Friday, August 26, 2011

Episode 47: Why MBAs Can't Mention Their Past

Miro: Welcome to the MBA Show, We’ve got a new school year here in Cambridge,and we’re here some brand new eager, yet terrified first years!


I’m MiroKaz.
I’m The International MBA of Mystery.
I’m Lieutenant MBA.

Miro: We’ve got a special show for you today, celebrating the

We’re here today to talk about the issue of Personal Branding.

(1) MBA Tip of the Week:


We have some fresh MBA’s here. What is worrying you right now?

Stav: I’m worried about being pigeon holed.

Sean: Well, what did you do before school?

Stav: Well, I used to be a great engineer in my home country. I was like johnson from johnson&johnson. And that’s where i want to take it. medical devices, energy, web. Whatever. But my problem is that i got involved in film production too, and that’s what everyone remembers, because there are 100 engineers for each film maker.

Sean: wow. Filmmaker

Tip 1: You only get one thing.

Stav: Well, what if I’ve done two things?

Miro; No! You get one thing.

Stav: But, I used be the president of my home owners association!

Miro: NO. You only get ONE thing. The great thing is that you get to pick what that one thing is.

Sean: You know Miro, we just got done filling out multiple applications showing what multi-faceted, accomplished individuals we are. Are you suggesting we now reduce ourselves to a one-dimensional description?

Miro: I know it’s counter-intuitive, but you should NOT take credit for everything you’ve ever done. And you only get one message


Stav: Great tip. So what’s tip number 2?

Tip 2: Focus on the future, not the past.

Sean: I have a classmate who just completed a PhD in physics. But he wants to go into the entertainment industry. Obviously very different fields, but a PHD in physics!

Miro: Great example! This person should brand himself as sports-management guy. Drop the physics thing. It’s amazing to have a physics phd, but if you don’t want to be remembered as physics guy - just don’t mention it.

Stav: So that’s tip number 2: Focus on the future, not the past.


Sean: Guys, I have to be honest, I really haven’t experienced this problem.

Stav: what do you want to do after B-school?

Sean: Management consulting.

Christina: BORING

Stav: Then how can you make your brand more interesting?

Sean: Well, I know this contradicts the previous tip, but I was a bomb technician in the US Navy.

Stav: [Excited.] Like “The Hurt Locker”?

Sean: Yes, just like “The Hurt Locker”.

Miro: Wait, wait, wait. You were a bomb tech and now you want to be a management consultant. [prompt for story].

Sean: Well Miro, the last time I was in Iraq, it was hot, I’m wearing the bomb suit, looking for this bomb on the side of the road, and all I could think about was becoming a management consultant.

Miro: Seriously?

Sean: Yes, I named my rifle “McKinsey”.

Miro: This is actually a great example of tip number 3, which is actually an exception to tips 1 and 2. IF YOU NEED A BOOST OF INTEREST IN YOUR CASE, YOU CAN TALK ABOUT YOUR PAST ONLY IF THERE IS TRUE AND CLEAR CLOSURE. if you were in the army and are now in b-school, it is obvious you’ve closed doors. Same thing If you got your PhD and are now in b school. It is clear you’re not going back and you won’t be pigeonholed.

Tip 3: Exception. It’s okay to mention the past if the door is clearly closed.

Stav: just a short disclaimer: all these tips are relevant only for new admitted students, who are bombmarded with many new people and introductions

Sean: But if you’re still an applicant - you are in a different position. You are being evaluated by professionals who know how evaluate your past wihtout pigeonholing you.

(2) Radar
Miro: Packing for my trip down south
Stav: i’m meeting with a web 2.0 start up, to see what i can do for them.
Sean: 2-day baking class.

International MBA of Mystery
Lieuntentant MBA
Miro Kaz


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