If you have chosen a career in business and want to get a qualification that will allow you to go for more promotions, expand your horizons, and boost your career in several different ways, there are plenty of reasons to consider getting an online MBA.
When deciding on an MBA, the first step should involve identifying your career goals and determining how this advanced degree is going to help you achieve them. People decide to get an MBA for many different reasons.
You might want to give yourself a boost when climbing the career ladder in your current line of work, or maybe you are thinking about starting something new with a different employer or in a different industry. Getting an MBA can be the first step in the process of taking your career where you want it to go and get the most from your professional life.
Currently, MBA graduates are in high demand in many different business industries. Over eighty percent of employers have been looking to add MBA graduates to their workforce over the past few years, and this isn’t set to change any time soon. MBA graduates are able to enter the field straight into a very high level of demand, and many are scouted by employers while still studying, with positions available for them as soon as they graduate.
With more and more online MBA programs now available, getting this degree online is often one of the best options for busy students who want or need to continue working full-time or upholding other commitments while studying.
Here are some of the main reasons to consider getting your MBA online, along with some tips to help you choose the program that is an ideal fit for you and your goals.
1. Boost Your Resume
Getting an MBA can provide an instant boost to your resume since having this qualification listed will certainly add some prestige to your credentials and help you stand out from the crowd when you are applying for positions.
Typically, MBA graduates are held in high esteem by employers who will often view these professionals as individuals with a lot of knowledge about the business world who can bring a lot to the table.
Getting the MBA degree will provide you with the capabilities and discipline that are needed to succeed in an upper management position in many different areas of business and various industries. To find out more about where this qualification could take you, check out the MBA degree from Kettering University.
2. Improve Your Career Opportunities
Many people make the decision to get an MBA because they are motivated by a strong desire for more opportunities in their current career, or the desire to change their career into something new and different.
The online MBA degree program will certainly help to expand the number of career opportunities that are available to you whether you want to get promoted in your current workplace or are considering moving into a different business industry or sector. With an MBA, your current employer may be more likely to consider you for promotions that come up within your current place of work.
On the other hand, if you’ve touched on different areas of business in the past such as marketing or supply chain, but these are not your key areas right now, taking a specialized MBA concentration in these areas can prepare you for working in these positions in the future.
3. Overcome a Career Roadblock
Another big reason why MBA students are enrolling in these online programs is that they have been working in their current career for a while and feel that there is nowhere left for them to go without first getting an additional qualification.
Perhaps you have been in your current position for years, have moved as far as you can up the career ladder, and feel like you have hit a roadblock, with any further positions requiring qualifications that are more advanced than the ones you currently possess. While your past experience will certainly play a part in helping you overcome these career roadblocks, adding an MBA to your resume can be one of the best ways to supercharge your professional life.
With a wide range of different MBA concentrations to choose from, it is easy to find something that suits your goals well or is centered around an area of business that you are most interested in pursuing.
4. Widen Your Professional Network
Getting your MBA online will also give you a great chance to widen your professional network.
Despite being distance learning programs where you will be mainly studying and learning from home, the majority of online MBA programs will provide you with ample opportunities to get to know your fellow classmates and build strong business connections with your peers as you study.
Although you won’t be meeting with them face-to-face in the traditional way, a good online MBA program should provide students with networking options such as online chat rooms and forums. In addition, many students will create their own informal communication channels such as Facebook and WhatsApp groups.
5. Improve Your Teamwork Skills
While getting an MBA is often the choice that students make in order to learn how to become a better business leader, any good leader knows that having good teamwork skills is essential for them to inspire others and get the results that are needed.
When leading a team, you are not only in charge of the team but you will also be one of the most important members of it. After getting your online MBA, chances are that you are going to be working within organizations where teamwork is going to be an important part of the job.
In many aspects of running a business, no one person is going to be able to do everything alone, and teamwork is an essential part of success. While studying for your online MBA, you will also be given the opportunity to fine-tune your teamwork skills while working with others on projects remotely; a highly sought-after skill in today’s business world as remote working becomes more widespread.
6. Develop Important Management Skills
As part of getting an online MBA, you will have a great opportunity to build an important variety of leadership and management skills that you are going to need to be successful in your future career.
For students who already have management or supervisory experience, getting an online MBA is an ideal way to improve these skills even further and apply the foundations of business when making decisions in the future from an authority position.
An online MBA doesn’t just prepare you to lead with confidence but will also help you boost your decision-making skills, particularly when it comes to making data-driven business decisions.
Top Things to Consider When Choosing an Online MBA
With many benefits, it is no surprise that online MBA programs are becoming a firm choice for students who are looking to improve their business careers.
However, with more of these programs now available, choosing the right option for you is likely to be something that will take some thought and consideration. Before you decide on an online MBA program to enroll on, there are some factors that you should always consider first.
1. Will You Manage Studying Online?
First of all, be honest with yourself – is studying online something that you feel could be a good fit for you?
While online degree programs are certainly becoming more and more popular these days, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic, they are not the best choice for everybody. Some students simply learn better when they have set class times to adhere to and can get out of the house and socialize with others as part of their learning experience.
On the other hand, online study can get quite isolating, and you will also need to be ready to deal with all the distractions that you are likely to face at home.
If you like the flexibility of online programs but aren’t so keen on studying from home, you may want to consider a blended degree program that gives you the option to study at home or attend classes depending on what is best for you at any given time.
2. Program Flexibility
The level of flexibility that is offered by the online MBA program is another key factor for many students to consider. Online degree programs are often chosen by students who need to uphold other commitments in their lives while getting their degrees.
For example, if you are currently working full-time or have children that need to come first, online study is probably more appealing to you since there is the option to fit it around your life rather than vice versa.
However, some programs are more flexible than others, so it is worth making sure of this before you enroll. Certain programs offer complete flexibility where you can study at times that are suitable for you. On the other hand, others may require you to be present for online lectures on certain days and times.
3. Is the School Accredited?
Another major factor to consider before you decide which online MBA program you would like to enroll on is whether or not the school that offers it is accredited.
Accreditation is provided to colleges and universities by a range of accrediting bodies. Look out for an accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs or the International Accreditation Council for Business Education.
Accreditation means that the school has been provided with a strict, rigorous set of academic standards that they must adhere to, giving you peace of mind that you are getting the best education when studying for your online MBA.
4. Networking and Socialization
Since networking and the chance to seriously build your professional network is often one of the major reasons why business students choose to get an MBA over other degree types, it is important to ensure that the school you choose is offering the option for students to get to know one another.
While studying online is always going to mean that you’re unlikely to meet everybody face-to-face in the same way as you would when studying at a traditional campus, the internet has made it possible for students to easily network remotely and any school that you choose should have taken advantage of all the different communication channels that are available to them.
Before you decide to enroll, it is worth asking about how networking is handled on the program and how students can meet and stay in touch with one another.
5. Full-Time or Part-Time?
How much time you have to complete your degree is another factor worth considering when enrolling in an online MBA.
While studying online has made it easier to get your degree full-time without having to reduce your working hours or give up other commitments, it can still be a huge amount of work to undertake.
If you are currently working long hours and have other commitments such as a young family to consider, a part-time online MBA might be a better option for you since this will provide you with more time to get things done and focus on graduating with a better grade.
6. School Experience Level
Finally, consider how long the school you are considering has been offering MBA programs to study online. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more schools are now offering a range of online programs for students who prefer distance learning or feel safer studying in this way.
However, you may want to prioritize schools that have been offering online learning since before the pandemic. These programs are more likely to be fine-tuned and will often have fewer issues compared to the newer ones since the school has built up more experience with delivering them and know what works and what does not, making for a more seamless and stress-free experience.
Getting an MBA online can be an ideal move for anybody who wants to improve their business career or move into a different area of business.
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I am Adeyemi Adetilewa, a media consultant, entrepreneur, husband, and father. Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Ideas Plus Business Magazine, online business resources for entrepreneurs. I help brands share unique and impactful stories through the use of public relations, advertising, and online marketing. My work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Thrive Global, Addicted2Success, Hackernoon, The Good Men Project, and other publications.