When it comes to career advancement or salary potential, an MBA is generally regarded as one of the best degrees to earn. The benefits of an MBA, however, go beyond one’s bank account or employment potential.
MBA students acquire an array of abilities — both professional and personal — that benefit their daily lives.
The Underappreciated Benefits of an MBA
Arguably, no matter what degree a person decides to earn, there is inherent value in higher learning. The benefits of an MBA derive from the blend of demanding coursework and student diversity, which helps ensure that graduates acquire a broad range of well-honed skills, gain exposure to varied perspectives, and create a new network of lifelong connections.
Being able to sharpen one’s financial acumen is perhaps one of the most obvious benefits of an MBA. Students learn to analyze the stock market and gain an in-depth understanding of national and global markets. They have a sophisticated understanding of inflation and interest rates and are better able to make sense of fluctuations in the economy. Students learn how to assess risk, including when to play it safe or take a chance. This foundation in finance helps with managing one’s personal finances and investments to make the most of a paycheck and help secure a comfortable future.
Better Time Management
MBA students generally spend a lot of time studying. This is especially true in an online MBA program in which learners have to be motivated and disciplined to self-direct their studies. The successful completion of an MBA signals to employers that you are capable of hard work, and you don’t shy away from challenges.
Another benefit of an MBA lies in the many opportunities available to sharpen your communication skills. Whether you communicate face-to-face or via online networks, you’ll learn how to get your ideas across to get the results you seek. Not only will you learn how to research complex topics, you will also have to distil and transmit your findings. Furthermore, communicating your needs to others clearly and respectfully is a vital part of effective negotiating. Communication and negotiation skills are talents that can prove useful not only in business dealings but also in other areas of your life, including negotiating a mortgage, buying a car, or debating with your children or spouse about what movie to watch.
Many people are surprised to learn that sharpening one’s creative thinking is another important benefit of an MBA. Contrary to popular belief, an MBA degree is not merely about facts and figures. MBA students take creative approaches to problem-solving because all businesses — from small start-ups to large established corporations — need executives who can think creatively to solve problems and create new products and services. Learning how to “think outside the box” serves MBA graduates well in all facets of their lives that require a novel approach to a challenge.
Online MBA programs attract students from diverse educational and social backgrounds. The chance to meet and network with other students is an important benefit of an MBA. Even if you do not pursue a career in business, you’ll become part of a network of friends, colleagues and professors who turn to one another when faced with a challenge at work, are looking for new job opportunities, or simply want to enrich the network with relevant knowledge or insights.
Leadership Outside the Office
Perhaps the biggest intangible benefit of an MBA is that it teaches students how to be well-rounded leaders. Those who enroll in an online MBA program can expect to gain confidence, hone their interpersonal skills, increase discipline, develop teamwork skills, and strengthen creative problem-solving. These over-arching leadership skills serve graduates well not just in their professional careers but also in their personal lives.
Choosing the Right School
When deciding on an online MBA program, be sure to identify schools that will help you develop the full spectrum of tangible and intangible leadership skills.
One school that prioritizes academics as well as soft leadership skills is Florida International University. The online MBA program at FIU features an array of courses that teach students such central economic concepts as finance, international business and entrepreneurship. Students also learn teamwork, creative problem-solving, negotiation skills and communication skills. The online MBA program strives to equip students with the skills, knowledge and confidence to excel in the workforce.
The degree you earn through a full-time or online MBA program is much more than a well-regarded business credential. What you’ll find, in addition, is that an MBA degree offers you a variety of opportunities and experiences of tremendous benefit to your professional and personal life.
Learn more about the FIU online MBA program.
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