MBAs are all about improving your job prospects, expanding your network, and learning critical business principles such as policy, logistics, marketing, and finance
MBAs are all about improving your job prospects, expanding your network, and learning about essential business principles such as policy, logistics, marketing, and finance. “If you want to be an entrepreneur, an MBA won’t help you much because entrepreneurship is all about experiments and exploration,” says serial entrepreneur Snehanshu Gandhi, who co-founded Kaagaz Scanner and two other start-ups during his time at IIT-Bombay. He also has an MBA from the Indian School of Business (ISB) in Hyderabad and has worked in boutique management consultancies.
Although we always equate an MBA with an IIM or a prestigious “brand,” this is not always the case. An MBA is a postgraduate degree that is a passport to a corporate job for any Tier II or III aspirant. The fact that one works for a bank, a financial institution, a corporation, or a big startup matters more than the salary. Just 30,000 MBAs are generated each year by the top 100 universities, so not everyone makes the cut. Business schools are developing new models, and IIM-Udaipur has started a programme in which industry leaders and experts are invited to participate in 15-minute online sessions. Similarly, UpGrad.com offers online MBAs through partnerships with global B-Schools such as Deakin Business School, University of Essex (Online), and Liverpool Business School. Since asynchronous education is here to stay, this model works.
The MBA programme is structured to teach teamwork, problem-solving, and critical thinking skills, as well as all facets of corporate business (done through case studies). Most MBAs can only have toolkits, not real-world experience. Modular or mini-MBAs can help with this by providing intensive boot camps in each region. Students may enrol in several mini-MBAs at any time they feel the need for additional training. MBAs are known for producing excellent middle managers, which is why the degree is also known as a ‘Master in Business Administration.’ The MBA isn’t built for entrepreneurs, but that’s where the potential lies. Founders in the early stages of their businesses may benefit from formal mentoring and guidance, and MBA schools can certainly collaborate to develop a new curriculum for founders.
However, a powerful countervailing force has recently emerged, one that can make the process of forming a business less risky. It’s known as the “lean start-up” approach, and it emphasises creativity over meticulous preparation, customer input over intuition, and iterative design over conventional “large design up front” production. Despite the fact that the technique is just a few years old, its concepts—such as “minimum viable product” and “pivoting”—have rapidly gained traction in the start-up world, and business schools have already begun modifying their curricula to teach them. Start-ups are not clones of larger corporations. They don’t happen according to master plans. The ones who excel eventually go from failure to failure easily, adapting, iterating, and refining their initial concepts as they learn from customers.