what is this term "hacksaw" I keep seeing?

Is this an AF or Wall Street term? Someone was talking about a Hacksaw MBA

What is that exactly? an MBA program that isn’t in the top 100 or something? An unaccreditted university?

While the list is an ongoing debate amongst many in the AF crowd, any MBA that’s not from Harvard, Wharton, or Stanford is considered hacksaw. If you have an MBA from any other institution, you are to take a rusty, dull hacksaw blade to your genitals.

EDIT: consult Itera, TheRighteousHacksaw, Numi, et al… for a further, more refined discussion.

EDIT #2: refer to CVM’s post below.


I coined term rusty hacksaw when beefing with Itera (we good now) about to go or not to go to an MBA program. His conclusion was “Go Top 10 or don’t bother.” Mine resolution was, “Go Top 2 or saw your sack off with a rusty hacksaw.” The connotation ‘hacksaw’ refers to an instance where one should remove their sack versus go through with said instance.

Now that you know, obtain that oxidized blade and get working on your ballsack.


Here is the first formal thread on the term: hacksaw


You’ll have to forgive me because this a text-based medium, but I can’t tell if that comment was made in jest or was serious.

For example, Cornell’s MBA program is ranked #17 and it’s an Ivy League. You’re telling me that if a job applicant told you he just got of Cornell’s MBA program, you’ d tell him that he should take a hacksaw to his nuts because Cornell isnt’ good enough? What the fuck? I feel like I’m on WSO’s forum!

It’s all satire. I’m a card carrying hacksaw MBA member and I’m doing pretty well. The notion, go to a top 10 or don’t bother is just callous and ignorant.

Though for a good while Itera was preaching that going to B School outside of top 10 is a total negative NPV and waste of time, money, and brain cells.

I think for most members it is satire, but some posters like itera and others are 100% serious about it

Right, like if I’m not president by 45…well, hacksaw.

Yeah, I mean, look at Andy Bernard. He graduated from Cornell and went on to become a branch office manager of a paper company.

No president has ever gone to Cornell. You’d be better off going to Eureka or Ohio Central than Cornell.

I recently learned from one of my younger friends about Poe’s Law


The fact that Itera’s serious ramblings are repeated as satire by others shows this is a perfect example of it. What’s most aggravating is when the guy dismissing the achievement as hacksaw has never even played in that level of league before.

And yes, since Cornell never produced a U.S. president I guess it could be joked about as hacksaw. I’d turn to Yale because it did produce at least one president, but the problem with Yale is that it won’t meet Itera’s criteria of being a top 10 school. It’s only ranked #13 in the country ::giggles::

^ I suppose thats fair

Yo, mlwl, how’s the gig going?

Good for the most part. I’ll start with the cons so that you can understand the pros:

CONs :

  1. It’s corporate finance and business analysis, so it will NEVER be as prestigious as VC, HF, PE, IB. The pay will never be close at the higher levels. I think the senior analysts make betweeen 60k-90k. No bonus, no stock options, no education reimbursement.

  2. The people aren’t dumb, but they aren’t geniuses either. I don’t think the company has ever had a CFA or even a person that passed level 1. I’m the only guy from a top 20 school so I have to deal with everyone else’s sour grapes in the form of subtle remarks. We do have 2 CPAs though in our 15 man team.

You get a lot of people that went to hacksaw schools for their undergrads and MBAs and they try to act like it’s no different from attending a prestigious MBA program. I politely remind them that our new President is a Harvard MBA and our CFO is a Stern graduate. It’s fucking hell.

  1. Everything is disorganized as shit. We’re running a company that is about to hit the “large company” bracket and we’ve got like 10,000 Excel files trying to record monthly data for 500+ locations. It’s a hiccup away from using dinner napkins to keep track of shit. There’s no CRM database that quickly shows where we stand with each site and each customer contract.

There is no big enterprise system/database worth talking about. No Oracle, no SAP, no Hyperion, no COGNOS. The closest thing we have is Great Plains, which only the accounting department gets to use. They have gone so far as to use an accounting program to credit/debt non-financial stats. UNREAL.

  1. The more experience people on the team know what they’re doing, but are aweful instructors (by my standards).

PROs :

  1. Hours are from 8:30 to 5:30 most days. Of course it gets tougher during invoicing week and in the last month of the year. In 4 months, I’ve only seen ppl stay to 9pm once.

  2. Because nobody is a superstar, it’s easier to become the one-eyed man in the land of the blind. We have like one guy out of all of us that knows anything real about SQL and VBA. I expect to be the leader in Excel, SQL, and VBA 1 year from now, with help from you guys. Everyone dreams of writing a macro and talks a big game about teaching themselves shit, but nobody has actually broken out a book and learned how to write super macros with VBA. I don’t know how I’m going to learn, but I’m going to learn it.

  3. Because of the disorganization and lack of good instructors, I believe there is oppurtunity for me to become a great manager there someday because I will do a better job of training the new employees. I believe there is oppurtunity for me to make processes more automated, more efficent, and more accurate. Just two weeks ago, I uncovered a huge flaw that was going to cost us $40,000+ by year-end. They better remember that when they have to lay off an analyst and arent sure who to keep.

  4. Benefits include discounted rooms at high-end hotels and free valet parking at key locations. During the CFA exam, I valeted my car for free instead of paying the $38 fee. I’ll do corporate finance for the rest of my life, but I would prefer it stay in the hospitality/travel/leisure space.

^ This dude is borderline Vandy level, needing some humility. Don’t worry though, I was in your shoes once. My quick advice after playing this game for a long time: never underestimate those senior to you. You might think it’d be a breeze to “be a great manager,” but its not. You might think you’d do such a better job without much effort, but its not that simple. Leading is hard, its a challenge every single day beyond anything someone that hasn’t done it can understand. Its not just training and finding process improvements. Don’t look down on people with hacksaw education compared to you. Its all performance now that you’re in the game. If they add more value to the bottom line than you, then no one will give two shits where you went to school. I’m as hacksaw as it gets and my salary is a multiple of your seniors. I got there on performance alone, passing lots of folks with big egos and fancy parchment along the way. And never remind people that the CEO went to Harvard. The CEO is the CEO because he busted ass. His Harvard education got him in the door, sure, but there are plenty of hacksaw CEOs leading better firms. Honestly if I heard a junior remind someone that their MBA was hacksaw as the CEO went to Harvard, it would be a problem.

damn multiple of 90k, congrats bro

^ I should have left it out. I was trying to illustrate that top20 is a ticket, but not the entire game. Anyway, it came across douchey, I admit. Apologies.

That multiple could be 0.33 man. Jus sayin.