Three Top MBA Specializations for the New Global Economy

Tomorrow’s economy will not be the same as yesterday’s economy. Increasingly, the financial workplace is about how to compete globally rather than just locally or stateside.

Companies pursue business in both established and emerging markets in an environment of accelerating change. As a result, employers seek qualified candidates to work not only in the U.S, but also overseas.

Graduating with a top-ranked MBA degree equips you with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in a global economy where change is the norm, rather than the exception. MBA degrees have specializations so as to align a degree more with people’s interests and companies’ needs. Some are more suited than others for use in other countries.

The following are the three top MBA specializations that prepare MBA graduates to succeed in any country and address global issues.

MBA Specialization: Finance

Reacting to the national and global financial crisis starting in 2007, leading companies and financial institutions accelerated the hiring of financial analysts and managers to safeguard their assets against similar occurrences.

By design, a Finance MBA graduate works to change the environment within which companies work, rather than what happens inside an individual company. In other words, their focus is already broad – perfect for thinking globally.

Business schools continue to react to ongoing global financial events, altering their programs to incorporate the lessons that need to be learned from economically altering concerns, such as the 2008 Recession and the Eurozone Crisis.

A solid MBA program recognizes this financial globalization and incorporates it into the coursework. Rather than just working to be compliant in one or two countries, the task now is to meet the rules and regulations across several countries.

Knowledge of capital markets, audits and financial control in different countries is an absolute necessity. That means in-depth legal knowledge is needed to not only succeed in a global business environment but to function at all.

Financial managers shape the new global economy with the highest level of responsibilities. At this level, you could work to shape the country’s direction and economic policy in the U.S. Treasury or the Federal Reserve. At any level, this finance concentration can help regulations for a whole industry.

MBA Specialization: Marketing and Advertising Management

A Marketing / Advertising MBA has become one of the most desired degrees in recent years. With the shift to digital and online marketing, most companies now have their own, in-house marketing teams that specialize in bringing inbound traffic and customers to the businesses.

Technological evolution over the last few decades has forever changed the shape of marketing. Many business schools have emphasized marketing skills in their curricula to meet these demands. This is the case, even though “traditional” media channels still have power to reach very large crowds.

Particularly, the growth of the Internet, social media platforms, and databases containing detailed customer profiles has heightened the value and sophistication of marketing tools.

Nearly 65 percent of executives surveyed “strongly agree” that data-driven marketing is crucial to success in a hyper-competitive global economy. That’s the key finding from a recent Forbes Insights report.

Modern marketers embrace data-centric tools to make the most of the data gathered from a variety of tech devices and social media platforms. Well-researched data allows marketers to turn their creative art into more of a science.

Numbers and data are understood without translation. The right data provides the foundation for customer acquisition and retention, up-sell and cross-sell opportunities, and improving customer experiences. A Marketing and Advertising Management MBA is the clearest, fastest way to understand the importance of data.

On the ethics side of how businesses operate in a global economy, marketers will increasingly need to encourage and promote an industry’s eco-friendly practices. Even if reluctantly, countries and their leaders will have to work together more to manage and hopefully reduce global business problems such as pollution, poverty and potable water.

Businesses will be born from the need to meet these issues head on. Existing companies will also need to do more. Those with an ethical business approach will succeed in these areas, and that’s what a Catholic school, such as the University of Saint Mary, can offer.

At its simplest, companies seek MBA marketing professionals who understand the importance of global reach, and can help them understand and succeed in global markets.

MBA Specialization: Enterprise Risk Management

The global economy has given organizations many opportunities that didn’t exist just 10 years ago. With new ventures and technologies, comes new risks and the need to minimize them.

Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) is a management technique focusing on identifying, mitigating, and preventing various business risks. Career opportunities for risk officers are growing as organizations become increasingly concerned about the potential impact that strategic, operational, financial, and cyber risks have on companies in today’s world.

In emerging markets, some of the risks faced by companies include breach of intellectual property, volatility of currency or exchange rates, geopolitical instability, and lower (sometimes higher) safety and quality standards in other countries.

Cyber threats, too, continue to evolve as more sophisticated attackers emerge. Cyber attackers are increasingly targeting financial functions to embezzle money and / or steal sensitive data. The business world currently needs a renewed focus on leadership and accountability in this area.

Finding MBA professionals who can lead and affect change within an organization’s project portfolio is necessary and provides far-reaching strategic advantages.

As described above, some of the skills desperately needed in a global economy are:

  • Understanding different cultural and business practices
  • Data analysis
  • Awareness and ability to handle multinational laws and legal challenges
  • Ability to identify or avoid risks such as cyber threats

Any of the specializations above are particularly well-suited to mastering these skills in the evolving global market. Even personal research and interest to discover more about the global view of business can take you far, no matter which MBA specialization you choose.

For more in-depth information on MBA specializations, The Complete Guide to MBA Specializations in Demand presents an overview of seven MBA specializations that align with current business needs and trends. To learn more about the online MBA at University of Saint Mary, request more information or call 877.307.4915 to speak with an admissions advisor.