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What kind of skillsets can an MBA degree give you?

Filmed at the QS Sustainability Conference, October 2010. Jillian Fransen, Head of Sustainability, Barclays Bank: Really what an MBA graduate can bring to our programme is around innovation; our strategy has three core pillars and the newest one is 'financing the future'. This is where we're really looking to work and engage with MBA students and graduates around what that means, and what's the innovation piece. Simon Propper, Managing Director, Context Group Ltd: We are a consultancy that works for large multinationals, so we weren't specifically looking for an MBA. We can't take fresh undergraduates so we look for people with 1-2 years relevant work experience as well as sustainability training of some sort. Andrew Cave, RBS. Chairman, United Nations Global Compact UK Network: We recruit from a broad range of MBA backgrounds and skillsets. RBS is an international banking group with 150,000 people in insurance, retail banking, investment banking. So we recruit from a range of different skillsets Simon Propper: The interesting thing about the MBA graduate was that though she didn't have lots of work experience apart from placements, she had picked up a huge amount of insight into how business works, the tools business uses. She was very professional in her approach, which makes a good consultant; she came with a great Powerpoint, had all sorts of analysis of the exercises we gave her, and she bubbled to the top as the best candidate. Fransen: Over the last 100 years there's been a lot of innovation in financial services, and now it's becoming a diminishing return to find that innovation and that's where we are looking to engage with MBAs to get fresh new ideas. Cave (Royal Bank of Scotland): Ultimately big businesses and corporations need managers and leaders and a there's a continual need to refresh our intake of people with those skillsets and the aspiration to grow into leadership roles. Having people from business schools with this mindset already instilled in them does a lot of our work for us.
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