I think I might want to go but what will I actually learn?
Many people are currently in a point where they are deciding what they will do with their lives. One option for many people is business school but you may not really know what business school is like. This article will hopefully give you a better idea of what you do in business school.
There are a lot of different things that go into business, and business school typically breaks it down into all these areas. In first year you have to take all the courses and then you get to decide which area you want to focus on. The main areas in first year that I took were Operations, Finance, Marketing, Management Science, Management Behaviour, Accounting, Strategy and Finance. I remember some of these courses better than others.
My best course, and therefore the one I remember the best in business school, was Operations. Operations is basically how to run a factory or some sort of process line. How you would make stuff if you were running some sort of process. Most people don’t end up doing this stuff because there are not many jobs in the area. The main thing that I learned in operations was about the bottleneck. Basically when you have a production line there is one part of the line that is the slowest and however slow the slowest part of the line is, that’s how slow the whole production line is. Therefore it’s completely useless to speed up any part that’s not the slowest, because the production line isn’t getting faster. You need to spend all your effort on the slowest part. The exam was basically find the bottleneck.
Then there’s Management Science. This is basically using computers and formulas to help people make business decisions.
With Management Behaviour you’re basically learning how to deal with people. What to do if someone in your group sexually harasses someone else. How to motivate people to climb Mount Everest and that kind of thing.
Then there’s Marketing where you basically figure out what product to make, how much it should cost, how you’re going to position yourself in the market and how you’re going to promote it.
Then there’s accounting. I don’t remember much of accounting but I think I remember it being about keeping track of where all the money goes. It was my worst course.
Finance is how you’re going to get money to run the business. This is like issuing stocks (equity) or bonds (debt). It also talks about being a little tricky with playing the market.
Finally there’s strategy which is how to make large scale decisions for a company. Stuff like whether to take over a smaller company, whether to start a new brand or a new type of business. There’s some overlap between the areas.
And those are the main things they teach you in business school!