The Reasons to Earn an MBA
The next time your company puts out a vacancy announcement for a high-level position, check out the requirements for job applicants. In many fields, it’s now expected that CEOs and other high-level executives to have an advanced degree. In most cases, that advanced degree is an MBA, otherwise known as the Master of Business Administration.
The MBA is different from most other degrees because it allows more flexibility and customization. The goal is to train experienced business professionals in a variety of business-related topics, including management, marketing, and accounting. Think of it as top-tier training that shapes the mindset and advances the skill set of serious business professionals.
If you aren’t sure whether earning your MBA is a wise investment of your money and time, consider our list of the top five reasons business professionals may take this step.
1. A Business Degree Opens up a Large Number of Career Paths
Regardless of your work history prior to earning your MBA, you will have job options in a long list of fields once this advanced degree makes an appearance on your resumé. For instance, consider just a few of the jobs most commonly explored by MBA candidates and the approximate salary that you can expect for each of those positions.
- Investment Banker: $200,000 and up
- Management Consultant: $100,000 to $1 million and up
- Marketing Manager: $140,0001
Many MBA candidates don’t want to switch career fields, so they often transition from managerial to executive positions. Some will also become consultants, offering their business expertise to executives and business owners who want professional guidance when making important executive decisions. Whether your goal is a complete career switch you just want to move up to the executive level, you will likely have more job opportunities if you have your MBA.
2. There Will Always Be Job Openings
If you’re like most people, job security is something that crosses your mind regularly. In most industries, competition is fierce for the highest-paying positions. Companies that offer excellent benefits packages can receive thousands of applications when a vacancy opens, or a new position is created. This means that you have a lot of competition whether you’re searching for a new job or you’re just hoping to hold onto your current position.
One way to enhance your shot at complete job security is to invest in your MBA.2 Many of your competitors won’t have this impressive achievement on their resumé, and that means their skills and business expertise will fall short when compared to yours.
An MBA program also gives you many unique opportunities for networking within your field as well as with professionals from other fields. This means that you will know about many job openings that aren’t publicly announced, and you will likely receive job offers, referrals, and tips from your professional connections. All this networking translates into a steady supply of job opportunities that many of your competitors will miss out on.
Finally, the skills that you learn in an MBA program are easily transferable to the growing gig economy, which requires an entrepreneurial mindset and skill set. If you can go into business for yourself as a professional consultant or by opening your own business, you may never have to worry about applying for a job again.
3. You’ll Learn Skills That Can Be Transferred Across Industries
The skills taught through MBA programs are easily applied to any industry. Where there is a business ready to thrive, there is a need for business expertise. This means that someone holding an MBA should always have the skills to pivot when a job is lost or when it comes time to change career paths for any reason.
For example, many business owners and hiring managers prefer to hire professionals with an MBA because they will possess the following soft skills.
- Problem solving
- Analytical thinking
- Verbal and written communication
- Time management
Regardless of your work history, these soft skills are valuable for all businesses. Therefore, it’s so easy for MBA candidates to switch career paths or provide consulting services to businesses in multiple industries.
You’ll also master a variety of hard skills that are easily transferred between industries. For example, your mathematical, reading, and writing abilities are pushed to a new level through aggressive MBA training. Some MBA programs also teach advanced computer skills, and you may learn to use technologies that are up and coming.
4. You Can Earn an Advanced Degree and Make More Money
Earnings for people holding a master’s degree are approximately 97 percent higher than earnings for people with only a high school diploma.3 It’s possible that this rate is even higher for many MBA candidates since this unique master’s degree opens the door to a more versatile pool of jobs at the highest levels of business.
In general, you can expect to earn more money with each advanced degree that you earn. If you really want to maximize earnings, push beyond your MBA to earn a doctoral or professional degree. You can more than double the earnings of a high-school graduate with these higher academic achievements.
5. It’s Easier and Cheaper Than Ever to Start Classes
One of the biggest barriers to academic achievement in the past was limited access to quality universities. Now that MBA programs are widely available online, this barrier has been lifted for most people. Even if you live in a rural area that isn’t close to a major university, you can fulfill all requirements to earn your MBA online. If you have the time to commit to the program and dependable Internet access, you have what it takes to further your education today.
Are you worried that you can’t afford to go back to school? Financial barriers are still an issue for some students, but you now have more financing options than ever before. For starters, you may qualify for an MBA scholarship based on your financial need and/or professional accomplishments.
If scholarships aren’t an option, you may apply for financial aid or take out a personal loan to cover the cost of your MBA program. The higher earnings that you will likely achieve after completing the program will make it easier to repay these loans, but make sure that you don’t commit to a loan that you can’t afford right now. If a family member is investing in your education, they may agree to receive payment after you finish the program.
Depending on where you work and your current position, your employer may also pay for all or some of your MBA training. Even if this isn’t an advertised benefit, meet with a member of management to ask if the company is willing to invest in your education. Many companies will see the value in this investment and will agree to pay for your program as it will benefit their business in the future.
Are you ready to explore your MBA options? Start comparing online programs today to see the variety of programming available and the many financing options. The MBA journey is unique for everyone, so take some time to determine your long-term professional goals. This will help you find the ideal MBA program for your future.