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Why is it essential for an engineer to do MBA?

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Dr. Charu Bhaga

I was taking a management development program for an analytical firm on risk management in banks which was attended by employees carrying a few years experience, their new employees and to-be employees (to be selected post training). The trainees came from different educational background – few had commerce background and other engineers; few completed MBA and few had only bachelors degree (B.E.). 

During these six days  training of such a mixed crowd, interacting with few of them in detail, understanding what they do and what they want to pursue, created various apprehensions in my mind. Mainly my mind was revolving around one employee of this firm having few months of industry experience. He attended only one day of training. On asking the other employees of the firm as to why is he not attending the training I got an answer saying, “he wants to focus on machine learning and doesn’t wish to understand the framework for which he would be making a new process or a software.” He told one of his colleague that whatever process would be explained to me by a banker I can understand from him and work accordingly and therefore, I don’t require such background training on what the regulations in risk are and what they would be.” Listening to this I thought an engineer would be an engineer and continued imparting the training.

Once the training got finished and I was completing some related documents, my mind struck me of the same person. I thought he must do his MBA as he lacks in bigger picture of life. I do understand that he is quite focussed which is really good but at the same time MBA makes you realise that out of whatever you are studying here you may use only 10-20 per cent of knowledge in your immediate job. But as you move up in your career ladder, the remaining 80-90 per cent gets applied in some way or the other. MBA makes you think out of the box. Obviously, there will be some exceptions. Moreover, it grooms you, polishes your communication and presentation skills. I believe it helps a person to stand from nowhere to somewhere, such that people in his organsation can see his polished skill-set.

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