Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Why MBA?

The MBA degree opens up worlds of opportunity for its bearers. Many business positions require an MBA for advancement. For example, investment banking and management consulting firms hire large classes of newly minted MBAs each year at six-figure salaries into the "associate" level -- those without MBAs generally don't advance past the "analyst" level. At major consumer products companies like Procter & Gamble, Kraft and Colgate-Palmolive, MBAs are hired as "assistant brand managers" into the brand management department -- those without MBAs are generally not eligible for the department. And it is from this function that these companies' senior executives are generally drawn.

Companies should seriously consider MBA if they believe they could and should be doing a better job tapping the full potential of their employees' knowledge, experience and skills in accomplishing the organization's objectives. This belief may have arisen due to problems related to sales, product/service quality and delivery, after sales service or any of the other aspects of the organization's operations resulting in less than optimal profitability.
To the extent that these problems are rooted in "people problems", they may be the result of employees not caring about their job or the company, being unwilling to go the extra mile or take responsibility for their actions, and poor teamwork or cooperation between different teams and departments. Such employee attitudes and behaviors are typically rooted in poor communications and a lack of mutual trust and respect. In situations where communications, trust and respect are lacking, particularly between management and employees, companies invariably experience "people problems" that cause needless expense and reduce profitability. MBA is uniquely designed to address these issues.Nevertheless, companies cite a variety of reasons for adopting MBA:
Need to improve the company’s performance: When management concludes they need the active help and involvement of the entire organization to improve the company’s performance.
Need to turnaround a negative culture: When management feel their efforts to move the company forward are being de-railed by a lack of real support or cooperation among the employees.
Realization that there has to be a better way: When management recognizes they no longer could or should carry the entire burden of responsibility for the company’s success or failure on their shoulders alone.
Belief that you get what you give: When management believes employees respond to a good work environment, challenging opportunities and an equitable compensation program by being more productive.
Desire to give something back to the employees: When management wants to reward employees by offering them a share in the company’s financial success and by providing them with opportunities to further their careers. Many MBA companies appear to have been relatively enlightened in their management practices prior to adopting MBA but, for a variety of reasons, failed to tap the full potential of their organization’s capabilities. It’s the integration of the various management practices or components of the MBA system and the discipline demanded by the system that has the power to bring about the culture of ownership and enhanced performance.