General MBA or Specialised MBA - What is better and why? Column by Dr. Atish Chattopadhyay, Director, IMT Ghaziabad
Sreetama Datta, 22 Nov 2017, #IMT Ghaziabad
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MBA aspirants often face the dilemma about choosing the right programme, whether to go for a general MBA programme with regular electives, or a specialised management programme. With the boom of career opportunities in plethora of sectors across industries, there has been emergence of institutes offering specialised MBA programmes. Students a Careers360 sought the opinion on the pertinent question, General MBA or Specialised MBA – what is better and why, from Dr. Atish Chattopadhyay, Director, IMT Ghaziabad.

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Prior to taking up the role of Director in IMT Ghaziabad, Dr. Chattopadhyay had held the positions of Dean in MICA Ahmedabad and Deputy Director at SPJIMR Mumbai. In this column, Dr. Chattopadhyay states that in the initial phase of career, specialised knowledge and technical skills are important. As one moves up the ladder, one needs to have a holistic view of business.

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Read the full column on General MBA Vs Specialised MBA by Dr. Atish Chattopadhyay.

Times are changing and more and more organisations are looking for management graduates at various levels. In some cases a management degree has almost become an entry level qualification. The question is what kind of MBA is better and why?

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MBA originally is a general management programme. Internationally, it is a trend that an individual pursues MBA only after a few years of professional experience. However, in India, fresh graduates or those with limited experience (less than three years) comprise a sizeable chunk of the class in any good management school offering a two-year MBA.

For the first job, specialised knowledge and technical skills are very important. As one moves up the ladder, one needs to have a holistic view of business, and therefore, a general MBA becomes relevant for a leadership role. To put it simply, technical skills play a significant role in the initial years of one’s career, but, as an individual grows up to assume a leadership role, people skills outweigh the technical or specialised skills.

Most of the initial employment is based on specialised skills. And if that is the case, a specialised MBA (or specialised masters in management) is probably more suited for a fresher. The areas in which a specialised MBA can be of value are Marketing, Analytics, Finance and Banking, Supply Chain Management etc. Also, one foresees increased demand for sector specific specialised programs in areas like Infrastructure and Real Estate, Petroleum, Telecom, Retail, Textile, Hospitality and Tourism, Healthcare etc.)

If you look globally, you will find some of the very interesting specialised programmes in Biosciences, Museum Leadership, Horse Racing, Sustainable Energy and Environment, Cyber Security, and Corporate Innovation Management.

As far as the industry is concerned, there is a need for both generalists and specialists. However, a lot depends at what level the requirement is and for what role. For some specific role which requires technical knowledge particularly in a functional area, a specialist with required skills will be more suitable. In roles which require people skills and interdisciplinary understanding of various functions a general MBA is more desirable. However, such general management roles are available only after the individual has acquired substantial experience in a functional role.

Having said that, it appears, that going forward, more and more fresh graduates may opt for a specialised management qualification (internationally known as the specialised MS or Masters), while an experienced professional may seek a general management program (popularly referred to as general MBA). This may not imply the necessity of pursuing two separate MBAs but rather constant learning and skill upgradation to remain relevant. The B-Schools may need to reorient their programs and offering to cater to these changing needs.

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Questions related to IMT Ghaziabad

Showing 90 out of 90 Questions
20 Views

What is the last date to apply for IMT, Ghaziabad? Will I be able to apply for it after CAT?

Apurv 8th Oct, 2019

Hello Shristi, If you are talking about the two year PGDM degree, then for that degree the admission portal opened on 23 august and will close on 22nd november. If you are talking about the admission in15 month PGDM executive program, it closed on 30th september. You can get more info about all the admission deadlines by visiting this official link and clicking on KNOW MORE in the respective exam: https://www.imt.edu/admissions/

162 Views

Sir if a student have 69% in 12 the and if he is having 99 percentile in Cat .th n he or sheis eligible for iim . I

Deepesh Malhotra Student Expert 22nd Jul, 2019

Dear aspirant,

12 th marks are considered in calculating the total score of an individual. You get points based on your 12 th score. Considering your 12 th score you will get hardly 2-4 points out of 10. The total score depends on various factors starting from 12 th mark, cat score, interview and all. After the total score it is decided whether the candidate will get a call from iim or not.

Hope this will help you..!! 

85 Views

What is the cutoff of IMT Ghaziabad, Nagpur and Hyderabad in CAT

Sampriti Student Expert 18th Jul, 2019

For IMT Ghaziabad, it requires a 90 percentile in CAT. Apart from that your past academic records and your profile also matters. 

For the other 3 campuses of IMT which are Nagpur, Hyderabad and Dubai, you'll get a call if you have 70 percentile. For Hyderabad and Dubai you may get a call at even a 60 percentile. 

Moreover the GE/PI rounds of the Ghaziabad campus happens separately while the process is same for the other three campuses. 

All the very best 

25 Views

Can i get admission in sirifort institute of management technology with rank 7380 non delhi general for b.com hons

Nishtha Sharma Student Expert 16th Jul, 2019

Hello aspirant,

Your rank is quite appreciable. You may have the chances to get admission in bcom hons, but hurry up because the seats are filling and cut off ranks may lead in any direction by now. All the very best to you

Thank you 

74 Views

Hi, I want to know the best weekend classes/distance MBA institutes or colleges in Delhi NCR. Please advise.

mayuri fakirde 28th Jun, 2019

Dear aspirant,

These are the following institutes for distance MBA:

  • Institute of Management Studies (IMT)

Eligibility: Bachelor’s Degree in any discipline

Fees: ₹ 1,10,000

Test: No


  • Symbiosis Center for Distance Learning (SCDL)

Eligibility: Bachelor’s Degree in any discipline

Fees: ₹ 41,500

Test: Yes


  • Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU)

Eligibility: Graduation with 50% marks and 3 years work experience

Fees: ₹ 31,500

Test: Yes


  • ICFAI University

Eligibility: Bachelor’s Degree in any discipline

Fees: ₹ 63,000

Test: No 


  • Sikkim Manipal University

Eligibility: Bachelor’s Degree in any discipline

Fees: ₹ 73,000

Test:Yes 



  • Annamalai University

Eligibility: Bachelor’s Degree in any discipline

Fees: ₹ 39,700

Test:No


  • Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies

Eligibility:Graduation with 50% marks

Fees: ₹ 77,200

Test: No



  • Prin. L. N. Welingkar Institute of Management

Eligibility:Graduates  from any recognized University

Fees: ₹ 62,000

Test:No



  • Amity University

Eligibility:Graduation with 40% marks

Fees: ₹ 1,51,800

Test:No



  • Lovely Professional University

Eligibility:Graduation in any discipline

Fees:₹ 41,600

Test:No

All the best!

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