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MBA News You Need: More MBAs Head Into Tech, LBS Alumna Talks Humanitarian Investing, and More

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Each week we collect all the MBA news that’s fit to print and provide a quick overview of the latest trending topics from top business schools around the world.

Here’s your quick MBA News You Need digest for the week of January 21, 2019.

More and More MBAs Heading Toward Tech Jobs

2019 is slated to be another major year for MBAs employed by tech. According to early recruitment patterns revealed by GMAC, 89 percent of tech employers plan to hire MBAs this yearup from 84 percent in 2017. This data has been consistent at many top business schools.

At both Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business and Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, the tech sector has demonstrated record-breaking employment figures. At Fuqua, nearly 28 percent of the 2018 graduating class entered tech, going to companies such as Microsoft, Google, Dell, and others.

The reasons for this shift are manifold. Tech jobs tend to appeal to MBAs for their emphasis on innovation, not to mention the competitive wages they offer. Fuqua grads, for instance, posted a median annual salary of $130,000, which is a higher salary than finance ($125,000) but only slightly less than consulting ($140,000).

Another reason for the increased demand in tech recruitment is the opening of Amazon’s two new headquarters in NYC and Arlington, Virginia. This will have a significant impact on many schools including MIT / Sloan, UVA / Darden, and Cornell Tech, just to name a few.

“This will only expand our access to Amazon recruiters. And [just] as importantly, our access to our alumni as guest speakers, and ongoing collaboration for curriculum development,” says Jenny Zenner, senior director of Darden’s Career Development Center. (Business Because)

LBS Alumna Talks Sustainable and Impact Investing

Impact investing is one of the latest hot topics in finance. Now it has the potential to take a new direction. According to Katherine Brown, head of Sustainable and Impact Investing at the World Economic Forum and London Business School alumna, a new form of impact investing could address the needs of fragile populations: humanitarian investing.

Humanitarian investing focuses on return-seeking models and mechanisms that seek to provide capital for displaced people in fragile situations. The idea is to turn a difficult situation into an opportunity, even in high-risk environments. So far this formal investment category does not yet exist, but there is pioneering new work being done to provide remedies along the humanitarian journey.

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), 70 million people are forcibly displaced globally. This indicates an urgent and substantial need for humanitarian investment. There are many opportunities to invest in stability and humane solutions even if it’s typically a no-go for investors.

“While the concept of humanitarian investing may not yet be well understood by the global community, I have set my sights on bringing people together to start tackling the problem statement,” said Brown.

“It’s a humbling opportunity, not to mention a terrifying one at times. But no one ever said that mission-driven work should be easy – we just need to be ready to go there, no matter what.” (LBS News)

Booth/Kellogg Survey Shows Trust in the Government is Falling

As the longest government shutdown in history continues with no end in sight, it’s not a surprise to learn that Americans’ faith in government is dwindling.

According to the most recent Financial Trust Index (FTI) survey conducted by Chicago Booth and Northwestern / Kellogg, Americans’ trust in the government was at 18.4 percent on December 27, 2018one of the lowest levels recorded by the survey. This figure is on par with the end of 2016 following the election of Donald Trump when the American public’s faith in government reached 19.1 percent.

The survey, which polls around 1,000 Americans on their trust levels, demonstrated a rapid decline that began with the shutdown. On December 18, before the shutdown, trust was at 25 percent, reaching 27.2 percent on December 21. Then, the Senate and House adjourned without reaching a deal and trust began to plummet, and the numbers are far worse when it comes to trusting politicians. On December 27, less than 1 percent of respondents (.8 percent) said they trusted politicians.

You can read the full survey results here.

MIT Sloan Research Describes 3 Ways to Win Online Ratings

There’s no doubt that online ratings are both blessings and curses for businesses. In most cases, business owners think they only have two options when they get a negative review: ignore them or confront them.

After a decade of studying restaurant reviews in NYC, MIT / Sloan Ph.D. graduate Jason Greenberg revealed that online ratings hadn’t increased inequality among restaurants. In fact, it’s the exact opposite: ratings can be used to build a sense of quality around your product without a celebrity name.

Here are Greenberg’s three tips for getting the most out of your online reviews:

  1. Cultivate early reviews by distinguishing your products and services and finding your niche. That’s what customers demand.
  2. Focus on building goodwill with your customers by engaging and interacting with them in personal ways.
  3. Learn and adapt your business to reviews and reach out to unhappy customers.

Read the full report on MIT Sloan’s Ideas Made to Matter.

Kelly Vo
Kelly Vo is a writer who specializes in covering MBA programs, digital marketing, and topics related to personal development. She has been working in the MBA space for the past four years in research, interview, and writing roles.