Top jobs in the business sector are lucrative for many reasons, ranging from high pay to the social prestige of having a high-ranking professional job. People who land these positions tend to do so through a combination of hard work, a savvy approach to their career and a solid education. Though there are roles that don’t have specific educational requirements, they are fewer in number, and you will most certainly find it more difficult to land these kinds of positions if you have no educational background.
The gold standard of business education
Though some workers in high-ranking jobs have undergraduate degrees in business, it’s not as common as you may think. However, you’ll find that a very large proportion of them have an MBA degree – or Master of Business Administration. This degree is offered by a lot of universities, such as Bolton University, and though extensive and time-consuming, an MBA course rewards students by showing potential employers that a candidate has a broad business understanding.
Students can enrol in an MBA programme over a two-year, part-time period, or if they can afford to take the time off work, they can enrol in a full-time MBA. Most programmes would require several years of work experience, but not a first business degree. Executive MBAs for more experienced and senior workers are increasingly popular; this course requires less time to complete but would have a higher initial entry requirement.
Other paths to business knowledge and credibility
MBA programmes are very popular, but MBA candidates are in relatively short supply due to the high cost involved both in terms of time and in terms of class fees. There are other options to make you stand out as a candidate. Most professions have professional qualifications that are relatively inexpensive to take and don’t require very long periods of study. By achieving accreditation with a relevant professional body, you will immediately be taken more seriously.
You may also want to consider simply working very hard in your role and climbing the career ladder in your organisation. Many business leaders started in jobs with no education at all, but built their experience through the years. Employers often reward exceptional employees with the opportunity to gain qualifications, with top team members taken on courses, and employees that show management potential enjoying fully sponsored MBA programmes, including paid leave to study.
Take the long-term approach
People in high-ranking business jobs have another common quality – the ability to see the long-term picture and to effectively plan and execute those plans. To achieve your ideal top-level job, you will have to work on a career plan, which will include educational stepping stones. Take time to research which qualifications would be useful for your career path and carefully evaluate the costs and benefits of each. If you have the option of investing in a degree programme, do so; but don’t forget that the result of career dedication might in fact be the opportunity to study while an employer picks up the bill.