MBA programs are designed for people who want to become leaders in their field, take on senior management and executive roles, and even start their own ventures. By gaining a broader and more in-depth perspective on business theory and applying your knowledge to real business challenges through an MBA, you learn how to make the right decisions and steer your company toward success. For leaders, that means identifying opportunities and risks for your organization, managing assets and people and analyzing markets. For entrepreneurs, it means learning how to take your idea, turn it into a profitable business venture and scale it into a more competitive player on the market.
Before you begin applying to MBA programs, identify your career goals and narrow down the schools you want to apply to according to how well they meet your personal criteria. What do they offer their students that translates into valuable knowledge and experience you can apply to your own career or business? If you are already working full-time in your chosen sector at a company you like, find a part-time program offered on evenings or alternate weekends. If you have an idea and you want to turn it into a business, but don’t know how, find a program that supports entrepreneurs not only through courses but also resources like access to mentors, funding and incubators.
The Entrepreneurship MBA specialization offered by the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics is one such program targeted toward people with their own ideas and a passion for starting their own projects. The school offers many opportunities for students who want to launch their own businesses, including the chance to work in the technology startup incubator Communitech Hub or their own LaunchPad space.
Any good MBA program should also focus on your ability to apply business theory learned in textbooks and lectures to real business scenarios. One way to accomplish this is through projects like the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics Applied Business Research Consulting Project, an eight-month project that sees groups of students working as consultants to a company to make recommendations on a real problem facing the company. Through this Wilfrid Laurier University partners with organizations like Manulife Financial, Walmart Canada, Royal Bank Financial Group, the Grand River Hospital Corporation and the Royal Ontario Museum.
Whether you want to pursue an MBA to become a business leader or to start your own company, it’s important that you find a school that offers programs and resources that will help you reach your vision. Programs like the Lazaridis MBA at the Lazaridis School of Business & Economics offer more resources than others for entrepreneurs and students who want practical business experience. They also offer a chance for you to expand your professional network and learn valuable advice about your sector through their ASK (Alumni Sharing Knowledge) program. Before you apply, look for a program that offers practical experience, mentorship and networking opportunities as well as cutting-edge resources for startups.