The Harvard MBA Is Bad for You

John Warner:

We need to abolish the Harvard M.B.A degree for the good of the people who pursue that path, as well as the world at large.

I’m saying this based on my reading of Charles Duhigg’s recounting of the 15-year reunion of his Harvard Business School graduating class, published in the New York Times.

What he found was a group of people who are “miserable.”

“I heard about one fellow alum who had run a large hedge fund until being sued by investors (who also happened to be the fund manager’s relatives). Another person had risen to a senior role inside one of the nation’s most prestigious companies before being savagely pushed out by corporate politics. Another had learned in the maternity ward that her firm was being stolen by a conniving partner.”
Duhigg admits that these are extreme examples, but even so, the prevailing sense was one of “professional disappointment,” of lives “unfulfilling, tedious, or just plain bad.” Divorce, disconnections from their children, a sense that no matter how much they made it wasn’t enough, the despair was pervasive.

Duhigg believes the main problem is that these people simply believe their work doesn’t matter. In his book, “Bullshit Jobs: A Theory,” David Graeber shares a survey in which 37% of working adults in Great Britain said their job makes no meaningful contribution to the world.