Does an MBA better prepare you for entrepreneurship?
Is it worthwhile to pursue an MBA (and all the costs associated with it) if you are planning on becoming an entrepreneur and launching your own startup or should you focus that time, energy and money directly on building your business? Are there advantages to an MBA that will help you operate better or get more funding?
Get a few years of experience in your field first. Save money to get your MBA and start your company. With good experience and an MBA, you'll be more credible especially if you want to raise money - angel or venture capital.
My opinion is that you need some business knowledges but you don't need an "MBA". An MBA is mainly designed for managers that will have growing responsibilities in an MNC. Entrepreneurship is a little bit different.
If you live in the US business education like MBA are extremely expensive and I guess you would feel better having this money in your bank account.
Nevertheless, if you have no business background at all it may a bit difficult for you to start and operate your business.
You can take some courses or read some good books. Now if you want an MBA I know that William Howard Taft University organize MBA in Entrepreneurship. It's organize online, they are accredited and really cost efffective compare to traditional MBA's.
You can have also a look at my website www.athenasia.com
We assist entrepreneur to create their business plans but we don't offer templates or books or any "Do It Yourself" packages, instead we train and coach the entrepreneurs to come up with their own plan. This enables not only to get ownership on the plan created but also, and this is what interest you, get general business knowledges: http://www.athenasia.com/business-planning.html
When your business is growing Athenasia can help you with strategic performance management and again you are receiving training, coaching and consulting to develop your own. You can have a look at: http://www.athenasia.com/performance-management.html
This is the alternative way we have developed.
I will tell you from personal experience, you do NOT need an MBA to excel in business. I have an MBA with a focus in entrepreneurship studies, I've also owned companies. I learned more from owning my own company than I did getting the MBA.. Seriously, an MBAs is unnecessary cost, and a waste of time and money... not to mention, the a big fat student debt you will incur and will take forever to pay off, and the interest keeps piling up to be twice the cost of the useless degree. There is so much more you will learn hands on than by running after this piece of paper.... Moreover, everybody these days have an MBA so what's the point? It's easy to get and therefore highly competitive... when something is so abundantly available the value is weakened. It's the same as everybody having a high school diploma. Save your money and your time. Your hands-on experience will be sharper than MBA classes. I know from practical experience. I am keeping it real and tell you as it is. My best wishes!
It absolutely does help, although it is not all you need. MBAs typically focus on solving the problems of larger companies. You would get 80% of the value by taking only a few classes, Strategic Management, Marketing, and Finance. Even if you take those at the undergrad level you must do something. Too many entrepreneurs are unprepared without understanding the ABCs of business.
It all depends on the program and your background. Moving from the an "idea" to "monetizing that idea" can be difficult if you have no education or experience on how to do it. The MBA will definitely help guide you to get the experience more efficiently (operate better) than just jumping in. I do think that banks would prefer an MBA opposed to nothing if it is your first time for funding but a successful record trumps all when it comes to asking for more.
I think this is an interesting question. Many people people have become successful without an MBA, some even have dropped out and still succeeded. I don't an MBA is needed for success but training and qualifications can be useful.
What may be more important are the circumstances. Some are driven to entrepreneurship through their circumstances and many things happen despite our "plans".
There is the "Hollywood" tendency to glamorise certain things but some have quiet accomplishments and others very public ones. Some with qualifications and some without.
Finding a trusted coach or mentor is very useful and being connected to the right people can also be good too. The truth is that there is not always a neat fit and many will try try to make one be available. I will suggest though, that while qualification is good, aiming form an MBA may be a sign of wanting to get "a good qualification" just in case...and that may limit one's commitment to the rigours of entrepreneurship.
All you need to be an entrepreneur is an idea and the determination to see it through. Some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world had no formal education, just a creative solutions focussed mindset and a will to succeed
Depends on where you get your MBA, I had 4 courses in starting a business with professors who were serial entrepreneurs. I went to the Zicklin School of Business in NYC. What an education. I thank God for my MBA because without it, I couldn't command the top dollar. The top dollar I wasn't able to achieve doing the same work without the sheepskin.
The greatest enterpreneurs have always been people with less than a college education and even drop-outs. The MBA is highly oversold and overvalued. Hard work and creativity, the kind you won't find in the staid educational systems in most countries, won't do it. Save your money and hire a consultant who DOES know what s/he's doing. Have them mentor you, then go out and make good.
Yes and no, howeverI don't have a MBA degree, but you can always register for open enrollment or Executive programs that are a custom fit, for your specific entrepreneurial needs or style. MBA degrees provide a framework and cases tudy based coursework for the business world, but its not a litmus test. Start-ups ,are incepted and concieved through hard work, drive, completion and ambition. Those factors and attributes are the hallmark of success in business and life.
Whether or not to get an MBA is really going to depend on your situation and your personal motivation for getting one. Getting an MBA will take a considerable amount of time and money. I went back to school to get my MBA in Entrepreneurship after over 10 years with startups, including my own, to build out my network, to generate and vet new startup ideas, and to get a firmer understanding of the financial aspects of business (I'm an engineer by training). You definitely don't need an MBA to become an entrepreneur and I would highly recommend getting experience first as you'll not only get more out of the MBA experience, you will also be able to provide far better insight into the class discussions. Also, more importantly than the MBA, surround yourself with trustworthy mentors that have relevant experience from which you can learn.
One advantage of enrolling in an MBA program is the fact that you will be eligible for the numerous business plan competitions that are offered by universities throughout the world. Most of these competitions require the participation of MBA students. Winning a business plan competition typically provides for a variety of in-kind contributions such as legal and accounting help as well as much-needed non-dilutive cash to get your company going.
Nothing beats experience.
An MBA is a piece of paper, experience is pure gold.
Hello Stephen! I hope your project is going well.
I like your topic. However, I believe it may be highly controversial. I would like to share my personal opinion. I don't believe that MBA will make you a good entrepreneur. Good ideas and ability to draw people together to a common goal will. However, what MBA will give you is a set of skills that help you to analyse ideas/situations in a structured way. I believe this structured thinking can help you to create robust analysis. In its turn, such analysis, together with negotiation skills, can lead to better funding opportunities. But, and it is a big one, it is only valid if you have a GOOD IDEA first. I view any degree, including MBA, as a set of tools that you can apply in different context. However, if you start with nothing (no good ideas) even a good toolkit won't help you.
OMG...No! I have an MBA from a good school and it helped me in the corporate world. But no way did we cover anything remotely related to entrepreneurship. I've had to learn through entrepreneurs' groups, partnering with successful entrepreneurs, and 'hard knocks'.
I absolutely think an MBA will help for two main reasons:
(1) It prepares you to think critically and supplies you with the references needed to write and execute a business plan which is helpful in vetting your ideas and getting others involved.
(2) It is invaluable for building a network of connections for partners, funders, mentors, and collaborators.
Of course, if you can bootstrap a business without an MBA, then your may actually be more successful. Remember, MOST entrepreneurs do not have an MBA.
If you do decide to get an MBA choose a school that will help you get the references, experiences, and networks that will help you most. A program that focuses on internships rather than case studies would be my recommendation.
MBA it's just another "medal of honor" and your next social step for your friends and family and business colleagues. And i agree with http://www.mosaichub.com/member/p/kelly-mcdonald better to do bussines then waist time in class room!
I had a start up and learned a lot from it, now I'm working on my MBA. I can say that I'm 100% sure that if I had it to do over again, I'd take the MBA first. While there are many things you will not learn in a class room, the more knowledge you have BEFORE you start, the more likely you will be successful. I think it's the equivalent of working smarter, not harder. If you have a good understanding of business before you start up then you are more likely to run an efficient, organized, competent business. There's a reason most businesses fail and I don't think over-education is anywhere near the top. It's usually because people with real skills/ideas don't understand how to run their business. So, is it worthwhile? Absolutely. Is it necessary? No. Will it prepare you properly? Probably not. Will it help you adapt and change? Certainly.
Hi Stephen, just dive right into it.
Don't even consider talking to those VCs or Angels that think you'll need an MBA.
There is nothing more defining to get funding than something you create that
others want. When that's combined with the fire in your belly, that will get others
coming your way.
If you did an MBA, you won't give yourself a chance to fail or endure, so skip it.
Even though an MBA gives you a general perspective about the business and corporate world, it is very limited and narrows down the assumptions that exist in the real world, particularly when it comes to start and run a new business, where things are quite different and there is no recipe for success. In my personal case, I recently got my MBA and can say that most of these programs prepare students to get into the increasingly tough job market, I mean, to be employees rather than employers.