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What is Business Administration?

Some people just want to go to work, do their job, and go home. They may have no real desire for responsibilities beyond those required to do their jobs. They have no desire to be managers, run a department, or do anything beyond just a regular job. Others, however, are more ambitious and want to join the ranks of management. Some end up happy being a middle manager, while others dream of being a CEO. For those in the latter category, an education suited for a business administrator is a good place to start. These people understand how a business operates and, depending on their interests, can earn additional education in a specific industry. For those who want to be their own bosses, a degree in business administration is helpful because people can learn the skills and tools they need to successfully run a business and eventually have their own employees.

The title business administrator is an umbrella title for anyone with any sort of supervisory responsibility in a business. Administrators oversee employees, the general operation of a business, and other areas depending on their main focus. Administrators can be found in all industries and at various levels. For example, a shift supervisor for a fast-food chain would be considered an administrator, but so would an office manager for a real estate company. The further up the organization a person climbs, the more responsibility they will have as an administrator.

The ability to advance varies depending on industry. Some administrators are former workers in that industry, while other administrators have not worked in the industry but have a solid management background. In some industries experience alone can move you into administrative positions, however, attaining an education is never a bad idea.

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Business Administration Education in Kansas

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, managers make an annual average salary of $78,000. The demand for managers is expected to increase through 2029. For those who think a career as a business administrator is something they might be interested in, this is a good time to get the education needed to move toward that goal. Below you will find information regarding education, a general guide map to becoming an administrator, and some of the different careers a person who wants to become a business administrator might work in.

There are several degrees that a person interested in becoming a business professional in Kansas can earn. Below is a general guideline of what courses each level will cover and the time it will take to earn.

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Associate Degree in Business Administration (ABA)

An associate degree in business is an excellent starting point and is most certainly better than having no formal education. Students study introductory concepts of business and receive an overall idea of how businesses operate in different industries, as well as experience the issues those that manage them may face.

Course examples for a 2-year degree program include:

  • Accounting I & II
  • Intro to Management
  • Intro to Marketing
  • Business Law
  • Business Ethics
  • Micro- and/or Macroeconomics
  • Payroll Accounting

Associate degrees typically take two to three years to complete, though that can shift depending on whether or not you are able to attend only part-time or strive to find an accelerated program to get you into the workforce more quickly.

Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration (BBA)

A bachelor’s degree in business administration is the starting point for many who wish to become a CEO or find another place among the C-suites. Many programs allow students to choose a specialization for their business degree, so a student who is interested in working in accounting could specialize in accounting or someone who wants to work at advertising could specialize in advertising or marketing. Along with the courses included in the specialization, students will receive a decent amount of general business education.

Some of the courses a student might take include:

  • Financial Accounting
  • Operations Management
  • Marketing
  • Business Fundamentals
  • Ethics
  • Economics
  • Quality Control
  • Computer Systems

Two of Kansas’ largest industries are manufacturing and real estate.

For students who want to enter either of these industries, they might also take the following courses:

  • Cost Accounting
  • Managerial Accounting
  • Public Relations
  • Real Estate Contracts
  • Real Estate Management
  • Real Estate Marketing
  • Selling Real Estate

Bachelor’s degrees consist of a minimum of eight semesters and take four to six years to complete. Some specializations may require a special project be completed before graduation.

Master's Degree in Business Administration (MBA)

For those who aspire to hold a senior management position with a company, a master’s in business administration, or an MBA, is the next step. A person can start their managerial career with a bachelor’s, but senior managers are often required to have additional education in order to manage both people and an organization affectively. MBA programs pick up where an undergraduate level program ends by adding additional critical thinking, analytical, and speculation courses.

Some of the courses a student will study at the graduate level include:

  • Advanced Business Communication
  • Business Analytics
  • Business Statistics
  • Financial Projections
  • Managerial Accounting
  • Marketing Analytics
  • Quantitative Business Analysis

A graduate degree can take between three and five years to complete. For successful completion, either a capstone project or a comprehensive examination is often required.

PhD Degree in Business Administration (DBA)

A doctorate in business is a degree for someone who either wants to set themselves up as a subject matter expert or explore academia as an additional career. The terminal degree will not only qualify a person for the highest levels of management in an organization, but it will also make a person attractive to colleges and universities who are always looking for experienced businesspeople to teach the next generation.

Some subjects included in a doctorate program could include:

  • Accounting
  • Economics
  • Ethics
  • Finance
  • Organizational Human Development
  • Information Systems
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Operational Management
  • Organizational Leadership

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Along with the coursework, a doctorate degree candidate must also complete and then successfully defend a dissertation. The process usually takes between five and seven years to complete.

Become a Business Administrator in Kansas

To reach the top echelon as a business administration professional in Kansas, a person should combine a good education with exceptional work experience. It's possible to achieve both at the same time, but laying the foundation of an education is the easiest route, although that does not mean that a person with a stellar work ethic cannot achieve management status. For those who are already employed, progressing at your current employer while attending school can also lay a good foundation. On the other hand, exceling in your education will help you land a decent job once you complete your degree. Internships are a good way to combine your education and work experience.

The more education you have, the further you can expect to progress in your career as a business professional, as a rule. This is why a person should decide their career goals and then find out the level of education needed to achieve them. For example, if you want to be in upper-level management in a certain industry and managers in that industry tend to have a master’s degree or higher, you know that you will have to at least meet that minimum requirement. If you want to set yourself up as an expert in your field, then be prepared to go to school for a doctorate degree. Once a person has determined their ultimate goal, they should work toward that goal both from the education and work perspective.

Another option to set yourself up as a business professional is to start your own business. If you have the drive, motivation, and business savvy to start and run your own business, this will immediately set you apart from other business professionals. An education will still be required, but attaining it could be easier because you will have practical work experience to go with the education. When your business is successful, you will not only be seen as an expert in your field, but you will also be able to assist other people who are striving to become business professionals.

Careers for Business Administration Graduates

Since every industry is certainly a business, every industry needs business professionals. Below are a few examples of the positions a person seeking a career as a business professional can explore.

  • Administrative Coordinator
    An administrative coordinator helps an organization run effectively. They coordinate schedules, greet and communicate with guests and other staff members, and ensure that the general needs of the organization are met. They have excellent communication skills and are comfortable working with a variety of people of all organizational levels.
  • Team Supervisor, Call Center
    A call center team supervisor is in charge of a group of call center representatives. The team supervisor monitors calls, offers training and guidance, and advises representatives in areas where they could improve. Most team supervisors are former representatives, so they have an intimate understanding of how the job should be performed. They are also responsible for maintaining the metrics for their team and report to the call center director. Not only does a team supervisor have to have representative experience, but they also have to be excellent communicators and managers.
  • Marketing Manager
    In the old days, a marketing manager had to choose whether to advertise on the radio, in print, or on television. But now that we're in the digital age, there are many other options to choose from. A digital marketing manager is in charge of placing an organization's advertising in the digital marketplace. This includes websites, social media platforms, and other forms of advertising that are not print. A digital marketing manager needs to understand where an organization's core audience resides and tailor the marketing campaigns accordingly, as well as placing them in the right platforms.

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  • Product Manager
    A production manager overseas the production of goods and services for an organization. They track raw materials, the production line, and the end product. They work with district distributors to ensure that the products are shipped to where they need to go and they are also responsible for ensuring that their products are produced at a price point that does not hinder the organization's profits. Production managers are natural multitaskers, have good communication skills, and have an excellent eye for details. They report to facility managers, or the owner.
  • Public Services/Works Director
    A public service director is in charge of ensuring that public areas are maintained properly. For example, a public service director could be in charge of fixing sidewalks and streets in an area. They also ensure that roadways are kept clean, be it from litter or the elements such as snow and ice. In some municipalities, the public works director is also tasked with maintaining public buildings as well as public areas. Grass cutting, window washing, and general construction maintenance all fall under the umbrella of the public works director and his workers. This person must be excellent at communicating with a variety of people and have excellent organizational skills. The ability to make and follow a budget is also needed in this position.
  • Branch Manager, Banking
    A branch manager of a bank is in charge of all aspects of that bank. They oversee the tellers, loan officers, and other employees of that bank. They must ensure that all transactions made at the bank are accurate. Branch managers have excellent organizational, analytical, and communication skills.

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