You’ve likely heard some of the benefits of getting an MBA before: C-suite connections, professional prestige, and other unexpected but equally important perks that last long after graduation. But with the time and money that you have to commit to the program, it’s normal to want to know exactly what you’ll get in return from this popular business degree.
Read our detailed list below to see exactly how an MBA can benefit you.
1. Higher Salary & Return on Investment
One of the most popular draws for young professionals to an MBA program is the promise of higher earning potential after graduation. Well, the rumors are true: the average starting salary for MBA grads (class of 2020) is $20,000 a year more than those with an undergraduate business degree.1 That, along with a median signing bonus of $10,500 and a $70,000 average salary increase three years after completing your degree, can quickly add up.2,3
It’s important to note that an MBA isn’t a one-way ticket to the C-suite, and it certainly doesn’t happen overnight. However, because of this significant salary potential, you’ll be glad to know that the return on your investment is also impressively high. Employers recognize how much time and energy an MBA program demands and often reward employees accordingly. For example, U.S. News found that some highly ranked universities reported MBA graduate salaries that were, on average, seven times higher than the estimated total cost of their programs.4 Since MBA programs tend to be shorter, students also can emerge with less debt and are less likely to drop out, putting them in a much better financial situation than other professional degrees.
2. Deeper Leadership Skills
For any business-savvy company, knowing how to successfully manage and lead a team isn’t just a bonus, but a prerequisite for senior roles (and most understand that management and leadership are two different things). If moving into a senior position is on your list of goals, then an MBA can help you get there.
A majority of MBA programs include exercises or even entire courses on people management and team dynamics. This helps professionals at any point in their career improve their communication and collaboration skills to empower and encourage everyone with whom they work. At Seattle Albers School of Business and Economics, for example, each course in the Online MBA program features a Leadership Challenge to help students develop the right mindset to communicate cross-functionally and lead a team to success.
3. A More-Informed Career Path
Unlike other, more specialized degrees, an MBA provides a unique opportunity for students to learn multiple areas of business. This can include marketing, finance, risk management, international business, negotiations, and more. With broader knowledge and experience in different fields, you can refine your interests and make more informed decisions about your future.
For those who are firmly committed to a certain path, some schools offer the option to specialize your MBA (e.g. an MBA in Marketing). However, you might want to consider whether you should pursue an MBA or something else, like a Master’s in Marketing or Accounting, to gain the necessary skills for that industry.
4. Larger, More Diverse Network
There are several ways that your MBA program can create connections: your cohort, school faculty, alumni, networking events, career fairs, and more. Opportunities like these can make the difference between wishfully applying for jobs and securing an interview. From first introductions to post-graduation, an expanded network is a huge advantage for business professionals.
If you attend a graduate school like Seattle Albers, you’ll also have access to more extensive resources like a job board, mentor program, alumni connectors, professional panels, and expert podcasts. If you’re in the Seattle region, this can help open doors for you at competitive companies like Microsoft, Amazon, Boeing, and Zillow.
5. Modern/Leading Business Knowledge
No matter how long you’ve been working, you can be sure that the business world has changed since you finished undergrad; new softwares, best practices, and capabilities are constantly being created, and very few working professionals have the time to keep up.
A quality MBA program will stay up to date on these changes and incorporate the latest findings into your curriculum. You’ll be trained to navigate the complexities of modern business with a fresh lens and a proven skill set that only a graduate degree can offer. Then, you can use those talents to help your company stay ahead of the curve—and you’ll become an invaluable asset in the meantime.
6. Flexible Schedule for Work
It’s highly encouraged (and often required) that you have professional experience before starting your MBA, so being able to balance work with coursework is a necessity. Luckily, a majority of programs offer flexible options to complete your degree, including part time, full time, accelerated, or online methods. Evaluate your current working situation and ask your employer how best to proceed, then talk to an Admissions Advisor about their university’s MBA offerings.
If you're concerned about the financial and career implications of taking time off work, don’t worry—an Online MBA program lets you take classes when it’s convenient for you so you never miss a day in the office. In fact, 91% of students getting their Online MBA in the 2015-2016 school year were employed when starting their degree.5
Reap the Rewards of a Seattle U MBA
All the benefits listed above—and more!—are standard for an Online MBA from Seattle University’s Albers School of Business and Economics. Our rigorous curriculum, experienced faculty, and extensive Seattle network make your graduate school investment more than worthwhile. Start an application today to make these benefits your reality.
1. Retrieved on August 2, 2021 from hbr.org/2020/12/is-an-mba-degree-really-worth-it
2. Retrieved on August 3, 2021, from gmac.com/-/media/files/gmac/research/employment-outlook/gmac-2018-corporate-recruiters-survey-report.pdf
3. Retrieved on August 3, 2021, from ft.com/content/a2813230-d69b-11e7-a303-9060cb1e5f44
4. Retrieved on August 3, 2021, from usnews.com/education/best-graduate-schools/paying/articles/2016-04-07/calculate-the-return-on-investment-for-an-mba
5. Retrieved on August 4, 2021, from usnews.com/higher-education/online-education/articles/2017-05-23/us-news-data-the-average-online-mba-student