Why Do Companies Prefer MBAs?

Why Do Companies Prefer MBAs?
By Jennifer deJong, Monster Contributing Writer

  • MBAs are sought after for their ability to think critically, deal with ambiguity and solve complex problems.
  • the master of business administration degree represents a way of thinking, not just a set of financial skills and business knowledge
  • looking for the 50,000-foot view — the strategic thinker who takes an analytical approach
  • Operations managers who have risen through the company’s ranks are experts at getting things done. But MBAs from the outside can bring a fresh perspective, like figuring out how to improve key business processes, such as filling catalog orders.
  • Training Critical Thinkers
    • an MBA can evaluate a company by looking at its financials, they also ask if the numbers make sense in terms of other realities
    • process of earning the degree teaches MBAs to think critically –  relies heavily on the case-study approach
    • requires students to evaluate business dilemmas and formulate the best plan of action
    • case studies typically reflect current issues
  • Professional Problem Solvers
    • know how to frame problems, ask questions and collect data
    •  MBA candidates who are ready to answer more than just stock questions –  done some research, called a few customers; you get a sense of how they might spend their first 60 days on the job, and that is impressive
    • ability to deal with ambiguity and create changes that help the company compete
    • demonstrate the ability to maximize talent, enroll others, champion change, look at the big picture and optimize the company’s interests
    • degree itself is not a guarantee, as many MBAs have gaps – It comes down to the person and their accomplishments. For example, if an MBA candidate says, “I lead the team that revised the billing process,” company recruiters dig deeper. If the process improvement didn’t yield a result, the candidate may not make the cut
  • MBAs: Not All Alike
    • Getting an MBA is a big accomplishment, but once you have it, you still have to compete for jobs.
    • Top schools are brand names – when you are competing against a brand name, the burden of proof is on you, even though core MBA courses remain remarkably similar across different institutions.
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