Earning an MBA can be very beneficial for your career. Apart from helping you learn business principles and build leadership skills, an MBA will provide you with an expanded professional network and increased job opportunities.
However, finding a job with an MBA can still be challenging, especially for candidates with no experience. If you have an MBA and can’t find a job, read through my tips below.
It will be helpful to remember that while an MBA is a helpful tool, it is not a golden ticket that will provide you with an instant entry into the job of your dreams. You need to take action by networking, building experience, and marketing yourself in the correct way.
Is It Easy To Get a Job With an MBA?
Earning an MBA can most certainly boost your career. An MBA provides job security since the qualification increases the quality and quantity of jobs you can choose from in a management or business-related field.
Candidates who are looking to start their own business ventures can also hugely benefit from completing an MBA.
An MBA is most useful to candidates who already have a few years of on-the-job experience. In essence, an MBA is meant to refine your business and management skills, rather than build these skills from scratch.
A good MBA course focuses on practical, hands-on learning experiences, in which students can draw on their past work experiences and also learn from the professional experience of their peers.
A lot of times, recruiters value the additional skills that an MBA provides, but also want to see previous experience.
If you’re a professional who has your eye on a big promotion, or who is looking to make a career change, for instance, from auditing to consulting, obtaining an MBA can open up doors for you.
An MBA can also furnish you with the necessary skills needed to move into an executive position further down your career path.
What Can I Do With an MBA and No Experience?
Most MBA programs require that candidates have at least two to three years of professional experience under their belt in order to gain entry into a program.
However, increasingly, candidates are allowed to directly jump from their undergraduate degrees to MBA programs without taking a break to obtain some work experience first.
While obtaining an MBA can prove beneficial when you’re hunting for your first job, you should realize that employers often value job experience more than they do qualifications.
Even when you can finally say, “I completed my MBA,” you may find it challenging to land a job. The good news, however, is that MBA unemployment rates are on the decrease post-Covid and that most students who have obtained an MBA say that the qualification was worth their money and time.
Here are a few jobs you can consider if you’re an MBA graduate with no job experience:
Investment bankers sell equity or issue debt, and they also give investment advice and help their clients with things like mergers and acquisitions.
While you will find an investment banker job much easier with experience, it’s possible to gain entry into the profession with no experience if you take steps to network and connect with businesses.
Business development representative
Working as a business development representative is a good option if you have no previous work experience. As a business development representative, your role will be to bring in new business acquisitions.
Public service manager
This is another position that’s well-suited to MBA graduates with no work experience. Public service managers work for the government and oversee the operations and maintenance of services such as solid waste management and roadworks.
You could also consider working as a compliance officer. These professionals work in a wide range of industries, including business, marketing, and accounting.
They are responsible for understanding and implementing regulatory legislation that affects business operations.
An MBA is a useful qualification if you want to work as a business analyst since what you’ve learned directly applies to this career.
As a business analyst, you will analyze a business and recommend ways in which operations and strategy can be improved.
Since the healthcare industry is booming, professionals in this field are always in demand. Working as a healthcare manager is a great option for an MBA graduate with no experience.
These professionals oversee medical business operations and ensure that they run at maximum efficiency.
How To Find Your First Job
Finding a job when you’re fresh out of college can be difficult, regardless of your qualifications or the profession you’re pursuing.
If you’re an MBA and can’t find a job, don’t despair. There are many steps that you can take that will help you bag your first job. Here are a few tips and pointers to get you started:
Before you start your job search, ensure that your resume, cover letter, and interviewing skills are polished.
First, you should tailor your resume and cover letter to suit the requirements of each individual job you are applying for. Do some research into the company where you are applying to learn about its culture and business goals.
Ensure that you highlight relevant skills and that you inform the company about how your skills align with the requirements of the job. Also, adjust the tone and wording of the content to better align with the company’s culture.
In the fortunate event that you’re called in for an interview, ensure that you dress appropriately. You should also speak and act in a way that’s appropriate. If, for instance, the interview is at a hip start-up, you may choose to dress and act more casually than if you went for an interview at Deloitte.
If you’re unsure about how to present yourself professionally, you can ask a career counseling service for assistance. They can give you resume guidance and can also give you pointers regarding how to conduct yourself during an interview.
Use Your School’s Job Placement Assistance Center
Many MBA schools have a job placement center that can provide you with assistance when you’re looking for your first job. A job placement department can connect you with employers who are interested in hiring MBA graduates.
It is important, however, that you note that not all MBA programs and schools are equal. Some MBA programs have a far better success rate than others when it comes to the placement of MBA graduates.
For this reason, it may be a good idea to enquire about a school’s student placement record before you apply. A job placement department should be able to tell you what the average percentage is of students who find jobs directly after earning their degrees at that school.
Network Like There’s No Tomorrow
One of the best ways to secure a job with no job experience is to network.
First, use your school’s alumni network. If you’ve obtained your MBA through an established and highly ranked school, you’ll have an extensive alumni network to draw on. However, even lower-ranked schools have alumni networks that you can leverage to find job opportunities.
Also, if you’ve interned with a company during your studies, you can use the connections you’ve made there to try find a position. You can email or phone contacts and let them know that you’ve completed your MBA and are looking for a job. If they can’t offer you a position, ask if they’ll be willing to share your resume with their contacts.
You should also stay in touch with your MBA classmates. During their job search, they may learn about opportunities that can be valuable to you. They may also provide you with ideas regarding alternative career avenues that you’ve not considered.
Lastly, also reach out to friends and family. Some of them may have a contact who can put you in touch with the right people.
Do Pro Bono Work
While this may not be the advice that you want to hear, especially if you’re broke or impatient to move out of your parent’s house, it can be beneficial for your job search to do some pro bono work.
You can offer your services to a non-profit or community service agency. While working for free is not ideal, doing so will provide you with valuable on-the-job experience, which is what employers are after.
In addition, you will be serving the community, which is also bound to impress employers. If you do your job well, your volunteer work may even turn into a full-time job.
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