Many college students pursuing a business degree have dreams of landing a job as a top executive in a major corporation. Top executives earn handsome salaries, are responsible for guiding entire corporations, and enjoy benefits and perks that come with that top position. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) is widely regarded as an extra credential that can apply to one of these positions, but what are the true career options for those with an MBA?
While most associate an MBA with a career in the fast-paced world of Fortune 500 companies, there are in fact a number of career fields available outside of the business world that offer MBA graduates employment opportunities. But, since we’re talking big aspirations, let’s discuss positions that are earned by well-qualified individuals with a great deal of professional experience.
The number and type of positions available in this career path are well-known. Chief Executive Officers, Chief Financial Officers, Chief Operating Officers, and Chief Supporting Officers are among the top executives in this career field. Their responsibilities can vary depending upon the size of the organization. For example, a CEO of a small business may be responsible for long term planning and operations as well as day-to-day operations to keep the business humming along.
Each of these positions has a job title that explains in some detail what responsibilities are included in the role. CEOs are responsible for the overall direction of a company, for example, while COOs are responsible for directing various departments within the organization and oversee day-to-day operations of the company.
This might seem out of the ordinary, but many elected officials are acting as the CEO of government agencies. Mayors, governors, and county administrators are elected officials, but many of them hold graduate degrees such as an MBA that make them qualified candidates for these positions.
These government CEOs are responsible for overseeing budgets, directing government programs, and appropriately allocating the resources of a government entity.
Those who are employed as in positions of guidance within educational institutions also tend to be highly educated individuals. School district superintendents and presidents of colleges and universities are typical examples of individuals who might hold an MBA degree. These individuals not only oversee the operations of schools, school districts, and post-secondary institutions, they are also responsible for issues like student achievement, budgets, and ensuring schools remain in compliance with government agencies and other stakeholders.
The field of Information Technology (IT) is increasingly important as companies further integrate computer systems and networks into their daily operations. According to U.S. News, the top three jobs on a list of “8 Ideal Jobs for MBA Grads,” are IT related positions. Computer Systems Analysts, Web Developers, and Database Administrators are all well-served by earning MBAs in college.
Computer Systems Analysts analyze business needs and help implement hardware, software, and network systems to meet those needs. Web Developers design and maintain professional websites ensuring that user experience is held in high regard to attract and keep customers. Database Administrators possess an overarching understanding of how important a well built and well maintained database is to a company.
Landing a position as a top executive is still a popular dream among MBA students, but not everyone’s career pans out the same. Fortune 500 companies only need so many CEOs, CFOs, and CIOs, so the rest of those students should consider some of the other career paths available to MBA graduates.
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