What Is the Best Degree for Launching a Business?

A big question for anyone looking to start up their own enterprise concerns business ownership and degrees; namely, what is the best type of academic certification for an entrepreneur? A 2012 article in Forbes Magazine took issue with a study showing that individuals with engineering degrees were more likely to become CEOs than those with MBAs. The study surveyed a number of Facebook profiles looking for people listed as “CEO” and then looked at their degrees. 75 percent of the listed CEOs had engineering degrees with the remainder having MBAs. The study concluded that when it comes to starting a company, an engineering degree was a more valuable asset than a business degree. The Forbes Magazine writer took issue with that considering it a case of “selection bias.” Obviously, some degrees are better for certain career objectives than others, so what really is the best degree for those who wish to start their own company?

Communications Degrees

Business owners are often called upon to make speeches and presentations in front of their employees or potential investors. They need to be able to do this competently. A communications degree can be helpful in preparing an entrepreneur for this aspect of leadership.

Marketing Degrees

Marketing degree courses cover multiple aspects of business and is therefore relevant to any discussion of business ownership and degrees. Marketing includes everything from accounting to information technology; these are skills that will be essential for anyone running their own enterprise. The whole point of marketing is to develop products and services that satisfy the needs of the marketplace. Delivering a good product or service in a way that encourages consumers to purchase, is a goal to which all business owners should strive.

Ethnic Studies Degrees

With a marketplace and workforce that is more ethnically diverse than ever before, having the ability to understand and relate to both is a tremendous asset to a new entrepreneur. Being able to build a loyal customer base in a particular ethnic group or that stretches across multiple ethnic groups can help a business to thrive even while its competition falters.

Information Technology Degrees

Technology is an important factor when looking at business ownership and degrees. The modern marketplace depends heavily on information technology. Having a background in this field can therefore provide an entrepreneur with the skills needed to optimize their usage of the many tools available. Furthermore, an education in computer science can provide the ability to think critically that is important for all areas of business.

Masters of Business Administration Degrees

Regardless of the debate on their value, it has been shown that an MBA from a reputable institution can help an individual to get ahead in the corporate world. Degrees from Harvard and other Ivy League schools are highly regarded in the business world. These degrees show potential employers that a graduate has the work ethic and competence to handle major responsibilities within a company. It makes sense that they would also be valuable when starting launching a business.

Engineering Degrees

This is an area that deals with mathematics and science and which appeals to those gifted at effectively utilizing technology. Having a leader with an educational background that fosters innovation and forward thinking can spell the difference between a failed startup and a resounding success.

While it is possible to be successful in business with any type of degree or even with no degree at all, it is clear that certain degrees are more beneficial for startup success. An individual whose long-term goals involve entrepreneurship should focus on the certifications listed above when considering the relationship between business ownership and degrees.