Is an MBA Necessary for Entrepreneurs?

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According to recent industry data, 24.4% of MBA graduates start their own company within three years of graduation. Pursuing an MBA gives students the skills, knowledge, and confidence to strike out on their own after working as an employee.

Programs that rank well on the Financial Times’ business education list tend to have higher percentages of entrepreneurs. In 2019, the Online MBA degree from the D’Amore-McKim School of Business at Northeastern University ranked 8th on the list of online programs.

Running a business is challenging, but the rewards can be substantial. Not only do entrepreneurs have the privilege of working for themselves, but they can also make a difference in their communities. An Online MBA provides the education to turn those dreams into a reality.

if you have the passion and drive to pursue your own business ventures, an MBA can help you develop the technical and strategic skills to succeed.

Can the skills of entrepreneurship be taught?

Throughout history, there have been many examples of successful entrepreneurs who succeeded without an MBA degree. These stories can be highly inspiring, but often leave would-be entrepreneurs wondering if they have what it takes.

Stephen Greer, a serial entrepreneur and author of Starting from Scrap, was able to make millions without a master’s degree, but when asked about the value of an MBA, he noted that formal education can hone the skills necessary for success.

“By definition, an entrepreneur is one who takes risk,” said Greer. “It’s an attitude and an appetite, one which may be hardwired into one’s personality. Education can influence one’s attitude toward risk: for instance, understanding the principle of diversification or the long-term returns of equities versus bonds may make an investor more willing to create a ‘riskier’ stock portfolio. But ultimately, can you teach someone to really enjoy taking risks? I don’t think you can.”

In other words, if you have the passion and drive to pursue your own business ventures, an MBA can help you develop the technical and strategic skills to succeed. No one can teach you the drive it takes to get a startup off the ground, but an Online MBA program can provide you with the skill set and hands-on experience to be an effective business leader.

Can an MBA help you develop the skills to own a business?

An MBA is a broad degree by design. The breadth of subject matter prepares graduates with a deep understanding of topics they can apply to a wide variety of business scenarios. From creating a business plan to developing sustainable supply chains, an Online MBA is a highly valuable resource for anyone who intends to start a business.

Key topics covered by an Online MBA program such as Northeastern’s include:

  • Financial statement preparation and analysis
  • Enterprise growth and innovation
  • Strategic implications of accounting data
  • Managing ethics in the workplace
  • Operations and supply chain management
  • Strategic decision-making in a changing environment

Additionally, at the D’Amore-McKim School of Business, you can fine-tune your MBA degree by concentrating on a particular field of study, such as:

  • Innovation entrepreneurship
  • Healthcare management
  • Marketing
  • Sustainability
  • International management
  • High technology management
  • Finance
  • Supply chain management

These concentrations allow you to develop a learning path that will take you closer to your goals as an entrepreneur and business leader. Plus, you’ll have opportunities to connect with like-minded professionals.

How is an MBA useful for starting your own business?

An Online MBA program can equip you with the knowledge and skills to not only launch your business endeavor, but also run it successfully. The wide range of topics covered in the program can help you understand key concepts that will drive your business forward in an evolving market.

But knowledge isn’t the only thing you’ll gain in the program. You’ll also have the opportunity to network with aspiring entrepreneurs who share your interests. You may even find talented individuals who you’ll want to add to your team. Building these professional relationships today can provide many benefits in the future.

You’ll develop a support system of peers and mentors who you can turn to when faced with challenges in the future. In addition to the time you spend in class, you’ll also have a network of alumni to learn from for years to come.

An Online Master of Business Administration can help you succeed as an innovative entrepreneur. By learning how to secure venture capital, make effective assessments of the market, and source high-quality talent, you can become a successful entrepreneur.

Learn more about the innovation entrepreneurship MBA concentration offered by the D’Amore-McKim School of Business at Northeastern University.


Recommended Readings

Career Paths: Entrepreneur vs. Employee

What Can an MBA Do for Your Career?

Northeastern University Online MBA Program



Poets & Quants – MBAs Doing Startups At Nearly Four Times The Rate Previously Thought

Stephen Greer – Does an Entrepreneur Need an MBA?