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Question answered in Quora - Is getting an MBA worth it?

Many people do an MBA hoping to become a People Manager, unfortunately not everybody succeed in that. Why? Also what are the things you need to do to get the most out of your MBA. The business school professors will some how sell the MBA program to you and you will buy it, thinking that you will get promoted, but it doesn’t work that way.

MBA is a great tool, BUT WHAT IS THE HUGE PROBLEM YOU HAVE THAT YOU NEED TO SOLVE WITH THIS TOOL NOW? And also if you don’t use the tool properly then you wouldn’t get the best out of the tool, or if you didn’t know how to use the tool properly then you wouldn’t get the best out of the tool as well. MBA is a great tool to solve a great problem, so before even you embark on the MBA program you need to be clear on what is the problem you are trying to solve? Don't put the cart before the horse, What does the solution look like? Your solution cannot be I want to become a people manager, your real goal could be grow in the corporate ladder, meaning get promoted, but how would you get promoted, nobody is going to give you promotion just because you got an MBA. You need to add value to your employer, that is the only way you can get promoted, that means you need to solve a major problem that your employer is having, so you need to work closely with the decision maker or your boss o your boss's to understand what are some of his problems that you can help solve. Then you need to not only solve the problem but also get attention through your accomplishments and your peers and your boss’s boss need to recognize that you accomplished something great and you deserve a promotion. So it is very important to have a strategy to make this whole thing happen, so starting this conversation of promotion when you begin in your MBA is already too late. You should start this conversation well in advance, not only that but you have to put this whole strategy together from beginning to end answering the questions below and most importantly always start your project with a end in mind, clearly visualize what your end looks like

What is end goal for you in getting your MBA? Is it more money or promotion or something else? Let us say it is promotion and promotion will automatically get you more money, so as long as you accomplish promotion then your goal is fulfilled

Then talk to your boss and figure out what you need to do to get that promotion, also tell your boss that you are even considering an MBA if that will help

Your boss might come back and say hey MBA is a good thing to have, no boss will say “Don’t do MBA”. If

your boss says don’t do MBA, then you are at the wrong place, you better start looking for a job somewhere else, because if your boss doesn’t want good things for you that is bad sign that you are in a wrong place or you have done something terribly wrong and there is no point in continuing your career there hoping to grow big, start looking somewhere else ASAP.

Let us say your boss said yes MBA will be useful and then you understand the lay of the land, why would

your boss give you that promotion,

What is in it for him?

What is in it for the company?

If you are an Indian or an Asian guy that doesn’t speak excellent English and the rest of your company is made of Caucasian Americans and you are not super smart and you are not from IIT (Indian Institute of

Technology, one of the premier institutions in the whole world) and you are not from some premier institution then you are no way becoming a manager there, so you better start looking elsewhere

What is the overall corporate strategy? Meaning what are the corporate goals that the company is pursuing that year and the following year and how will your promotion help accomplish any of the corporate goals?

Then you analyze your strengths, if you are an Indian then see if there are any outsourcing initiatives that are being pursued in your company, may be you could jump in and work with the Indian vendors from India and make that whole outsourcing a huge success helping the company realize all the dollar savings if not even more dollar savings

Or if you are a Chinese national and if your company is doing some hardware development, you can jump into that project and make trips to Shenzhen and help make this new hardware a huge success

Or let us say your company is heavily strapped for cash and you need to get a major project done but let us say at one tenth of the cost, then you could jump in propose an execution model where you would be the Project Manager and hire elancing resources through elance or upwork and have them execute the project at a significantly low cost and win laurels for your boss and yourself (because you had hired some freelancers for your hobby website or app creation project before, so you knew how to get work done from these guys, so you have an idea on how to get your big company project executed through these guys at a fraction of the cost)

Or may be there is a position that is opening up in Singapore and you can lean in and say you will go there and help with not only growing the team there but also executing the projects at a much less cost hiring

Singapore resources, also keep in mind that multi cultural experience will broaden your perspective and open many more doors for you in the future.

Once you understand all this and prepare a strategy to get these, your plan should like this for the next 6 to 18 months,

I am going to do this project and make this client a great reference able client

Then I am going to help accomplish this corporate goal

Then I will make this other project a huge success, that is going to help my group making these numbers, which is going to make my boss look really good

Then I am also going to facilitate some product development initiatives through my relationships with my past clients

Then I am also going to develop a couple of leaders under myself, that are going to deliver these training classes under my stewardship

Then I am going to show all this to my boss and peers make my case for promotion

By the time it is 12 to 18 months you have either completed your MBA or you are at least half way through

Now with all the goals accomplished and with the MBA you get your promotion

Also check out my book Puga Sankara's Supply Chain Blog - that is a must read before spending Hundreds & Thousands of $$$ on your MBA or Masters Degree to get the best ROI or before starting your Entrepreneurial journey.


Puga Sankara is the co-founder of Smart Gladiator LLC. Smart Gladiator designs, builds, and delivers market-leading mobile technology consisting of Smart Gladiator Wearable Scanguns, Tablets, Mobile Tech & Apps for retailers, distributors, and 3PL service providers. So far, Smart Gladiator Wearables have been used to ship, receive, and scan more than 100 million boxes. Users love them for the lightweight, easy-to-use soft overlay keyboard, texting&video chatting ability, data collection ability etc. Puga is a supply chain technology professional with more than 17 years of experience in deploying capabilities in the logistics and supply chain domain. His prior roles involved managing complicated mission-critical programs driving revenue numbers, rolling out a multitude of capabilities involving more than a dozen systems, and managing a team of 30 to 50 personnel across multiple disciplines and departments in large corporations such as Hewlett Packard. He has deployed WMS for more than 30 distribution centers in his role as a senior manager with Manhattan Associates. He has also performed process analysis walk-throughs for more than 50 distribution centers for WMS process design and performance analysis review, optimizing processes for better productivity and visibility through the supply chain. Size of these DCs varied from 150,000 to 1.2 million SQFT. Puga Sankara has an MBA from Georgia Tech. He can be reached at or visit the company at Also follow him at

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