Time for a confession!
Are you reading this article at work just for killing the hours until your next coffee break? Is the time consume you are spending on Candy Crush or Solitaire more than your actual work load and effectiveness? Do you count the minutes until you can run out of the office every evening? Is the thought of 15 days’ vacation the only thing that’s holds your head over water through the rest of the year? Do you wistful think back at the old times, when you still where in school and your adrenaline level was high while learning something new and be challenged by exams and school activities?
If you have read this lines and thought that also you could have written them, then it’s about time to pause for a second, listen to your inner voice and start changing something. Please keep in mind, that you will have a long life and still many many years to work. Life is too precious to waste your time in being bored and unsatisfied.
If you are a working professional, an executive MBA program for working professionals will not only help you out of the valley of sadness, it will also change your whole life forever.
Do you want to:
- Upgrade your CV?
- Gain priceless skills and knowledge?
- Step up the career ladder in your current company?
- Walk new career paths?
- Expand your network?
- Increase your salary?
- Change your future?
Then the Executive MBA for working professionals is waiting for you!
But one step after the other, with all the anticipations we awoke in you, we don’t want to hide that this will be not only a life changing experience but also a double load.
In a perfect world, ruled by pink fluffy unicorns, everyone who goes to a business school would quit their jobs and focus on achieving an MBA degree full-time. No distractions from life or more specifically, from work. Unfortunately there are no unicorns and for most people, quitting a job to go back to school just isn’t an option, especially financially wise.
In addition to the financial investment, if you leave your job to get your MBA, you could be losing other opportunities, for example professional advancement. Even if you’re fortunate enough to work for an employer that supports you, working full time while going to school can be challenging both physically and mentally, which could take a toll on your work performance. Indeed, it is not easy, but it is also not impossible at all.
The keyword here is BALANCE. But how can you reach this balance?
And this is not only the famous work-life balance we are talking about, no, it this case it is even a work-study-life balance. Crazy!
Don’t start your executive MBA headless, preparation is everything!
1- Check it with your employer first
Before you euphorically sign in for an executive MBA, you’re going to need to get your employers support. Schedule a meeting with your boss to discuss your plans before you start the program. Once you’ve conveyed that getting your degree will be a win-win for both you and the company, you can ask about flexible work arrangements like being able to work remotely one or even more days a week while you’re on campus. Employers understand the commitment of time, energy, and attention that’s required of MBA students. If you’re good at what you do, your boss will help you create an arrangement that works for the both of you.
2- Check with your family first
If you have already mastered the first hurdle successfully and got the support from your employer-congratulations. But please don’t be too fast with euphoric dance of joy. Now it is time for the second round in the ring: it is time to get also the OK from your family. Keep in mind that the double load of work and study will also influence their life. You will definitely have less time to spend with the ones around you and maybe also less money in your pocket while paying tuition fees.
If you have a family that will be impacted by your educational plans, it’s best to consider everyone’s needs so that you’ll have the support required to help you succeed. You need to build a team that both understands and supports the journey that lies ahead. So make sure your family is on board!
3- Choose the right program
Whether you have part-time job or a full-time, applying for a full-time MBA is simply not an option for you. A full-time MBA truly means 100% dedication in terms of studying for that degree. Since this is not your case, you’ll need to make a compromise and choose a part-time or online MBA, which is specifically dedicated to working professionals like yourself.
Part-time and online executive MBAs are equally acknowledged and valued by employers and they have the same curriculum as traditional full-time MBAs. So they are exactly what you need in terms of schedule and career goals.
4- Schedule ahead
If you want to be successful in both, your work and the MBA program, then there is no way around than designing the perfect schedule. A schedule that will align with your full time job is to figure out what you need in terms of flexibility—at work and at home. Make sure to get the syllabus for each course you’re going to take and compare class deadlines, midterms, and final exams, to work deadlines and business meetings, and then plan your schedule accordingly.
Above all, be sure to time block for study hours, so you don’t find yourself doing schoolwork during the workday. If you have requirements from your employer, you’ll need to find a program that offers control over schedule design.
Keep track of your responsibilities for both your job and your MBA. Set up a calendar for important meetings and tasks from your job and a different one for assignments and tests. Create specific study times and stick with them. This way, you’ll ensure that you do not finish MBA assignments during work and do not work during MBA study time as well.
5- Create an everywhere classroom
You can call yourself a lucky one!
You have been born in a technological age, where countless technical devices and apps are available. Anyone can become a multi-tasking person and complete many activities in little time. For example, during your train commute, you can read some of your course books or schedule the plan for the day, maybe even send some important e-mails to clients or have a Skype meeting with your boss. Furthermore there are great learning apps available which you can benefit from. These are just a few and examples of how you can benefit from technology to create a perfect study and work balance.
6- Take care of yourself
Don’t forget that there is still a world outside without learning and working.
Of course, work-school-life balance can be challenging. And yes, keeping your job, home life, and studies in balance when you’re enrolled in an executive MBA program is even more so. When you start an MBA program, you’re immediately adding enormous work to your shoulder. No matter how good you are at time managing, you might have to make some short-term sacrifices. But please also keep in mind that you also have to take a minute to breath and get some fresh energy by doing the things you like and that relaxes you. You need to fit in your busy schedule a little time for yourself. A little relaxation time helps you keep an emotional and psychological and balance. So go out and meet your friends for a coffee, read a book or go to the cinema to see a movie.
Reading all these information’s you need to take care of can be quite overwhelming but please keep in mind that this is only a tiny period in your whole lifetime but this will impact your whole future. The Executive MBA for working professionals will not only make you a better employee or job candidate, it will also make you a better you!