Most MBA candidates do not start their studies straight out of college. Before pursuing an MBA, most people build their careers. To complete your studies, you don’t have to leave your job.
It’s easier than ever to earn your MBA as a working professional with online MBA programs Tennessee. Find out how MBA students balance academic and career goals and responsibilities – and how you can participate in this enriching experience.
1. Make your schedule flexible
Set up a flexible work schedule if your company supports it so you can attend online classes and complete your work. Here are some options:
- An afternoon class one day a week or a bit later after a morning class.
- Listening to a mid-day lecture while eating lunch.
- Eliminate your long commute by working from home on certain days.
- Finals week time off requests.
2. Make a plan for work and school
Establish a plan for how you’ll accomplish everything, regardless of your work arrangements or class schedules.
Analyze your work forecast to see when larger projects will come up and how they will affect your course load. Talk to your management team about choosing dates that work for you if your job requires business travel or conference attendance. Perhaps you can find a way to host an event virtually or send someone to your place. Plan to make these arrangements.
3. Communicate at work and school
MBA students must communicate well to succeed. Be transparent with your management team about your exciting academic pursuits. What are your plans – and how can your MBA experience add value to the team and business? The more buy-in you can earn from your supervisors, the more likely they will support and encourage you to succeed.
Describe your educational requirements and the type of flexible arrangement you want. Make sure you get a written confirmation from your supervisor.
Communicate with your MBA advisors and faculty members. Plan if you’ll miss a class due to a personal or professional conflict. Your professors will gladly assist you if you’re proactive about handling these hiccups in advance.
Furthermore, you may be able to get internship credit if you’re working during your MBA studies. Your professor or academic advisor will tell you.
4. Embrace downtime
Free time can be hard between work, school, and home duties. Rather than binge-watching Netflix, use your free time strategically to get ahead on your work. Create a plan for any free time you have, whether it’s for coursework or unwinding. It can help you be more productive and minimize stress if you use it to get a head start on assignments or meal prep for the week.
5. Organize yourself
Follow a reliable organizational system when balancing a full- or part-time job with an MBA program.
Consider digital productivity tools, note-taking apps, and online document management systems now if you haven’t already. You should organize your class notes and file papers and projects to find them quickly. In addition, you won’t have to worry about losing your term paper.
Sync your tools through the cloud to be accessible on your smartphone, tablet, laptop, and even smartwatch. You should be able to view upcoming activities, even at work, using a calendar app or a physical planner. That way, you won’t panic about the exam tomorrow. No matter where you are, you can track what you need to do with a reliable system.