Unlike other graduate degrees, earning an MBA requires years of previous work experience.
But according to George Iliev, director of development markets at the Association of MBAs, it’s not even worth considering MBA programs before you turn 25. “The MBA is a booster rocket, but your pre-MBA experience is the space shuttle itself,” he writes in a recent LinkedIn post. “Who would launch into space a booster rocket without the space shuttle latched onto it?”
Though acceptance is possible, pursuing this degree after only a few years in the workforce puts you at an immediate disadvantage. Not only will you have an inferior choice of schools after top programs fill up with applicants who have more experience, you run the risk of classmates looking down on you. “Not because they hate you,” Iliev says. “Rather, because they would be embarrassed by the association with you.”
Furthermore, you set yourself up for disappointment salary-wise. “Unreasonable expectations will derail your job hunting efforts and will hurt your career prospects for the long-term,” Iliev writes. Despite holding an advanced degree, employers still base positions and salary on experience, so you can’t expect your post-graduate pay to be comparable to classmates who came in with more experience.
When it comes down to it, completing an MBA program can elevate your career and help you create a valuable network of professional contacts. But if you do it too early, you might be slighting yourself and not getting the best experience possible.
Click here to read the full LinkedIn post.
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