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  #17 (permalink)  
Old 15-02-2012, 10:12 AM
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I work in an IB and there are two ways to get to associate level. Either join as an analyst with a bachelor's degree, work 3 years to associate. Or, get a MBA and join as an associate.

Here's my take on MBA:
1. Useless to take MBA unless you take it at a reputable institution. SMU/NTU are lousy MBAs. Insead is good.
2. Networking, internship and placements are the key benefits of a MBA.
3. From a monetary standpoint, I would argue that the costs of the MBA outweighs the incremental income you receive out of it. You need to factor in the 1 (or 2) years of lost earnings/lost progress/ maybe lost promotion
4. MBA makes more sense in a booming economy. In a downturn, MBA maybe even be detrimental. Firstly you are out of workforce for 1year. Secondly, employers tend to cut MBA hires in downturn rather than undergrad hires. Thirdly, getting a MBA may make you seem overqualified for the lower entry jobs (even if your value to the firm is not much different vs a fresh grad)

To finish off, I'll sum up with some real life experience:
1. My firm takes in about 15-20 MBA hires across the region each year. Recently, there seems to be an oversupply due to weak conditions in EU and UK. Lots of qualified labor in the market
2. Only take MBAs from reputable schools.
3. Pay: Base US$120k p/a, exclude bonus. This is similar to what non MBAs get paid after 2 years of working.
4. I myself didn't take the MBA path.
5. Doesnt affect future progression in the firm. Whether MBA or not, once you get in you are evaluated on par with the rest - by job performance
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