10 Reasons to Pursue an MBA Degree

Alex Bolt, MBA Program Director at Torrens University Australia outlines 10 good reasons why an MBA could be the right move for your career.

Change is in the air in 2022 for many hopeful professionals. As we head into a post-pandemic economic growth period, studies show that more than 40% of the global workforce want to look for a new job (Forbes, 2021).

While many of the professionals who are considering a career change are uncertain about their specific future trajectory they all seek something better, something more rewarding, they seek roles where they can personally flourish. In a rapidly changing world new skills are needed to fulfill these dreams – gaining an MBA can turn dreams into reality.

Here are 10 good reasons why an MBA could be the right move for your career.

1. Expand your horizon and give yourself options

So, what is an MBA and what does it teach you exactly? An MBA provides broad competencies for professionals who have typically been in the workforce for several years to advance in their current organisation or to change industries. Feel like a bigger challenge? An MBA is recognised anywhere in the world, and the program is globally orientated.

An MBA is designed as a broad overview of how a business operates and to provide the diverse skills leaders need to understand and manage every division of a corporation, to attain senior positions in the public sector, or to be successful in their own business. An MBA will change the way you think, it provides new ideas and tools to recognise opportunities and successful business strategies to address challenges. The range of subjects studied in an MBA include:

-Financial Management
-Dynamic Leadership
-Business Decision Analytics
-Marketing
-Global Management
-Innovation Creativity & Entrepreneurship
-Corporate Sustainability

If you’re trying to change your career but unsure where to go, the ‘broad and deep’ approach of an MBA is important. By exposing you to diverse and unfamiliar subjects, an MBA gives you the opportunity to test your preferences and broaden your self-knowledge. By doing so you will develop a keener understanding of your future direction.

2. You’ll get a higher salary

Money talks, and the facts are indisputable; survey after survey of graduate salaries around the world show that MBA graduates get higher salaries upon completion of their studies. According to one QS World University Rankings survey, the salary for MBA students before their studies was $46,974. After graduation, the average salary had risen to $83,186: a huge increase of 77%. Plus, this figure seems to be going up, as the economy recovers.

Also read: MBA, Digital MBA, or Executive MBA? Here’s How These Students Chose The Right MBA For Them

Figures published by the US National Association of Colleges and Employers predict that the average starting salary for MBA graduates in 2021 will be $87,966: 11.3% higher than the average starting salary among 2020 grads.

Of course, the pay grades of MBA graduates vary hugely, depending on a graduate’s role, sector, location, gender or level of experience. It is encouraging that the business community continues to make gains with gender disparity. The AMBAs Application and Enrolment Report 2021, showing that the proportion of women applying to MBA programs globally rose to 39% in 2020.

However on the whole, studies consistently show that the future financial rewards for MBA graduates represent a sound return on investment.

3. Demand for MBA graduates is rebounding in 2021

The latest hiring surveys show that many employers are once again scouting for new management talent in 2021 and 2022. One such renowned survey, the Graduate Management Admission Council’s (GMAC) annual Corporate Recruiter Survey shows significant rebounds in hiring and salary projections for 2021 MBA graduates, compared to their 2020 predecessors.

According to their findings, after a slump during the pandemic, 91% of corporate recruiters are now hiring MBA graduates in 2021, and 9 out of 10 expect demand to increase or remain stable in the next five years.

4. Obtain the soft skills you need to be an effective leader

Soft skills are in demand in the post-pandemic world, and an MBA is a great place to learn them.

Arguably more important than the administrative, analytical and leadership skills taught are the interpersonal, self-reflective and community-focussed elements of the MBA program that are essential for ethical leaders. Leadership is a privilege that provides the opportunity to model values-based behaviour that followers take on as their own. Among the fake news, unethical leadership and corporate scandals of our modern world MBA graduates are being shaped as tomorrow’s moral managers who can positively change lives, communities and dishonest business practices. Central to ethical leadership are soft skills. Therefore, as part of an MBA course, you will develop:

-Emotional and Social intelligence
-Different ethical leadership styles
-Effective communication techniques
-Creative problem solving
-Collaboration
-Cross-cultural understanding
-Team building
-Negotiation
-Active listening

These skills are even more essential to the business world today than they ever have been, and are some of the top skills that recruiters look for when hiring.

5. You gain access to a bigger network

Almost 70% of Torrens University Australia’s MBA faculty either come from business backgrounds, or are still actively involved in business as board members, consultants or advisors. In addition to PhD qualifications these lecturers bring their rich experience to the classroom and also their broad network of industry contacts. As guest speakers in classrooms and through regular networking events such as job fairs, industry functions and open day’s students have the benefit of this direct contact with industry.

Torrens University Australia is proud to regularly host many prestigious companies on our campuses to talk with our students.  Many of these large organisations actively recruit our best and brightest MBA students – sometimes even before they graduate! Finally, remember your fellow students should become part of your lifelong professional network, most of whom are already in full-time employment.

It is essential the university you choose for your MBA has these important networking opportunities and strong ties to industry.

6. Statistically, you will end up in a senior position

In 2020, the Association of MBAs surveyed 752 current MBA students and 2,110 MBA alumni several years after their graduation, as part of an ongoing study. Within five years of graduating, 65% of graduates had already gained management positions within a large organisation, 12% were already senior managers, 11% had become entrepreneurs and 18% were working in small businesses.

The longer term outcomes of the study show it is increasingly MBA graduates occupying senior management positions, as business owners (27%) and board members (15%).

According to Payscale, some typical management roles that MBA graduates end up in (and their associated salary range and average) include:

-Project Manager ($59k – $122k and $85,832)
-Chief Financial Officer ($93k – $238k and $151,533)
-Senior Financial Analyst ($67k – $107k and $84,927)
-Financial Analyst ($51k – $87k and $65,355)
-Human Resources Manager ($52k – $100k and $72,471)
-Financial Controller ($63k – $132k and $92,138)
-Operations Manager ($54k – $120k and $81,075)

7. You can choose one of many specialisations

In addition to MBA core subjects there is opportunity to craft your own unique qualification with elective subject choices and dual programs. These specialisations allow students to follow their passions and shape their education toward specific career goals.

In addition to MBA core subjects  dual programs and elective subjects offer individualised specialisation. Some popular specialisations areas include:

MBA and Global Project Management
MBA and Public Health Administration
MBA and Sports Management
-Information Systems
-Sustainability
-Global Management
-Entrepreneurship/Social Enterprise

8. Internship and placement opportunities

Enrolling in an MBA means more than just study. The whole concept of an MBA is to teach you practical business skills that can be immediately applied to a work environment, and then to give you the chance to practise them.

Most MBA courses have a built-in industry placement, corporate project or internship as part of their curriculum. At Torrens University this placement is offered in an Employer Based Project. It is also possible in most subjects for working professionals to incorporate actual projects from their workplace in their assignments. Further, there is opportunity for students with a developed social enterprise to undertake a program that introduces them to investors at the conclusion.

An internship is an essential foot-in-the-door for MBA graduates, and many of these paid internships go on to become full time roles.

When you choose a business school or university to study your MBA, make sure that you choose a place that has:

-an internship program or corporate project built into the curriculum
industry partners you actually want to work for,
-and an active mentoring, success coach or job services program.

9. It’s an internationally recognised qualification

An Australian MBA is recognised throughout the world. MBA content is recognised by employers globally as providing the core skills essential to the leadership/management of any organisation in any context. Additionally, many MBAs are now online and can be studied from anywhere in the world, making it a truly international degree.

Quality of programs is assured by the use of an accreditation system developed by independent, international organisations. Examples of accreditation are the AACSB and the ACBSP.

Torrens University’s MBA is consistently recognised as one of the best in the world, being awarded Tier One status and ranking 27th globally for Online MBAs by CEO Magazine in 2021.

10. It’s a flexible education

An MBA is designed to give you a broad education, covering a range of leadership, management, strategic and interpersonal skills that are transferable across different roles and industries. For this reason an MBA is a passport into many, diverse professions.

Research shows that MBA graduates go on to work across a diverse range of industries, including consulting, banking, finance, IT, education, non-profit, energy and government. One 2019 study of graduate outcomes by the Association of MBAs shows roles for MBA graduates include:

-Consulting (18%)
-Operations (16%)
-Sales or business development (16%)
-Finance and accounting (10%)
-IT (7%)
-CEO or general manager (6%)
-Marketing or PR (5%)
-Purchasing, logistics and supply chain (4%).

The study found that 88% of MBA graduates reported significantly increased business management proficiency and confidence. Further, 81% agreed that the skills they learned during their MBA have helped them develop greater resilience – a valuable skill for any role in our rapidly changing world.

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MBA News is Australia's leading source of news, views and information about doing an MBA in Australia. MBA News was established in 2014 to provide prospective MBA students with the information and resources to start their MBA journey. We hope to inspire all of our readers to the take the first step on the long road to an MBA.