How do we define success?
Institutions can be called successful when they achieve their mission over time.
The mission of the Harvard Business School is to develop leaders who make a difference in the world. Primarily, this means graduates of its MBA and executive programs—although scholars and teachers trained in the School's doctoral program, or in joint Ph.D. programs with other Harvard faculties, certainly lead in their respective academic fields.
But what does "making a difference in the world" mean? Does its meaning change over time—either in over the life of the institution, or of the individual? How do HBS alumni define "success"?
There are other aspects of success, as defined by HBS. These include, for example:
- arriving at a workable definition of the profession of business
- creating a transformational educational experience
- developing useful knowledge
- disseminating that knowledge across key constituencies
- helping other institutions around the world provide effective management education
- creating a campus and a community
- developing a strong business model that supports the institution's mission
- cultivating the next generation of leadership without tying its hands
Collectively, these add up to a story of impact—which at HBS is often used synonymously with "success."