Entrepreneurs beat their own drum and lay down their own rhythm. So, if you’ve already decided that a traditional career in finance, consulting or industry is not for you, and you’ve got unshakable confidence, boundless energy and entrepreneurial strategic vision, why take the time to first earn a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree? Won’t that just be putting your dreams on hold?
Based on our experience at The MBA Exchange, after advising thousands of professionals with lofty entrepreneurial goals we’ve got to conclude that a top MBA is an asset to any entrepreneur.
Does an MBA help entrepreneurs?
Let’s take a look at the data: we see that a substantial chunk of top entrepreneurial ventures are founded and led by alumni of business schools like Harvard, Stanford and MIT. That a top MBA program nourishes entrepreneurship and innovation is the obvious conclusion.
If you’ve already got plenty of entrepreneurial spirit, you still need a place to gain training, soft skills, experience and confidence with risk-taking. A top business school could be the ideal option to give you and your business-to-be a strong chance for sustainable success and long-term growth.
Benefits of an MBA for entrepreneurs
What are the benefits of an MBA in entrepreneurship? Here are some of the ways an MBA degree can get you the boost you need to help your future entrepreneurial ventures succeed.
Enhance your personal brand
In the real world, many business ventures fail, especially with first-time CEOs at the head. With an MBA entrepreneurs can demonstrate instant credibility and potential. An MBA from a top-tier school of business, as well as corporate experience on your resume, might be what you need to insure yourself and your business venture against failure — or to help you gain crucial resiliency to recover after seeming missteps.
As senior consultant with The MBA Exchange Jean-Philippe Odunlami notes, “Successfully launching a business requires credibility to help secure customers, investors, partners, suppliers and other stakeholders. A top-tier MBA immediately gives the entrepreneur a trusted ‘brand’ that key constituents will recognize and trust.”
Gain management skills
In order to start a business and keep it going, you need an actionable understanding of all aspects of management. Top MBA programs with a concentration in entrepreneurship help you deepen and update your current core skills, from financial analysis and operational efficiency to market planning and more. MBA classes help you value a startup, navigate funding opportunities and learn more about common pitfalls and operational best practices. With an MBA, entrepreneurs have the necessary skills and experience to make the right call when the pressure is on!
Refine your business plan in a risk-free environment
MBA students benefit from a risk-free space to take risks, try out ideas and become better with the core requirements of entrepreneurial management. Business schools offer an array of incubators, accelerators, competitions, conferences, etc., where you can test drive and improve your strategies and tactics at zero cost and with zero risk from initial failures and growing pains. Leadership and teamwork are enriched through team exercises, simulations, competitions and group projects. An engaged MBA community can help you flush out your ideas, catch supply chain concerns and vet marketability before taking your entrepreneurial concept out into the real world.
Connect with powerful networks of business leaders and alumni
Do you currently have access to senior leaders and decision makers in your future industry? Do you already have relationships with key contacts and influencers in the cities and countries you intend to target? If your answer to both questions is “no” then you should say “yes” to an MBA entrepreneur education. The esteemed faculty and vast global alumni network become highly responsive, lifelong resources for those entrepreneurs who attended their school. And the alumni network provides lifetime access to experts and risk-takers.
Do entrepreneurs need an MBA?
Placing one’s entrepreneurial dream on hold is a big — and painful — choice. You might even have venture capital support already lined up to finance your dream! So, you’re now considering whether a full time business school education is really worth it for you.
It’s a legit question. Sure, some individuals manage to launch entrepreneurial careers without higher credentials. It takes time and focus to complete an MBA degree, meaning that you’re not going to be able to go full-steam ahead on your entrepreneurial plans for a few years yet if you do opt for b-school. Is an MBA really necessary for your goals?
Is an MBA worth it for entrepreneurs?
Not all entrepreneurs have an MBA, but an MBA for entrepreneurs can provide that special something that a venture needs to succeed. In addition to building your entrepreneurial skills, an MBA entrepreneur is likely to see significant return on investment in terms of future salary and pay scale, especially if you take advantage of all your program offers in terms of networking and startup opportunities.
What’s the basis for our observations and advice on this topic? Over more than 20 years, The MBA Exchange has advised thousands of professionals contemplating an entrepreneurial career. In fact, our consulting team includes dozens of MBA grads who have launched startups after earning a b-school diploma. We also have experienced MBA career services professionals who understand the wants and needs of eager entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs must make decisions under time pressure despite having limited information. What’s your decision? Does a top MBA entrepreneur education make sense for you? Your answer will help determine your future success, so give this important question all of the consideration that it deserves. When deciding to get your MBA as a prospective entrepreneur, why not start with a free evaluation from The MBA Exchange? We’re ready to put our expertise to work for you.