MBA worth the investment

Is an MBA degree worth the investment?

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Before you undertake a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree, the question tends to arise: Is an MBA degree worth the investment?

For our parents’ generation, the default option for better career development was getting an MBA. At one point in the late 2010s, many people considered the degree, too. But as much as the brand glittered, a price tag of RM100,000 plus two years of lost wages just didn’t seem worth it. And now? 

Is an MBA worth it in 2022? It’s becoming more and more clear that an MBA degree is not just a questionable investment—it’s a risk that’s simply not worth it. The model of taking students out of the workforce to study decades-old cases was designed for a different era, when technology didn’t shift entire industries at such a breakneck speed. 

Covid-19 has shone a glaring spotlight on just how archaic this type of education is. Almost overnight, business plans have been torn up, the rules we’ve played by scrapped. Executives can’t lean on the tactics they learned from outdated case studies—all of us are learning about our new world in real time. 

MBA students will be watching their business courses online, just like you can, thanks to widely accessible MOOCs—massive open online courses like Udemy and Coursera. The job opportunities? Many companies that hire MBAs have frozen hiring and cancelled summer internships. MBA graduates will be competing for scarce jobs with candidates who’ve been working for the past two years.

In fact, management skills have never been more important to long-term career success. In a post Covid-19 world, the only jobs that are truly future-proof are those that can’t easily be automated or outsourced. One key category is management roles that require a high level of interpersonal skills, emotional intelligence and experience. 

Financial Value of an MBA in Malaysia

MBAs are a financial investment, according to analysis by salary comparison website Payscale, MBA graduates in Malaysia are not receiving an identifiable financial benefit as their career progresses.

1-4 RM42,000
5-9 RM72,000
10-19 RM82,135
20+ RM228,000

There are many alternative MBA programs such as online business class. Given that many of these programs are free or cheap, they’re a much easier risk to take. The MBA is an obvious target, but all of higher education should pay attention to this case study.

It’s time for many of these outdated institutions—which lure students with prestige, saddle them with debt, and rob them of their most formative years—to go the way of Blockbuster.

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