Career Choice in Management and Entrepreneurship
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Career Choice in Management and Entrepreneurship

A Research Companion

Edited by Mustafa F. Özbilgin and Ayala Malach-Pines

Although a large and steadily growing research literature attests to an interest in management and entrepreneurship, little research has focused on comparative assessment of the career choices and trajectories of managers and entrepreneurs. This timely book fills the gap by presenting an assessment of early influences on the career choice of managers and entrepreneurs, their attitudes at the start of their careers as students, and in their later employment experiences.
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Chapter 14: Business Education as a Career Choice

Yehuda Baruch and John Blenkinsopp


Yehuda Baruch and John Blenkinsopp INTRODUCTION The highly competitive nature of current labor markets leads people to strive to gain skills, competencies and qualifications that will make them better leaders and managers – in academic terms, they seek to develop their human capital (Becker, 1964). Human capital theory (Becker, 1964) suggests the labor market rewards, either directly or indirectly, the investments that individuals make in themselves. Further, it is claimed that such investments can result in increased opportunities (Becker et al., 1990) and actual career progress, for both mid-level managers and top executives (Baruch et al., 2005; Judge et al., 1995). There is clear evidence to suggest that investments in human capital may be translated into economic wealth (Baruch and Peiperl, 2000; Baruch et al., 2005; Becker et al., 1990). People seek to make an investment that will yield the best return. Societies, via labor markets, value and reward certain occupations over others, and managerial positions are among the more desired ones. One way to reach managerial roles or to progress faster on managerial ladders is by studying business and management. Gaining a first degree or second degree is the typical route for this, and the Master in Business Administration (MBA) remains the flagship of business education. Whether the MBA remains the ‘right tool for the job’ for business and management is widely debated – there has been significant criticism of the entire MBA concept and its contribution, with prominent scholars questioning its value and relevance (Bennis and O’Toole, 2005;...

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