Newflash! (Not): MBAs Seek Private Equity Gigs

CNN Money reports that MBA students are in hot pursuit of private equity jobs. For the last several years, a good percentage of my business school clients have been coming to me with that stated goal, and my advice to them has been to get in line, because it's the "sexy" field to be in right now -- MBAs pursuing the same small number of private equity slots are a dime a dozen, and private equity shops generally prefer MBAs who had private equity experience before going to business school. Similarly, back when VC jobs were all the rage, I had to break it to MBA applicants and students that VCs generally prefer people who already have the "scar tissue" of operational start-up experience.

These trends reconfirm for me that while pursuing an MBA can be a way to switch careers, it's better to transition into one's desired industry before heading off to business school, even if that means jumping in at a lower level than one ideally wants.