How to decide which MBA specialization is best for us?
Many students don’t know what to do in Marketing, Finance, HR, or Operations and if you don’t know this in advance how would you decide which MBA to do?
This is why I will address what working hours you have to contribute to every single specialization and finally, I will share that after each specialization what do you do in the job? You should have a repository or a resource from where you can know this to know exactly what needs to be done after a job. So, how do you get that information?
There is an important point that you need to know which is the difference between an MBA specialization and a function.
When we use the terms consulting, marketing, finance HR, IT, and product, these are all functions, these are not specializations.
There are some colleges that offer you a specialized MBA. E.g. their degree is MBA in Finance or MBA in Marketing. In that case, a majority of your subjects are from that particular specialization.
But, at the IIMs or in majority of the B-schools, the MBA that is offered is called a general MBA. In that MBA, you study all the subjects equally and after that, you can enter any job. Not only that, but once you get a job, you can also switch. For example, I studied at IIM Ahmedabad, I studied all the subjects there in the first year. I studied some subjects from finance, consulting, strategy, HR, marketing
I studied all of them.
Then, in the second year, I got the option to choose my own subjects But, it is impossible that a student studies all subjects of one function in 2nd year and that’s because of your timetable. So, e.g. I took more subjects in marketing but at the same time, I also had some finance subjects some HR subjects also It was a mix of all which is why my MBA was a general MBA and the majority Bschools in India offer a general MBA.
Now, if you have the clarity that you want to go into a particular specialization e.g. you want to get into HR then you go for a specialized MBA But, if you aren’t clear about it then the best way for you is to go for a general MBA program.
It not only gives you the exposure to study all subjects, it also helps you switch the job which is why when an HR gets a job in the HR field
it is very difficult to switch to any other role but if you get into consulting after General MBA then it’s easy to move to marketing or to move to HR or any of these fields.
Now that you have this clarity what we’re going to discuss is function-wise, not specialization-wise which one is the best function for you?
So, the working hours of these functions are the most hectic in the case of consulting and finance folks. I have friends in the finance and consulting world they work for min 14 hours a day and they might even work 18 hours a day on some days when the work gets stretched.
In fact the days on which they work 14 hours are their good days. Many people leave consulting in the first year itself just because it is not manageable. It’s hectic along with traveling every week that it becomes difficult to handle and very few people are able to handle that
On the other hand, you don’t travel a lot in finance but you have to be at the desk and you have to give a lot of time working on the data
which is why it is considered to be one of the most hectic jobs.
The most chill life is that of an HR, marketing, and general management folks. In the case of a sales role, your work is full of pressure but your working hours are minimal marketing jobs are chill, and people leave by 5 pm from the office. The rest of the specializations like Project Management or operations, are comparatively chill.
But, on some days, in a client-facing role, your work might stretch. Or if the requirements are a lot on someday, then you might be working 12 hours a day but that’s not the case for most of these jobs. It is still not as taxing as finance or consulting jobs.
There is a broad generalized notion this may not be valid for each role but if you work in a client-facing role, e.g. you have clients in consulting or finance some operations teams are also in client-facing roles, in that case, your workload increases and you are dependent on the client for a lot of deliverables which is why your working hours stretch esp if the deadline is nearing, you have to work more.
If you’re in an in-house role, e.g. you’re in marketing or HR, in that case, these requirements are not as much which is why the working hours are limited. This is a broad generalized notion you can use in case you want to decide what kind of a job you’d want to do Now, in this final section I’ll share how can you decide which specialization is for you – for this the best way is to do internships because you get to see your managers during internships.
Most of them are MBAs so you get to know the real work. I know you can’t do an internship in all fields so what’s an easier way to understand what happens in specializations for that channels are dedicated to specializations
e.g. Skill to Will talks, About sales