Eight Reasons an MBA Will Get You Hired
The value of a Master of Business Administration (MBA) is hotly debated; naysayers insist it’s not worth the time and effort. But the statistics seem to prove them wrong: according to a 2013 Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) survey, “Not only are more companies planning to hire recent MBAs around the world in 2013 (75%, up from 71% that hired in 2012), but they expect to increase the average number of new MBA hires per company from 11.4 in 2012 to a projected 14.6 in 2013.”
Yes, you didn’t misread that finding—a full three-quarters of the businesses surveyed hired or planned to hire MBA graduates last year. (The survey respondents included 900 employers in 50 countries around the world.) So what is it about an MBA that will get you hired? Here are eight of the myriad reasons:
1) You’ll learn the requisite educational content needed to succeed in the business world.
How many times have you faced a challenge on the job that you wished you’d been informed of and trained on beforehand? There’s a reason people go to school—because they want to learn the knowledge and skills that will further their career and personal development goals. Business school is no different; MBA programs offer structured educational programming that helps both novices and experienced businesspeople grasp concepts like organizational structure, strategy, and business theory. The “MBA” designation on a resume is a stamp of advanced business knowledge, a widely accepted qualification for a number of careers—and as such, MBA graduates have a higher chance of obtaining a high-level management position.
2) You’ll gain practical knowledge.
Of course, simply attending classes is only one aspect of business school. MBA students are surrounded by business practitioners, professors, and thought leaders. Those who go through an MBA program will gain insights into practical aspects of today’s job market, such as regional demand (where are the jobs?), compensation trends (how much will I earn in a given role?), and even company hiring plans (what’s open now?). Knowing where, how, and when to look for a job will help you get one.
3) You’ll gain access to a powerful network.
Another thing about being surrounded by business professionals—you build your network. When it comes to business school, the alumni network alone is worth its weight in gold. Networking is arguably the most valuable outcome of business school. After all, the vast majority of jobs are never posted on job boards or company websites; instead, companies hire people referred by current employees or other connections. Those who develop these connections therefore have a clear advantage.
4) The MBA is becoming more universally sought-after.
According to the GMAC survey, “the greatest growth in demand for MBAs…is coming from the energy/utilities and health care/pharmaceuticals sectors—industries not traditionally sought by MBA talent.” As more businesses look to grow and increase the productivity of their employees, they seek educated, competent people with a knowledge of how to reduce costs and overcome economic challenges—topics discussed at length in MBA curricula. For this reason, the MBA is becoming increasingly relevant and applicable in every industry.
5) Companies compete with one another.
As a follow-up to the previous point, companies are competing to hire the best talent. According to the GMAC survey, “More than half (55%) of companies worldwide plan to expand their customer base.” These companies’ ability to claim a bigger share of the market depends on the team members they hire—which means they’ll be looking for those with the qualifications, network, and experience of an MBA graduate.
6) You already have a job—and sometimes, your employer will pay for your MBA.
As all of these companies compete for the best talent, many smart executives realize they can do more with what they’ve got. By sending current employees to business school—and footing the bill-they’re making an investment in individuals as well as in their own business. It’s just good sense.
7) Large companies in particular look for MBA graduates.
The GMAC survey reported, “Small companies (fewer than 1,000 employees) plan to hire an average of 4.6 recent MBA graduates in 2013, compared with an average of 9.9 MBA candidates per medium-sized company (1,000–24,999 employees), and 26.3 MBA candidates, on average, per large company (25,000+ employees).” So if you’re looking to work on the business or management side of a large firm, you’ll definitely want to consider getting an MBA.
8) You can hire yourself.
A number of people attend business school with the goal of starting their own business. In addition to providing educational guidance, MBA programs can give budding entrepreneurs access to business plan competitions and put them in contact with potential investors. An analysis by Poets&Quants found that start-ups spun out of 20 business schools received almost $2 billion in investment funding. Tom Eisenmann, the co-chair of Harvard’s Arthur Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, told Poets&Quants that really, “It’s pretty straightforward: If you’re working on a business and you can push it far enough while you’re in the MBA program, you’re in a place where you’re rarely more than a phone call or an email away from somebody in several [venture capital] firms.”
So what’s the end result of earning an MBA? According to the GMAC survey, “MBA graduates continue to command higher starting salaries compared with other master’s graduates in the United States, with a median base salary of $95,000 [US dollars], up from $90,000 in 2012. This is a salary premium of $43,000 over bachelor’s degree holders, up from an average of $40,000 reported over the past six years.” (And that doesn’t even include work/life benefits like paid vacation, health benefits, and other perks offered to top recruits. So why do they earn more money? Because they’ve developed the skills, network, and tools necessary to advance into higher management positions. That’s why an MBA will get you hired—because you’re better equipped to make the case for why you should be hired.
Online Executive MBA Programs
Kaplan University While executive MBA programs are designed for working professionals, earning your MBA degree online from Kaplan University can be an alternative solution to continuing your education while maintaining your career. Kaplan is a robust, innovative school network with campuses scattered across the country and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Walden University In addition to several specializations for its general MBA program, Walden University also has many DBA programs available should you decide to continue your education. Walden University is an online school accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
Liberty University Liberty University is the largest non-profit Christian university in the country. Liberty has an online MBA program that is designed with working professionals in mind. Liberty integrates business ethics and academic integrity into its Christian-based curriculum. Liberty is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
Saint Leo University The MBA from Saint Leo University is a 36 credit hour program and entirely online-based. The degree explores the several facet of upper management including professional development, marketing, entrepreneurship, economics, legal studies, and behavioral studies. Saint Leo is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and was founded in 1889.
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