The following is a guest post from Anthony of Online MBA.
By understanding the point of an MBA, you’ll be better equipped to choose a suitable MBA program and plan for the future of your career. In recent years, the MBA, or Masters in Business Administration, has become one of the most popular graduate degree programs worldwide. MBA programs can be very expensive, leaving some wondering how they can justify the relatively high price of an MBA. In reality, an MBA can be one of the best investments you’ll make in your life, and will provide an excellent return on investment when you consider the increased pay and more satisfying job you’ll be able to secure after completing an MBA program.
One of the main reasons why people pursue an MBA is the expected salary increase that they’ll receive once the MBA program has been completed. In fact, a person with an MBA can be entitled to a salary that is $10,000 to $30,000 higher per year than a person with only a bachelor’s degree. In reality, your total salary increase could be higher or lower than this range. However, the point of an MBA remains: by obtaining an MBA, you’ll be worth more money. You’ll need to consider the cost of the MBA program you plan on pursuing, and then figure how many years it will take for your increased salary to pay off the initial cost of receiving the MBA. Many individuals find that it will only take a few years to pay off their MBA once they find a higher paying job upon graduation.
Of course, there are other factors to consider when making the monetary investment of pursuing an MBA as well. These factors include:
The industry you’d like to work in.
A normal MBA, as opposed to an Executive MBA, won’t necessarily be an automatic ticket to a management position in any field. An MBA with a concentration in a specific field will be more competitive than a more general MBA, so long as you can commit to working in that field.
The location of the job you’d like to work.
There’s a reason why most salary ranking websites separate their information geographically. Typically, a job position in a rural midwestern town will pay less per year than the same position in Chicago, New York or Los Angeles, for example. As such, your MBA might not be worth as much if you don’t plan to relocate to a metropolitan area.
Whether you plan to use your MBA to advance in your current organization or secure a position in a different organization.
Talk to senior-level staff at your current organization to see what kinds of opportunities might open up for you if you receive an MBA. Simultaneously, research job opportunities at other organizations to see average starting salaries for individuals with MBAs. Compare the salary figures of each.
Of course, money isn’t everything, and it’s important to recognize that an MBA could put you on the fast-track to a more enjoyable, challenging and satisfying job, regardless of annual pay. According to a study performed by an independent staffing service, Accountemps, 80% of senior-level executives feel that an MBA is important when seeking an upper-level management position at a top organization.
By obtaining an MBA, you’ll be better equipped to obtain your ideal job in the near future, as an MBA can often make up for some (though rarely all) of the work experience required by organizations hiring for high-level positions. You also have a couple of different options when obtaining the degree. You can either attend an on site University or join the ever more popular way of attaining it, which is getting an online MBA degree.
In addition, an MBA can be just the tool you need to leverage a better balance between work and your personal life. Potentially, an MBA may allow you to take a job where you’ll spend fewer hours per week working, have more free time for family and friends, and still earn a highly competitive wage. Meanwhile, the work you’ll be performing will often be more satisfying and meaningful, and possibly even lower in stress than a lower-ranking position. When you consider all of these factors, understanding the point of an MBA is actually quite easy.