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Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Value of an MBA in the Economic Crisis of 2009

Is an MBA as valuable in the first quarter of 2009 as it was in the first quarter of 2007? According to Matthew Stewart, an MBA is "...overvalued piece of paper." I happen to have earned the degree, and while Mr. Stewart hasn't, he makes an interesting point.

His statement that short term, with the contraction of the financial and consulting markets, MBAs are going to be hurt, is generally a fair statement. It is also true for mortgage brokers, commercial Realtors, and bank personnel in general (Goldman Sachs). Executives & Professionals: Changing Jobs?

However, MBAs can be very successful as entrepreneurs. A thorough understanding of accounting, finance, marketing and broader management topics provide a one of three critical pieces for a successful business. While speaking with a major VC firm, the firm stated that they would invest in a company that had a "B" business idea, if they had an "A" management team. Further, they would not invest in a company with an "A" idea and a "B" management team. The VC firm continued that the management team either had to have significant experience and success or had to have at least one MBA with a less experienced team. Elite Jobs for elite professionals! Let Doostang help accelerate your career.

In this financial crisis (2009), MBAs can also be success in leading restructuring or streamlining activities. They can also use their academic knowledge of quantitative and qualitative management to help develop new products, strategic vision, as well as train existing personnel on any number of business topics. Personally, having an MBA in difficult economic times is a strong differentiators in a field crowded with candidates seeking work. Try RingCentral Fax FREE for 30 days

Does this mean that everybody should run out and start an MBA program? No! An MBA is an expensive and time consuming investment. If you can't justify the expense, as it won't relate to your current or desired field, spend the time and money getting the training that will. I am a proponent of broad, life-long education, but I am not a fan of wasting money. Cheap? No. 100% Free. Trade stocks for free on The Free Trading Community.

This economic crisis will end and companies like Goldman Sachs, GE, and McKinsey will start to hire MBAs again. There will always be a need for people skilled in qualitative and quantitative analysis, as well as financial management, human resources, and supply chain management. While some will argue that an MBA is not particularly valuable, they may a true statement in a limited context. However, in a broader context, they may be even more valuable in the economic and financial crisis we face today, and will face in the future.

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