WHY GLOBAL MBA?
There are certain important differences between an Indian MBA degree and a foreign one. The learning environment and the ‘MBA-experience’ vary by a great extent with the school. Indian education system helps prepare conceptually strong managers with solid ‘funda-es’, the schools abroad focus on practical aspects and offer much broader exposure and perspective.
Here are the main benefits of a foreign MBA:
- Broader Scope: You instantly become a ‘global citizen’ the moment you enroll! Your career opportunities become wider as you have an option to work in the foreign country, as well as come back home.
- Practical Learning: Mostly, the foreign MBA courses are case study based, which makes them less ‘bookish’, interesting and fun to learn. Even the statistics course would make you think from a logical viewpoint, with little calculations involved.
- Strong Peer Group: The class would typically have people from 10-30 different countries, with over 5 years of work experience (average). The cultural exposure would certainly broaden your outlook.
- Better self-assessment: Many colleges offer informational interviews with psychometric tests, which allow you to discover yourself and help you make the best career choice for yourself.
- Enjoyable Experience: While there always be a few sad folks in every schools, from my own experience, I can promise you that your experience will be immensely enjoyable. You only need to be clear about what you want out of the MBA, and possess a big heart.
- Global Network: Several top ranked schools are over 100 year old, which offers you a strong and large alumni network. You’ll be able to connect with the who’s who of the business world, in every part of the world.
WEIGHTAGE OF ABROAD MBA DEGREE IN INDIA
A degree in MBA from a reputed international college or university means a lot in India. All the companies want to expand their business and when they get to appoint an MBA graduate, who has been in foreign country and learnt all the international standards of conducting business and improving profit, they never thinks twice and hires him/her immediately by offering an undeniable package.
This gives them an edge over their competitors as a fresh and innovative mind is at work at their end. It has always been an unwritten protocol that says colleges and universities in foreign country has to be better than the India colleges and institutes as the study pattern in our country and abroad are completely different and their curriculum of every subject include much more practical exposure than Indian curriculum.
Thus, a degree in MBA from abroad is of tremendous significance in India.
MBA ABROAD VS. MBA IN INDIA
Aspiring students interested in attending a postgraduate business course often find themselves trapped in a dilemma they find difficult to get out of: Should they pursue an MBA in India or should they opt for an MBA degree from abroad? And the temptation of getting a graduate degree in business management from a reputed foreign university is undeniable.
Set your Expectations:
There is no right or wrong answer to the decision you make regarding pursuing an MBA in India or abroad. It all depends on your personal and professional expectations post graduation as it will influence which academic path is more suitable for you.
For instance, if you plan to develop a professional career and a management position in an Indian company, then you should definitely consider attending an MBA in any of the prestigious Indian B-schools. Having a local post graduate degree will be valued by potential employers. In addition to this, your contacts network will mostly be built up of Indian colleagues who will be able to help you land the position you want or put you through with their own contacts so that your career goals can be met.
On the other hand, if you are interested in pursuing a global career and in developing a global business outlook, then your best choice will be to pursue an MBA abroad. It will give you the chance of being immersed in a multinational and multicultural environment that will urge you to move out of your comfort zone. Needless to say, your contacts network will include people from the four corners of the world, which can open up doors for you almost anywhere.
If you are thinking from the future point of view then you must consider the fact that India is a vibrant economy today and corporate the world over value the pool of talent that exists here. In fact, people opt for positions in India to be a part of the growing economy. Lately there has been an increase in the number of NRIs coming back to India. In this thriving scenario, it makes sense to get your degree from an Indian B-school.
There has also been a steady increase in the number of tie-ups between Indian and foreign universities. Some of them include the SP Jain Institute of Management and Research with Virginia Tech, the Indian School of Business with the Wharton School-Kellogg School of Management, the Management Development Institute with Cambridge College, Great Lake & Yale, Welingkar College with Temple University, the Institute of Management and Technology with Fairleigh Dickinson University, Great Lakes and Yale University. Thus, with more and more premier international education its way to Indian shores, one can experience the benefits an international education and a lesser cost.
Also, Indian MBA courses have been expanding and growing significantly in recent years. MBA graduates from Indian B-schools have proved their mettle in the global working environment and are offered top positions in several organisations. Considering the purchasing power parity, initial expenditure (cost of the program), initial placements, and growth in salary as inputs in decision, MNCs do not have to think twice before coming to India in search of middle and senior management talent.
Personal Aspirations – Motivation for going abroad for MBA
Last but not the least, the ideas, that can end this dilemma of yours, are as follows:
You need to consider each of these points, and then only you can get a specific answer that can help you in deciding whether to go for an MBA from India or Abroad?
- International career aspirations – If you have international career aspiration, you should go for MBA Abroad rather than MBA in India.
- Global exposure with blue chip firms – If your dream companies are the world famous blue chip firms and companies, then also you should pursue an MBA from Abroad as many of these firms do not come for placement in Indian colleges and institutes.
- Financial gains – The salary package that you will receive after an MBA degree from abroad, in India as well as in foreign country, has no match with what you will be offered after an Indian MBA degree. Therefore, your financial prospective also plays an important role in this decision making.
- Access to the best available faculty and infrastructure – No need to explain as it is a well known fact that colleges, institutes and universities abroad has much better facilities and infrastructure than the Indian colleges, institutes and universities.
- A one year course – mainly the regular MBA courses in abroad are on one year that saves a lot of time in comparison to 2 – Years regular MBA program in India.
- A Desire to settle abroad – If you plan to settle abroad, it is a must to pursue your higher studies there as their firms and companies will give preference to the candidate who knows the work culture and environment of their country and has experience of it. So, it’s better to pursue your studies there if you plan to get settled there only.
Even by the most conservative estimates, pursuing an MBA degree abroad would set you back by at least Rs. 10 lakhs, if you have to shell out the money on your own. This could go up to as much as Rs. 30 lakhs for the top U.S. B-schools. Financial aid is limited, and comes with strings attached.
That is why despite of the fact that all reputed universities across the globe offer scholarships for international candidates, the number of candidates being awarded the same is limited. The fee structure of foreign universities is apparently higher than that of Indian B-Schools, and if the other expenses are also considered such as living expenses, accommodation, study visits, consumables and equipment, it could cross your budget. So in this case assume that you are not going to get any scholarship and then look at the funds available at your disposal. If you have sufficient funds then pursuing an MBA abroad may be a good idea. But if you have financial constraints then you need to think on it. Bank loans are available but opt for it only if you are confident about your successful completion of the course and your ability to repay the loan.
Eligibility criteria for studying MBA abroad vary from country to country and school to school. But for most of the schools the following criteria are followed:
- 3-4 years of education post the 10+2 stage
- Prior work experience is recommended (Required for a majority of the schools)
- GMAT and TOEFL/IELTS scores (GMAT is mandatory for all schools in the US, recommended for schools elsewhere – unless specified)
- A strong extracurricular record
As is obvious, all the schools relatively compare you to the rest of the applicants. But along with that, a realistic assessment of one’s capabilities is also done. In case you don’t have prior work experience, there is not much to be gained by applying to schools abroad.
In case you see that your GMAT scores are above the cut off averages of schools you wish to apply for, then you automatically make a strong case for yourself. Along with a strong academic record, MBA schools abroad also give quite a lot of weight to extracurricular activities – in the belief that an applicant needs to be well rounded and capable of giving back to society. This is a very important facet which one tends to ignore.
REQUIRED SKILL SET
The fundamentals of business are taught in every MBA program. Accounting, economics, finance, organizational behavior, marketing, statistics, and operations form the primary business disciplines and skills and are in the expected repertoire for any MBA. How and when students cover the basic skills varies, however. In most programs these subjects will be taught in a group of core courses required of every student. These core courses consume most or all of the first year of study in a two-year fulltime program. In some programs, students who have a prior background in business can be exempted or waived from some or all of the core courses, on the basis of either a special examination or an evaluation of the undergraduate transcript.
Some programs regard a few areas as background knowledge and expect you to have learned the material before you start your graduate program. Statistics, economics, and accounting often fall in this group. When you’re comparing the length of programs and calculating time to degree, be sure you remember to consider any program prerequisites. (Calculus and computer skills are also common prerequisites for MBA programs.)
Other programs take another approach, offering the core courses within the structure of the program but requiring this course work only of those students who have not mastered it previously. If your program has two tiers, with different entrance points-for students with undergraduate degrees in business and those with degrees in non-business areas-you may be exempted from some or all of the first year of the program if you were an undergrad business major.
It has been said that mathematics is “the language of business.” But many MBA programs are moving away from the heavily analytical approaches that predominated several years ago and are giving increased emphasis to the “soft” areas of communication and interpersonal skills. Said that, the quantitative elements of business studies have not gone away.
The actual level of mathematical knowledge that you’ll need varies widely from program to program. Some schools expect you to have studied statistics before entering the program. Some will expect you to use calculus on a regular basis. Generally speaking, you should certainly feel comfortable with college algebra and brush up your quantitative skills if they’re rusty.
It’s a tech world out there
In an ongoing effort to adapt to technological change, almost all business schools have integrated personal computers into their programs. Many schools will require you to have your own laptop. The extent to which you’ll be expected to use a computer will vary from program to program, but you should make an effort to have at least a minimum comfort level with word processing, spreadsheets, and databases before starting school. You may want to check with the schools you’re interested in to find out the hardware and software specifications.
Are you a team player?
One of the ways schools are mimicking the business environment in their academic programs is in the use of student teams. As corporations have increasingly turned to teams to work on projects and to solve problems, MBA programs have converted an increased share of course work from individual work to team work. Many programs now incorporate training in teambuilding somewhere in the program – either as part of new student orientation, in team building workshops, or as a topic in organizational behavior courses.
Teams may be formed for the purpose of one project in one course or they may remain together for months, working on multiple courses. In the often competitive environment of MBA programs, the cooperation required of teams doesn’t always come naturally. Since team work is almost always time consuming, students in schools that use teams may find that activities and even policies on work during the academic year reflect the heavy time commitment of working with others.
EXAM TO BE FACED
For pursuing MBA from Abroad, an aspirant has to go through three two qualifying tests:
- TOFEL/IELTS (Test of Proficiency in English)
- GMAT (MBA Entrance Exam)