A very close friend of mine from my college days had the privilege of attending a company sponsored MBA course from the prestigious Asian Institute of Management (AIM). He had to take it as a pre-condition for his moving up to a higher position.
He had what is called Executive MBA.
If the example still escapes your comprehension, an Executive MBA is a program primarily designed to educate working executives, managers, entrepreneurs and other business leaders.
Yes, executives and managers need to be educated. In fact, they need more education than ordinary working people. It comes with the added responsibilities and higher pay. Apparently, the higher they rise, they dumber they become, at least from the point of view of the rank-and-file.
Difference between an MBA and Executive MBA:
In a lot of respects, a regular MBA and an executive MBA (EMBA) are similar except that the latter is designed for managers, executives and entrepreneurs.
Since they are intended for working professionals, they are more flexible, allowing students to take evening classes or on weekends.
Some requirements in the regular MBA, like the GPA and the GMAT are waived in the EMBA program.
The average EMBA program lasts for a year or two. Some students who can manage their schedules well get to finish it in less time.
Students of an EMBA are in the mid-stage of their careers. They are going into it to increase their career options, update their knowledge or brush up on the skills they already have. It is part of their continuing education.
They are never in the beginning stages of their careers, like those enrolled in a regular MBA program.
My friend was already well into in his 40s when he took it.
How much does an EMBA cost?
The cost of an executive MBA depends on the school you are enrolled in. Generally, probably because managers and executives are difficult students to handle, it is slightly higher than a regular MBA.
Whereas a lot of the EMBA students are company-sponsored, you may not enjoy the same privilege. In which case, you have to explore some fund sources.
One possible source is to ask your employer to pay for your tuition. There are companies which encourage their employees to get higher education. Some of these are soft loans while others are bundled into their employee benefits.
I know of a company which reimburses their employees getting an EMBA, provided they pass all subjects.
Should your company have none of these, then you may be forced to make a loan at conditions that may not be very wholesome to you.
Choosing an EMBA:
Choosing an EMBA program is something that needs a lot of thought.
Among other things, you would want a program that is accredited and offers good academic opportunities; that is pertinent to your current situation. You may also need to have it nearby so it won’t disrupt your work schedules.
Accreditation is the term used to describe the review process educational institutions to voluntarily undergo to prove their commitment to quality education and continuous improvement.
It is important for three reasons:
– It ensures quality education;
– Scholarships and grants are only given to accredited institutions;
– Employers prefer MBA degrees from accredited institutions.
After earning their EMBA degrees, managers and executives go back to their respective organizations facing one of these options: continue to work at their current jobs, moved sideways or upwards.
The worst fate is to be given more responsibilities but with the same salary. Sucks!
The entrepreneurs will view their business with a new vigor and vision. They either fine-tune their existing business models or adopt new ones. They could go into partnerships or joint ventures, or apply for incorporation. Whatever the case, they would find good application of their newly-acquired business and strategic planning skills.
An EMBA is an advanced business degree that people take to improve their business or get higher salaries. There is no guarantee that they will. But a Bloomberg Businessweek study shows that executives with EMBA degrees tend to have higher salaries than those who don’t.
In a separate report, Forbes magazine shows 40 of the 100 highest paid CEOs in corporate America have an executive MBA degree.
The debate on the importance of an EMBA in getting mega buck salaries may never be settled. So far, however, figures show that those who took the time and effort and spent a fortune in getting it have desks-with-a-view in their corporate offices.