In theory, you know what an MBA is. It’s a Master’s of Business Administration, a degree designed to give you an overarching understanding of business and take your career to the next level. But, what is it really? And what does it actually prepare you for? This week, we’re busting some common myths about getting your MBA and what you can do with it.
Myth: Business schools are full-time two-year programs. Sure, when you think of the standard business school experience it involves putting your life on hold and attending school full-time for two years. Not true! There are so many more options than just two-year full-time MBA programs. Check out the following opportunities to see if they fit your needs: one-year full-time MBA programs, part-time MBA programs, executive MBA programs, executive development programs, joint or dual-degree programs, or distance learning programs. Hello options!
Myth: Business schools are a cut and dry experience. Your undergraduate experience likely prepared you for a very specific type of learning involving cramming, learning by the book, and reciting the same answers countless other students have given before you. Business school is nothing like this rigid curriculum model. It’s very fluid and adaptable to stay on top of current business trends. You’re asked to challenge the status quo and think critically to solve real world business case studies.
Myth: Business schools are just about business. You’re going to learn SO MUCH about business during your business school experience. But, business school is about soft skills just as much as it’s about knowledge. You’re going to expand how you think, refine your communication skills, and develop your leadership potential. You’re also going to socialize like you’ve never socialized before to build relationships with your peers as they become your future coworkers, bosses, leaders, partners, and friends.
Myth: Every program is vastly different. While each school has a different culture and approach, programs are similar in their core curriculum. For example, in two-year programs you’re likely to first learn the basics of core business curriculum, take a summer internship, and then spend the second year building your chosen area of expertise.
Myth: You can’t specialize in business school. While everyone pursuing an MBA ends up with the same Master’s degree, you can pursue a concentration. Think of this as your “major” within the degree. Common concentrations include strategy, technology management, entrepreneurship, finance, and marketing.
Myth: Business graduates just get hired at consulting firms. While consulting is a very popular choice for business school graduates, the top three job functions companies plan to fill with MBA graduates this year include strategy/innovation, finance, and business intelligence/analytics. And these jobs aren’t just limited to one or two industries. Business school graduates are sought after by industries including consultancies, health care companies, tech companies, and nonprofits alike.
Myth: Going to business school doesn’t pay off. Student loans can be daunting. But, the experience can certainly be financially worth it. The median salary for business graduates hit a new high in 2019 with an annual base salary of $115,000.
And for our final myth, getting your MBA is an incredibly challenging experience. Just kidding! We can’t bust this one. Going to business school and pursuing your MBA requires just as much work as everyone says it does. But hopefully busting other myths surrounding the experience helps prepare you for school and beyond!