Many MBA programs require students to choose an area of concentration.
Other programs don’t require students to declare a concentration, but students may find that doing so will open more doors.
You will want to make sure that you find a concentration that helps you reach your goals.
How Do You Find a Concentration?
Choosing your concentration is going to be one of the most important steps you take as an MBA student.
You need to understand what options are available to you when you are looking for a mba online program and
which ones could best fit with your future plans. Here are some ways you can help find a concentration.
Reflect on Career Experience
There is a reason that most business schools require or encourage their students to have some professional work experience before applying.
They want to make sure that you have some insight into what you want to do with your career. Think about what skills you developed in the past.
What were your strengths? What did you enjoy or not enjoy? Are there are any valuable skills that you think you need to develop while moving forward?
Consider Your Strengths and Passions
You should think about what kind of career you will be best suited for after graduation.
Are you the kind of person who enjoys networking and is a natural leader?
A concentration in management might be best for you. Are you highly analytical and great at math?
You may want to consider a concentration in finance.
You don’t necessarily need to limit yourself to a particular concentration because of your strengths.
For example, you can use your analytical skills to do marketing research instead of analyzing financial data.
However, you will have to look for a more specialized career.
Take Initiative If You’re Unsure
Many people are not sure what they want to do when they start business school.
You will need to be proactive about your education to learn what direction you want to go.
Take the time to network with others who can give you more insight into what path may be best for you.
Ask your professors and people in the industry what you need to know about particular industries so that you can find a path that works for you.
Everyone’s preferences can change over time. You may start off with a concentration in finance and then realize the classes don’t interest you as much as you expected.
You may also do an internship and find that it isn’t the path you are looking for.
You will need to be flexible and be willing to change if the concentration isn’t right for you.
Most concentrations only consist of a couple of classes and you won’t be set back much if you decide to change.
You can also consider pursuing two separate concentrations if you would like.Some concentrations may even share common classes.
For example, a class on international finance could be used for both a concentration in global business and a separate concentration in finance.
Pursuing dual concentrations can be particularly helpful if you have a very distinct, multidisciplinary career goal.
About the author: Kalen Smith is an Internet entrepreneur.
He also has an MBA with a dual concentration in finance and marketing from Clark University in Worcester, MA.