What Can You Do With a Business Degree?
Updated : July 29th, 2022
Long gone are the days when you could get a well-paying job with only a high-school diploma and a good work ethic. Many people realize that if they want to succeed in today’s world, they’ll need at least an associate degree or bachelor’s degree to get their foot in the door. While simply holding a degree is a prerequisite for many jobs, what you choose to major in can mean the difference between a good job and a great job. For those who are interested in finance, marketing, sales, or project management, pursuing a business degree can open the door to a number of professions.
What Can You Do With a Business Degree?
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A business degree program can give you many options when it comes to your future career. Among other skills, business majors will learn about business management theories, how to effectively analyze data and develop strategies from it, and how to supervise a team. With this knowledge, you’ll be prepared for a range of job opportunities.
What Can You Do With a Business Degree?
Today, there are more business degrees awarded to graduates than in any other area of study. Why? Because of the flexibility it offers for possible jobs, the real-world skills it imparts, and the higher-than-average salaries that often accompany these jobs. Each school’s program will be slightly different, but most allow you to choose your area of study within the business world whether it’s healthcare administration, organizational leadership, or human resources. Each path will give you the specific expertise you’ll need to excel in your profession.
For those pursuing a traditional four-year education, you’ll also need to decide if you want a bachelor’s in business administration degree (BBA), a bachelor of arts (BA) in business, or a bachelor of science (BS) in business. A BBA degree allows you to focus the majority of your studies on business-related topics with a focus on practical applications, while a BA in business will include more courses in the humanities and social sciences to provide a more rounded education. A BS degree is similar to a BA, but the additional courses will be related more to math, science, and technology.
Additionally, there are higher levels of education that allow you to get your masters in business administration (MBA), or the highest level, doctor of business administration (DBA). By completing an MBA or DBA program, you’ll be better qualified for management positions like CEO or executive.
For most higher education programs there will be financial aid packages available. And, due to the high demand for graduates of business school, you’ll be in a better position to start paying down these loans once you enter the professional world. Additionally, some undergraduates who meet income requirements may be eligible for a Pell Grant, which is federal student aid that does not need to be paid back and is currently capped at $6,895 for the 2022-2023 school year. To find out more about your options for aid, reach out to a loan officer through your school’s financial aid office.
Many colleges and universities have specific business management degree programs. This career path is ideal for someone who considers themselves a natural leader, entrepreneur, or who has aspirations of becoming a business executive. A business manager must be creative, versatile, a solid communicator, and able to oversee complex organizations. You’ll need to be well rounded in accounting, marketing, and administration, and be willing to learn about every aspect of your organization to be an effective leader.
Management positions are needed in a variety of fields, both in the for-profit and non-profit sectors. After graduation, you may choose a position as a management analyst where you’ll help your organization implement more effective systems to reduce costs and increase revenue; an office manager where you’ll manage a team, organize and implement procedures, prepare payroll, and assign duties; a marketing manager where you’ll stay up to speed on market trends in your industry, analyze data, then communicate your findings to executives to increase sales and your customer base; or, a project manager where you’ll be responsible for individual business projects or clients ensuring they’re executed on time and stay within budget.
A consultant’s job is to analyze a business’ overall organization and provide insights and advice to help solve problems, restructure, or optimize its operations. A consultant’s job will vary depending on the line of work, but day-to-day tasks may involve building relationships with prospective clients that include researching, conducting and studying reports, interviewing clients and employees, analyzing data, presenting your findings and solutions to the client, and managing a team to execute your solutions.
Some schools may offer a degree program with a focus on business analysis for those interested in consulting, but these may be hard to find. Instead, if you want to be a consultant or business analyst, you should take a standard business major program and specialize in the area you’re most interested in, be it finance, accounting, human relations, marketing, etc.
Most entry-level jobs will be with an established consulting firm that partners with different businesses that are facing some sort of challenge. These businesses may need a consultant because they lack industry-specific knowledge on a particular project, or they may already know what they need to do to solve a problem but they lack the personnel to complete the process and must hire a consulting agency to fill in these gaps. Lastly, many businesses value having an outsider’s opinion when they’re faced with important decisions. A consultant can offer a new lens from which to view a problem and offer insights that may have been lacking within the company.
Consulting jobs may be an appealing career option to those who are adaptable and who like variety in their work. Because consultants work with many different clients, there’s typically a lot of travel involved in the job which is a perk to some, but may mean long hours and too much time away from family and loved ones for others.
A business marketing degree teaches skills like advertising, sales, promotions, public relations, consumer behavior, pricing strategies, and competitor research. You will also learn about basic marketing research, strategy, and management. This degree can lead to jobs like market research analyst where you’ll conduct research to look at larger trends of sales for certain products and services, then use this knowledge to advise your company about their future growth plan. Marketing jobs are ideal for business students who are creative, have strong math and analysis skills, and who prefer to focus on larger trends like expanding the company’s presence and influence rather than on internal operations.
You may be able to get a marketing job as an independent consultant, but most people begin working for larger companies like advertising agencies, public relations agencies, or marketing firms. Furthermore, jobs in market research are expected to grow at a rate of 22% from 2020 to 2030, 12 points higher than the average rate.
The job field for those focusing on finance is set to grow much faster than other careers, making this a good choice for those who are looking for a challenging career with higher than average starting salaries and opportunities for growth. Additionally, a focus on finance will give you a variety of options whether you want to work for a large corporation, small business, state or local government, or non-profit. Business majors with a concentration in finance will learn how to help businesses maintain and improve profits, how to streamline operations through strategic budgeting and planning, how to analyze numbers and statistics, how to make decisions based on rigorous research, and how to communicate effectively with clients, investors, and colleagues.
Business finance majors will qualify for most entry-level jobs, though obtaining a master’s or doctorate degree can give you training in specialized fields to earn higher salaries. One possible career is as a ??financial advisor where you’ll work with individuals to advise them on tax laws and investment options, and help them establish short and long-term financial goals. Similar to a financial advisor is the job of financial analyst. In this role, you may work for a bank, financial institution, or insurance company and while you’ll also advise your business or clients on the best investment opportunities, the majority of your time will be spent analyzing data and trends. Financial analysts often work as consultants as well.
When most people think of sales jobs they think of working in a store or making cold calls to potential clients. However, there are many more interesting and lucrative jobs for business majors who want to pursue an occupation in sales. Some schools will even offer a professional sales program designed for business graduates to compete for Fortune 500 jobs or cutting-edge technology firms. With a sales focus you’ll learn a basic business skill set including economics, marketing, management, data analysis, and accounting, but with a strong focus on developing interpersonal skills and negotiation tactics.
Jobs in sales are ideal for someone who likes a fast-paced and largely self-directed workplace, as well as those who like to travel since many sales positions require this for the job. These positions also hold huge potential for growth into roles like sales manager or account executive.
For those interested in starting their own companies or helping start-ups get off the ground, a focus on entrepreneurship will give you the best chances of success. With skills like business management, creating and implementing business plans, leadership, accounting, and obtaining financial backing, you’ll be well prepared to start your own small business. Alternatively, you can use this same skill set to obtain another general business job after graduation to build capital and obtain real-world experience before striking out on your own.
Finally, if you’re interested in traveling the world and learning about different cultures and management styles, a degree in international business is the right choice. These degrees prepare graduates mainly for working for international divisions of domestic companies in administrative roles, but can also be useful for those who want to work in national or international government as well as commercial and investment banking overseas.
Want To Change Careers? Consider a Business Degree
Many people choose to pursue a business career because it’s a practical choice that offers opportunities for advancement and a variety of workplace options. The number of different programs schools offer – whether it’s an associate’s degree, bachelor’s, or master’s – means you can tailor your education to your specific interests and needs. There are many jobs available for business majors or you can take your newly learned skills and start your own business. If you’re struggling with unemployment and unhappy with your career, schedule an appointment with a career coach who can help you explore your options and map out a career path that works for you.
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