As entrepreneurialism is one of the five MBA trends for 2015, with a rising demand for course content that focuses on start-up creation, KBS caught up with Dima Hourani (MBA 2014) to get her perspective on whether the classroom offers the best foundation to start-up success.
“There is a timeless debate about whether entrepreneurs are born or made. I believe that they can be both and that the value of an MBA for aspiring entrepreneurs relies heavily on course content. I work in banking, but chose to take the Entrepreneurship module on my MBA programme as an opportunity to gain practical knowledge and experience through theory, case studies and networking.
A start-up will require the ability to perform a range of business functions from finding and managing people to marketing and logistics. An MBA gives aspiring entrepreneurs grounding in these areas. For example, the MBA helped me to understand the basis of team building and developed my leadership skills that I have since applied in my career.
MBA students share a multitude of work experience and cultural differences. This is of great value to aspiring entrepreneurs who may not get this exposure during the normal working life, often due to a lack of time. At the core of entrepreneurship is freedom to exploit a wide range of sectors, markets and countries – particularly as we are living in an international and technological age. Essentially an MBA provides a fertile environment for cultural exchange. For example, an entrepreneur may find success through expanding their ideas to answer the needs of another country or market.
Theory & Practice
I think ultimately, an MBA should be considered in line with work experience. Reputable MBAs require between 3 to 5 years’ experience in industry and this indicates the reciprocal relationship between theory and practice.
The MBA is a life-changing opportunity that has an obvious cost. The return of this cost can mean the success of a start-up business. But understandably, doing an MBA solely for a start-up comes with the risk of failure and for this reason I see it as important for prospective students to consider an MBA a long-term investment that can be applied to any career.”
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