is MBA even respected in investment management?

At the moment, I am a quant specialised in flow products pricing/hedging. I find it very hard to move to the business side. I should probably have done it when I was younger, but I would appreciate any tips in order to make a successful move.

According to many on this forum, in your boat, there’s really nothing you can do. Since an MBA is now apparently hacksaw at any institution, and since your current job requires a high amount of technical attention (so you don’t have time to commit to learning such trivial things as SWOT or BCG matrices), I recommend sneaking into the cocktail parties held at your local upper-crust institution for the chardonnay-sipping MBA crowds and begin networking. Since, according to many of the established, successful and not-at-all anonymous commenters here, there isn’t really much to actually learn in these programs, the best bet is simply to network with these people. Skip the middleman and cut to the chase.

No, I’m kidding. But seriously – “moving to the business side” is very generic. By this do you mean, “I’m sick of being some programming donkey, and I’d like to move up to the hot-air-filled offices of the stuffed suits in my firm who smugly hand out business cards that say, ‘Billy Blowhard, MBA’ on them?” Some context would probably be useful.


I’ve seen people in America do this, but it’s usually people from very small programs who did it part-time. Is it the same or are people from the top institutions doing it too?

^ No way. I think the “MBA” thing after a name is super tacky, at least in the States. I prefer to use as few identifiers as possible; it means my reputation speaks for itself. Typically I even go by “Numi” in person, though someday, like Prince, or the Artist Formerly Known As Prince, I won’t even be known by a name; I’ll just be a symbol.

Or “Artist Formerly Known as Numi”.

That would get you attention.

As for MBA on the business card. I have seen it. Usually marketers or some other lame punk who got it at some crap school. Produces negative respect.

Disclaimer - I’m in the US so if the practice of placing MBA after your name on a b-card is commonplace, don’t take offense. However, I find it incredibly tacky/douchey and usually see it done by those who went to lower tier business schools - especially non-AACSB accredited.

I also expect to see the highly coveted “CFP” or a random designation if MBA shows up on their b-card.

Recruiters are also to blame. From what I heard, they advise their clients to put MBA after the name.

I met some recruiter that had MBA after their name on their card, only time I had ever seen it. I have a Bachelor of Science… should I put B.S. after my name? laugh

I’m slowly starting to see B.S. on business cards too.

I have yet to see B.S. on a business card. I agree it’s a very tacky move to signal you’re a graduate of a MBA program on your business card. This is kind of like my thing with the flag. If you’re worth your salt it will probably come out anyway you went to a business school. I agree it’s usually marketing or hr people with part-time MBA from lower tier schools in the USA. Just search for it on Linkedin. I challenge anyone to find a “Name, MBA” from a top 5 institution who works in finance.

Yup, again, quite commonplace here. I think Canadian corporate culture puts incredible weight on qualifications though, so that may be why. Like I’ve discussed in other threads before, one reason I finish the CFA program once I started was because a designation is essientially a de facto requirement for any senior finance (not executive… as in non-entry level) job in the country. No designation? Doesn’t matter your experience, you don’t get your resume through.

So it somewhat makes sense why people include it on their cards… it shows they are “qualified” by our funny Canadian standards.

I don’t have my undergrad or anything else on my cards though. Never really believed in it. It was a struggle for me to use CFA marks even. But I eventually did.

^ Disagree that experience doesn’t matter

Agreed, that was a bit of a hyperbole. But the designation is key here, especially in the corporate world. It’s very hard to get through HR screening without it. If you’re landing jobs through network primarily, then obviously this isn’t as big of a concern.

It depends on the industry, really, if you are an accountant, you need to put it on your business cards and resume and linkedin… etc, because you simply wouldn’t get hired for an accounting job if you are NOT qualified.

That is the same as being a controller or sr manager in a corporation, if you work in corporate finance, they probably want you to have a designation since, everyone you manage will be designated.

Work experience is important IF you actually get through the screen. it’s like government job needs a clean criminal record, if you don’t have a clean record, no matter how experienced you are, you aren’t getting through.

Investment management is pretty broad. Which part are you interested in?

Chicago Booth is an AMAZING school. For investment management, I think only HBS and Wharton are clearly better. I have a lot of friends there, and they’re doing very well with investment management recruiting. All the big name players you can think of come to campus to recruit: PIMCO, Fidelity, Wellington, State Street, Franklin Templeton, MFS, Capital Group, AQR, and more. For IM geeks, Booth is pretty much your Mecca.

Interesting thread. I think the CFA is valuable in terms of the knowledge acquired and signal you send to employers, insofar as it conveys genuine interest in the subject matter and your passion for investment management.

However, from talking to numerous CFA charterholders and MBAs alike, the general conclusion I arrived at was that an MBA from a top school is far more valuable if you are looking to transition into IM. Most of the people I know in the industry with a CFA alone managed to get the job early on in their careers and then took the CFA because their firm sponsored them. Obviously there are always exceptions when we are talking about such large groups of people, but the general advice I received from people was more or less “get an MBA from the best school you get into and then focus 110% on recruiting.”

I am currently at a M7 b-school. Not HBS though.

Here’s a quick guide: If someone describes their school as the top ranked school, they go to HBS or Stanford If someone says they go to a “Top 3” school, they go to Wharton If someone says they go to a “Top 5” school, its either Chicago, Kellogg, or MIT Sloan If someone says they’re in the “M7”, they go to Columbia If someone says “Top 10”, they mean Tuck, Ross, Haas, or