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Make More Money by Getting a Business Degree

Updated on September 7, 2012

More Education Can Help You Get a Better Paying Job

In times of high unemployment, one of the best ways to secure a better job and get noticed in the crowd, is to have a higher education. Getting an M.B.A. is one of the best ways to stand out among the crowd of applicants for the job you want.

Applying to business school can be difficult if you have been out of school for a number of years. The application process alone is quite rigorous, highly competitve, and will cost you time, money, and energy in preparing to go back to school.

The Screening Process of Business Schools

Usually business schools require you take the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test). Universities use this standardized test as a tool to help them eliminate or choose the best candidates for acceptance to their school of business. GMATs test for academic success thorugh mathe, verbal, and writing analytically. Schools will also consider undergraduate transcripts, essays, letters of recommendations, and person to person interviews. They will evaluate you based on your GMAT score, your GPA (grade point average), your resume and your essay, primarily.

High GMAT scores do not guarantee entrance into a graduate business school program.  All things are considered when they evaluate an applicant. Low scores, however, are an easy way to get eliminated from the application process. As a general rule of thumb, if the difference of your GMAT score is 50 points or more below the school’s overall admittance average, you might want to retake the GMAT to raise your score. Business schools most often focus on the most recent test score.

Show Your Expertise

Starting June 2012, GMAT is adding a data interpretation section that is meant to show how you do integrated reasoning. The test takers won’t necessarily have to solve math problems in this section, but determine if there is enough data to adequately answer the question. They want to see you analyze the logical elements given. They want to see how you think. Business executives, CEO’s, CFO’s and corporate decision makers need the abilty to prioritize the issues that need resolving. The business schools ar looking for people who can analyze what is important and approach the situation to show what is being asked of the candidate.

When you are writing your personal essay, be sure to include your unique career path. Write about your personal aims and objectives and the challenges you have had to face. Demonstrate how you achieved them, what lessons you have gained, and how you ahve successfully overcome obstacles. If your have a variety of experiences, bridge them to show how you are the stronger and better candidate for placement in the school.

When you get out in the world to look for a job, personnel managers are looking at your expertise and how it can relate to the challenges the position presents.

What Business Schools Look At

The graduate business school will want to know the type of person you are. This gives you the opportunity to overcome any weaknesses. In the personal interview it is important to emphasize your strengths and show how you compensate for your deficits. It is important to show them you can overcome your weaknesses so they will take that into consideration.  

In addition, they are will look at your GPA score and transcripts to see if you have the discipline, intelligence, and motivation to succeed in business school. Sometimes they focus more on  your junior and senior college years to get the best idea of your potential. Some business schools look at the overall grades.  Business schools also look at the university you got your degree from The reputation of the college you attended and the level of the difficulty of the courses you took are very much taken into consideration.

Some advise you take some quantitative classes such as statistics, calculus, or microeconomics and do well in these courses. Schools look for these classes, believing that they are good indicators of who well you will do in their graduate business school.

The Entrance Interview is Important

A typical MBA program looks for professional business experience, if you are not right out of college. You will want to accentuate your accomplishments working on a team, and highlight your leadership qualities. Key words such as organized, developed, and created show action. You will want to point out quantifiable accomplishments by showing your success in terms of efficiency, profits, percent improvements, and other notable activities and achievements you can discuss.

Your essay is a way for you to express who you are.  You will want to emphasize your strengths, show how you overcome your weaknesses and come across confident and self assured.  Be sure to include your reasons for pursuing your MBA and your desire to be part of the business school. At the interview, it is important to show some humility and not come across arrogant.

Accentuate Your Strengths - Acknowledge Your Weaknesses

Some business schools want professional recommendations, and some will permit academic recommendations too. Make sure your recommendations come as high up as possible, and that they know you well enough. It is better to have a letter from your direct supervisor who knows  you well, than a general letter from the CEO. You want the letter to come from someone who has seen you in action. If you are granted an interview by a school, act on it quickly so that you do not lose the opportunity.

Schools are looking for your strengths and they want to know how you will overcome your weaknesses.  Schools also consider what they find out about you online through social networking sites including internet forums, LinkedIn and Facebook. Make sure these represent a good impression of yourself

Business Schools Will Help You Get Professional Contacts

A good business school will prepare you for a high paying career upon graduation.  Business schools have a challenging curriculum that applies academic theories to real world scenarios. Business schools want their students to do critical thinking and become sharp decision makers. It is important to make astute choices that will yield profitable results and have the qualities to manage in uncertain, risky, and changing financial environments.  Meeting the academic qualifications for graduation is important. Equally important is the business contacts made in  school that will serve as a network to obtain a job. Professors, peers, mentors and executives are the first point of contact for graduates.

What to Expect in Year 1 and 2 to Pursue a Full Time Business Degree

What to expect in business school:
  • year one of a full time business program gives students an overview of the major business topics including finance, accounting, management, marketing, economics and specific electives.

The first year of graduate business school may be the hardest. Students will need to learn about world markets, ethics and a variety of management basics. MBA programs can be intense. You may do best in a school that divides students into small groups to enhance learning.

Very often you will enroll in a summer internship to get experience in your field of study. Sometimes these internship programs open up the opportunity for a permanent position after graduation.
  • In the second year of full time graduate business school you may be taking classes that specialize in certain areas. These elective courses will give you an expertise and proficiency in subjects that may make you more appealing for a job. The second year tends to have a lighter workload and a bit more relaxed atmosphere.

Business Schools Can Open Up a World of Job Opportunities

It is important to look at who the previous graduates are. Alumni are a major part of the business school experience and can give insight into real world situations that the professors may not necessarily offer in the theory of classroom teaching. Sometimes alumni have contacts to secure interviews and can give recommendations that put you ahead of your competition for the same position. College alumni are a great source to make contacts and for support. They can introduce you to networking events and provide resources that can set  you on your way to a successful business career.

There are many different avenues available for financial aid and scholarships. It pays to do your research in order to get the most assistance you can get. Do your research so you do not miss due dates for this application process.

Business schools offer an opportunity to further your career and obtain upward mobilitiy in the business world. An MBA program can educate you in a specialty field and introduce you to contacts that may help you secure a better paying job. Although graduate school can be difficult in the beginning, it is a worthwhile investment in you and your careeer.


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    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      Hi HP,

      You are right. A job and career is best when it matches a person's needs, life style, and self satisfaction. This article is just talking about a better paying job and better opportunities.

    • H P Roychoudhury profile image

      H P Roychoudhury 6 years ago from Guwahati, India

      I don’t agree with the logic that a job is better with better payment and not with time limit. To me a job is better if it provides sufficient time to enjoy the life with reasonable money.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      Hi Ang, Grad school isn't easy, but it is worth it. Thanks for the up rating, I appreciate it very much.

    • anglnwu profile image

      anglnwu 6 years ago

      Very informative. The process of getting accepted sounds pretty grueling. Rated up.