Did you know that there are a record-breaking 27 million entrepreneurs in the United States?
This refers to individuals who are either starting up or running a new business.
Although a little healthy competition can be good for you, there does come a point when too much rivalry can become problematic for your business.
If you are worried that there is too much competition and not enough demand for your business’ products or services, you will be pleased to hear that there is a way to guarantee that you and your company stand out from the crowd:
Through the pursuit of an MBA degree.
A popular choice not only for professionals wanting to take the next step in their careers but also entrepreneurs who want to gain an edge over their competitors, an MBA is one of the most popular post-graduate degrees, and for good reason.
Not sure what exactly an MBA degree is and what studying for one entails?
Within the below guide, you will find out:
- What is an MBA degree program?
- What are the different types of MBAs available?
- What are the requirements for applying for an MBA degree?
- Why choose online MBA programs?
- How an MBA can help you to become a more successful entrepreneur
What is an MBA?
MBA stands for master’s in business administration and is a postgraduate degree designed for those who want a successful business and management career.
An MBA degree is internationally recognized and covers areas such as:
- Business policy
- Human resources management
- Market research
- International trade
In terms of commitment, an MBA is not a degree that should be undertaken lightly as it can be both time-consuming and academically demanding. That being said, pursuing an MBA degree has never been more flexible with full and part-time options, online MBA programs, and the choice to complete your studies in as little as a year or up to 6 years, depending on your current commitments elsewhere.
What are the Different Types of MBAs?
As briefly touched on above, there are several different types of MBA degree programs that you can choose from, with each one having its own advantages and drawbacks.
A general MBA is the best choice for those who have some experience in business but want to fast-track their career in business and management.
If you are already in a senior or managerial role within a business, an executive MBA will equip you with the skills needed to enter the boardroom.
This type of MBA degree program is ideal for those who already have general managerial experience but would like to enter into a specific career field.
Distance Learning MBA
Also known as online MBA programs, this MBA degree is perfect for managing your studies around your new business or any family commitments you might have.
What are the Entry Requirements for an MBA?
Although the exact entry requirements will vary from one university to another, below are the common admission requirements for an MBA degree in the U.S.:
- A four-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited U.S. institution or international equivalent.
- A minimum of two to three years of work experience. The exact amount will be dependent on your role and responsibilities.
- A resume
- A personal statement
- Two letters of professional recommendation
- Proof of English proficiency
- GMAT score of over 600
It is worth noting that some business schools may accept candidates without any work experience; however, they will give priority to those who have a professional background.
Why Pursue an Online MBA?
As an entrepreneur, you will no doubt have your hands full with either the launch or running of your business/s. Therefore, you may be concerned that undertaking a degree of this magnitude will have a detrimental effect on your business. Fortunately, this doesn’t have to be the case. All you need to do is apply for one of the many high-quality online MBA programs that are currently available, and you can seamlessly fit your studies into your daily working life.
Still not convinced that you have the time to pursue an online MBA?
Take a look at the below:
Choose Full or Part-Time Study
With online MBA programs, you can choose to study full or part-time, meaning that you can find the time to complete an MBA degree whatever your current commitments to your business.
Take Care of Family Commitments
Often the most challenging element of further education is juggling your studies with your family obligations. If this is the case for you, online MBA programs can be carried out anytime and anywhere, meaning you can fulfill your course requirements around your family life.
Apply What You Learn Immediately
As an entrepreneur, you will know that every day counts with a new business, and the beauty of online MBA programs is that you can apply what you have learned with immediate effect to your business.
No Need to Travel or Relocate
Gain your MBA from an accredited online university or business school without even having to leave the comfort of your own home. No daily travel costs or relocation fees.
Experience International Networking Opportunities
With an online MBA, you have the opportunity to network with like-minded professionals from all over the world, allowing you to gain valuable insights into global business practices and global economics.
When starting a new business venture, every dollar counts, so you will most likely want to pursue the most affordable and cost-effective option. In terms of return on investment, online MBA programs can be significantly cheaper but still result in the same salary expectations.
How Can an MBA Make Me a More Successful Entrepreneur?
Now to the exciting part, how can an MBA degree make you a more successful entrepreneur? Discover eight ways that a master’s in business administration can benefit your business and any future businesses you may start-up below.
You Will Learn Financial Literacy
The vast majority of businesses fail. This is sad but unfortunately true. More specifically, 21.5% of startups fail within the first year, 30% in the second year, 50% in the fifth year, and 70% in the tenth year.
One of the main reasons for this high failure rate is a lack of financial literacy in budding entrepreneurs. Even if you have the most amazing idea for a new product or service, if you make common financial mistakes such as investing too much too soon or adding to the payroll at the first sign of success, you will struggle to stay afloat.
However, by taking an MBA course, you will gain a solid foundation in finance and learn how to make solid financial decisions for your business.
You Will Gain Interpersonal Skills
You are making sales, but you are struggling due to a lack of timely payments. Does this sound familiar?
New business owners will often lack the interpersonal skills and confidence needed to push their clients and suppliers to make payments without the need to chase them up. For larger, more established businesses, this is not overly problematic. Still, for new ventures, this can mean the difference between being able to continue to trade and having to close down.
Whist studying for your MBA, you will learn the importance of monitoring your cash flow so that you are able to effectively manage your expenses. Plus, you will be taught a variety of soft and hard skills which are needed for successful entrepreneurship, including interpersonal skills, leadership skills, and the art of negotiation.
You Will Learn How to Operate More Efficiently
Do you often find yourself bogged down in the day-to-day running of your business with little time or inclination to strategize for the future? If yes, then an MBA can most definitely help you and your business. Whether you are currently struggling to meet deadlines, are experiencing a lack of resources, or are having issues with compliance regulations, an MBA degree program will show you how to operate efficiently both in the short term and for the future.
Furthermore, you can choose to specialize in electives such as operations management, supply chain management, and data analytics, enabling you to stand apart from your competitors even more.
You Will Have the Chance to Network
It’s not what you know but who you know, and as an entrepreneur, you probably understand this more than most. However, again due to the daily grind of running your own business, you may not have the means or opportunity to network as much as you would like. Fortunately, an MBA degree lends itself perfectly to networking, particularly online MBA programs that allow you to meet professionals from all over the world.
Not only can you make valuable contacts with leading industry experts through your degree course, but you can also connect with your fellow students. You never know; one of them might end up being your future business partner.
You Will Learn How to Develop Your Business
MBA degree courses are specifically designed to cultivate strategic problem-solving, a skill that is essential if you want your business or businesses to grow in the months and years ahead. Through the implementation of industry-relevant educational tools and case studies, you will gain a unique insight into the world of business and learn how to apply these to make way for viable business models.
Furthermore, you will be able to generate effective business strategies and growth plans for your business, resulting in a much better chance of success.
You Will Become a Better Communicator
Nearly all aspects of an MBA degree, both on-campus and online MBA programs, have been curated to help hone students’ communication skills. As an entrepreneur, it is solely down to you to communicate with your employees, customers, investors, and suppliers; therefore, you need to ensure you are doing so effectively.
While pursuing a master’s in business administration, you will be taught how to express and articulate your plans and goals in an effective manner that will result in a unified and productive workforce and satisfied customers.
You Will Become an Effective Leader
Although some people are natural-born leaders, leadership is definitely a skill that can be mastered by anyone willing to put in the time and effort. If you struggle to assert yourself or you think that your leadership skills could do with a little upgrade, an MBA degree program is just what you need.
Teaching you to not only lead a team with confidence but also to keep employee morale up and boost motivation, an MBA degree will equip you with all the skills you need to be a compassionate and successful leader to your business.
You Will Learn How to Thrive Under Pressure
Starting and running your own business is arguably one of the most stressful undertakings that an individual can take on, and many buckle under the pressure. If you are worried that this may happen to you or you are already feeling the weight of the world on your shoulders, an MBA degree program will arm you with the skills needed to ride out any market fluctuations and deal with any setbacks.
Plus, this degree can help to build up your confidence in your abilities, teach you how to effectively multitask, and expand your horizons so that you can deal with multiple issues without breaking a sweat.
Making the decision to pursue an MBA degree course is not one that should be undertaken lightly. That being said, with a vast section of online MBA programs on offer that can be completed around your current working commitments and any family obligations, it has never been easier to equip yourself with the skills and expertise needed to make your new business a success.
Whether you have just launched your first business venture, have a string of successful businesses under your belt, or you are still in the initial stages of starting your own company, an MBA degree can help you on the path to success.