EMBA – The Ultimate Value

Why Should You Apply Right Now

Why do an EMBA? Because it is great value for money, fun, exciting, challenging, flexible, accommodating, and not to be underestimated - could be truly inspiring. How many things in your life are all of these and more? An EMBA programme offers busy executives and managers a fresh chance to look at business in a new way.

The executive form of the MBA programme seriously assumes that you are either just that – an executive, or on your way to becoming one, in your existing company, in a new one, or in your own business.

This, in turn, assumes that you have already had somewhere between six and 13 years of experience and are well into your thirties, forties or even fifties. You probably have a spouse or partner, and/or a child or two. You have got mortgages, leased vehicles, insurance funds, college trusts for your children, retired parents and an incredibly demanding and often stressful job. In addition, you are probably managing anywhere from five to five thousand people.

Taking a week or two on a tropical island is no longer enough to restore your enthusiasm about business, either in general or in your company or industry in particular. Interestingly, it is exactly the above that has been motivating an increasing number of EMBA students to apply and enrol: the need to find fresh inspiration to continue doing business in today’s hyper stressful and insecure times. Going back to school after a considerable period of work could genuinely give you a new perspective on both business and life. An EMBA in particular will certainly place you in a new and often unexpected circle of fellow executives who will be your classmates for the next two years. The ultimate value of this precious aspect of the Executive MBA programme is not to be underestimated. Each and every one of those people could be the unexpected source of wisdom or ingenuity to ignite you in greater business ventures. The above could indeed be the first of the top ten reasons why you should do an EMBA. Here are the rest:

Acquire new skills or fill in skill gaps

After six or more years on the job, you probably possess a vast array of skills and tons of specialised knowledge about your field of work. It is thus possible and even probable that after a while you may start to feel a little bit stuck in your niche. This is exactly where an EMBA comes in handy. It affords you the possibility to acquire new skills without the need to interrupt work. If you are climbing the corporate ladder, it will help you fill in skill gaps that lie between you and that craved CEO position. It might be exactly these new skills that your current manager is seeking in you, in order to release you on your way to corporate peaks. An EMBA could help you adopt some or all of the following:
a) new management skills to help you manage greater groups of people with an increased spectrum of specialties and levels of knowledge and responsibilities;
b) improving your strategic thinking and enhancing your ability to build up and/or analyse the bigger picture;
c) better communication and enhanced social skills due to continuous interaction with other managers and executives from different industries.

Expand your network

One of the key assets of the Executive MBA programme is that it places you among other managers and/or executives, likely to be decision makers in their fields. Some executives are known to have joined EMBA programmes for that particular reason alone. You will certainly create new contacts among your EMBA classmates that may develop into fruitful and lasting corporate relationships. Those contacts could be local if you are doing an EMBA in your own country, but also regional or international if you are attending beyond borders. The latter could be even more promising, as it would broaden your perspectives to an international career. Often, executives in EMBA programmes target international positions within their companies.

An added bonus is that you will continue to benefit from your newly created network even after graduation due to the excellent alumni networks that EMBA programmes actively maintain. You will be reaping the benefits of your EMBA education long after you have graduated.

Broaden your perspectives

Often, the fine line between senior managers and CEOs is the latter’s creativity and innovativeness, which make up a lot of what is needed to be a good strategist and macro planner. Enrolling in an Executive MBA programme could encourage and trigger your creative thinking, which will make an excellent addition to your already highly developed
technical knowledge of your profession. This kind of business education will take you several steps beyond just numbers and statistics, and will let you explore new ideas, dreams and wild hypotheses. Think of it as a safe testing field for your corporate madness. This, in return, will strengthen your confidence in your own decision-making powers, making you excellent leadership material.

Participating in an EMBA programme will enhance your understanding of key business processes within your company or field, allowing you to apply them immediately in your work. This could awaken some new interests in you, which could potentially ripen and develop into a new career or business. Opportunities to explore new horizons and expand
your perspectives will abound in Executive MBA studies.

Climb the ladder

An EMBA is often the necessary step from being a talented individual to a successful executive with strong management acumen and leadership prowess. Having a business degree is often a key criterion for choosing a GM or CEO from outside the company. It has certainly become the norm for CFO positions worldwide, even in emerging markets, particularly so in international companies. So, in this sense, the Executive part of the EMBA abbreviation serves not so much to denote an admissions criterion, rather than applicants’ common ambition.

Business savvy students hurry to apply their newly acquired skills or knowledge to their ongoing work as soon as each session ends. This certainly does not remain unnoticed by their superiors. So attending an EMBA programme has immediate benefits for both the student and their employer. A certain prerequisite for getting a promotion, right?

Excellent financial returns

According to the Financial Times’ 2011 business school rankings, b-school graduates see a salary increase of no less than 60 per cent over the two years after graduation. EMBA graduates often see this increase even sooner than regular MBA students, as their superiors recognise the positive results of their studies even before they have been completed, while regular MBA students may still be looking for jobs or choosing among offers.

Although all seven of the EMBA graduates interviewed for this article shared better remuneration, this was not among the top three reasons to pursue an executive business degree, even though its acquisition did indeed improve their financial situation.

Benefiting from the skills of others

An EMBA programme will immediately place you on the same par with other executives, managers and entrepreneurs from an array of different industries, to whom you may not otherwise have access. It is not impossible that, among this cohort of classmates, you will find your future lawyers, accountants, public relations people, mobile application developers, innovation consultants and personal bankers, as well as your future business partner/s. You will be seeing these people in action every month for two years, and will get to know their pros and cons intimately before choosing to hire them. A foolproof approach that will save you a lot of money in the long run. You will also benefit greatly from the different perspectives they will bring to the table. You will witness various mindsets, approaches and decision making processes. You will thus most certainly have the chance to take up as many clues as possible. Although you cannot call it free advice, as you are still paying for your EMBA, this is still the kind of knowledge and wisdom it often takes a lifetime to acquire.

A step to a new life

Enrolling in an EMBA programme could be much more than just taking the next step in the corporate hierarchy in your company or field of business. It could also be the first step to your new life. You may be a hard-boiled executive or a mid-level manager who knows the very depth and breadth of your business. An EMBA programme could help you find your new calling. It could be joining a new company with a completely different corporate environment or, for the first time in your life, launching your own business. If these dreams have been simmering in you for the past few years, why not make 2013 and 2014 the years you bring them to life? Let your independent ambitions blossom and thrive in an environment that is truly supportive of your entrepreneurial spirit and enthusiasm. Let the
expert faculty and your experienced classmates help you shape up your next business venture or develop your new idea to perfection. You will probably have the time of your life achieving your dream. Ultimately, an EMBA degree looks good on your CV, poses a great new personal and professional challenge, and is a great investment in yourself, while you can still enjoy spending time with your family and advancing your career in the meantime.

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