Business degrees are among the most popular among college students. This is likely to do with the fact that employment in the business sector is consistently growing, and that business careers tend to pay very well. In fact, many business and financial occupations pay college degree holders far more than the average starting salary for all college graduates. Be that as it may, many graduates find that their career trajectory is slower or even hindered by the fact that they don’t hold a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA). As a result, whether you’re a college student considering the next step in your educational journey or you’re a working professional exploring your career options, you’ve likely thought of the possibility of an MBA. But, is an MBA worth it? How will it affect your career outcomes and future success? Here are a few reasons you should consider enrolling in an MBA program.
Fast Track Your Leadership Career
While some students enter MBA programs from other fields, not everyone who enrolls in an MBA is interested in making a huge change in their career. Instead, they’re hoping to speed up the trajectory of their career path. This is a prime example of when an MBA would be a great investment. Many senior roles in the business arena require extensive experience. An MBA can help prospective business leaders bypass decades of work in order to fast-track their careers. Additionally, the average starting salary for MBA grads is $20,000 a year more than those with an undergraduate business degree. Graduates of MBA programs are perfectly positioned for accelerated paths into leadership. This is because employers know that MBA graduates have the interpersonal, academic, and leadership skills necessary to manage people and solve complex problems.
Additionally, some schools offer flexible, fast-paced, and online MBA programs. These programs offer a great alternative to traditional master’s degrees as they provide students with the flexibility they’ll need to continue working. Flexible start dates and, in some cases, an accelerated course of study, provide students the opportunity to study when and where they want and begin their careers all the more quickly.
If you already have business-related experience under your belt, this can also help accelerate your MBA curriculum. At some institutions, like the University of Bridgeport, prior business experience can waive out MBA prerequisite courses – allowing you to complete your master’s degree even faster, and expedite your leadership goals.
Make Professional Connections
In the world of business, you’ll be heavily reliant on your professional network. One of the best ways to develop your network is to earn an MBA. The peers, professors, and business leaders you’ll meet during business school will prove to be a major resource after graduation. According to LinkedIn, 80% of business professionals consider networking fundamental to their career’s success. More than 60% of professionals find that their network provides them with career opportunities that they would otherwise not be presented with.
When choosing an MBA program, find out what resources your school of interest offers to students, both before and after graduation. A school with a strong career center and supportive alumni network will prove to be worth the investment. It’s important to note, however, that though networking comes down to who you know, it’s also about how much you put yourself out there. During your MBA program, make sure to develop your professional and personal networks. Expanding these networks will help you take better advantage of all the benefits that holding an MBA can provide.
Develop Specialized Skills
Attending an MBA program that offers students the opportunity to specialize is another way to make yourself an attractive candidate to employers. Where a general MBA provides students with the skills they need to make decisions and lead, a concentration area provides specific coursework in a focused subfield, such as Accounting or Marketing. This kind of specialization prepares graduates to pursue specific roles and telegraphs to employers that they are uniquely qualified for those positions. Some MBA concentrations you may consider include Analytics Intelligence, Accounting, Finance, Healthcare Management, Human Resources Management, Management, and Marketing. These are all highly sought-after concentrations that provide graduates with the tools they need to become successful members of the business community.
Students and working professionals who find themselves wondering how to get a leg-up in the business world should highly consider an MBA degree. Unlike many other graduate programs, MBA programs are designed to prepare graduates for real-world, professional outcomes. Plus, with online and accelerated MBA programs, graduates can quickly become qualified for mid-management and upper leadership positions, at an affordable cost. This, coupled with the fact that MBA graduates earn a substantially higher income than bachelor’s degree holders, is a good indication that pursuing a Master’s in Business Administration is well worth your time.
Looking to take the next step in your career? Learn more about University of Bridgeport’s School of Business here!