How much do MBA rankings matter?
The simple answer to this question is that MBA rankings do matter. The top MBA colleges will lead to being those that rank consistently towards the top of the list and justify being there. Meanwhile, among considered employers, there is a noted value in hiring a new employee who graduated from one of the Best MBA colleges.
With this in mind, it can be alluring to choose a college-based purely upon its ranking. This can be a mistake, as just because the college ranks high on a list of top MBA colleges, it doesn’t mean that it’s the best college for you. An MBA ranking is a factor you can use to make your decision, but it shouldn’t be the only factor.
At the end of the day, a college ranked first and a college ranked fifth may not really change that much in quality. If MBA rankings are important to you, it may be more important to find out how many times a college has repeatedly been named among the top MBA colleges than to see exactly where it is in on one individual list.
Different MBA rankings look at different features of planned colleges. Some may focus on student achievement. Others may look at test results or post-graduation employment rates and salaries. When looking at rankings, it’s important to know what exactly is being ‘ranked’. This can help you determine which ranking might be the most important to you.
You’ve seen the MBA rankings, now what do you want?
It must be emphasized that MBA rankings are only one tool designed to help you make your decision as to which MBA program makes the most insight for you. It is certainly not the only tool and it probably isn’t even the most important. While a ranking may help you determine how a college performs overall, it’s important to consider your own personal goals. How are you planning to use your MBA degree? What is your budget like? Is location important to you? All of these questions are very important and none of them can be answered fully by a ranking.
Don’t let MBA rankings replace your own research. Certainly, they should not dominate what you have learned from examining the school, talking to the staff and students at the college in question. Rankings aside, the college must be a fit for you, your goals, and your personality. Use all of the resources at your direction, including rankings to help determine the best program for you.