Job Hunting in CSR: What's Next for These MBA Graduates?

by Aman Singh Das | July 14, 2010

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How much does CSR matter in a job search? What if yourjob search is built around corporate responsibility, especially in the currenteconomy? Can you afford to choose between employers based on their commitmentto sustainability, transparency and ethical accountability? To find out, Iturned to four job seekers, all of whom either graduated from MBA programs inthe last two years or are scheduled to do so later this year. The common threadbesides business school is their interest in corporate responsibility and changemanagement.

Over the next two weeks, I will be publishinginterviews with each of the graduates, providing you with in depth insightsinto their worlds and their progress—or lack of it—in finding employment intheir chosen field. Each of thegraduates left behind stable, well-paid careers—ranging from IT, programming,and nonprofit fund raising—to strike out in a field they feel truly passionateabout. Will they sacrifice that passion for CSR in favor of employment? And ifnot, how long are they willing to search for that perfect job, and whatalternatives exist in the marketplace?

The interviews will also unveil a dishearteningparadox for job seekers in the CSR field: While some companies are reactivelyramping up their CSR initiatives, they are tending to hire externally only forsenior level positions. The mid and entry-level positions in these newCSR-focused teams, however, are being transitioned from within the organization.This creates a framework that is restricting business school graduates who maybe equipped with a deeper understanding of the issues than the internalemployee base, but lack the "industry experience" to apply for thefew available senior-level jobs.

Stay tuned as I talk to Ashley Jablow, whograduated this year from Boston University's School of Management with anMBA in CSR Marketing, Communications and Strategy [Regular readers willremember her recent post: Will an MBA in Sustainable Business Get Me a Job?];Geetanjali Singh, a 2010 graduate from University of California-Irvine's Paul Merage School ofBusiness with a concentration on CSR, general management andstrategy; Whit Tice who graduated with an MBA from Case Western's Weatherhead School of Management in2008 as well as a Master's in Positive Organizational Development and Change in2009; and Larry Furman, a Sustainability Consultant and a current MBA candidateat Marlboro College, where he is concentrating onmanaging for sustainability and intends to graduate this December.

First up:Key Findings from the interviews

Filed Under: CSR

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