Friday, May 27, 2005

Out: MBA | In: MBI

[file under: What, me Worry?]

I came across a Manifesto by Jim Carroll today that I thought was an interesting read.

His thesis:
Figuratively and literally, it is time to move beyond the thinking that has led us to a world of MBA's – Masters of Business Administration – and focus upon the critical skill that will take you into tomorrow.

But, pray, what's wrong with MBA's?
...they focus on managing, rather than leading. Administering, rather than inspiring. Complying, rather than creating. The result is that they continue to wake up each morning and think, “what happened to the world I knew?” Perhaps that is because their focus has been misdirected – they've become experts in “administration” at a time when what they really need is a lot more “imagination.”

The solution:
The world doesn't need more administrators. It needs more MBI's – Masters of Business Imagination!

The author also describes what he considers to be the key elements of an MBI. They will have the ability to, among other things:
  • see things differently
  • spur creativity in other people
  • focus on opportunity, not threat
  • refuse to accept the status quo
  • bring ideas to life
  • have the skill to learn and unlearn
  • refuse to say the word "can't"
  • accept challenges with passion and enthusiasm
  • embrace change rather than shy away from it
  • listen to people who are different from them
  • live for the opportunity to have ideas challenged and debated
  • instead of saying "it won't work", ask the question, "how can we make it work".
Question: How many of you just skimmed through the list with a 'heard that one before'. I, for one, did. The funny thing is, every b-school website lists a set of the above traits as what they instill in their students - doesn't that mean an MBA is already an MBI (or at least an MBi).

Here is the full post.


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