Among the benefits of an MBA degree, career progression and high salary are some of the most important ones. Earlier, we have covered if you need an MBA to fast track your career and when an MBA is not worth it. In this post, we will try to find out if an MBA is worth it in the long run – whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur or a seasoned professional?
Should You Go Back to School for an MBA for Your Long-Term Career Goals?
By Rosana Beechum
Are you wondering whether you should go back to business school and whether or not it would make a difference to your career progression, or your ability to become a better entrepreneur or business executive?
At one time, an MBA was a must-have for professionals looking to improve their career and make it to a management position. But in today’s age of entrepreneurship, dominated by digital startups, founders, and a workplace driven by the millennium, the choice of whether or not to return to your studies can be one that’s no longer quite as compelling and even more difficult to make.
In recent times, the future of MBA education has been subject to much debate and the results see an entirely new generation weighing up the pros and cons of studying for this prestigious qualification. More than two years ago, a report in the Chicago Tribune revealed that applications for both full- and part-time MBA programs in the US are on a decline. The Economist said that more and more students are seeing the promise of business schools to be quite hollow, with the return on investment for an MBA, not quite the same as what it once was.
Related Article: Is it worth pursuing MBA/MS Abroad in COVID-19 times?
If you’re thinking about it, then here’s what you need to know about returning to school for an MBA and how the business school environment has changed over time. Consider these factors and weigh them up during your decision process.
Obtaining an MBA is Still a Must in Many Fields
If you’re thinking of pursuing a business career in a specialized area like banking, finance, investment banking, and many more, then it’s worth considering that there are many environments in a business where an MBA is still expected of you.
If you’re working in one of these fields without an MBA, then you are going to be the odd one out. Before you take the plunge, however, it’s worth taking some time to do your homework and get in touch with any specific firms that you are thinking of working to find out whether a lack of an MBA is something that’s going to hold you back.
Think About Your Long-term Goals
Whatever your plans and goals for the future, there are probably going to be many realities that you’ll need to confront. This is especially true if you are considering an entrepreneurial pathway, and the idea of getting an MBA is to help you improve your ability when it comes to running your own business.
There are many ways in which an MBA can help; improved pitching and raising capital from investors, better confidence and business acumen, and specific skills and knowledge to name a few. If you feel that you are lacking in any of these, then an MBA could be the answer for you.
The MBA Tour may be useful for you; you’ll get to explore options from some of the leading business schools around the world in one place to find a program and a school that’s suitable for your needs. Tours are held in various locations around the world with upcoming events in North America, Asia, and Latin America. Find out more about The MBA Tour’s upcoming events here!
Select the Right Program
Deciding that pursuing an MBA qualification is the right choice for you is an easy decision to make compared with choosing the right program for your needs, requirements, and short- and long-term goals. It may not be possible to find an all-encompassing program that covers everything, but the good news is that with so many different MBA options available today, it’s easier than ever to come pretty close.
Not every program is right for every applicant, so start early and give yourself plenty of time to research and determine what’s going to be a good fit for you. MBA degree programs come in all shapes and sizes – if you want to dedicate the next few years purely to studying, you can go for a traditional full-time, campus-based option while those who need to fit education around work, family and other commitments will benefit from getting their MBA on a part-time basis, evening classes or even an online degree that can be studied remotely and offers a much greater degree of flexibility.
Build Your Network
Many MBA students find that studying for the program itself is a great opportunity for networking. Indeed, the people that you meet along the way – no matter how you choose to study for your MBA – can often be just as beneficial to your career as the knowledge and skills that you will learn for the duration.
You should never underestimate the networking element of studying for an MBA; it gives you a unique opportunity to build once-in-a-lifetime connections with other business professionals, who can often serve as valuable resources to you throughout your career. The fellow students you will get the chance to meet when studying for an MBA will be lifelong business peers who you can turn to for advice on a multitude of issues, from getting started with your own business, to acquiring business funding, or even getting ahead when applying for a new position.
Consider the Financial Side of Things
There’s no denying that studying for an MBA – or any college degree, for that matter – can be expensive, so it’s definitely a wise idea to take the time to consider the financial side of things and work out how you are going to pay for your education. The good news is that when you’re studying for an MBA for all the right reasons with solid career goals in place, more often than not the qualification will begin to pay for itself sooner rather than later.
However, this doesn’t take away from the fact that you will still need to pay for tuition and all the other associated costs that come with being a student. The good news is that many MBA programs and business schools, in general, have realigned and reduced the financial burden of studying in order to make it easier for students. Many have also introduced new ways to help with student loans.
Before you make a decision, it’s a good idea to get all information about financial assistance upfront – you may be surprised at the number of programs that are designed to help you further your career or get back into the workforce with minimal financial stress.
Related Article: MBA is still very effective for salary increase
In order to become more viable in the market, it’s absolutely essential that you have the appropriate qualifications to back you. Studying for an MBA may no longer be as necessary for certain business careers as it once was, but it can still be a hugely beneficial move depending on your personal career or business goals. Gaining an MBA will not only open up new doors for you due to the skills and knowledge that you gain but also when it comes to the connections that you make. And, MBAs are becoming increasingly relevant to a wider range of fields such as fashion.
Ultimately, the decision is yours – and the good news is that today, there are many more creative options out there when it comes to getting an MBA, with pathways that balance time and finances to make it easier than ever for anybody to reach their career goals.
Author Bio: Rosana is an experienced writer who enjoys sharing her thoughts with readers. Specializing in business and education, she can highlight the latest developments that are affecting you in a clear and engaging way.
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