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Looking for guidance regarding Masters/MBA choices

Free advice from the world's top MBA consultants
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Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts
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Greetings everyone!

Hope this message finds you well

I'm currently looking for guidance regarding my master's or MBA choices. I'm currently in a crossroads in my career, where I have two choices:

1) Continue working in my career, develop myself professionally by reading books and taking online business courses, alongside professional experience


2) Take the leap and start a master's degree/MBA, which will allow me to develop my weak spots such as finance and accounting, be exposed to the latest thinking and trends in business, and develop myself as a well-rounded general manager. I also see the degree/MBA as an asset that will help me both personally and professionally.

However, I'm not sure whether it's the right step in my career now. Is it worth the time, investment, and opportunity cost? Also, given my age (33), should I apply for a full-time MBA or an Executive one?

I'm Male, 33 years, work as General Manager in the retail industry. I manage a cross-functional team across various business functions such as operations, logistics, merchandising, marketing and finance and accounting. My GPA from undergraduate was 3.57/4.00 (High Honors), and I studied abroad in the US and traveled to several countries. I'm passionate about traveling, history, music, learning, technology, and charity/social development.

I'm not sure about 3 things, which I was hoping an admission consultant can help me with:

1) Should I do the MBA now, or wait till later in my career? Given family circumstances and current economic recession, I think now is the right choice, but not sure if it's worth the investment and forging my salary for 1 year, or double the effort in case of an executive MBA.
2) Which format of the MBA is better for me? Full-time or Executive? Online isn't an option because I also want to make real professional connections while studying.
3) Which master's degree/MBA is the right choice? I see there are MBAs that offer a general management curriculum then electives where you specialize in your area of choice. There're also specialist master degrees that offer similar content, however, they focus more on one area such as marketing, entrepreneurship, finance...etc.

Which is the right choice?

Thank you in advance for helping

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by Michelle@ARINGO » Wed Jun 19, 2019 12:17 am
Hi there,
I recommend reading this article for more details on the various degrees and the comparison between them: https://aringo.com/mba-vs-emba-vs-mim/
Feel free to contact us for further consultation, good luck!
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Hi MBA.Aspirant.2020, you may find this article about the ROI of an MBA helpful as well as this one about whether you're a good candidate for an Executive MBA. Good luck!
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We have written a blog on when you should consider an MBA vs a Masters degree - have a read here.

It is a very important question and we think you have to look inwards to determine how keen you are to pursue breadth vs depth in your career - not backward looking about whether you can get in a course but more important what you want to achieve.

Please let me know if you would like to discuss more.
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Quick thoughts: At age 33, you're probably looking at an EMBA or part-time/fully-employed MBA. Why? Partly chances -- for top MBA programs, the curve begins to peter out after 30; partly fit -- you'll be with more people at your own level of experience.

Which program or format for you depends on a few other variables: what your goals are (career change? rapid progression in the same industry?), your preferred location (do you want to relocate for this? Do you have a preference between, say, college-town or big-city environments?), large or small programs, your tolerance for test-taking, your appetite for application risk, etc.

You would gain a lot from discussing these issues one-on-one with a professional admissions consultant, who can help steer you in the right direction. I'm a big fan of doing the MBA, and doing it now -- this year in particular is an ideal time to take a step out of the rat-race and immerse in a top business school!

Good luck,
Margaret Strother
Senior Consultant
Stacy Blackman Consulting

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