Ahead of the Curve: Two Years at Harvard Business School
Philip Delves Broughton
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Two years in the cauldron of capitalism-"horrifying and very funny" (The Wall Street Journal)
In this candid and entertaining insider's look at the most influential school in global business, Philip Delves Broughton draws on his crack reporting skills to describe his madcap years at Harvard Business School. Ahead of the Curve recounts the most edifying and surprising lessons learned in the quest for an MBA, from the ingenious chicanery of leveraging and the unlikely pleasures of accounting, to the antics of the "booze luge" and other, less savory trappings of student culture. Published during the one hundredth anniversary of Harvard Business School, this is the unflinching truth about life in the trenches of an iconic American institution.
stage whose roof sagged under the weight of water. My parents and my aunt valiantly drove up from Washington, D.C., but by the time they got here, all they wanted was to see me receive my diploma and then go and see our children. They had not the slightest interest in Class Day, the day before graduation, when a student and a guest speaker gave us some final thoughts on the whole shebang. So I went alone. Burden Auditorium was full, so I trudged over to Aldrich, where a sodden spillover crowd
content, and the network of people who hold it, matter. And it has ambitions to matter even more. Finally, this book is just one person’s view. No single MBA could ever be representative of the nine hundred students in the Harvard Business School class of 2006. Everything in this book occurred as I describe it. But I have altered the names and changed details to conceal the identities of some of my fellow students. I did this for two reasons. The first was privacy. The Harvard Business School
about our academic performance and the importance of respecting the learning environment, everyone was a little jumpy. If we were going to get into trouble at HBS and jeopardize our academic records, buzzword bingo hardly seemed worth it. He invited comments. The skydeck came thundering in. Rodger, one of the older students, who was still running his own technology business between classes, said that we needed to be able to strike a balance between joking among ourselves and being responsible.
speaking so awkward but also because much of what she heard seemed so mediocre. She had resigned herself to taking what she could from the classes and filtering out the rest. The term ended with written exams in each of the five subjects we had studied. The exams were open-book, but I spent a couple of days going over my notes from each course, trying to boil them down to just a few pages so I could work more quickly. The professors told us that if you showed up to class and prepared the
business from top to bottom, but also be ready to tear it up and start again, to listen to evidence that challenged your biases and ceaselessly revise your judgments. He was telling us that however secure we felt, we should always be alert for tremors. I heard this same lesson in a very different form from Dan Gilbert, the founder of Quicken Loans. I had not planned to hear him speak, but I was doing my usual Spangler shuffle between the frozen yogurt machine in the basement and an upstairs