Looking for MBA online schools can be intimidating and seem a daunting process, but getting a Master’s of Business Administration degree is often regarded as the first step to a career in business. It is common for both entrepreneurs to have one and within the ranks of a major corporate firm. Not all MBAs take such defined routes, however. For many people, the degree is the starting place for a number of unusual or nontraditional career trajectories. You don’t need to rule out an MBA just because executive management and accounting don’t appeal to you. Following are eight very different careers that can be yours once you’ve secured your MBA.
That’s right: the Central Intelligence Agency is looking for moneymen – and those with an MBA are likely to be the most competitive. After recession layoffs, the CIA has been heavily recruiting former investors. Those with an MBA are particularly prized in espionage because of their tightly honed skills. Business savvy and an understanding of market trends are required in the intelligence sector. Freshly-minted MBAs often have a harder time jumping into a new career as a spy, as some actual business experience is usually required–but not always.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, known more commonly as NASA, isn’t all space missions and extrasolar exploration. A good quarter of NASA’s employees work in administration, clerical, and management positions. Though an MBA isn’t a necessity for these jobs, having an advanced degree will help you stand out against the crowd. NASA also sponsors the “NASA Means Business” competition that pegs university against university to create financial plans for potential NASA missions.
If your heart is in the right place and you think that a non-profit setting is the place for you, work as a charity director could be incredibly satisfying. Your MBA expertise will be put to good use as you schedule and run fundraisers, chart resource allocation, and manage employees and volunteers.
Do you think you could be the next Sam Malone? If you’re ready to take on the responsibility of your own business, owning a bar would make use of the financial and managerial elements of your MBA instruction. For the right personality, it can also be a lot of fun.
Development Strategy Coordinator
Much like a charity director, the development strategist for a nonprofit charts goals for the organization, and figures out better ways of conducting daily business. There are many different job settings for this position, too. Development strategy coordinators can work with private schools, independent foundations, or churches–virtually any company that is classed for tax purposes as a non-profit.
Sports agents are not limited to the familiar roles of Jerry McGuire. It takes a lot of hard work to get started, but sports agents attached to some of the bigger players on ESPN could be responsible for putting together million dollar deals down the road. It’s all a matter of finding the right clients, and having the right expertise. An MBA is usually a great start.
If you like living on the edge, you might be the perfect commissioned salesperson. There is no base salary for many salespeople, so your livelihood depends on your ability to convince people that they need what you are selling. When it comes to higher-end merchandise, however, like automobiles and corporate technology, commissioned sales people can often make well over six figures a year. The negotiation and market economics skills gained in an MBA program will help you be a success.
Independent Film Producer
If ever there was a unique career path for an MBA graduate to take, it would be independent film production. Indie films often work on a tight budget, and require the close coordination of a number of different players. Most marketing is grown in-house, too, which makes many of the skills learned in an MBA program all the more valuable. For the truly courageous MBA grad, erotic film making can also be a profitable venture.
At its core, the MBA can be a very creative degree. While most graduates end up in more traditional business settings, career trajectories are nowhere carved in stone. There are a number of options available for an enterprising young MBA graduate. It’s all a matter of figuring out what you’re interested in, and leveraging your education to meet your goals.