Rethinking MBA pedagogy (from The Economist) September 30, 2009Posted by Brian Payer in Design Thinking.
How much responsibility do Business Schools bear for the financial crisis? Given that MBAs make up 40% of the workforce on Wall Street, quite a bit.
Top business schools are quick to talk about “educating leaders who make a difference in the world,” but MBA core curricula and widely accepting management techniques have not changed significantly in recent decades. Platitudes about culture and leadership are plentiful, but real change is lacking. The author in this “Economist” article goes so far as to suggest scrapping the current business school curricula and starting from scratch.
There is an open question about MBA pedagogy, and our class is exploring the issue in depth. Perhaps we should invite the author to class, or at least send a letter to the editor. I’ve always wanted to write one of those letters that starts “Dear Sir:”…
What can we recommend? Exercises in design thinking, sketching, visualization, wicked problems, ethnographic research, improv and critical thinking are a start, but the key will be infusing design thinking tools and skills into the entire MBA program. Let’s make sure that the Haas difference goes beyond mission statements to create positive change in the education of future leaders.