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When should you do MBA ? Directly after Bachelors/B.Tech or Work and then ?

Many students across the global with aspirations to pursue management degree like MBA wonder when should they get MBA ? Some think :  why waste and year, just get it right after B.Tech/ Engineering or any Bachelors degree .  What is the correct decision ?  I was one of those who used to always think like that : ” I should not waste time and get it right away”. But, luckily things did not work out and it is a very good thing I did not do it right away. I feel the importance when I am in classes discussing with fellow class mates.

When should you ideally do MBA ?
Short answer, ideally, you should work for at least  3 to 4 years and then start MBA.

What difference does it make ? Why should you work ?  
Work experience makes a huge difference. I can not explain how important it is. Many concepts related to  leadership, organization management, change management need work experience. You will not make much out of those classes if you do not have experience.  For instance, the question would be: how did you deal with your team ? what conflicts did you encounter as a team manager or member.  Think about it, if you have not worked, how would you know ? So, it is very much needed to have work experience.

What point in your career should you do MBA ?
You could pursue MBA for couple of reasons, either to change careers or move into leadership roles. In first case, MBA is recommended when you plan to move into leadership roles or you started a leadership role and need help to do well. Especially for leadership roles, the Golden rule is, you have to work for few years before doing MBA. In fact, some of the top ranked business schools in the world require professional work experience.  They know the importance of it.

In the second case, where one would do MBA is to change their career path . Let’s say you are in some sort of IT kind of role and you want to make a career change to strategy roles. One of the things you can do is get admission at good school, do it full time and on the way do internships in strategy. This gives you an option to change your careers. The key is internships, if not you may end up where you were and may not be able to change easily.

What can I do during my working period after Bachelors to be prepared for MBA ?There are couple of things you can do during your prep time. First and most important thing is to make sure you do well in the tests like GMAT, GRE, or any other test that you would take for admission. So, focus on the important areas that are part of these tests like Verbal,Quantitative, Writing skills, etc. You need to start to research about schools that could fit your passion and goals.

Now, second thing, these things may not directly help you with admission, but will help you be knowledgable and can help you in your MBA classes or after that for your career. Depending on your background, you can start studying books in finance, leadership, Innovation, articles in Economist, Fortune, Harvard Business Review, etc. You can do many of the online courses on leadership on Coursera or LinkedIn that can help you increase your business acumen.

 My Personal Experience :
My background is from engineering and I always had the perception that I should not get break in education and I will lose the track…but, my perception was wrong…I could only realize the value of work experience when I started to do the pre-requisites of MBA and then fully appreciate the value of work experience when I was doing MBA…Having said this, there are many successful students from elite schools, who get done with MBA from top Universities and come out with flying colors right after engineering…but, this does not apply to majority of the students…
What are your thoughts ?  What is your experience ? Do you think, it is important ?
 If you are stuck between decision to do MS or MBA in US, you may read this article on  MS vs. MBA in US – Coursework, Cost and Funding “


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  1. Sir,
    I am a fourth-year engineering (ECE) student and have a very basic knowledge of programming. Is work experience in management field necessary or a job in ECE core field fine?

    • I have the exact same doubt and also I’m below average in EC field and I discovered I have some very good business skills like management coz I’m working with my father in business and I’m in the last year of ECE but I want to now opt for mba in business management so in what field should I take the experience in, core EC or what should I preferably give interview in?

      • Unnati,
        You can go for Management, but as I suggest in article, it is best to work as an employee and get experience before you become a manager. This gives you an understanding of how the whole thing works. You can give it a try, but they usually hire Management Graduates, put them on rotation programs and then slowly groom them to lead teams…

    • Srihari,
      It depends. Usually, some get hired as Management Graduate, but many grow in the organization and get promotion. So, it is hard to give a standard answer

  2. Good afternoon Sir,
    Shrey here. I am about to complete my first year in college in B.Com [Honours] and have a knack for public speaking, creative problem solving and marketing. I have done a part time internship in a tech ed startup called Openhouse in Kolkata as a marketing intern. I am skilled at writing impactful essays and have some knowledge in mobile photography too.
    Looking for a list of apt soft skills and a suggestions on courses and universities to pursue my MBA from.

    • Shrey,
      We do not advise on schools. Depending on what you like, you could do research online on the MBA schools that rank by program. For example, if you are looking at Marketing, Kellog School of business is great…if you are looking at Finance Topics, Booth school of Business or Columbia are better…so, you need to do your research and then plan for the same.

    • Hi sir,
      I am 2018 passed out BE,CSE
      I dont have any work experience
      I wanted to pursue MBA in finance abroad this year.
      Is it right option to do MBA without work experience.

      • Harshitha,
        As I wrote in the article, it is better to get some experience before you pursue anything. But, if you do not have an option, then you may consider it.

  3. Sir now I’m 2rd year of engineering after completion of engineering I’m planning to study MBA..to study MBA do we need internship in engineering….?

    • PrincyAngel,
      No, not necessarily. It just helps…It is not a requirement. As the article says, it is recommended to work for few years and then take up MBA…

    • Thesni,
      MBA is a general management degree, you only choose electives, if you want to…So, nothing to worry about it now…you can check with the school you plan to study for more info.

  4. Engineering education doesn’t tell you much of anything about how business works. just techincal stuff. . .An engineering degree will teach you how to apply your knowledge practically. An MBA degree will teach you how to manage people with engineering degrees, who are going to be working for you. Engineers joining management give multitasking ability for engineers. For example if an engineer has done MBA for acquire management skills, get job in technical department of any company. That engineer can also handle management responsibility as well. This helps to increase their salary package, so national economy as well. In the competitive market scenario companies require multitasking employees. You can opt MBA with BTech as a integrated course which is 5 years course or you can go for MBA after the completion of BTech degree but its take 6 years. here i am the student of BTech+MBA integrated course from Quantum university which is situated in Roorkee, uttrakhand. which is the best college for Technical and business studies in north India.

  5. Hello Sir,

    Presently I am doing Btech in food technology and i am planning to do MBA.So I am confused that in which branch(HR,Finanace,Marketing.,etc) I should do specialization.Please guide me.

    • Kratika,
      In general MBA is an General administration degree and you can choose your emphasis on the area. So, technically it does not matter, you will just take few extra courses. It is highly recommended to work for few years before MBA, unless you get into like really top schools. Think of which area you would like to work in future…e.g. work with people means HR, work with numbers on reports and company performance means finance, etc. Talk to few people, you will get an idea.

  6. Sir i’v done B.Sc (chemistry) and i got placed in a manufacturing industry lately as a process controller .But sir i am not totally satisfied with my job role.
    I want to do MBA in( operation management), but everyone says that MBA in operation is only for students those belong to engineering background. But i have work experience relating to that field but i don’t belong to engg. Background.
    Should i do MBA in operation.
    Please sir help me out.

  7. I am currently in third year of my engineering. I was wondering if I should get job experience in technical field itself through college placements or work in finance or banking field.

  8. I am in my final year of engineering and got placed in TCS . I am also prepairing for mba enterances so should I do mba just after my final year or join TCS ?

    • As I mention in the article, you get more value of your MBA, if you work for few years. I would work for few years and then do MBA.

      • Bro I’m a graduate in computer science and I want to do mba, But I figured it out that I need work experience before getting admission in good university for mba. So what are the kinds of jobs available for me to gain work experience of minimum 1 year

  9. Hello,
    Presently , I am working in IBM. I have just started my career. Actually, I am very confused what should I do as I am not happy with my work life. Even I know its very difficult to switch jobs and get a package as I am not a heart core coder. So what should I do? should I go for mba preparation as I am aiming of giving cat next year till that time I will have 2 years of experience . I really need your suggestions.

    • Mamta,
      Well, speak to someone who are in the kind of work you may like…ask them what makes them happy and see, if you would like that too…Once you know the roles or jobs you may like, then you can think of education that can help you get there. So, it may be MBA or something else…So, take time to think and speak to few people.

    • To be honest, don’t go for MBA right now. The market for MBA is down and it is not the right time to go for it. If you go for it, you’ll suffer even more. I would suggest you to continue your job and make yourself perfect in it. Create a work life balance and enjoy your work.

  10. I did BTech in food technology but intrested in marketting field. From where should I start my career if I want to do MBA from correspondence.

    • You can start applying to MBA schools, check their websites and look at their requirements for admissions…that would be good starting point.

  11. Great article!!
    Yes you are exactly right about numerous benefits for those people who want to pursue MBA after engineering and there is one most amazing benefit that you will get easy success to a managerial position and move up in the hierarchy so thanks a lot for helping engineering students for showing another path.Thank You.

  12. Hello sir,
    i have done my B tech in civil Engineering and now i am working in a it firm… so is there any chance for me to get work visa over there..

  13. sir i have b tech mechanical degree and two year experience from multinational company but i interested in MBA through scholar ship from a well reputed university …… will you guide me

    • javed,
      Scholarships are not easy to get for MBA. There are lot of articles on the blog on how to get started and apply. You can browsed around to find more info. We do not provide guidance on specific schools.

  14. Hello,

    I am confused weather should I go for MBA or MS. Here is my scenario
    I am double master ( one from India and ona from Germany) in Microbiological/biotechnology background and I have 1 year research work experience.
    Right Now I am in USA on F2. My question are here.

    1. I am not from mathematical background. will it be advisable to go for MBA?
    2. My marks is average in bachelors and master ( 70-75 %) will I get admit?

  15. hi
    i have completed btech in cse 2017 . after that i got job small startup company
    after 1 year that company the company will be terminated . from that time i working for so many firms that not considered out core sides after some personal reasons i leave from city . then that time i working on accounting side ( 1 year) .i am decided to work in accounting side, now i am doing mba is it possible ? i am totally confused because i am c s e student is there any way?

  16. Hi, I’m in the USA on H1B visa. Completed 4 years of my H1B quota. I want to take up evening MBA which takes 2 and a half years. So I’ll be done with 6 years of my H1B visa quota. So, how would I continue with this?

  17. Sir,
    I have completed b tech in ECE in 2017. I have got placed as a software engineer in an IT firm. But , I would like to do MBA as I am very much interested in business and management section. I’m confused whether to go for the job or do MBA now. Since I am from ECE , I have very little knowledge on coding. So, I am in a doubt on whether I will be able to do my work as a software engineer in the IT firm or not as I have very little knowledge in programming languages. May be I can learn it in their training classes, but I am not sure. I’m totally confused on what to do next. Whether MBA or job. Can I attend MBA coaching classes while going for work ? Or should I just focus on MBA, leaving behind job?


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