This is a legit question so don’t hate me just trying to understand if it’s worth it or not. What is the draw of applying to M7? I understand elite status, but based on research the median total comp for an M7 grad is 185k as of 2020 study (2019 data) and the average age of the students in these programs is 27/28. I know going to MBB they have pretty specific comp coming out for M7 grads but outside of those three firms, what is the draw? Trying to justify spending 200k for a degree.

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Varies by person. Network most common reason. Career pivot also common reason. Comp matters to some but not all. At the end of the day, it should be an enabler to live the life you want to live. I for example took a 50% pay cut coming out of MBA because I wanted to re-align more towards entrepreneurship. 100% could have done this without the MBA, but separating myself from the comfort of a job (and income) and throwing myself into a situation where I could make my own helped get me over the hump. (Frankly, if you are just thinking about pay bands… hope you can find some greater inspiration for your career!)

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Not just MBB…Big Tech, IB, Big 4 pay at or above that median. Plus corporate leadership dev programs (LDPs) pay close to that median.

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Yeah like Deloitte typically is 40k-50k base higher

Compare median 5-10 year trajectory of someone post MBA at MBB/T2, PE, IB, Tech compared to someone without. They're all probably in the 500-800 range TC.

It's significant. If you can do the same without a top MBA then don't do one. Some people can, most people probably not.

10 years out of MBA and still at mckinsey will 100% be over $1,000,000. But… only like 5% of people who joined after MBA actually stick around that long, if even that. It’s a slog to get there. And you very well may find substantially more fulfilling and interesting work elsewhere. Hardly any money in the world could get me to go back to mckinsey (I’m an alum). Yes, hyperbole but you get the point…

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If you have a good job pre MBA, you won’t be able to make the maths work by trying to directly calculate ROI.
It’s a bet that through the MBA, down the line, you will make better choices, and maybe get better opportunities (both through promotions and external opportunities either applying normally or through your new network)
Or maybe put differently, the “counterfactual” that you stay in your job and keep getting promoted might not be right. Maybe you get fired, maybe you burn out and want to quit, maybe you hit a promotion ceiling. If any of those things happen, you’re probably better off having done the MBA.

But it’s not always the right choice for everyone. So many variables

For a direct career progression standpoint it probably doesn’t make sense in the short term. I will be a level above the post-mba position at my firm when I matriculate, but I view it as buying 2 years back of my (relative) youth. I did not attend a top undergrad either, so having the credential also satisfies some small personal insecurity. Neither of these can be quantified in $$$, but to me are worth the investment.

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