Kellogg | Mr. Finance To Consulting
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Kellogg | Mr. Boutique Consultant
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Harvard | Mr. Hustler
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Kellogg | Mr. Multinational Strategy
GRE 305, GPA 3.80
London Business School | Mr. CFA Charterholder
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Tuck | Ms. Green Biz
GRE 326, GPA 3.2
Wharton | Mr. Small Biz Leader
GMAT 700, GPA 2.61
Kellogg | Mr. 770 Dreamer
GMAT 770, GPA 8.77/10
Marshall School of Business | Mr. Strategy Consultant
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Kellogg | Mr. Engineer Volunteer
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IESE | Mr. Future Brand Manager
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MIT Sloan | Mr. Surgery to MBB
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Harvard | Mr. British Tech 2+2
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Columbia | Ms. Cybersecurity
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Wharton | Ms. Ultimate Frisbee
GRE 326, GPA 3.47
Wharton | Ms. Future CEO
GMAT 710, GPA 3.0
Chicago Booth | Mr. Inclusive Consultant
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Stanford GSB | Ms. Civil Servant
GMAT 730, GPA 3.3
Harvard | Mr. MacGruber
GRE 313, GPA 3.7
Duke Fuqua | Mr. National Security Advisor
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McCombs School of Business | Mr. Military 2.0
GRE 310, GPA 2.3
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Navy Electronics
GRE 316, GPA 3.24
Wharton | Mr. Naval Submariner
GMAT 760, GPA 3.83
Stanford GSB | Mr. Techie Teacher
GMAT 760, GPA 3.80
Ross | Mr. NCAA to MBB
GMAT 710, GPA 3.2

Pepperdine Offers Apple Watch For MBA Ranking

Pepperdine's Graziado School of Business is ranked 78th among the top 100 business schools in the U.S. by Poets&Quants.

Pepperdine’s Graziadio School of Business

To help meet Forbes’ threshold for alumni participation for its ranking of the best MBA programs,  Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management is offering alums the chance to win a $269 Apple Watch. The unusual offer—described in a recent Facebook post—is being made so that at least 15% of the school’s full-time MBA alumni in the Class of 2012 fill out a survey Forbes uses to rank business schools.

While it’s common for schools to send emails encouraging their alums to complete ranking surveys sent by Bloomberg Businessweek, Forbes, The Financial Times, and The Economist, it’s unusual that a school would offer an incentive to gain compliance. The minimum participation levels vary from one survey to the next. Bloomberg Businessweek, for example, does not require a percentage of respondents but rather a minimum of at least 30 students to be included in its ranking. The Financial Times insists at least 20% of alumni reply to the survey, with at least 20 fully completed responses. The Economist mandates a minimum response rate that is equivalent to 25% of the latest intake or 50 students/alumni (whichever is lower)—to be included in its ranking.

Graziadio Dean Deryck J. van Rensburg, who assumed the deanship at the school in November after serving as former president of global ventures at The Coca-Cola Company, sent emails to alumni relaying the Apple Watch offer.  “We’ve done this before,” says Lisa Perry, director of marketing and communications at Graziadio. “This is just part of our broader engagement with alumni.” The previous incentive offered by the school to alumni, thinks Perry, was an Apple iPad.

In 2015, the last time Forbes ranked full-time MBA programs, Pepperdine ranked 63 out of the 65 schools that made the list. The magazine surveyed 17,400 alumni at 95 schools regarding their pre- and post-M.B.A. compensation, career choice and location. Forbes said it had a responsse rate of 24%. If a response rate for a school is under 15%, the magazine will exclude the school from its rankings.

Source: Facebook feed for Pepperdine’s Graziadio School of Business & Management

Here’s the Facebook post published by the school:

“Want to win an Apple Watch and support Pepperdine Graziadio?

“2012 Full-Time MBA Graduates, graduating between August 2011 to June 2012, should fill out the 2017 Forbes Best Business School Survey via email directly from Forbes. Details about the survey and how to win an Apple Watch were included in a separate email from Dean Van Rensburg.

“Your participation plays a vital role in ensuring Pepperdine Graziadio’s inclusion in the rankings, as we must hit a minimum response rate to be considered. Thank you for your paerticipation!”


About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.