have an HHI of 10,000.  A market with tons of tiny firms might have an HHI of 50.

The HHI takes into account the relative size and distribution of the firms in a market and approaches zero when a market consists of a large number of firms of relatively equal size. The HHI increases both as the number of firms in the market decreases and as the disparity in size between those firms increases.

“Markets in which the HHI is in excess of 1800 points are considered to be concentrated.” Transactions that increase the HHI by more than 100 points in concentrated markets presumptively raise antitrust concerns under the Horizontal Merger Guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission. See Merger Guidelines § 1.51.
A HHI index below 0.01 (or 100) indicates a highly competitive market.
A HHI index below 0.1 (or 1,000) indicates an unconcentrated market.
A HHI index between 0.1 to 0.18 (or 1,000 to 1,800) indicates moderate concentration.
A HHI index above 0.18 (above 1,800) indicates high concentration[1].

(4) Contest Announcements:
  • MIT $100K Executive Summary Competition - 2 page exec summary - due today at 6 pm at

(5) Business School Tip of the week:


Scientists better understand the importance of sleep

Other: Did you hear that Yogi Bear Market?
One: Did you hear that Ben Bearnanke?
    • helps us consolidate and retain memories
    • 2 weeks of 6 hour sleep gives you the response time of someone legally drunk

(6) What's on your Radar
Miro: Holiday parties! Tazo chocolate tour.
Tom: EdCamp at Columbia


  1. Your business school tip of the week: "sleep" is definitely a great tip. As a student you need to be active and your memory should be on top shape. Getting more quality sleep will help you remember and process things better.

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  2. I totally support GRE/GMAT based exams when a student is going to enter into programs of such a higher academic level.

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  3. Interesting to see how this will shape up in the future. At the moment, most people applying to B-school with the GRE are those who are also using their GRE scores to apply to specialized master's programs in other business areas

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