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Will Business School Help Me Get a Promotion at Work?

Executives in lounge

Have you reached a point in your career where you’re feeling stuck and wondering how to advance? If so, you’re in good company.

Many of us have been in a professional rut at some point, leaving us to question what it’ll take to get a promotion at work.

If you’re wondering how—or even if—business school can help you get that promotion, we’re here to help. Based on data and input we’ve collected from current b-school students and alumni, here’s insight into how an advanced degree can help you get promoted and fast track your career.

Pursuing a business master’s degree makes you more attractive to employers

If you’re a working professional, there are many flexible degree options available, including part-time, online, hybrid, and executive MBA (EMBA) programs. Many students choose one of these options, since they allow you to work on a full-time basis. The other good news: Employers may be more likely to promote you once they know you’re pursuing a business education, as it shows you’re committed to professional development.

In fact, in a 2018 survey by the Executive MBA Council (EMBAC), 54 percent of EMBA students surveyed received new responsibilities at work during their program, and 40 percent of those students reported receiving a promotion while they were studying. Those benefits aren’t limited to EMBA students, either. Regardless of the program you choose, a business master’s degree gives you an edge in a competitive job market. “As the demand for competent and innovative leaders continues to rise, companies and individuals will look for ways to advance their abilities to stay competitive in the ever-changing business landscape,” says Michael Desiderio, executive director of EMBAC.

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And promotions aren’t the only bonus of business school. If employers believe a business degree will make you a more valuable asset to the company, they may offer tuition reimbursement for part-time or online programs. Deloitte, Apple, Intel, Chevron, and Bank of America are all on the list of highly reputable companies who offer tuition reimbursement for business education.

These benefits suggest employers see the potential—and even immediate payoffs—from employees pursuing a business education, and as a result, you could start reaping the rewards even before you finish your degree.

It increases leadership competency (and management potential)

In a 2018 Graduate Management Admission Council survey, business school alumni from multiple programs cited that the most valuable part of their education was that it prepared them for leadership positions. Since business school equips students with critical leadership training, you’re better prepared to take on senior management roles. And, assuming you perform well in those roles, you’re in a good position to advance your career even further down the line.

It builds your case for a salary boost

If you’re like most prospective students, a salary increase may be a motivator in pursuing a business education and subsequently achieving a promotion. Since a graduate business degree gives you formal training in management and leadership, it strengthens your case for getting a raise. Based on the numbers, employers recognize the value of a business master’s degree and compensate accordingly. Data from a recent survey showed that graduates at least doubled their salaries within three years of completing their degree. Considering the median starting salary of a business school graduate is US$110,000, your salary outlook is promising.

How much can business school increase your earning potential?

When you’re assessing whether business school can take your career to the next level, it’s also important to evaluate the return on investment. To estimate how much a business degree will increase your earning potential, check out our interactive tool now!

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