Signing up for an MBA is a game-changing move that could pave the way for a brighter future. But how do you know if this is the right path for you? First, let us examine the answer to the question – “Should I get an MBA Degree?”
The simple answer that question is – It absolutely makes sense to pursue an MBA to advance your career. Most businesses are seeking potential employees who not only have the expertise to perform well on the job but also have analytical thinking in making important business decisions. Regardless of which sector you work in, public or private, the same basic organizational and business principles apply. Those principles include decisions that are tactical, strategic, transactional, and logical. You will learn all those principles for achieving operational excellence in an MBA program, which will drive your business’ future growth. Recent studies show that 46% of new MBA graduates had job offers with salaries of $125,000 or more. A paycheck like this will probably help pay the bills and much more! But life is more than just money. And to sign up for a degree that is as challenging as an MBA is not a decision to take easily. So how do you know if this is the right path for you? Here are the top 5 reasons that will convince you to pursue an MBA degree.
1 – Higher Career Prospects and Upward Mobility
Not much of a surprise in the fact that most MBA applicants want to improve their careers; 42 percent of survey respondents said they want to increase their employment prospects. What may be interesting is that the immediate post-MBA career target for almost half of them, 46.5%, is to take on leadership or general managerial level roles. Globally, the number of MBA candidates seeking leadership positions after graduation is almost three times higher than those who are mainly interested in a pay raise. While the ratio is smaller in North America, it still accounts for nearly twice as many who pursue leadership positions instead of salary hikes. The U.S. News and World Report cite higher employment rates and claims that an MBA will improve job security with the current employer or inside the industry. According to the Graduate Management Admission Council, 96% of the employers surveyed agreed that employing business school graduates would generate value for their businesses.
2 – Acquisition of new skill sets
The second most significant explanation of why professionals want to pursue an MBA is directly related to the first. As professionals aspire to transition to management and executive roles, they do need to develop new skills that relate to those responsibilities. Today, MBA programs offer courses on strategy, organizational behavior, and leadership to empower students to succeed as leaders in the workplace. In an article for the Harvard Management Review, Ed Batista, a mentor and internal coach at Stanford Graduate School of Business, writes:
“Concept of education has improved significantly in the last few decades. It previously focused on quantitative analysis in areas such as finance and operations, with little emphasis on other aspects of organizational life. As a result, MBAs have always been seen as bean counters that are myopically focused on data and out of touch with the problems facing managers in the real world. Business schools have acknowledged that it is not enough to provide quantitative and analytical education because within a few years of leaving school (or even immediately after graduation), their graduates can add value more through their ability to lead and handle others than through their talents as individual contributors. Yet performance in these more senior positions requires a completely different set of interpersonal skills.”
According to the Q.S. data, more than 40% of respondents decided to pursue an MBA to learn soft skills in communication, interpersonal relationships, and leadership. Besides, Q.S. implies that the key motives for finding an MBA work together. Sometimes, the short-term aim of many MBA students is to develop new skills that can boost job opportunities and contribute to leadership.
3 – International Experience
Almost 40% of respondents ranked acquiring international experience as the primary reason for pursuing an MBA. Although this statistic is less pronounced among North American and European MBA students, it is the top priority for applicants from Eastern Europe (55 percent) and Africa and the Middle East (50 percent) and the second most relevant criterion for applicants from the Asia-Pacific region (45 percent). Students in regions where foreign exposure is most prevalent are very interested in obtaining real-world experience in more developed global markets such as North America and Western Europe. For this reason, almost all of the top business schools in North America and Europe offer global immersion trips to major business centers around the world of academic credit, and some programs, such as Stanford’s, require these trips as graduation requirements.
4 – A Stronger Professional Network
Respondents of the survey also ranked another factor high- increasing professional networking. Around 30 percent of respondents mentioned networking as a reason for pursuing MBA programs. A separate 2016 survey showed that 85 percent of all positions are filled by networking, so it is not shocking that MBA applicants are looking to communicate with their peers. Many MBA programs rely on group work as a backbone of the coursework so that students can learn from each other. Students also get exposed to different business practices, cultures, and perspectives. Students will not only learn from their peers but will also create long-lasting personal and professional relations with each other — some of whom may one day become CEOs, partners, or company owners. Jennifer Hyman and Jennifer Fleiss, for example, met as section mates at Harvard Business School in 2008. Ten years later, they established a $1 billion business named Rent the Runway.
5 – A Change in Career
The two answers that the survey respondents gave were – to enable a career change and start a business. Approximately one-quarter of all respondents listed one of these two as a reason to pursue an MBA program. Career changer aspirants may involve applicants who use an MBA degree as a means of moving to a new sector, job feature, or venue. An example of this can be seen at Indiana University, where about half of all MBA applicants are involved in a transition to entrepreneurship or a new career path. There are several different types of MBA programs; some are general programs, while others that concentrate more on a particular area, such as an MBA in Healthcare Administration. According to the Princeton Review, the most common concentrations are finance, marketing, operations, entrepreneurship, and management.
The MBA credentials can provide graduates with greater versatility by offering a range of opportunities. This versatility may explain the reason why as many as 40% of MBAs transfer to unanticipated industries after graduation.
Are you ready to pursue an MBA Degree Online? If so, this is the best place to start your research – Online MBA Programs.
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