An MBA, or a Master of Business Administration, is a very hot topic nowadays. Is this just a trend, a trifle, or is there real value in pursuing such a study programme? It is expensive and demanding and it has high entry requirements, so why should you opt for an MBA?
We will try to make that clear and list the advantages of an MBA, especially when it is a top business school with a very good reputation. So, here are the top 5 reasons for which it is worth it to start studying a master in business administration.
1. Higher salary
The average salary for an MBA graduate is considerably higher than that of an employee with a regular master qualification. For MBA graduates the average salary ranges from 70.000 $ (in governmental or non-profit Institutions) to 120.000 $ (in consultancy, finance or healthcare). That is almost twice as much of what you can expect to earn with a regular University degree. In this case, in 2-3 years, you cover the investment made in your MBA education which is estimated to cost, for a 2 year MBA at a top business university, 110.000 $ on average.
2. Better career opportunities
This advantage of an MBA degree goes hand in hand with the first one and it is actually the cause of the first one. Graduates of an MBA programme have, due to their qualification, higher chances of obtaining and holding a high level management position. It is estimated that 70% of the MBA graduates worldwide are senior managers or board directors. This type of position brings along a higher salary but of course also a higher responsibility and longer working hours.
Whether you wish to further your current career by advancing in a leadership position, or you want to pursue a new career, an MBA is definitely going to boost your chances of achieving these goals.
3. Better consolidated business network
As an MBA student you have great networking opportunities. Through this type of study you get to know and interact in a relevant manner (in a context that accentuates your business management capabilities) with colleagues (future high level managers), professors and teaching staff (usually former or current potent business people, with great on-field experience). Furthermore if you are not doing a part-time MBA next to your job or within your company you have good chances to meet potential employers through the various internships that are part of most top MBA programme. Last but not least you gain access to the extensive alumni network of that particular MBA programme and of others (professionals with key positions to whom you already have a direct link through the MBA education you possess). This extensive, well consolidate business network is bound to pay off throughout your whole career making you the first-hand recipient of all relevant information in the field and giving you better chances at seizing the best opportunities.
4. New skill and knowledge acquisition
You may think it sounds trivial and may say to yourself isnt that what any study programme is supposed to do?. Yes, it is, but an MBA education is usually pursued in a very specific situation by a young professional with a few (2,3 or more) years of experience and sometimes even by senior employees that feel up for the challenge. After some time in the professional life (even as little as 2 years) it is in the human nature to conform to a certain repetitiveness and to stagnate in a comfort zone. This limits your disposition for learning and new skill acquisition, why should I learn something new when what I know works just fine, its safer to stick to what I know best. Studying a Master of Business Administration forces you to get out of your comfort zone, deal with the latest issues, apply the newest management techniques and just constantly challenge yourself, your practices and your approaches. And that will continue after graduation as well, as an MBA also provides you with the channels that will keep this challenge alive and push you to continuously improve.
5. A holistic perspective on the business world
As mentioned before, through studying an MBA you become part of a great network of professionals and companies and you constantly challenge yourself with the newest problem-solving. These things together give you a great overview of the business world, a deep understanding and a certain receptiveness to the slight changes of this environment. This type of overview and sensitivity is very hard to achieve without spending a lot of time on it. Also, as regular employee, your access will be restricted to much of the relevant information. As an MBA student or graduate this insight comes with the territory and is a great asset, not only to you as a manager, but also to any potential employer.
If you are the type of person that can handle the challenge of holding a leadership position, of having a lot of responsibility and of being in a constant learning and development cycle, then you are probably a good candidate for an MBA.