I did 2 years at an elite boutique then 2 years at a fairly elite buy-side shop. If I start a company that isn't successful, how will MBA programs view me after the startup vs. now? Would I have to get a "normal" job after the startup to be able to get references or look OK for an MBA? I am mainly talking about HBS / Stanford / Wharton.
The concern I have is that I am 27 now, so if I do a startup for 2 years, then I will be 29. If it's true that I need a "normal" job before I can have references for HBS / Stanford / Wharton, then that will put me at 31 at the time I attend, which is on the very older end of most MBA classes. I am concerned that I will be too old and will have to get an executive MBA.