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Top business school alumni were in charge at some of the most calamity-stricken organisations as the recession took hold. So are we due for a big rethink on what business courses actually teach? Ian Wylie reports.
Finding scapegoats for the recession has been easy - like shooting fish in a barrel. With discredited CEOs such as Dick Fuld of Lehman Brothers, Andy Hornby of HBOS and Rick Wagoner of General Motors all sporting MBAs from top business schools on their CV, critics have plenty of ammunition to condemn MBA programmes as partly to blame for the financial crisis.
In truth, we are probably too quick to give MBAs praise and credit in the good times and too eager to slam them for the hangover once the party has ended. But with the lustre of their most prestigious business degree tarnishing, business schools need to take action.
Some contributing factors schools may be powerless to change. Why is it, for example, that ambitious managers choose to enrol on an MBA programmme in the first place? Yes, they may be seeking to broaden and deepen their business knowledge. But no candidate is blind to the fact - often cited by business schools - that after just one or two years …