Managers Not MBAs: A Hard Look at the Soft Practice of Managing and Management Development
Covertext: In this sweeping critique of how managers are educated and how, as a consequence, management is practiced, Henry Mintzberg offers thoughtful and controversial ideas for reforming both.
“The MBA trains the wrong people in the wrong ways with the wrong consequences,” Mintzberg writes. “Using the classroom to help develop people already practicing management is a fine idea, but pretending to create managers out of people who have never managed is a sham.”
Leaders cannot be created in a classroom. They arise in context. But people who already practice management can significantly improve their effectiveness given the opportunity to learn thoughtfully from their own experience. Mintzberg calls for a more engaging approach to managing and a more reflective approach to management education. He also outlines how business schools can become true schools of management.