If you are thinking about returning to school to get an advanced degree in the management field, the question you are most likely to be pondering on a daily basis is “why should I follow through this and not run for the hills?” Well, why shouldn’t you run, indeed! Higher education costs are doing anything but going down in today’s tough economic times; it is important to understand the value of a master’s degree in management to ensure you put your best effort into first obtaining your education and next maximizing your job prospects upon successful graduation.
Advantages of Earning Your Master’s Degree in Management
Deciding to return to school to and pursue a master’s degree in management will be both promising and exciting. The process can produce rich rewards when approached with proper perspective. Learn how obtaining your degree can set you apart from your peers and also gain a much deeper understanding of how different master’s in management degrees differ (for instance, a MSC/MSM versus a MBA degree) and the diverse skill set you will emerge with upon your graduation from each.
Both stateside and in the United Kingdom, the demand for qualified and trained candidates with higher education credentials in management has remained strong, despite an erratic global economy that quakes from continent to continent. This is because, to date, a company’s bottom line output in terms of productivity and profits still rests heavily upon the strength and skill of its workforce. There are a variety of different ways to approach master’s in management careers, each of which offer unique advantages in competing for lucrative career growth at the various stages of your career’s duration.
The MBA and MSC/MSM Track Offer Different Options
One of the first decisions you must make before choosing your particular master’s in management career track will be whether to concentrate towards practical application of management theory or practical application of employee development theory. While you have likely heard and overhead the term acronym “MBA” bandied about frequently as you have progressed in your career, the acronyms “MSC” or “MSM” (which are used interchangeably but mean the same thing) may be less familiar to you. This is because the master’s in management science, or MSC/MSM, degree is both newer and originally of European origin. The master’s of business administration, or MBA, degree originated in America and has become so wildly popular in recent years that “getting an MBA degree” has become a reliable cover story for individuals who are using a lay-off to regroup and improve future job prospects. It’s also considered a bona fide next step for advancement-minded individuals who simply want to get ahead in their chosen field.
Overview of Coursework with an MBA Degree vs. MSC/MSM Degree
Regardless of your reasons for returning for higher education in the field of management, you need to be able to begin honing in on whether you would rather spend the remainder of your career applying management theory en masse or developing the careers of individual employees. In the former, your coursework will include studies to hone your skills in employee management, implementing organizational systems, employing leadership-building and team-building principles, using motivational strategies, and applying business systems theories in new and innovative ways for small and larger organizations. You will also need to be prepared to put your advanced mathematical skills to good use in a business management setting.
Conversely, pursuing your master’s degree will invite you to delve deeper into coursework focused on accounting, finance, macro and microeconomics, business strategy, marketing and advertising, human resources and organizational design. Leadership courses are also a part of this degree plan. Because management science is in many ways the inverse of business management, with this track you will be required to study in depth the pivotal role each individual can play within the context of the larger organization. Here, you are less concerned with the business structures themselves and more concerned with the role of each individual within those structures.
It can be helpful to simplify your choice down to one straightforward choice: do you prefer a more academic or business/professional role for your future career direction? If you are of a studious and academic-minded nature, and you feel you may even one day enjoy a career in higher education yourself, you may choose to opt for a MSC/MSM track. If you instead have aspirations of climbing all the way to the top of the high corporate ladder in a major corporate setting, the MBA track is clearly your next best step.
This article was writtle by Oliver Plin. Oliver is currently pursuing his MBA and expects to graduate next year. His dream is to be able to one day run his own fortune 500 company.