Four Common Reasons When Choosing an MBA
An MBA degree is a popular choice among many students for several reasons: career advancement, increased income, or a shift in future career direction. Regardless of the reason, students face a series of challenges within the program.
Typically, MBA students struggle with determining the vital content to focus on. Many MBA students note that they only apply a fraction of the knowledge acquired from the program and express concerns about applying MBA program knowledge in real-life situations.
Whether you’re considering, currently in, or about to enter an MBA program, you might encounter similar challenges. To extract the maximum value from the program and avoid overwhelming situations, MBA students need to identify core knowledge areas worth investing time in. Additionally, understanding which aspects of the program will be most beneficial to your career path is crucial.
The “key” to identifying these is the reason why you’re determined to pursue an MBA program. Below are four typical reasons for studying an MBA and how to maximize study time, as shared by the Harvard Business Review.
Pursuing an MBA with a Business Development Focus
Individuals intending to start a startup or embark on a new venture within a business might face numerous challenges. In such situations, an MBA program can assist students in addressing these challenges through knowledge and networking acquired from the program.
For those looking to establish or grow a business, consider these questions:
- What challenges is my business currently encountering?
- What knowledge can assist me in overcoming these challenges?
- How can I apply this knowledge to my company?
For instance, Steve, a tech company founder enrolled in a high-level management MBA program, constantly seeks the best approach to bring his product to the market. During the MBA program, he learned about market segmentation and beachhead markets. These concepts were entirely new to him. Applying these concepts from the MBA program, he promptly used both tools to develop a market approach strategy for his business expansion, realizing their worthiness for in-depth study.
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Advancing Career with an MBA
For individuals aiming to secure higher positions within a company, pursuing an MBA can offer a competitive advantage. Attending a business-focused MBA program allows you to bring new ideas to your current role. Moreover, lessons in leadership or business learned at the institution significantly aid in strengthening skills for a higher position.
For those aiming to climb the corporate ladder through an MBA:
- What needs to change for me to advance quickly?
- Which knowledge can I apply to facilitate these changes?
- How can I leverage new knowledge to ascend the career ladder?
Consider Jen, an MBA student striving for promotion within her company. Analyzing a case study during her MBA program, Jen discovered ways to enhance the organization’s management style. She realized that effective managers create measurable positive impacts and that the most critical aspect is their ability to guide employees effectively. By presenting her findings to higher management and proposing a training program focusing on managerial skills, Jen effectively showcased her readiness for a promotion.
Transitioning Careers with an MBA
Individuals considering a career change can benefit from an MBA by experiencing various roles and industries. Throughout the MBA program, learners should focus on studying business lessons from different companies and sectors. It’s an excellent opportunity to pause, introspect, and align personal values with career goals.
For those looking to transition careers via an MBA:
- How is my current job? How do I envision change in the future?
- What experiments can I perform in class and at work to explore a new path?
- How can I leverage these experiments to alter my career?
For example, Zara, a Technical Product Manager, admired technology-related roles but also enjoyed strategic planning. While studying strategy in her MBA, she applied Porter’s Five Forces Analysis to her current field. The essay was a personal challenge, allowing her to explore a new role and decide to specialize in strategy. After focusing on relevant courses, she smoothly transitioned into a new role post-MBA.
Exploring Future Paths with an MBA
For students unclear about their career path, an MBA can serve as a tool to explore further. They can utilize the program to explore various fields and identify their most intriguing areas. It’s a unique opportunity for self-reflection and career goal orientation.
For those using an MBA to define their career goals:
- Post-MBA, which fields am I interested in?
- What defines my values, and how can these areas align with my values?
- Which MBA courses will help me explore these capabilities?
Richard, employed at a federal contractor, was uncertain about his career trajectory. However, during an online MBA program, he explored various fields from business to finance. Through a business communication course, Richard discovered an interest in strategic planning. Although he tested entrepreneurship and finance, he remained in exploration mode to finalize his career path.
In Vietnam, many students also choose an MBA program as a compass to navigate career paths. One of the most preferred MBA programs is the PSO MBA—a globally recognized program designed by Western Sydney University, ranked in the top 1% of the world’s excellent universities.
The PSO MBA equips students with contemporary business theory and its practical application to solve complex real-world challenges. It serves as a suitable choice for students seeking a quality MBA program, contributing to career guidance in the future.
An MBA degree isn’t truly challenging when you determine your learning motivation. Identifying learning goals helps students focus on essential information—significant contributors to career development. This connection between learning and career pursuit is the thread that binds an MBA degree to an individual’s career path pursuit.