A prestigious MBA program is not cheap: the fees could easily run from $70,000 to $160,000.
So why should you bother with getting an MBA at all?
Reason #1: Getting An MBA Can Accelerate Your Career
The most common reason for getting an MBA is career acceleration.
An MBA is a valued credential recognized all around the world. The skills and knowledge obtained in an MBA program are highly valued by many employers.
In several industries, such as management consulting and investment banking, an MBA is a de-facto requirement for career progression. A study found that the average MBA holder’s career accelerates 30% faster than that of someone without an MBA.
Reason #2: An MBA Will Unlock Different Career Pathways
Another popular reason for getting an MBA is career change.
For professionals from various industries, an MBA opens up the path to enter management consulting, investment banking or venture capital.
An MBA is also useful in changing careers more generally, e.g. someone from a manufacturing background may find an MBA helpful in transitioning to the pharmaceutical industry. According to Bloomberg BusinessWeek, 64% of MBAs who graduated in 2012 entered a new industry.
Reason #3: Expand Your Network
One of the biggest benefits of an MBA is the expansion of your professional network.
The MBA opens up your school’s academic, student, and alumni network to you, which can be very valuable.
Many professionals, including those who’d like to pursue entrepreneurship after the MBA, cite this ability to make wide and relevant connections as their most important motive to seek an MBA education.
Reason #4: Improve Your Career Prospects
Finally, of course, employability of MBA graduates is high.
For one, MBA graduates from highly-rated business schools are highly desirable for blue-chip employers. According to data released by Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) in January 2013, even in a tight job market, 92% of 2012 business school graduates worldwide found employment within 3 months after graduation.
MBA salaries also remain high. Graduates from highly-rated schools could earn anywhere between $100,000 and $240,000 per year. These salaries represent 55% to 160% increase from pre-MBA salaries.
In purely financial terms, an MBA typically pays itself off in about 4 years. The lifetime salary enhancement for the average MBA graduate from a highly-rated business school is over $2 million!