Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

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Lost_Dreams
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby Lost_Dreams » Sat Aug 03, 2013 11:21 pm

IAFG wrote:I wasn't really imagining you'd get McKinsey, but I worry that if your background isn't consistent with your goals, M7 can only help you so much.


Your suspicion is warranted, and is the very reason I am considering a JD as well as MBA.

One of my ex-coworkers went from my firm's IT consulting analyst stint -> M7 MBA -> Bulge Bracket Investment Banking Associate gig.

The major value with top MBA is that it enables people to make career switches into IB or top strategy consulting. However, it is a big gamble: you have to quit work for two years (opportunity cost) and getting that IB or top consulting gigs out of MBA is still VERY competitive and leaves many to go back to the same job as before the MBA.

Given that a top MBA is a large gamble on my part, I am not sure what option makes more sense: top JD, top MBA, or just stay put in my current boring job and stop day-dreaming..
Last edited by Lost_Dreams on Sun Aug 04, 2013 12:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

Lost_Dreams
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby Lost_Dreams » Sat Aug 03, 2013 11:26 pm

jbagelboy wrote:
untar614 wrote:For what I've been told, MBAs are largely networking opportunities, and most of the people coming in have very solid work experience that will help them in getting those good jobs upon graduation. I would guess the best option would be to go get the necessary math prerequisites and then get a masters in finance/financial engineering/mathematical finance/etc from a top school like Princeton, Berkeley, Columbia, NYU, Stanford, Chicago, MIT and Carnegie Mellon. Those, I believe, are more geared toward people with very little work experience. They'll probably get you entry level jobs as a financial analyst, though the best students at Princeton may be able to get better stuff. But the important thing is you should be able to get relevant work experience in finance with decent pay, and a chance to work your way up a bit. Then later on, once you've sort of topped out as a quant and have a lot of experience, going to an M7 may do more for you in trying to get into a higher managerial position in finance.


This makes sense and its a solid explanation of the distinction, although clearly getting your BA or BS in math/econ/stats/finance would avoid the redundant masters. I would go for a Ph.D fellowship(fully paid with generous stipend) in Economics at HYPSCC if you have the grades and profs for LoRs, then take terminal MA after 2 years and leaving for a position in finance (these programs are well connected). Then you'll have the pedigree and job for free. Paying $100K for a masters that teaches you undergraduate work -- someone mentioned black sholes, we did that in metrics II -- seems a bit trite. Id be hard pressed to advise it unless you are doing the jd anyway and its the same cost (dual).

The MBA is for people who have completed their entry level experience and need to transition to a higher level in the same line of work, or who seek to shift (obviously this is more challenging). Remember the plurality of every top b-school ends up in consulting anyway.


I already have a BA in Economics, from an Ivy. Econ or Finance majors at college level are 'soft' majors and teaches you very little quant/ math skills.

PhD programs in Econ at top schools look for strong math/ stats skills and they'd rather admit people who were math majors in college, rather than Econ majors at college.

Not to mention, even if I get into Econ PhD, I wouldn't do it anyway.

Regarding masters in Fin. Engineering: I suck at math and don't have the mathematical ability to get into top programs. Also, regarding finance, I am looking to get into M&A (I-banking) or Restructuring (where top MBA's feed into), not trading or risk (where Fin Engineering largely feed into) As a result, a top JD or top MBA makes more sense for me.

The value I see in a top MBA is that it enables people to make major career changes (ex: go from IBM's IT consulting -> top 10 MBA -> Morgan Stanley IBD or MBB Consulting)

However, I keep hearing that MBA's employment outcomes have been very murky nowadays and it seems to be a big gamble for me to take.

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buddyt
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby buddyt » Sun Aug 04, 2013 3:53 pm

Tagging, as I recently left my IT consulting gig for similar reasons to attend local flagship w/$$$.

mono172000
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby mono172000 » Mon Aug 05, 2013 1:41 pm

Don't have much to add other than that I'm in a similar position and am currently struggling through the same decision. Coming up on year two in a management consulting gig at one of those same firms (so not making as much as the OP yet). Always assumed law school was the next step, but 50 hours a week making decent money is hard to give up.

FWIW, the management consulting gigs at these firms aren't much better than the IT consulting jobs. You're mostly just writing business requirments or doing pmo stuff for the same tech projects that the IT guys are working on. Very little real strategy work outside of MBB. But it's not hell, pays well, and decent hours.

I'm a ~3.8, 165-168 aa male. Was thinking about applying this cycle or next, especially if I can grab an extra few points on a retake. But the more I think about it the more I realize I'm really not sure what I'm running to. Slightly comforting to know there are other people working through that same decision.

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jingosaur
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby jingosaur » Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:29 pm

mono172000 wrote:Don't have much to add other than that I'm in a similar position and am currently struggling through the same decision. Coming up on year two in a management consulting gig at one of those same firms (so not making as much as the OP yet). Always assumed law school was the next step, but 50 hours a week making decent money is hard to give up.

FWIW, the management consulting gigs at these firms aren't much better than the IT consulting jobs. You're mostly just writing business requirments or doing pmo stuff for the same tech projects that the IT guys are working on. Very little real strategy work outside of MBB. But it's not hell, pays well, and decent hours.

I'm a ~3.8, 165-168 aa male. Was thinking about applying this cycle or next, especially if I can grab an extra few points on a retake. But the more I think about it the more I realize I'm really not sure what I'm running to. Slightly comforting to know there are other people working through that same decision.


I agree with this. A lot of strategy and management consulting is now basically IT consulting.
Last edited by jingosaur on Tue Aug 06, 2013 12:36 am, edited 2 times in total.

RoaringMice
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby RoaringMice » Mon Aug 05, 2013 3:32 pm

jbagelboy wrote:
This makes sense and its a solid explanation of the distinction, although clearly getting your BA or BS in math/econ/stats/finance would avoid the redundant masters. I would go for a Ph.D fellowship(fully paid with generous stipend) in Economics at HYPSCC if you have the grades and profs for LoRs, then take terminal MA after 2 years and leaving for a position in finance (these programs are well connected). Then you'll have the pedigree and job for free. Paying $100K for a masters that teaches you undergraduate work -- someone mentioned black sholes, we did that in metrics II -- seems a bit trite. Id be hard pressed to advise it unless you are doing the jd anyway and its the same cost (dual).

The MBA is for people who have completed their entry level experience and need to transition to a higher level in the same line of work, or who seek to shift (obviously this is more challenging). Remember the plurality of every top b-school ends up in consulting anyway.


I was going to suggest a PhD for the OP as well, from a top program only, in a field that is in-demand re: academia (finance, for example), only if fully funded. My hesitancy in doing so was his 3.1 UGPA. Too low, too low, IMO. What do you think?

OP, a thought - are you interested in academia? If you decide to go for a JD, one idea is a dual JD/PhD in finance. Make you more marketable. Again, if fully funded, if top program. Which I'm not sure of, re: your UGPA, but is worth investigating if you're interested.

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Monochromatic Oeuvre
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby Monochromatic Oeuvre » Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:48 pm

Don't think a non-URM with a 3.1 can go anywhere that places into academia in statistically significant numbers.

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jingosaur
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Re: Consulting -> MBA or Law School?

Postby jingosaur » Mon Aug 05, 2013 11:55 pm

With inspiration from the timbs post about International Law, I made one for the type of job most people in OP's and my position are looking for:

8:00 You wake up in your 59th Street penthouse and kiss the high fashion model who you met at Rose Bar last night goodbye.

8:30 You arrive at your office to find out that the stock market will crash at opening and a highly leveraged discount airline company will go bankrupt if its expiring commercial paper is not turned over by the end of the week.

9:20 After making a call to the airline company’s CEO, who attended your art gallery charity event last month, you close a deal to purchase the company for 30 cents on the dollar.

10:00 You receive a phone call from the CFO of a pharmaceutical company that you’ve been trying to purchase. A big four auditor found out that he expensed the yacht that you both used to sail the Mediterranean on his corporate expense account. After looking over his employment contract and some new legislation regarding corporate expenditures, you advise him to resign as he can legally obtain two years of compensation and the yacht as severance.

12:00 Lunch at 11 Madison. Everything that you order is off the menu, per usual. You strike up a great conversation with the young, attractive waitress.

14:00 The early morning market crash experiences a rebound and you and your board of directors enjoy a round of scotch to celebrate the $100 million profit made on the long position that your trading team initiated in the morning.

16:00 At a meeting of powerful business people in New York City, you announce that the CFO that you advised in the morning will head the health care division of the struggling Asian consumer goods conglomerate that you acquired last week.

18:30 You appear on Fox Business network and talk about how Obama’s fiscal policy is ruining America.

20:00 You partake in an illegal high-stakes poker game at the Four Seasons Hotel penthouse while sipping cognac with the high fashion model from last night in one arm and the 11 Madison waitress in the other.

22:00 Your phone rings. “Why aren’t you in the office? We have the small enhancements implementation readiness session in five minutes.”

You wake up at 7:55 a.m., in a cold sweat about to miss a morning meeting at the IT consulting job you had before you left for your JD/MBA. You consider going back to school for an Economics Ph.D.




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