Thursday, February 24, 2011

How to say your name so that people remember

Ali Freedman from joins Tom and Miro to provide some tips on how MBAs can improve their speaking skills. Learn how to say your name so that employers remember you and the quick way to make sure you remember the name of everyone you meet. Also, Tyra Banks is now an HBS student.

(1) Headlines:

they have finally done it. Scientists at Harvard have finally condensed the entire HBS degree down into a single drunken week.

How’s they do that Tom?

Raise the price!

So discovered this when we Tyra Banks has enrolled in Harvard Owner/President Exec Program.

At least the average MBA just got 1% more attractive. And after Prince enrolls next year, the average MBA will be 1% more flambuoyant.

The program is three weeks on campus spread out over three years, and the first week is $31K.

That makes the fulltime MBA, the discount option.

Dear super successful business person. Do you already own two hit television show? Do you have a diamond necklace for your dog? Do you make your omelettes out of free-range, organic Fabrege eggs?

The Harvard Exec Education Owner/President Program is for you, Tyra Banks.

But seriously, why does Tyra Banks need an MBA?

Is trying to get a job investment banking? and she needs more credibility.

This one baffles me.

Speaking of successful business women, our guest on the show today teaches Consultants at Boston Consulting Group (among other companies) how to enhance their communication skills

MBA’s, please welcome to the show...

(2) Alison (Ali) Freedman
Masters in Education at Michigan. MBA at Ross.

Well, I’m a small Internet celebrity, so there’s obviously nothing that I can do better. But we need to do something about Tom? You travel all over North America. What kind of advice to hear your self giving over and over again to MBA’s?

People feel like they are good at speaking, but basically, they’re NOT. I do a lot of video work with people and show people what they actually look like.

- There is nothing I find more annoying than endlessly admiring myself on tape.

- That’s why I play The MBA Show on loop while I sleep.

A lot of the work you do with people is on simple things such a saying a name?

Saying your name more slowly can help people keep track of your name.

Or you can add something to help people remember your name such as “Tom Rose, like the flower”. Slowing down and saying your name clearly is a really important part of meeting someone.

Model out good behavior

SKIP - What if your name is foreign sounding, or you are an MBA working abroad?

If your native language is Hindi. You need to say your name really slowly. And make it easier for you to say it.

If you are saying someone else’s name, make an effort it will be okay.

How does an MBA end up as a presentation trainer?

If needed for time, What else do you frequently find youself telling MBAs?

(1) Say your name well and think about remembering other people’s names.
(2) Pay attention to the non-verbal communication you use. (A problem for MBA’s because we’re put into a lot of high-pressure situations.)
(3) Don’t “up-speak”. Don’t end statements with question marks at the end.
- To fix this, think about puting a period at the end of the sentence.
(4) Focus on things that you can change. For example, I’m 4’ 11” and I know I can’t change that.
(5) Slow your pace. (MBA’s often speak too quickly.) Try practicing with a period after every word.

(3) Jargon: Up speak (Up tick)

What is upspeak?

Why is it a problem?

How can you train this out of yourself?
- Put period at the en dof the sentence.

(5) Business School Tip of the Week: NAMES Acronyms

How do you remember people’s names?

I have an acronym that I use to remember names.

Neighbors and Friends - Think of people you know who have that name.
Anyone Famous - Tom: Tom Cruise
Mental Image - Miro in Spanish means “I look”, so I picture you with a hand mirror.
Early Ellen - Alliteration
Silly Willy - Rhyme the name

How can you practice this?

We write our names on our arms. Tom: “Tom Rose” Other arm: “The Real”

Close: Alison also teaches communications at MBA programs throughout the country. If you would like to hire her, goto

(7) What’s on your Radar?

Tom: Taxes
Miro: Taxes
Ali: Nuitblanche - All night arts festival

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Average MBA Gets One Job Offer for Every 3.6 Interviews

Find out how much MBA's made in 2010 and what they had to do to get those jobs from the GMAC annual salary survey of MBAs. Learn what a BATNA is how how its the key to getting that salary you are looking for after business school.

Happy valentines day MBA’s.

(1) Headlines: GMAC MBA Salary Report

If your partner if partner has recently of being stingy, The GMAC says they’re right. The median MBA Salary last year was $94K

That is a lot of padfolios.

To get those jobs the average MBA sent out,
33.3 resumes
6.3 interviews
1.9 job offers

What the heck is 0.9 of a job offer?

Rip last zero off a $100,000 job offer.

This comma is in the wrong place!

That’s because you only sent me .3 resumes.

Great news, 93% of respondents were employed.

Great news, 86% of respondents were employed … by other people than themselves.

Being self employed is a real job!

Are those the people who hang out over at the unemployment office?

Tom, how many times do I have to tell you? that’s the entrepreneurship center.

It’s not like everyone who’s working for other peopl. Here’s an interesting stats, 48% of people opened their search up to lower compensation levels.

48%?! Good god, that means almost half of all MBA’s are earning below-average salaries.

Just one good bubble and we’ll push that number down to 40%. Comeooooooon bubble.

(2) MBA Valentines Gifts
Did you just find out that it was valentines day three days ago? Not to fear, we here at The MBA Show have some last minute gift ideas that can be quickly adapted for a nice valentines day surprise.

Nothing says I love you like a nice leather valentines day card.

Miro: Open card, show audience.

Want something to put flowers in that doesn’t look last minute? That Bain water bottle becomes a nice vase.

Miro: Oh, and look, it’s personalized! Turn around and show back.

We’ll you know those necklaces that have people’s names on them … how about a business school version

I hate you TheRealTomRose … and what’s with the photo????

Gotta stay true to the brand!

(3) Malcom Gladwell hates business school rankings
Malcolm Gladwell, author of Business classics like “Blink” and “The Tipping Point” has 6 page page article in the current New Yorker trashing college rankings as capricious and arbitrary. He says they basically reflect whatever criteria you use.

My god, is that what gladwell looks like? He has a huge afro, I had no idea. If comrade obama has his way, soon this is what all of wall street will look like.

He writes for the New Yorker, what did you expect,

I was expecting a confusing, poorly drawn cartoon.

(3) Jargon: BATNA

This is a term from Negotiation.

Best Alternative to a Negotiated Offer.

Before you go into a negotiation, this is your best alternative of what you will do if you can’t reach a settlement.

When you’re applying for your first job offer, this zero is your BATNA.

The classic example is when negotiating that 2nd job offer... (Or your 1.9th Job offer)

... your BATNA is the salary the other guys offered you.

For example, when I was looking for cohosts for The MBA Show. Mirokaz was my BATNA.

The best way to negotiate from a position of strength is to have an amazing BATNA.

(5) Business School Tip of the Week: Have a good BATNA

So this might be counter-intuitive, but you might want to first negotiate the offer on the job you are less interested in.

This is easier said than done, but it can be worth a lot if you can make it happen.

(7) What’s on your Radar?

Tom: I’m going to Killington Vermont
Miro: Haas Educational Case Compeition

Bonus Content:

Miro: Using BATNA to get three internship offers.

# Book “Re:thinking the MBA, Business Education at a CrossRoads.”
# “rebalancing from the current focus on "knowing" or analytical knowledge to more of what we call "doing" (skills) and "being" (a sense of purpose and identity) must occur.”

# They provide an interesting model of how it could be
# Harvard Med School: 165 incoming students, 10,000 faculty members

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Top MBA Salaries

Find out which MBA's are getting paid the most, and how much they're making. Tom and Miro discover why people who work in private equity are the best people in the world. Plus, the new painless way to write group papers.

(1) Business Porn: 2011’s Highest Paid MBAs

Some outrageous numbers:

The highest paid Wharton graduate reported a $350k starting salary. He’s going into private equity. That’s more than three times the median salary of $110k.

It’s about time! The market is finally working correctly. I love to see hard work getting rewarded.

Tom, how can you possibly justify a 27 year old kid who has been sitting in a classroom for 2 years getting half a million dollars.

If you want to get the best person from Wharton, you might have to pay $0.5M.

Who could this mythical person be?

It’s a combination of two things. It’s the skills of this person are tremendously important to this job. And second, the nature of the business that they’re being hired into allows for more productivity.

So are you saying that someone in private equity is more skilled than someone at a non-profit?

Not by definition, but probably. That’s not my point though.

My point is that the value of the job you are doing and consequently the value of your salary is based not only on what skills you possess, but on the job that you are performing. Someone mining diamonds will probably make more money than an equivalently skilled counterpart mining coal.

You’re assuming rational behavior here. When I look at these numbers, I see irrational factors at work. If you’re classmate comes to you and says they got a job with a $500K salary, I’ll bet you you that their last name matches the name on the firm and probably the building you are studying too. Any industry where 29 year olds are making over $500K a year is headed for a crash as surely as a real estate bubble.

Tom, these folks are making 20x what the lowest paid MBA is making. What do you think about the lowest paid Wharton MBA making $25K at a ‘media’ company in the Midwest?

Let’s hear it for personal fulfillment.

(2) Headlines: Harvard Changes Curriculum

Harvard announced that they are going to change their curriculum. Harvard has been know for there tradition of teaching every single class with the case method. They are going to include more experiential learning and global perspective.

Woah woah woah, stop right there. I can already call this a good decision. I don’t even need to know what they are mixing in to know that this is a good decision. When you teach 100% cases, mixing in 3% of anything else will be a move in the right direction.

They are adding exactly one class that will be a field learning class. It’s going to span the whole first year and actually have an international field component.

When you have a investment portfolio that is 100% bonds, you could invest 3% in rocks and be more diversified.

(3) Jargon: Air Time

Air time describes how much time you get to talk in class. So if someone talks a lot during class, you might say, they got a lot of “air time” that day.

In case study classes, the learning primarily comes from students talking to each other. Sharing their perspectives and analyzing the case.


And the majority of your grade is based on the quality and quantity of your airtime.

...This is bad :(

As you have probably noticed. Most MBA’s have an insatiable appetite for air time that manifests itself in several ways [arm gesture, pause, guilty look].

Business school and the case study method teaches us one thing. It’s that there is no sweeter sound in the world than your own voice.

(5) Business School Tip of the Week: Google Docs

Miro’s latent, homoerotic dance. Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god! Tell them about google docs.

If you write papers in groups. No, if you write ANYTHING in groups, you need to be using google docs.

Real-time multiple edits.
No version control.
Revision history is captured.
Saving happens automatically.
You can

You don’t even have to steal it. This software comes pre-stolen.


(7) What’s on your Radar?

Tom: I’m going to the tobogganing world championships in Maine.
Miro: My wife and I have an annual Valentines tradition? We go to Providence, Rhode Island and go to Dave & Busters.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Join Y Combinator Get (nearly) Free Money - The MBA Show Episode 19

Will MBA's follow all the money sloshing into silicon valley?  Yuri Milner offers $150k in convertible debt, no cap, no discount to every Y Combinator participant and Tom and Miro explain what the hell that means.   Bonus: How to turn one informational interview into 10.

(1) Headlines: Financial Times Ranking
LBS and Wharton are Tied for 1st place. They’re neck and neck.

Wait! LBS? What’s a foreigner doing on the list?

Financial Times is one of the only rankings to combine foreign and domestic schools

Why aren’t there international schools in other rankings?

When Business Week started doing rankings of Business schools in 1988, international schools weren’t on the list, simply because they didn’t make the list. The focus of management education was the US. There wasn’t global competition.

All current US business school rankings are now out of date. And we are calling for the inclusion of international schools on ranking lists.

Thanks to Poets & Quants for their great analysis of the FT Rankings

Financial Times Global MBA Rankings 2010 (no that's not a typo, it says 2010)
1. LBS
2. Wharton
3. HBS
4. Stanford
5. Insead
6. Columbia
6. IE Business School
8. MIT Sloan
9. Chicago Booth
9. Hong Kong UST

(2) Business Porn: Free money

Yuri Milner, the guy who invested hundreds of millions in FaceBook, Zynga, and Groupon, is partnering with SV Angel and is offering $150k to every company in Y Combinator. What the hell is a Y Combinator? (~40)

Y Combinator is a camp/incubator

The terms are very generous:
$150k in Convertible debt, no-cap, no-discount. Think of this as a loan someone is giving your start-up that you never need to pay back in money. You can pay it back in stock, and you only have to if you’re successful.

So what do you think tom?

[Skeptical] So Yuri is investing with out doing any due diligence or background research? The bubble is back baby! Where’s my check book? I’m investing too. Thank god. I can finally stop doing this due diligence that is sooooo 2008. … Where’s my bonus?

Well, it’s not really no background, what’s he’s doing is depending on Y Combinator to do his diligence for him.

Tom can’t keep a straight face. Other people are doing it? It must be right.

Okay, okay. it’s a little nutty. But this money out there and other money chasing it means that there’s going to be more opportunity for MBAs. When companies have money they can afford spend a little more on things like MBAs.

So the takeaway is: The startup money is back. Put startups back on your opportunities list.

Thank you Russian Oligarchs.

These are the terms your dad would give you.

3) Jargon: Convertible Debt

Two big to raise money: stock and loans.

Miro: Got that!
-In loans you get money and pay back that same money to owner plus a fee.
-If you sell stocks in your company take money and give them a worthless piece of paper in that entitles future profits in the company.
Where does converable debt

Convertible debt is a hybrid. It starts out feeling like a loan. Because someone gives you cash. At the end of the day the debt is converted into stock.

I understand why I would give people a loan: If they are stable they’ll pay me back with interest
I understand why I would buy stock: becuase if I think a company will grow alot, then a small amount of money will turn into lots of profit.
Why would I give that loan to a highly unstable company hoping for stock? It seems like a worse deal.

Well let’s role play it.. You be the entrepreneur and I’ll be investor.

E-preneur: Dude, man, hey, i just smoked some grass and cake up with this amazing idea: crowd-sourced, social, micro-payments, freemium. It can’t fail. …. Give me a loan.

Investor: It feel a little sktechy right now, can you give me any proof you’ll be around in one week.

E-preneur: [long pause] No

Investor: Okay, why don’t we try this. I think company worth 10. I give you another 10 to make 20. You give me 50% of the stock?

E-preneur: No way this thing will be worth billions!

Investor: That’s the best you can get. No one is going to give you more money for your company than that.

E-preneur: In case you haven’t noticed. This is silicon valley. There’s people around the corner to fund my weed-based brilliance.

Investor: Woah woah woah … woah. Don’t do anything drastic. How about this. I give you $10k now. You go build the thing. If it’s really worth $1,000,000 like you say and you can get someone to pay you for that, then you just give me $10k worth of that deal.

E-preneur: Done! [Handshake]

Both: And Scene! [Hippie gesture].

So the takeaway here is that Convertible Debt is generally considered great for the entrepreneur. If it’s an option, it’s really worth considering.

(5) Business School Tip of the Week:
- Get two referrals at the end of every conversation. Job networking, business starting. Any question.
Follow-up: can i use your name

You only need one cold introductionn.

Thanks for sitting down with me. Who else should I be talking to about this topic?

(7) What’s on your Radar?
Miro: Superbowl party
Tom: Tutoring Indian b-school students DURING the superbowl

Sign-up for our newsletter at to check out the following bonus content (the newsletter will be launched by 2/17/2011):
Bonus Topics:

(1) Convertible Debt: Exists where there is competition

(2) Convertible Debt: Seems like a buyers market to outsiders, but in reality, highly limited access to amazing deals.

(3) Convertible Debt: What the hell is Milner thinking?

(4) Convertible Debt: What other terms do you typically see in convertible debt deals?

(5) Converitble Debt: Why would any sane investor ever agree to give convertible debt?