The Idea: a homemade MBA

Can I gain the same knowledge and skills through a self-taught MBA as I would through a real MBA at a brick and mortar school?


I’m really excited about this idea.  I’ll define what I mean by the “homemade MBA” in more detail in another post, but for now I just want to get started with this project.


The best first step in any endeavor is research.  The internet has a lot to say about self-study MBAs.  However, I found that most roads lead to Mr. Josh Kaufman and his notion of the Personal MBA.  His site certainly piqued my interest, and I decided to buy the book and see for myself what it has to say (a quick guess from what I can gather prior to reading the book – it’s a synthesis of a bunch of business books that Josh read).  Unlike Mr. Kaufman, I think it takes more than just reading to learn effectively.  As such, I am going to focus less on textbook and business book reading, and more on free online courses for the content of my homemade MBA.


Step two of my initial research was a quick overview of Harvard’s MBA curriculum (more on why Harvard’s curriculum in another post), and what is available in the world of free online courses (aka Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs).  To my amazement, it looks like I’ll be able to create an almost mirror-image of HBS’s curriculum on my own with free, online courses available on Coursera.  I’ll show you the details of my curriculum comparison in my next post.


Although I’m really excited, I’m also slightly concerned about the workload of this project.  The classes range in duration from 6-12 weeks, and in average hours required per week (each) from 4-12.  And, there is a point when eight of the 13 classes overlap.  Not good.   Combine this with a full-time, relatively-demanding job, a (wonderful) marriage, and an upcoming international relocation (for work), and that’s a lot on my plate.  Then again, doesn’t the saying go – if you want something done, give it to a busy man? (or woman, we’re gender equal here)


Well, to pull this off, I’ll certainly be busy.  Time to get to work.

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