However, what is often ignored is that to achieve such high salaries, MBA students and graduates alike need to possess something greater than a passion for high earnings: career progression and a thirst for self advancement.
“Whether looking to advance career, change career or start a new business, the MBA can provide a holistic ‘tool-kit’ of business acumen to help you succeed in the future,” explains Oliver Ashby, business development manager at London Business School in the UK.
“This includes valuable soft skills so that students are equipped to deal with all aspects of the business world, whether that is seeking investment for a new venture or presenting to a corporate boardroom.”
“An individual should apply for an MBA program if they have reached a point in their career where they have a body of work behind them and a core skill set that they want to expand and advance prior to making their next career steps,” says Steven Cousins, MBA recruitment and admissions manager at Cass Business School in the UK.
“It may be that an applicant wishes to accelerate or change their career or pursue and entrepreneurial goal - an MBA program is designed to support this kind of transition, by exposing students to a wide range of practice and theory in an interactive, international and engaging environment.”
The MBA application process is by no means a simple task, with a range of factors to consider and processes to contend with. In fact, which MBA you choose will also affect the admissions process that you will be faced with.
While each business school differs slightly in its requirements, admissions exams such as the GMAT or GRE, application essays, interviews, and letters of recommendation will all play a part in aiding MBA admissions departments to make their decision on whether an applicant is worthy of enrolling on their program.
However, first, future applicants will need to put in a great deal of research in order to decide which MBA program is worthy of their application.
“Reputation is key when it comes to choosing a school,” explains Sharon Bamford, chief executive of the Association of MBAs (AMBA), a London-based international MBA accreditation agency.
“Employers not only ask whether you have an MBA, but where you studied and some programs have better reputations than others. You can measure the quality and mark of a school by checking that the MBA program has the right accreditations.”
Admissions departments often report receiving applications that, while the candidates are highly skilled and offer great promise, simply aren’t the ‘right-fit’ for their school.
In this scenario, however much time and work an applicant puts into their application, a lack of research in the initial stages of the application process is their downfall.
Which MBA program you choose is a crucial decision.
“Think about finding an MBA program like buying a house,” advises Dr Steve Seymour, director of MBA programs at Ashridge Business School.
“There are plenty on the market, but you need to find the one that offers what you are looking for, not what might suit someone else.”
Firstly, Dr Seymour says, “make a list of what you want your MBA to include and compare potential schools against the list.” Secondly, “don't say yes to any school or offer without visiting the campus first. It has to feel right for you and not just look good in the brochure or on the website.”
Finally, “be prepared to sell your experience and expertise alongside your GMAT or test scores. Think about what you have to offer to others in the class and what you would expect other students to offer you.”