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This does not mean that an individual cannot be a CEO without an MBA, but in today’s business environment such a scenario is unlikely if other qualified candidates up for the position possess an MBA with similar work experiences. An MBA is also considered a symbol of prestige in the business and academic communities. Lacking one when working with others who possess MBAs may leave one stigmatized and viewed as inferior even with comparable skill levels.

There are many limitations in terms of career advancement and salary potential when it comes to life WITHOUT an MBA. An MBA is viewed as a universally recognized management qualification, one that increases the holder’s market value and opens doors to lucrative careers. Not having an MBA puts one at a distinct advantage in terms of competing for jobs, especially in light of increasing numbers of MBA graduates. According to Miles, “the range of MBAs on offer grows and the number of students mushrooms” (33). As more MBAs become available, those without the advanced degree face stiff competition in terms of hiring, career advancement, and salary potential.

Another limitation from NOT having an MBA is the lack of valuable experience gained by many MBAs as they pursue their degree. Many business schools like MBA candidates to have had real-world experience


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