If you’re thinking about building your own company, some people say you should have an MBA, while others think it is not necessary. Many aspiring entrepreneurs believe that a unique idea alone can help them create a highly successful business, while others feel they need to attend business school to build their dream business.
If this sounds like you, there are different schools of thought to take into account when it comes to the value of pursuing an MBA today or not.
On one hand, there are undeniable benefits that can come along with attending business school if you’re an entrepreneur. But on the other, today’s connected world can provide various alternatives when you’re building a business.
In this article, let’s dig a little deeper and assess the pros and cons of each choice.
First, here are some key points that can help you decide whether getting an MBA is right for you.
Build connections and meet talented people
One of the most valuable things about going to business school is not solely the degree you’ll receive, but you also get the chance to meet many new talented people. You can learn a significant amount of crucial information from your professors and fellow students—and these experiences can help you get ahead.
Also, the process of getting an MBA is not solely about learning outcomes. For many entrepreneurs, it’s also about making critical connections. Going to business school can provide you with your first significant networking opportunity. You may find that the relationships you build at school remain useful to you when you’re out in the real world launching your business.
Running a business isn’t about theory
Running a business is not a task that you can describe as theoretical. There are things you need to know, and business theories that are helpful to understand.
However, this doesn’t mean that getting an MBA will harm your chances of finding success in business either. You don’t necessarily need to attend business school in order to get where you want to go.
All of the theories in the world can’t ensure your business will be a success.
Founder and entrepreneur of The Better Leads Institute, Sid Clevinger, who holds an MBA, shared whether he believed his MBA has helped him run his business. He believes MBAs are too theoretical, and don’t prepare founders for the unpredictable nature of starting a business.
“MBAs teach you how to run a business with no resistance and no setbacks. Getting an MBA is like using a learning template for business that doesn’t exist in the real world. As an entrepreneur, my biggest wins were when I had a plan, and then got punched in the mouth and won, when I got blindsided or lied to, and I was still able to come out on top. My MBA did not prepare me for those moments—that’s the difference I see in MBA holders and true entrepreneurs,” said Clevinger.
Getting an MBA
Love Hudson, Co-Founder of Mar-Dat believes entrepreneurs should get an MBA.
Hudson stated, “Entrepreneurs should get MBAs because it can give them the foundation for understanding how business works. I completed my executive MBA from Georgia State, and my business partner completed his from Emory. We started this company together, with these different educational backgrounds, but with similar career trajectories. Both of us have the same passion for helping companies maximize the value of their data. We both discovered this passion while getting our MBAs.”
Grow personally and professionally
Another thing you shouldn’t ignore about getting an MBA is that it can help you grow and discover new passions. The process of learning can be transformative for many people, and it can help you grow both personally and professionally.
Should you spend your money on school or building your business?
However, getting an MBA requires significant financial consideration. The average cost for an executive MBA today is roughly $60,000.
You shouldn’t avoid looking at this significant decision from a financial point of view too—especially when student debt and loans never go away.
Many people find that spending their money on growing a business and getting it off the ground is more important than going into debt.
Gain the benefits of betting an MBA through other resources
There are many ways you can get the benefits of an MBA without attending college today. You can learn from those around you, find a mentor, read and research, or take online classes as you begin to build your business.
The Internet is an incredible resource for learning. Some would argue that it’s possible to learn just as much in your own time via reading and accessing resources online.
Today’s entrepreneur has more options than ever before. If you’re looking to achieve a successful career in business, starting with one MBA course can give you an idea if further education is the right path for you.