How to Choose the Mba Specialization

Most of the people who are applying for admissions to MBA feel that getting into a good b-school is the most difficult and those who are in feel that getting out is more difficult! Strange as it may sound, but getting out of a b-school is no easy. Reason, during you MBA you have to make some tough decisions and deciding on the specialization is one of them.

One of the first things to understand is that specialization is not something that one should worry about at or from the time of joining. Most of the students remain perturbed about their specialization from day one! If you have carefully chosen an MBA for your post graduate studies then understanding the course and industry expectations in semester one is more important than worrying about anything else. Remember, there are many in the campus who (mis)guide you on this.

Most of the institutions require you to choose a specialization in semester three, which means you have a year at your disposal to understand the specialization well before you zero into something. In fact most of the course curriculum in semester one and two touches upon some aspects of all the specializations. So you know well what each specialization entails and depending upon your interest you can make the right decision for yourself.

Traditionally, the specializations were limited to marketing, human resources, finance, IT/systems and operations management. Now there are more options available like entrepreneurship, rural development, hospitality, tourism, brand management etc. I understand more options might translate into more worries for some, but if you have understood the discipline and researched well, it shouldn’t mean much.

Before you decide: Now before you decide, you may like to consider the following for better decision making

  • Understand the Subject well: Understanding does not mean whether you like the subject book or not. It means getting to know what kind of job opportunities are available for the particular discipline and whether or not want to you see yourself holding any of these positions. You may well be interested in numbers, but what roles are available in the field of finance is what is more important to know.
  • Know your priorities well: Industries / organizations vary in how they reward people / employees. Some believe in fast internal promotions and lesser remuneration comparatively while others are good pay masters with lesser internal promotions. You choose one depending on what suits you more. Similarly the work hours / schedule may also be a consideration for you. Research is the key word. I would advise dedicating a good one hour towards the end of semester two.
  • Use the elimination technique: An elimination method is often a good way to arrive at what fits you best. You begin by dropping out what you don’t like the most and whatever is left is the best option for you.
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