Value of MBAs: $-250,000

Guy Kawasaki has found that the following quote (which he gives regularly) is a guaranteed applause-getter:

What is the value of an M.B.A. these days for young college graduates who want to start their own company?

Probably about a negative $250,000. (I have an M.B.A., and I was once a young college graduate.) I don’t think an M.B.A. matters very much for starting a company. A much better educational background is an engineering degree. You can always hire M.B.A.s, but if you don’t have the ability to conceptualize and deliver a product, you’ve got nothing.


  1. Of course, given that a substantial portion of the US economy involves services as opposed to “delivering a product,” you gotta wonder how relevant Mr. Kawasaki’s advice is. If you work in Silicon Valley, I imagine it’s helpful, but there’s a whole lot more to the US economy that Silicon Valley. Could an engineer have started Walmart or Berkshire Hathaway? I seriously doubt it.