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Want to obtain an MBA? Here is what you should know

File Picture Photo by Michael Walker

File Picture Photo by Michael Walker

Published Jun 13, 2022

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Johannesburg - What is an MBA? Who should get an MBA? Why should one even pursue an MBA?

MBA stands for Master of Business Administration and according to mba.com, the MBA is the world’s most popular graduate management degree.

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It is a generalist degree which gives you fundamental management knowledge, meaning you’ll get a holistic view of the business while simultaneously developing the vital soft skills and leadership skills required for effective management.

Nosimilo Ndlovu, a lecturer, and strategic consultant obtained an Executive MBA through the Gordon Institute of Business Science and outlined her motivation to obtain an MBA.

Lecturer and MBA graduate Nosimilo Ndlovu.

“I came from the arts and media industry and wanted to gain a holistic understanding of business, so I could leverage my skills as an expert in the media industry in any business sector,” she says.

Ndlovu lists the opportunity to learn from industry experts and professionals as one of the great advantages of obtaining an MBA.

“Earning an MBA allows one to be part of a global network of business thought leaders. It gives an individual access to well-connected, respected, and astute professionals you may not have otherwise had a chance to meet or connect with in any other space. It also allows you the opportunity to build relationships with other professionals,” she says.

Some of the top career motivations for prospective MBA candidates are a salary increase, promotion to senior positions, managing people, and working internationally.

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While entry requirements may vary from institution to institution the general entry requirements for most MBA programs in South Africa are:

  • Four-year degree (NQF 8) OR three-year degree plus PG-Dip (NQF 8)
  • Post-university work experience: A minimum of four years for the programme
  • Acceptable GMAT, NMAT score OR the WBS Admission Test.
  • Mathematics: A level of competence equivalent to the requirements of the SA Matriculation certificate

Ndlovu gave five bits of advice for prospective MBA students;

  • Not all MBA programmes are created equal, choose a good institution to pursue your studies, the name behind your qualification carries a lot of weight.
  • Business school offers you an opportunity to learn about new roles and industries, furthermore, you get the opportunity to experiment with the skills required in a variety of roles as part of your Programme. Take full advantage of the resources offered at your chosen school, and play every role on offer before deciding on your ultimate career role in business.
  • Being an MBA student gives you an out from many social and other engagements, you just don’t have the time for (as) you literally cannot do it all. There is no balance you must surrender to the MBA. Use this time to explore new opportunities, meet new people make new valuable connections, and new leaders, and figure out what it really is you want to do, and what really matters to you. Pivot and allow yourself to transform for your greatest benefit.
  • Being in business school can be all-consuming and stressful. It is taxing and exhilarating at once, you will meet new people and find yourself in new spaces literally and figuratively. Your personal life and otherwise balanced health and wellbeing will compete fiercely for your time. Try and create some semblance of balance by setting aside time to focus on yourself and those near and dear. Find something that gives you the time and space to reconnect refresh and recoup amidst the demanding submissions. The course is gruelling and the sacrifices are great but the reward is even greater.
  • Don’t fall behind, remember why you came to Business School, when it gets overwhelming go back and read your application letter remember why you started the journey and don’t settle for anything less than success.

IOL BUSINESS

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