To arrange speaking or consulting engagements with the author, please contact him at: ron@thetrophykids.com.

 

The Can-Do Spirit of Millennial Social Entrepreneurs

By Ron Alsop

June 2010

GMAC Deans Digest

A generation shaped by community service and the global reaches of technology remains optimistic business can provide solutions, says columnist Ron Alsop.

Five years ago, when Filipe Santos asked the MBA students in his “New Business Ventures” class at INSEAD how many aspired to become a social entrepreneur, only about 5 percent raised their hands. Today, at least 25 percent plan to create a business dedicated to generating both social and economic benefits, and five years from now, Santos expects even more budding social entrepreneurs in his class.

“I receive an email a week from people interested in social entrepreneurship,” says Santos, academic director of INSEAD’s Social Entrepreneurship Initiative. “These people are coming to business school with a different mindset. They aren’t just seeking a career leap.” INSEAD, which has campuses in France, Singapore, and Abu Dhabi, has offered executive education in social entrepreneurship for five years and will launch a social entrepreneurship course for MBA students this fall.

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Young MBA Students Face Skepticism

By Ron Alsop

April 2010

GMAC Deans Digest

As more MBA programs admit talented but inexperienced millennial generation students, the trend is stirring up concerns. Will their limited workplace exposure prove detrimental in the classroom? Have they formulated a clear career strategy, or do these impatient millennials just crave Master of Business Administration credentials to escape entry-level jobs? And how will they compete with more seasoned students in this weak job market?

Opinions are mixed, but there is clearly skepticism about MBA candidates younger than 24, the fastest-growing age group taking the Graduate Management Admission Test. Some older students consider them entitled neophytes along for the ride rather than equal partners on the team. Although they may have benefited from internships and college leadership positions, they often lack the rich professional backgrounds that enhance a class discussion or project.

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The Millennial Generation’s Rush to Get an MBA

By Ron Alsop

February 2010

GMAC Deans Digest

After graduating from Stanford University, Tim Jones didn’t want to waste three or four years “doing grunt work and trying to prove myself.” He felt that he had spent enough time preparing reports and PowerPoint slides during summer internships without ever getting the chance to sit in on the presentations to senior management. So last year, he jumped right from Stanford into the MBA program at Washington University in St. Louis. “The MBA will give me a competitive advantage over people of similar age,” says Jones, who is concentrating on finance and accounting. “I will be ready to make important decisions and advance faster; my employer will trust me more with an MBA.”

MBA programs that admit recent college graduates seem tailor made for the impatient, highly confident members of the millennial generation who hope to bypass routine entry-level jobs and start higher up in the ranks. “My friends and I want to have impact and do meaningful work as soon as we land at a company,” explains Anton Doss, who headed straight from Hampton University to Carnegie Mellon University’s MBA program. After graduation, he expects to join Bank of America’s leadership development program.

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