Last night an Italian whom I had talked to for a bit at a Wharton Winter reception came up to me when he left and said he’d learned more from me than from the guy who was doing the reception….Hmmmmm. I guess if I don’t get in at b-school, I could always be one of those people at trade fairs trying to sell some widgie….
The reception itself was nice, the talk reasonably informative, the crowd a bit quiet although I have been at events where the crowd was even duller. But the disappointment for me came at the drinks afterwards. I talked to a few people and asked them why they were interested in Wharton, and what they wanted from an MBA. Wrong question. They wanted their ticket punched. They didn’t have anything remotely interesting or passionate to say about why MBA. Getting their ticket punched. Big sigh. And what keeps on surprising me is that all these guys (and yes, they are mostly guys) are all so bloody serious. Yes, an MBA is serious business, but it is also just an MBA. Have a little fun, lighten up. I always wonder what these people think of themselves as leaders. They are all so focussed on making a good impression, asking the right questions and showing off that they don’t really interact with the other person they’re talking to. They don’t listen, rarely ask questions that reveal an interest in the other person but more in getting information for themselves. I don’t know….maybe it’s me.