Why No (Good) Jobs After MBA?

“I have done B.Sc in Physics, planning for MBA as next course. Is that a good decision?”

“What about MBA after BA in English?”

“MBA after B.Sc Agriculture is a good choice?”

“I am Planning for MBA after M.Sc Mathematics. Can I get a good-paying job?”

Questions like the above are frequent and regular in various higher education and career discussion forums. I will name them the pre-MBA queries. Then some questions and concerns come from the MBA-secured graduates; I will call them post-MBA queries. Instead of quoting those questions here, if I extract the essence from those genres of career guidance questions, the net result will be one big-gigantic-echoing question – Why no (good) job after MBA?

I have deliberately bracketed the “good” part. Though the questioner will not make it obvious, the concern will be – “Why no better jobs after MBA?” However, it has to be highlighted that the jobs will exist but may not match the profile, status, glamour, and matter of the MBA course content. And, definitely nowhere near the promises and marketing gimmicks spill out by the business school advertisements and agents.

There are five elements to the answering part, as I can figure out from my observations, experience, realities, and confessions obtained from my surroundings, and they can be listed:

Wrong Person:

Education courses have a uniqueness in their nature and scope. Not all students can go for any course and expect the same result for each one of them. Education domains are personality-specific. The case is more accurate for MBA. An MBA graduate is expected to hold people skills, managerial traits, leadership qualities, supervisory abilities, a holistic approach, and a knack for teamwork. If the students lack such qualities, it is a big red mark for them even before their MBA. Individuals can earn their MBAs and acquire most leadership-managerial skills through practice. Yet, if they are uncomfortable fulfilling such administrative roles, MBA will make them misfits for the profile they are supposed to occupy.

Wrong Reasons/Orientation:

People do things in their life for various reasons. Even if I can recollect my current career position, much has to do with my decisions because of specific reasons and some orientation I received from people I knew, spoke to, and heard from. For MBA programs, students may come under the influence of overhyped MBA advertisements, career counselors’ advice (who suggested another MBA silver bullet to solve all your career confusion without knowing your personality and interest), and even their half-baked convictions. Only in the later stages of their career, after enough damage has been done, do these students realize the wrong turn they took in their career path.

Wrong Process:

Doing post-graduation is a crucial decision one student will make in their education graph. Post-graduation or master’s programs are about specialization and determination to focus on a specific knowledge field. However, if one has to analyze the way students pursue their master’s program, they can only wonder how they are committing to such decisions without any thought process or long-term plan. For the sake of keeping things ‘rolling’ and to avoid their neighbors questioning their kids’ jobs and life plans, many parents find it convenient to keep their students inside education institutions as long as possible, with the expectation that the more the number of certificates, the better the chances of landing in a job. But the reality is, more than certificates, employers expect their potential employees to be skillful, possessing enough team skills and emotional intelligence along with technical knowledge needed for the role. Students with more qualifications tend to have more expectations, and less patience, making them uncomfortable in jobs they may even get. If MBA comes into this equation, the scenario becomes even ugly. 

As with many post-graduation programs, MBA can be pursued after 2 to 5 years of industry experience after their undergraduate/bachelor’s program. Such an approach will enable the MBA pursuant to gain more clarity towards their career outlook and prepare them to expect what they can achieve from their MBA.

Wrong Institution:

Regarding education, three parties are significant – teachers, students, and institutions. While teachers are the directors, guides, and mentors for their students, educational institutions provide the atmosphere and ambiance for the education they receive. Education is not only about knowledge; it is about experience and exposure. Hence, the quality of education institutes affects the quality of students. The same is true for MBA. MBA is not a text-book oriented course. Instead, the quality of MBA programs is closely associated with industry collaborative programs, networking opportunities, and alumni initiatives.

Wrong Attitude:

A healthy attitude is ever more vital to grow in life and career. No matter how passionately you love the domain, how deeply you are motivated, how well you are prepared, or what great institution you chose for your education if your attitude is wrongly directed, your career graph will follow a trajectory that you never wanted to see even for your bitterest enemy. The right attitude is critical for MBA grads since they are responsible for leading, managing, and administering spheres of an organization. If the top is rotten, what to expect from the bottom?

So, these are the five primary reasons why your MBA is not providing you the expected result- a good-paying job with better career growth and opportunities. There are many more reasons. However, the five points we discussed are the cornerstones of the answer I wanted to convey from my observation, experience, and analysis.

Any education, with MBA no exception, allows you to process the knowledge. Constant learning, skill-earning, and upgrading are the soul of real education. If you want to turn an education program into an employment opportunity, the first and foremost thing you must do is to find yourself in your educational qualifications.

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