Too Old for An MBA? Weigh Your Options.

by Vincent Carton

Are you too old for an MBA? The average age of an MBA student is 28 years old.

If you’re considering getting an MBA at 30 or above, you might be pondering that question. 

While you’re never too old to improve your business education, enrolling in an MBA course may prohibit you from achieving your career goals. A traditional full-time program takes at least 2 years, which is too much time to take off from work and your career. 

Additionally, an MBA can cost $200,000, making it harder to justify your return on investment. 

Let’s go over the experience of older students and why an MBA alternative is a better fit for those looking to strengthen their business acumen. 


Is Getting An MBA At 30+ Worth It? 


If you are wondering if an MBA is worth it after 30, you must consider the time you would take off from your career to pursue the degree.   

A traditional MBA takes 2 years, and part-time programs can take between 3-5 years, which is too long.    

If you enroll in a full-time program, you will not have time to work a full-time position, leaving behind high wages and career opportunities. 

Getting an MBA at 30 or above usually requires a more careful approach to financial management and familial commitments.

For example, you must consider the cost of your forgone salary, the cost of the program, the cost of relocating if you’re moving to a new city, and the cost of living without a full-time salary but with a family. 

The reasons for getting an MBA in the past were to develop business and management skills, improve your network, and increase your earning potential. Unfortunately, current programs are years behind the curve, making the degree not worth it after 30 or even before.

A lot of the current MBA curriculum is old-fashioned and fails to prepare students for current business trends and challenges.  

Because a lot of the MBA curriculum is outdated, it will not be helpful to your career in the future, and therefore the effort you put into completing your coursework will be a waste of time. Additionally, many individuals enroll in MBA programs to connect with ambitious professionals. 

Although there is no age limit for an MBA, it will be harder to fit in socially if you’re much older than the class average.


How Does Age Affect The MBA Recruitment Process? 


The average first-year student spends roughly 8.7 hours a week on recruitment, focusing on company briefings, networking events and calls, company research, and applications.

Even after spending so much time, most students are unhappy with their MBA recruitment process because they end up taking a job in an industry that’s not their first choice.

Top companies such as American Express, UBS, and GlaxoSmithKline only recruit MBAs on 8 campuses. Meaning students who don’t attend those schools will be at a significant disadvantage.

If you’re above the average age, you will have a much more difficult time during the MBA recruitment process.

Employers who recruit MBAs are generally looking for younger, less-experienced candidates and, therefore, will not match the salary expectations you deserve due to your higher level of experience.

Therefore if you’re an older MBA candidate enrolling because of a career plateau, you may want to consider other options such as an alternative.


What Is The Value Of An MBA Alternative?


An MBA alternative is a targeted business program that teaches the critical tools and frameworks needed to start your own business or move into a leadership role at your employer.

The courses are economical with their students’ time, as some are as short as 7 weeks. The courses also provide tremendous value, costing less than $2,000, a fraction of a traditional program.

Furthermore, MBA alternatives, such as the Business Intensive, consistently update their curriculum to fit the needs of the current business market.

Because many alternative courses have a digital-first approach, theories are better able to keep up with the latest technologies and business trends.


Is An MBA Alternative Right For Me? 


An MBA alternative can help guide you to tremendous business success no matter the career stage.

While a traditional MBA is a useless waste of time and money, an MBA alternative can provide you with the same skills and network opportunities in less time and for an affordable price.

Your best alternative option is the Business Intensive. The course is Forbes and’s best online business course.

Business Intensive at a glance:

• Length: 7 Weeks

• Format: Fully online

• Cost: Starting at $1,499

The course transforms students from passive consumers of business information into active business leaders. The program teaches 8 essential business skills, including strategy and finance, sales, branding, marketing, pricing, customer research, web development, and communication.

Students will finish hands-on projects including:

• Refine and test a business concept

• Run a market sizing, revenue growth, and competitor analysis

• Deliver a high-caliber presentation

•  Analyze financial reports and models

• Develop a brand strategy

• Build a no-code website

• Develop and execute a marketing and sales plan

• Pitch a business idea with conviction and charisma

There are live weekly guest speakers. Past guest speakers include Andrew Yang, PayPal Founding COO David Sacks, Ellevest Cofounder and CEO Sallie Krawcheck, product gurus Jackie Bavaro, and Gayle Laakman Mcdowell, and Peloton Cofounder Graham Stanton.

The Business Intensive is an excellent opportunity for students who want to improve their business skills, network, and gain the confidence necessary to become a business leader in their desired field.

If you feel that you are too old for an MBA, you’ll find much more success with MBA alternatives because they’re shorter, less expensive, and provide more up-to-date business information.