There are some interesting perspectives surrounding whether or not an MBA degree is worthwhile. In today’s quickly changing business environment, some argue for the necessity of advanced degrees. This, in turn, gave way to too a saturated market of advanced degree holders with no way for organizations to properly assess actual competency. Now, many are choosing individuals with no degrees, but rather a proven skill-set.
As an entrepreneur, it was an interesting decision for me to return to school. When I finished my undergraduate studies, I knew for a fact that I was NEVER going back to school. I was DONE. Ten years later, I needed a different kind of forced, inspirational input that I never anticipated. I could have taken a few free online courses but I know myself well enough to know that I do not have the attention span for that. Let’s be real. We can all pretend that we are super-motivated and driven but when you are sleepy after a long day day, many of us do not have the drive to sit down of power through a free online course in a topic that may not excite you.
I am about half-way through the program and here a couple things I have learned thus far:
1) I had to force new inputs to kick-start the learning and inspiration process for me. Even though I knew I was not reading enough, having to read ten lengthy academic articles BEFORE a course even starts really drove the point home. As a result, I now read faster and have changed what types of inputs I consume. While still addicting, Facebook is infinitely more boring now.
2) You don’t know what you don’t know. This phrase gets kicked around a lot but it captures my journey well. As a seasoned entrepreneur there are plenty of things that I know. But even beyond the notion that we cannot know everything, there was clearly some things that I didn’t know I didn’t know. My assumptions were correct and the good folks at the Fox School of Business knew a few things for me to at least consider. Every course I have taken dug deep into concepts that I would have assumed I already knew. I quickly learned that there was a subtly in communication that one can be oblivious to without the right foundation.
An MBA is not for everyone. Master’s programs are not for everyone. But it is important to know oneself well enough to know what it will take to move you to the next phase of your self-directed journey.