MBA in the Period of Financial Crisis

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The global financial crisis is affecting all areas, including business education. But despite the negative emotional atmosphere entailed by the global economic crisis, the demand for business education and training is growing.

There is a range of reasons for this: first and foremost -- the global scarcity of labor. This problem may seem to be burning under the economic upturn. However, in a business recession, the need to use human resources efficiently means their qualification is more rigorous and as a result the problem becomes even more severe.

During periods of crisis people need stability. They cannot anticipate in what way the situation will develop but are sure that a good education will lead to a good job.

No crisis lasts forever. The economy is cyclical, and a recession is always followed by a surge. That is why now is the most suitable time for study.

The global financial crisis is accompanied by an unusual splash of interest in MBA schools. According to GMAC, 77 percent of MBAs report an increased number of applications for face-to-face MBA programs in 2008. It is the highest rate over the last 5 years.

This year, 19 percent more Americans took the GMAT. The number of international applicants increased by 26 percent. A boom in Western MBA programs has reinforced the positions of the leading domestic business schools; this year they enjoyed a 40 percent growth in MBA students.

When the labor market was stable and full of interesting vacancies, many people preferred immediate employment and postponed MBA study. Now they are concerned with their future: there are less vacant jobs and the first to be employed are the holders of prestigious diplomas.

Within two years, when current business school students finish their MBA study, there will be in part of the new wave and in demand on the labor market.

What MBA programs are currently in demand? Noting the financial market situation, financial programs are very popular now. People want to better understand the reasons underlying the crisis and how they and their companies could withstand the recession. Leadership programs are popular as well. Apart from the economic situation, companies always need leaders. As in demand as ever are General Management and International Business programs. And so is Information Technology.

Before deciding on a special MBA program, it is reasonable to investigate the labor market situation and try to foresee future trends in your industry.

Everyone needs an MBA: programs are designed in such a way that helps you to succeed in any area both in your career and your private life.

Whether you are going to head an organization, a unit or to set up your own business, you need an MBA diploma. There are two categories of people who should be especially interested in an MBA. They are young people aged 25 – 30 who have received initial experience after graduating from universities, want to be managers and are at the beginning of their careers. The other category involves people who have already had career achievements and want to work more efficiently.

Determined, self-confident MBA holders are always in demand, even in periods of crisis. Apropos, as the labor market changes, small profitable prospective companies are showing an interest in MBA holders. Developing, previously non-competitive industries try to attract MBA holders as well.

For example, many interesting vacancies are offered now by pharmaceutical, biotechnological, information and other hi-tech companies. Such businesses as finances, marketing and strategic management always need MBA holders.

There will surely be demand for analysts who are able to assess a company's middle-term potential. Specialists in assessing in-firm management efficiency will enjoy being in demand as well.

Currently, the world as a whole and our country in particular are facing difficult economic situation. Reality should be revised, illusions discarded, mistakes acknowledged and traditional behavior patterns refused.

But challenges are known to make us stronger. In overcoming hard times, we may shortly become disciplined by adversity and acquire the true, rather than supposed, self-confidence and confidence in our surroundings.