Monday, May 26, 2014

Twitter Basics for MBA students

Twitter can be a great tool for students to build professional relationships, find a job and stay up to date on what is happening in your industry. Before you dive into Twitter, I recommend you get a few of the basics down. Below are a few basics you want to master. These tips are for people that want to use Twitter strategically for their careers, if you don't care about that, you probably won't find this advice as helpful.

1. Decide what you're going to tweet about. It's easier to build a following on Twitter when people know what you will be tweeting about. If you're all over the place, it'll be harder. This does not mean if you tweet about marketing, you can't tweet about your favorite NBA team. Just try to be consistent. For example, I tweet 90% about marketing, technology and networking. 10% is whatever I'm in the mood to tweet about.

2. Remember that everything is public. Think before you tweet. People have lost their jobs for the things they have tweeted about. A PR executive with some racists tweets is the latest casualty.

3. Put up a professional profile picture. Just like LinkedIn, if you're using Twitter to expand your network, it can help to have a professional picture. At least put some kind of picture up. No one wants to see the Twitter egg.

twitter egg with an x

4. Fill out the description. This is your chance to let people know what you'll be tweeting about. I recommend you link to your LinkedIn profile, blog or personal website in the description.

example of a twitter description

5. Post consistently. If you never post, many people will eventually stop following you.

6. Follow people. Follow anyone or anything that interests you. Follow companies you are interested in or people you admire.

7. Favorite tweets. This is a simple way to let people know you like what they are sharing. Twitter notifies you when someone favorites your tweet. This is also a great way to get someone to follow you back.

example of favoriting a tweet

8. Retweet people. This is a way for you to share great content that you find with your network. Just like when you favorite, the user is notified and there is a good chance they might follow you back.

9. Respond to tweets. The great thing about Twitter is most people on it are the sort of people that want to have conversations with the Twitter community. Comment on posts, or respond to questions. You'll be surprised who might respond back.

10. Be yourself. The more authentic the better.

Twitter can be a valuable tool as you navigate your career. Have fun with it and find what aspect of Twitter creates the most value for you personally. Good luck and happy tweeting.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Why I Chose BYU For My MBA

Where you go to get your MBA is a very complicated and personal decision. I've had a fantastic experience these past two years at BYU, so I thought I'd write down some of my thoughts on why I came to BYU for my MBA. Below are my top reasons for choosing BYU.

Old school BYU logo

It's a great school. It's a top 30 program. Different rankings put BYU in different places, but Forbes most recently ranked BYU as #17.

You can not beat the cost. I did not want debt loads from school to dictate any career decisions post MBA. The cost of tuition and living in Provo is astronomically low. Graduating with little or no debt gives you much more flexibility in your career choices right out of school and the next 5-10 years. US News just put out a list of which schools provide the most financial value at graduation. BYU is the highest ranked school on the list. To put this in perspective, I saved my entire second year's worth of tuition over my summer internship.

The people I knew who went there.  I did not know it at the time, but growing up I was surrounded and influenced strongly by BYU MBA's in my church, community and Boy Scout activities. Even as a teenager, I admired and respected those leaders. During my undergrad I met and became friends with some BYU MBA's and I really liked them and admired their career ambitions. They seemed like my kind of people.

It gets me to where I want to go. I really thing this is the bottom line for choosing a business school. Can it help you get to where you want to go? When I looked at all the random things I want to do in my career, I determined that a BYU MBA would help me at many steps along the way. This was a tough question for me because it takes a lot of educated guessing. For example, just because you go to a school that your dream company recruits out of, does not mean you'll get a job at that company. You might be better off at a different school and a little more hustle. It's also really hard to value the future value of a network from any school. It might be worth millions or close to nothing. I just made the best decision with the data I had.

It's a tough decision to figure out what school to go to, but I'm extremely happy with my choice. I think a big part of that is that after I decided, I didn't look back and made the most of all the opportunities I had during those two years. Whatever I put into the experience, I got back even more. It could not have worked out better.

P.S.- Cafe Rio might have had a slight part in the decision.
Picture of a cafe rio burrito

P.S.S. - Here is a quick video on how I felt about the professors a BYU, feel free to check it out too.