Should You Go To Business School in 2024? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

Hi again 👋 I’m Jonny, Media Manager at Career Protocol and a better person than I was last year. I’m on a new diet, with brand new habits, about to go to the gym any minute now just to be fit enough to collect the highest quality MBA resources you’ll find this month.

Welcome MBA applicants and the otherwise MBA curious! January is a huge month for new MBA hopefuls and the very beginning of tentative MBA research (I’ve seen the stats!) so whether you’re deep in the weeds of an ongoing application or about to possibly start thinking about maybe applying in the future, my job here is to get everything you might want to know this month into one place.

Is such a monumental achievement possible? Let’s find out.

Here’s a summary of the MBA Bulletin this month:

✨​  The Best MBA Programs of 2024

✨​  MBA Rankings (and what do they mean?)

✨​  How much money do MBAs make?

✨​  MBA Timeline: What do I need to do and when?

✨​  MBA Interview Tips for Round 2

✨​  MBA News Round-up

Happy Gregorian New Year!
Jonny 🌠​

The Best MBA Programs of 2024

Let’s get it out the way: the MBA programs that are widely held to be the best might not necessarily be the right ones for you. Business schools specialize, they are in different places and they have wildly different cultures. Chicago Booth and Harvard Business School do not cater to the exact same kind of person.

On the other hand, there are things that distinguish the best of the best, not least reputation: a future hiring manager will notice when you smoothly slide over a resume containing the phrase “Stanford GSB.”

So which business schools are considered the best? (See the news section below for a good comparison between US, Europe and rest of world MBA outcomes!)

US: The M7 or “Magnificent 7”

Europe: The E9 or "Exceptional 9"

I made the E9 up, but according to our international expert Charli, these are the Euro 9 to get heads turning:

Rest of World

It is, of course, deeply unfair to give the US and Europe their own spots and to lump everyone else together. But here is the overarching logic: the location of your business school should match the location of your desired workplace. Want to work in Europe? It's hard to beat a European business school for local networks and opportunities. Looking at Singapore or China? Guess where you should be looking.

Otherwise, as of time of writing, US schools really have everyone else beat in terms of international prestige and you can moreorless expect to take a US MBA anywhere. But the world inside and out of business schools is changing – the others are catching up. My favorite picks for top international challengers are:

  • Ciebs (China)
  • HKUST Business School (Hong Kong)
  • Indian School of Business (India)
  • Nanyang Business School (Singapore)
  • National University of Singapore Business School (Singapore)

This is a great time to subscribe to our YouTube channel for free MBA application advice straight to your feed every week!

MBA Rankings

There are a variety of organisations ranking MBA programs with an equal number of different ways to rank them. As much as it would be fun to rank the ranking agencies, we don’t want to give the impression that you should ever put too much stock into them. A ranked list of MBA programs can never give you enough information to find the best MBA program for you.

Some MBA rankings you could look to are The Financial Times, US News and Bloomberg. Poets and Quants will usually make a composite list from these. Recently, LinkedIn has joined the fun using its vast wealth of data to produce a slightly divergent list.

There are even rankings to measure case impact!

MBA Salary: Will Going to Business School Make Me Rich?

Depends what you mean by rich – I take my salary in exquisite cheese and consider myself the richest MBA resource machine in the world – but let’s look at the data.

We have an MBA Career Report that breaks down average salaries at US schools by function and industry. It’s exclusive to our community, but joining our community is free!

Sneak peek:

  • Post-MBA consultants start on almost double the wage of their post-college colleagues at close to $200,000 [fortune].
  • As we discuss in this video graduates from top US programs can expect somewhere in the range of $150,000 to $200,000, but this is in no way guaranteed, with select schools starting average salaries topping $200,000 (Yale and Kellogg have recently joined the club!).
  • See the report for a breakdown by industry and function!

The thing to keep in mind is that merely going to business school, even one of the most famous ones, is rarely enough to catapult you into the big leagues by itself. Your network, skills, employment history, clubs and ability to crush the interview process are just as important as the brand on your resume. You have to make use of ALL the resources and opportunities at business school if you want to maximize your chances. This is why we developed the YOMO program to help you hit the ground running when you start your MBA – be the first to find out when it opens by joining our community.

MBA Application Timeline: What do I need to do and when?

For the especially fresh faced: applying to business school is a lot of work, but if you start early and approach the process methodically it can even be a fun and potentially enlightening journey of self-discovery (and dare we say improvement?). This is our goal when coaching our amazing students: to use the time to help them grow into even better, more-admittable-to-business-school-with-a-full-scholarship people.

MBA admission typically occurs in three rounds. The first tends to wrap up in September, the second in January, and I won’t tell you the third because we really, really don’t recommend you apply in Round 3 since by that point you’re completely at the mercy of diversity and class profile quotas. Find out specific MBA application deadlines (including Round 3) here.

Here’s our advice for when to start working on each part of the MBA application. (Spoiler: you don’t have to start just yet!)

MBA Interview Tips for Round 2

MBA interviews are coming up for Round 2 applicants! Congratulations to everyone who’s managed to get this far! We’ve released a ton of free resources to help you prepare for those interviews.

Top MBA news round-up

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Jonny Hunter

Jonny Hunter

Media Manager

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