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You have to make some serious life decisions and you want to make sure you make the right one. Although we can not tell you exactly what you should do, we can give you some guidance as you weigh the pros and cons in your decision making process. In this case, we will be debating the timing of when you should do your masters — either right after you finish your bachelor’s or after you have worked in the real world for some time. This is a question many students ask themselves during their last year of their bachelor’s degree. Some of you might think you don’t want to waste time and believe you should just get your masters degree over with so you can have it in your back pocket come job application time. Others might think that work experience before a masters degree will give you the edge you need when you apply to get into a good MBA program. In this article, we go over why you should consider the second option and not jump into your post graduate studies after you have finished your bachelor’s degree.
When to start your MBA?
If you do a quick google search, many recommend that the best time to start an MBA is after 3 to 4 years of work experience. The general consensus is that you should start your MBA after having gained some years of quality work experience. Doing an MBA right after your bachelors or B.tech degree might make sense in terms of time because you will finish at an early age and have a “head start” in life. However, having an MBA at a young age won’t bring you further in your professional career because you simply won’t have any work experience. A company won’t give you a management position without you having had relevant work experience, it’s as simple as that. Therefore, the best time to actually start an MBA is after having some years of work experience.
During your MBA studies they will ask you questions such as: which conflicts did you deal with with your work team? How did you work them out? What were your experiences managing a team? What have you done at work when this or that happened and how did you confront it? As you can see, during your MBA, professors always ask work relevant topics, and not having any work experience makes it impossible to answer them. So when you start with your MBA, to get a better learning experience out of it, you should definitely bring work experience with you.
At what time during your career should you start your MBA?
You will probably need an MBA when you want to move into management or leadership positions. Studying an MBA will help you in these roles, as during your studies you will have a lot of management and leadership classes. Your professors will use a lot of real life examples, and you will be in the position to handle different problems which could occur at work. This will be super beneficial for your career because if you encounter these problems at work, you will know what to do. As mentioned above, the best time to start an MBA is after having had 3 to 4 years of work experience. The top ranked business school and universities actually require 3 to 4 years’ professional work experience from you, before you can do your MBA. Some universities even require work experience for doing a Master’s degree in a business subject.
How can I prepare for my MBA while I am working?
When you already know you are going to do an MBA, you can start preparing for it while you are working. For example, if your major in your undergraduate was not business, start and get yourself prepared with management books. You should also get to know all business terminology before starting your MBA, so you are not lost in your classes. Apart from the management books, you could read through some business and finance books to help you follow your MBA classes from the beginning with ease. If your undergraduate major was business, you should be well prepared for you MBA and should do a short review before starting your degree.
Wrapping it all up..
Let’s be real, you are going to learn a lot during your professional work experience and will gain crucial life experiences while you are at it. Many of you may think that you will lose time if you don’t do your masters or MBA right after your bachelors or B.tech degree, but this is not true. On the contrary, you will gain a lot of work experience which will help you during your MBA studies. Normally, having worked before starting an MBA helps tremendously as you go through your MBA program. Don’t be scared to stop studying for some time and focus on learning outside of the classroom! Having professional work experience is more important to companies than having two titles and no work experience so it might be more beneficial in your future job searches. Think it through and make the right decision for you! We recommend gaining work experience after a bachelor’s degree but we also know that “to each his own” and the right decision for you depends entirely on you!
We wish you the best of luck in your MBA degree, no matter which way you decide to do it! For those of you who have already done an MBA, let us know what your thoughts are on the best timing to start one. Please share your experiences and your recommendations with us, and if you have any questions let us know!
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