Deciding what to do next is one of the common dilemmas that students go through after completing their engineering degrees. There is certainly no shortage of advanced engineering degree options to choose from, and students can also get plenty of benefits from studying for a non-engineering advanced degree such as an MBA. Engineering students may cover a wide range of topics depending on the specialty that they have chosen. Computer engineering students, for example, study various aspects of software development, technology, and computers while those who study chemical, civil, electrical, or mechanical engineering can typically find a range of great career choices in the infrastructure, power, and energy industries.
Companies typically prefer engineering students that have chosen the relevant subject specializations for their chosen career, but if you have hopes of climbing up the career ladder and enjoying more responsibility in your work, an MBA may also be a great choice for you. Here are some of the main reasons why engineering graduates should consider getting an MBA.
The theory in the corporate world is that combining an engineering degree education with an MBA afterwards provides you with the best combination of both skills and knowledge to gain traction in your career and move quickly up the career ladder. The managerial skills and background provided by an MBA put engineering graduates in a better position to fast-track their career to higher-up supervisory and even visionary roles. On the other hand, an engineer who does not have any formal management training or knowledge might find it much harder to reach these positions. Click here to find out more about the importance of MBA education in engineer and general manager training.
As an engineering graduate, you will have developed a solid understanding of the technical side of your work. Throughout your studies, you will have gained many technical and scientific skills related to your engineering specialty, and figuring out technical instructions or crunching numbers might be something that you can do in your sleep. But if you want to work towards becoming an engineering manager, you’re going to need an entirely different skillset to combine with your current one. An MBA will prepare you for all the real-world problems that organizations face and provide you with a deeper understanding of the human element and how to effectively manage people.
Getting an MBA after graduating as an engineer gives you a better opportunity to get to where you want to be in your career much faster. And, you can earn more in your career with the average starting salary of an engineer with an MBA being much higher compared to an engineer who does not have one. It’s clear to see that the corporate world prefers to hire engineers who have a specialization in management allowing you to enjoy higher rates of pay and a much faster rate of career growth when you show up with this combination.
Your MBA training will allow you to develop a more holistic perspective and approach to your work and the problems that you encounter in the workplace. A good manager is required to observe and get an understanding of the macro- and micro-level problems and understand how to solve them in a way that allows everybody to work together for optimum productivity and the best results. Compared to an engineering environment, problem-solving tends to be much more dynamic and complex in a business environment, and getting an MBA will provide you with the skills that you need to see the bigger picture and approach problem-solving holistically.
Many engineering graduates who opt to study for an MBA after getting their engineering degree will find that it provides them with a lot of options for personal development too. As a whole, the MBA curriculum focuses on group projects, discussions, presentations, and industry visits which allow students to develop deeper confidence, fine-tune their communication skills, and develop their personality, all of which are important soft skills for any future engineering manager.
You may be set on a career in engineering right now, but you never know what might change for you in the future. Gaining an MBA after getting your engineering degree will open the door to a huge range of different career opportunities, whether you would like to pursue engineering careers in your chosen specialty, would like to move up the ladder into engineering management, or want to become a manager in a different industry. The MBA is a very well-respected qualification around the world and regardless of your engineering background is likely to be welcomed in many non-engineering companies. If you are looking for a career switch, or suspect that you may be likely to want a change in the future, getting an MBA certainly makes sense.
Good leadership is about much more than simply having expertise in your subject matter. A good leader needs to possess strong people skills, the ability to negotiate, inspire their teams in tough times, make the right decisions, think critically on the fly, and take responsibility. These are some of the core skills that you will learn as an engineer studying for an MBA program, giving you the chance to combine your technical expertise with a wide range of leadership soft skills that are sought-after and valued in any company. It’s no surprise that around 90% of CEOs come from MBA backgrounds, and getting an MBA will allow you to easily go for a range of leadership positions in your field or elsewhere, whether you decide to move into a different industry or start your own business venture. if you want to become your own boss and start your own engineering firm, an MBA provides you with the foundation that you need to lead your firm to success.
At first glance, an MBA might not be the obvious choice after graduating as an engineer, but the truth is that this advanced degree can help you develop a wide range of coveted skills as a leader in the industry.
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