Business Schools Journal

Category — Business Schools

The London Business School Practices What It Preaches


The London Business School is a prestigious institution with a worldwide reputation to uphold. Many of the most influential individuals working in the field of Human Resources teach at the LBS, including such luminaries as Rob Goffee, Gary Hamel, and Lynda Gratton. But the interest in high-quality, educated, and informed HR management does not end in the classroom. The London Business School has a staff of over five hundred employees beyond the faculty, including their own HR department. The director of the non-academic HR department, Philip Willatt, does his best to practice in the employee arena what they preach in the classroom. In his decade of experience in this position Willatt has used the LBS as a laboratory and showcase for the values the school espouses, bringing the words of the teaching staff to life in his department. As Willatt says in a recent interview with HR Magazine, “We want to involve as many stakeholders as possible in shaping who we want to be.”

Staying True to Its Mission and Values

The London Business School is well known as one of the most effective management training schools in the world. The LBS takes its core values and vision very seriously. They give their strong beliefs and emphasis on global awareness and integrity full credit for their success. The proof is in their amazing graduation and employment rates. 93% of the graduates who received MBAs in 2011 got a job within three months of matriculation. This is an astonishingly high percentage, especially in the context of the current market for MBAs.

The mission and values of LBS are clearly articulated by Willatt and his staff, and are easily comprehended by any student or visitor. These values were not decided in a vacuum. Over two years were spent painstakingly working out the exact wording and presentation. Consensus was essential because it was important that all employees understand and agree with these core beliefs. They must be carried out at every level of the LBS enterprise, even those traditionally overlooked by HR staff. Willatt points out, “Values are important here, because they go into procurement functions, including catering, cleaning and printing.”

The LBS has always been known for big ideas and important announcements. According to a recent Management Today article, in 2011 Gary Hamel, a professor from America visiting to teach entrepreneurship and strategy, made international business news when he declared that the greatest invention of the 20th century was management, but that fundamental flaws in the application of this knowledge was leading to a crisis in capitalism and therefore “the era of the imperial CEO will come to an end.” This is the sort of cutting-edge reasoning for which the LBS is so well known.

Hand-On Learning Laboratory

The London Business School is a place of learning, but it is not a training college or public university. It is a charitable not-for-profit business entity. This has given Willatt and his staff the freedom they need to truly put the ideas of the LBS Human Resources school into practice. It is invaluable for the students and professors to see the results of their education up close and at once. There is no substitute for hands-on experience, as Willatt knows. He understands and fulfills the first purpose of business college by using every resource of the school to further the education of the attendees.

February 12, 2013   Comments Off

Best Colleges: 7 Informative Rankings For Business Students

It’s the time of year when prospective students, especially high school juniors and seniors, are taking a serious look at colleges. While a wealth of educational resources is a good thing for students, the choices can be overwhelming. Fortunately there are several tools available to help students and their parents find the right college or university.

US News and World Report 2010 Best Colleges

US News and World Report recently updated its annual Best Colleges ranking and research tool The 2010 Best Colleges interactive search tool allows students to search a database to find the best colleges based on the following criteria:

  • public/private
  • campus setting
  • enrollment
  • tuition and fees
  • basis for financial aid awards
  • test scores
  • acceptance rates
  • student to faculty ratios by major
  • student population stats by gender and ethnicity
  • student activities

Click here to access the US News and World Report 2010 Best Colleges ranking.

Forbes America’s Best Colleges

Like the US News and World Reports list, Forbes America’s Best Colleges resource provides an overall best colleges ranking based on many of the same factors. The August 2009 list of best colleges provides an at-a-glance listing of some of the best higher learning in the country.

Click here to access the Forbes America’s Best Colleges ranking.

Top Community Colleges

University’s have their place, but community colleges are also a valuable resource for many students. Washington Monthly’s Top Community Colleges ranking looks beyond the typical mainstream college guide to help students shop for a community college just as they would a larger school. Community colleges represent a significant portion of overall higher, with 43 percent of college freshmen beginning their education at two-year institutions.

Click here to access the Washington Monthly’s Top Community Colleges ranking.

Princton Review’s Best Value Colleges 2009

Few things most of us purchase will be as costly as our college educations. The Princeton Review Best Value Collegesranking helps students find the best school at the best price. The Princeton Review selects schools based on 30 factors in three areas: academics, costs and financial aid. Tuition, room and board, and required fees, as well as book costs and other factors, are included in the financial measurement.

Click here to access the Princeton Review Best Value Colleges ranking.

Best Engineering Colleges

Because so many business students come from the engineering department, it seemed appropriate to include’s Best Engineering Colleges ranking here. Their focus on how much you’ll make after graduation sealed the decision. Their list of best engineering schools is ranked by post-graduate salary potential.

Click here to access the Best Engineering Colleges ranking.

Top Online Colleges

Online colleges are prevalent now and for good reason. Best Online Colleges ranks the Top Online Collegesto help you decipher all the choices. Completing a degree online is possibly the most convenient and expeditious way to further your education while maintaining full time employment. Online degree programs offer flexibility and are quickly being adopted by more and more students who want a learning environment that fits their needs.  

Click here to access the Best Online Colleges ranking.

Hottest Student Bodies

College is very serious business, but it’s supposed to be fun as well. That’s what you’ll find with PopCrunch’s 2009 Hottest Student Bodies ranking. Check out this list if your choice of institution is in part or in whole informed by the quality of girls on campus. (I looked for a similar list of hot guys and couldn’t find it. If you know of one, please speak up!)

Click here to access PopCrunch’s 2009 Hottest Student Bodies ranking.

September 2, 2009   Comments Off

How Relevant is Your Degree?

When you are ready to commit a significant portion of your time and money to getting an MBA, you want to make sure you’re getting an education that’s going to transform your talent and ambition into a solid set of skills that deem you irresistible to the best employers. Business schools are competing to make their MBAs the most relevant to your success.

This month the MBA Roundtable released the results of its 2009 MBA Curricular Innovation Study indicating that 69% of MBA programs have significantly revised the curriculum in the past four years to improve the relevancy of the degree in response to criticism that they are not preparing graduates for today’s business challenges.

What Is Relevance?

Among the 69% of MBA programs making significant revisions to their curriculum, the most common change was the addition of ‘applied content’, or project-based courses. In addition to giving students more opportunities to take their learning out of the comfortable lecture hall and into the demanding real-world business simulations, respondents also reported that integration across topics and disciplines, as well as interdisciplinary content were popular changes.

MBA Programs That Get Into Details

MBA programs have traditionally focused on equipping students with big picture concepts, eschewing fine details of specific industries for personal leadership and decision making skills. Apparently that’s changing. The MBA Roundtable data reveals that 25% of MBA degree programs have added an industry specialization in the past three years. Common emphasis areas are healthcare, biotech, medicine, and entrepreneurship. Another change: about half the programs reported that they had added a focus on leadership development (as in, developing others) and global perspectives to their offerings.

Change is Good

And the changes just keep coming. 89% of all MBA programs surveyed are planning additional curricular changes.

“I think this is very promising news,” said Rodney Alsup, president of the MBA Roundtable. “It shows that there has been a concentrated effort among MBA programs to innovate and make changes that increase their relevance to both students and employers. Furthermore, this has been done in an educational environment that can be resistant to change, or, at the very least, has approval processes that make it difficult to make changes in a timely manner. Some schools need approval from their state boards of education prior to revising their curricula, for example.”

The motivation for these changes comes from both internal and external sources, according to the study. The most common motivator by far was internal quality improvement initiatives, with 64% of participants selecting it as one of their motivators. Among external motivators, “competitor schools” was the most commonly chosen answer, with 34% of respondents choosing it as one of their motivators.

If  you want to know more, check out all the results at

August 13, 2009   Comments Off

New Tool in the Search for Better B School Candidates

Students have a new way to demonstrate their potential to succeed in business school. Along with GMAT scores, essays, and exhaustive applications, potential MBA candidates can now submit the results of personality testing directly to graduate programs. And while the use of this new technology is still a student choice, if the idea takes off you can expect graduate schools to begin requiring the personality test results as part of the standard package.

The Personal Potential Index

Educational Testing Service (ETS) has created the ETS Personal Potential Index (ETS PPI), a web-based evaluation system that provides graduate applicants ratings on specific personal attributes deemed by graduate and professional school deans and faculty to be critical for academic success.

The tool is the first of its kind to evaluate students’ noncognitive or personal attributes. Specifically, the testing process measures:

  • Knowledge and Creativity
  • Communication Skills
  • Teamwork
  • Resilience
  • Planning and Organization
  • Ethics and Integrity.

These “soft skills” are considered essential for academic success. The launch of ETS PPI marks the first large-scale use of noncognitive measures for admissions in higher education.

Michael L. Jeffries, Associate Dean of Students at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and Director of McNair Scholars & Minority Student Affairs, says ETS PPI will help identify candidates that might otherwise have been missed, while expanding opportunities for a diverse range of students. The McNair Scholars Program is a national initiative aimed at increasing the number of first-generation, low-income and/or underrepresented students in Ph.D. programs.

“The graduate community needs to continue to reduce barriers to graduate education and allow more underrepresented scholars to join the ranks of the professoriate,” explains Jeffries. “To the extent that the ETS PPI will broaden opportunities for students, it is something that I strongly support.”

Early Evidence of Success

Based on more than a decade of research, ETS PPI was developed in response to requests from graduate deans and admissions professionals to address a need for noncognitive measures to evaluate applicants. The development and introduction of ETS PPI comes with the full support of the independent Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) Board.

ETS PPI has been piloted for the past three years through the National Hispanic Research Center’s Project 1000, a program based at the University of Arizona that seeks to increase the number of underrepresented students in graduate school. ETS PPI also was successfully used during this time by ETS for selecting candidates for its summer intern program.

According to David G. Payne, Ph.D., Vice President and COO in the ETS Higher Education & School Assessments Division, research indicates that achievement gaps that exist in standardized tests do not exist in noncognitive measures, which is why ETS PPI is seen as a tool that may help to level the playing field for students seeking graduate and professional degrees, such as an MBA.

“Solid GRE scores and undergraduate grades are very important, but they don’t provide the complete picture of a candidate’s potential,” says Payne. “We’ve known for some time, thanks to research and anecdotal evidence, that qualities like resilience and teamwork were indicators of success in graduate school. The problem was how to measure them effectively. But now, with the introduction of ETS PPI, we have a tool that allows for accurate and valid measures of these critical personal attributes.”

Ready to Be Tested?

Students who have registered for the GRE General Test after May 1, 2009 will have the option of using ETS PPI and sending up to four ETS PPI evaluation reports at no additional cost. ETS PPI is not exclusive to GRE registrants. It is also available to past GRE test takers and others for a fee of $20 per report.

Student can create an ETS PPI profile online as well as contact information for the evaluators he or she would like to complete an ETS PPI evaluation. ETS then sends an e-mail to each evaluator inviting them to access the ETS PPI system to complete the student’s evaluation. Evaluators log in to the system and respond to a series of statements to rate the student on the six personal attributes and to provide an overall rating of the student. The student is notified when each evaluation has been completed and can choose the schools to which the evaluations will be sent. ETS creates an evaluation report, and sends it to the institutions designated by the student.

Find out more here:

The way ETS describes the process, it sounds like an extended reference letter, but apparently the science supports the results.

What do you think about personality trait testing as a criteria for grad school admission?

July 15, 2009   Comments Off

Ford Rewards Student Entrepreneurs

Ford recently honored young business leaders in the 2009 Ford HBCU Business Classic. Some of the nations top students submitted business plans for expert review and judging. Held at Clark Atlanta University, the contest showcased the best and brightest minds from Historically Black Colleges and Universities around the country. Student teams from Florida A&M University and Howard University won $100,000 in scholarship prizes for their innovative business plans.

The Competition

The students’ business plans were evaluated on the viability of their business model, as well as presentation and the business plan’s potential benefit to the community. 

“As an HBCU graduate I know firsthand the impact that programs such as the Ford HBCU Business Classic can have on students,” said Crystal Worthem, Multicultural Marketing Manager, Ford Brand. “The real-world solutions presented during the competition are extremely timely and will have huge positive implications on communities and businesses nationwide. We are excited to pave the way for this next generation of business leaders, and gain their perspective about the current economic situation and solutions for the domestic auto industry.”

The teams had 25 minutes to present their business plans to the judges and prove that their plan can be converted into a viable business strategy. Plans were judged by a panel of judges that included influential entrepreneurs from the business community.

“This is my second year participating in the Ford HBCU Business Classic and the students continue to impress me with the level of professional dedication that they put into their business plans,” said Dr. Randal Pinkett. “They are presenting timely real-world solutions and business models for a number of industries, including real estate, automotive, manufacturing, technology and the environment. These finalists are poised to become the business leaders of tomorrow.”

Florida A&M and Howard Take Top Prizes

Students from Florida A& M University in Tallahassee, FL, received the grand prize for their business plan for VMed LLC. This life changing company is planned to utilize technology to simplify people’s health care needs. As the grand prize winning team, the students from Florida A&M received a total of $50,000 in scholarship funds.

Howard University students presented a plan for AutoCard, a student printing company with licensing rights to incorporate university logos on student business cards. They received $30,000 in scholarships. Hajj Media, also from Howard University, took home second place honors for a plan to offer multitier marketing solution for local small businesses.

Students from Lincoln University also placed in the finals with their strategic plan for an architectural firm dealing with industrial, commercial and residential services in Philadelphia.

Got a Great Business Idea?

It’s too late for this year, but bookmark and plant to enter the competition next year.

June 6, 2009   Comments Off