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How to promote Student Entrepreneurship in Business Schools?

MBA programmes need to help entrepreneurs access talented students across various professional programs

Sun Mar 6 2011

One of the most recent discussions on BusinessBecause, put forth an idea to create an online platform for MBA students to share and discuss ideas (read here). The idea, put forth to the GMAC MET Fund Ideas to Innovation Challenge, suggests that such a virtual network would lead to greater global connections and entrepreneurship opportunities across schools. I see great merit in such an idea. However, I suggest that its benefit may be greater if spread across diverse professional schools. While MBA schools have made admirable strides at diversity (my MBA class at London Business School includes an Olympic athlete, event planner and former fighter pilot to name a few), they still largely attract and cultivate strategic skill sets. While one cannot dispute the value of consulting frameworks in business decisions (my husband is a consultant and constantly astounds me with his problem solving skills), it is important to realize that, in most cases, starting a business today requires creative and technical abilities not typically found at business schools.

It is inexplicably difficult to start a business during an MBA, and even when one has a good idea and the gumption to pursue it, he or she needs a team with complimentary skill sets to execute it. In the case of my business, MOVE Guides, this has meant a team of programmers, graphic designers and writers. Unfortunately, one does not often find the best in these areas in business school and I have found surprisingly little to help MBA entrepreneurs access the best at other professional schools. Professor Jeff Skinner has begun trying to bridge this gap at LBS with Ideapreneurship, a start-up incubation programme between LBS, the School of Communication Arts 2.0 and the computer science department at Queen Mary University. While spirit of the program is admirable, it seems unnecessarily structured and does not yet offer a central platform to pair skill sets and build teams. I do hope that as the program evolves, it will grow to fill this gap.

(This article is a guest post by a student entrepreneur at London Business School. Read the rest of this post here)

(The Author is an MBA from AGSM,UNSW,Sydney and Kellogg School Of Management, USA. He is also the Founder and Editor of DelhiPlanet Media You can follow him on Twitter @kirtidhingra)