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Which MBA Programs Have the Highest Salaries?

Deciding to pursue a full-time MBA from a reputed business school can be an expensive affair. However, the return on investment on an MBA degree makes the expenses worthwhile. MBA graduates from good US business schools continue to bag lucrative salaries even in 2021, which clearly shows that the Covid-19 pandemic has not stopped MBA dreams.

In fact, this can be the right time to take a leap of faith and embark on your MBA journey. Read on to know more about different MBA programs that can fetch you high-paying jobs.

[READ: ROI of MBA from the USA]


Top MBA programs

Following are some common full-time MBA programmes that can provide you with a head-start in terms of salary package.

  • Finance

An MBA with a specialization in finance remains a hot favourite among MBA applicants. With more and more companies looking to go global with their operations, skilled finance managers are likely to be on demand for years to come. 

Furthermore, many US B-schools offer optional courses with a finance major such as specialization in capital markets, corporate finance, etc. These optional courses help the students to explore various sub-sections of finance and pursue respective careers such as research analyst, finance manager, fund manager, etc.


  • Marketing

A career in marking can be one of the most challenging and rewarding ones among all other fields. A good product alone cannot boost sales in a company unless it is supported by some dynamic and innovative marketing strategies and a dedicated team of marketing professionals. 

Therefore, marketing managers are always in demand across the industries. MBA grads with marketing specialization can don the role of brand manager, sales manager, chief marketing officer, and so on.

Of late, the advent of the internet and social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc., have given rise to new roles for marketing managers such as digital marketing specialists, online marketing strategists, etc.


  • Operations

Operations are one of the core areas of management. Heavy industries like mining, automobile manufacturing, etc., largely depend on operational activities. The cost-cutting measures in times of crisis often depend upon how efficiently a company manages and streamlines its operations.

Hence, an MBA-Operations degree can open a plethora of opportunities for you in the field of logistics, supply chain, inventory control, production planning, maintenance, or quality control. 


  • Human Resource

A well-oiled human resource department can help shape the workplace vibes of a company by selecting the right people for the right type of job profile. Besides, an HR manager has to take care of various factors like attrition rate, proper training of the employees, possible discontent among employees or creating an active internal grievance redressal mechanism.

Therefore, companies today are willing to invest considerable time and effort to develop their HR. Hence, sharp HR managers are always wanted across industries.

Furthermore, an HR manager is also instrumental in drafting a firm’s HR policies, including performance appraisals, promotions, etc.

Top B Schools for Highest MBA Salaries

Sr. No. Name of Business School University Highest Average Salary and Bonus (in $)
1 Stanford Graduate School of Business Stanford University 1,76,083.00
2 NYU Stern School of Business New York University 1,75,148.00
3 Tuck School of Business Dartmouth College 1,73,882.00
4 Kellogg School of Management  Northwestern University 1,73,057.00
5 Chicago Booth School of Business University of Chicago 1,72,683.00
6 SC Johson College of Business Cornell University 1,72,254.00
7 Harvard Business School Harvard University 1,71,785.00
8 Columbia Business School Columbia University 1,71,436.00
9 Darden School of Business University of Virginia 1,69,190.00
10 Fuqua School of Business Duke University 1,67,134.00

[Source: USNews]

Top Industries That Offer  High Salaries to MBAs

The salary offered to an MBA graduate depends upon multiple factors such as his undergraduate degree, academic excellence, work experience, and so on. However, the prevailing industry trends tend to have a significant impact on the salary of an MBA graduate. 

According to the data analyzed from businessbecause, the following are some of the relatively high paying industries as per the recent trends.

  • Consultancy

Many traditional organizations often want to restructure their business to drive growth and improve business performance. Management consultancy firms help such organizations identify problems and suggest improvements or changes that can be implemented to modernize the business. 

Well-known consultancy firms like McKinsey, Bain, Price Waterhouse Cooper, etc., have a long list of big companies as their clients. These firms are always on the lookout for promising MBA grads and offer a good starting salary.

  • Financial Services

The corporate world and its strategies often revolve around increasing the bottom line, and hence companies providing financial services usually have a loyal customer base. Traditional financial services may include advising clients on business strategy, investments, savings, pension and insurance products. 

  • Investment Banking

Investment banking involves advising companies, governments, and institutional investors on how to invest their money to achieve their financial goals and implement long-term or short-term financial plans. 

Additionally, if a company decides to go public, the investment banker overseas all the necessary compliance and advises the company at every stage of the initial public offering (IPO).

  • Technology

The technology industry has emerged as one of the biggest job and revenue generators for the last few years. Behemoths like Alphabet Inc, Meta, Apple, and many other technology companies recruit MBA grads in thousands every year. The trend is likely to remain unchanged in the near future.

Industry-Wise Breakup of Top Average Salary of MBA Grads

Sr. No. Industry Average MBA Salary (in$)
1 Management Consultancy 1,52, 470.00
2 Financial Services 1,29,889.00
3 Technology 1,24,289.00
4 Healthcare 1,18, 004.00
5 Media/Entertainment 1,09,846.00
6 Energy 1,08,730.00
7 Retail 1,08,270.00
8 Real Estate 1,07,522.00
9 Consumer Packaged Goods 1,06,719.00
10 Transportation and Logistics 1,06,250.00

[source: US News]

Lastly, remember that you should prioritize your interest area while choosing your MBA stream rather than blindly running for the high-paying specialization. You can consider taking the help of an expert MBA consultant to guide you in selecting the right programme as per your aptitude. 

Your main area of focus should be to acquire new skills that can help you during your entire professional career regardless of job trends or global economic factors. 

For over 15+ years as an Entrepreneur, and India’s Top Educationist, Jatin has led a range of initiatives in the Education Industry. In this role, he has created many successful educational services and products geared towards generating success for professionals aspiring to join IVY League and global Top Tier Universities for MBA Programs, Masters Programs, and undergraduate courses. He is the Founder and CEO of PythaGURUS Education, and has been recognized as a thought leader in the Higher education sector. Economic Times, Hindustan Times, Times of India, India Today, Business Today, Tribune, and many other national newspapers have recognized his work, and have given him numerous opportunities to be a regular columnist. He has also served as a panelist for NDTV, and other national news channels.

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