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What is Business?

A business professional usually earns a college or university degree and uses that education to progress to a high level in their chosen field. On the job, the business professional will be required to reach and maintain competency and use their knowledge in their daily tasks. In addition, business professionals are expected to work within a code of ethics or conduct.

However, it’s hard to note what kinds of daily tasks you might have because it depends on what sector, industry, or position you end up in. Business professionals may be accountants, bankers, research analysts, investment bankers, consultants, and more. Each one of these professionals is expected to operate within professional standards, as dictated by their industry and position - these are behaviors, practices, and ethics which govern what that professional is able to do.

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Business Education in Kansas

The top industries in Kansas include wholesale trade ($11 billion), Educational services and healthcare/social assistance ($13.7 billion), Professional/business services ($18.1 billion), Real estate and rental/leasing ($20.2 billion), and manufacturing ($27.6 billion).

Forty-two percent of Kansas’ economy is directly related to agriculture. This includes beef cattle ranching and farming, providing the highest financial contribution. Kansas is also seventh in the nation when it comes to its agricultural production. This includes wheat, of which the state covers about 12% of the total agricultural output for the United States. And nearly every county in Kansas produces some form of mineral. Petroleum and natural gas are extracted at the highest level in the state, though helium, limestone, and salt are close behind.

Between May and October of 2020, Kansas’ labor force data showed that roughly 1,450,000 people were employed in the civilian labor force. Information and financial activities were the only two sectors to show a percentage drop in unemployment and professional and business services showed a fairly consistent positive percentage of employment.

Kansas State University and other educational institutions in the state work hard to ensure that novel pipelines of new workers and jobs come to the state. They also work to see that there are direct investments benefiting the state.

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Business professionals have a hand in all of these developments. Every sector requires workers, nearly all of which will be referred to as ‘businesspeople’ as they progress in their careers. And every business professional including claims adjusters, investigators and examiners, cost estimators, human resources specialists, logisticians, management analysts, and others contribute to Kansas’ industries.

Associate Degree in Business (AS)

Colleges in Kansas are aiming to provide their students who are majoring in business administration and other business majors with professional growth, which will hopefully enable them to find a position in a business field. Students should be able to develop and use their skills in more than one career path. A general business degree could lead to nearly any bachelor’s, while a degree in administration or management will allow students to more quickly move into supervisory positions. However, they will need some experience if they only complete an associate degree.

Business degree programs are this level were created to give students a broad foundational education, providing an emphasis on business learning that would help them succeed. Students develop the skills they need to work with or manage various types of businesses. The career fields graduates choose may include industrial production management, sales, operations management, distribution management, administrative services management, social and community service management, and others. Students with an associate of science in business administration may be offered a position in entry-level management positions or they may also choose to transfer their degree credits to a four-year university.

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Bachelor's Degree in Business (BS)

Students majoring in bachelor’s business degree programs receive a broad education in business, much like those in associate programs, which offers exposure to all areas of business study. Students also spend time developing the leadership and communication skills they will eventually need in their business careers.

At this level, in undergraduate business programs and through real-life experience, students become strong candidates for career opportunities in a huge variety of business fields. These positions may be higher-level management positions, but many larger businesses are looking for bachelor’s for their entry-level positions, so you may need to gain experience before moving into management, even with a bachelor’s degree under your belt.

One university in Kansas offers 21 hours of advanced business electives such as business law, supply chain management, accounting, information systems, marketing, business analytics, management, entrepreneurship, and finance in one of their business programs. These types of subjects are common to all business programs, and you should expect your program to cover these subjects and other similar ones throughout your four-year degree.

Business graduates with a bachelor’s degree may find positions in general management, sales, retail, entrepreneurship, and more. Specific positions may include personnel recruiting, branch manager, customer service manager, small business owner, fundraiser/development officer, property or real estate manager, human resources administrator, insurance agent, or industry relations specialist.

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Master's Degree in Business (MS or MC)

Students earning their master’s in organizational leadership earn a business degree which focuses on business leadership, strategy, team-building, and ethics. However, no matter what type of master’s degree they opt for, at this level students receive exposure to practical knowledge drawing on the central tenets of leadership and management of people and organizations.

Students who are working full-time may earn this degree in a hybrid format, working at their own pace, or they may be able to find a master’s that is offered in a fully online format, allowing you to complete your degree while keeping up with your family and maintaining your current career trajectory.

Students focused on earning their master of business administration (MBA) immerse themselves in a top-level business education. Students who do not already have a background in business can also thrive in this program.

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PhD Degree in Business (PhD)

Doctorate students who have new ideas and enjoy learning new things should thrive in this type of program. They should also have an analytical mind which helps them to solve difficult problems. Students who plan to work as a tenure-track faculty member in a business school are particularly well-suited for PhD programs.

Areas of study may include accounting, finance, analytics and operations, human resource management, marketing strategic management, organizational behavior, and other options. PhD and doctoral programs are designed to encourage faculty and student collaboration. Graduates can find positions within the foremost business schools or find their way in another position in which their expertise comes in handy.

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Become a Business Professional in Kansas

As with other states, Kansas does not require business professionals to obtain any specific certifications before they begin to work in their field. Even so, earning certifications may help professionals land the position they want within their specific industry.

Business-related certifications may also give the professionals additional confidence that they know what certain positions entail and that they will be able to perform as expected. Below are just some of the options you have if you are looking for certification to make your resume stand out among the crowd of applicants for positions. Make sure you research your particular field and earn a certification that will provide you with plenty of applicable knowledge.

  • Professional Strategic Selling (PSS)

    This certificate prepares business students for sales careers. Students gain exposure to the basics of sales and learn more through the curriculum and sales labs, which allows them to grow the skills they need for a successful career. Business colleges generally offer this certificate program, but it is open to students in all majors.
  • APICS Supply Chain-Inventory Management

    In partnership with the Business Education & Training Analysis (BETA) organization, APICS offers career-enhancing certification programs in either inventory management or supply chain management. Participants are able to take classes in Wichita or online so that they can gain new skills and brush up on their credentials.

    Participants who have earned their business degrees from business colleges at a private or public university can be eligible to sign up for this program. APICS through BETA has been developed to meet the specific needs of each class participant.

    There are also certificates focused on project management, marketing, and much more. Make sure to find the right certification for your specific career goals.

Careers for Business Graduates

  • Operations Manager

    An operations manager who understands business concepts will perform well in their career. This professional manages the operations of their organization and they are responsible for the efficient management of these processes: labor, quality control, productivity, safety measures as set by the Operations Department, and more.

    Operations manager may act as a company representatives in regulatory issues; ensure operational procedures, systems and principles in management and information flow; and supervise enhanced management reporting. Most importantly, they carry out supervisory responsibilities as established by the organization’s policies and applicable federal, state, and local laws.

  • Administrative Assistant
    Administrative assistants are responsible for carrying out clerical tasks for an organization’s leader or CEO. This role may be a good one for someone who is organized and motivated. An assistant will coordinate calendars, send emails, take phone calls, prepare for large meetings, and take notes during meetings.
  • Marketing Manager

    Marketing managers require the ability to be versatile and flexible, as they may be responsible for expanding inbound sales channels as well as overseeing current metrics for marketing campaigns and training.

    Other responsibilities include tracking performance of different campaigns and analyzing results. They manage the budget and make sure every piece of material fits the company’s brand identity. The ability to work with web analytics tools and converting creative ideas into successful advertising projects also helps.

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  • Data Analyst

    Because of the proliferation of data, it’s a big job to make sure it’s managed effectively. A skilled data analyst can winnow insights from every data set. It’s their job to interpret statistics and turn it into information that the leaders of organizations can use to make vital decisions.

    Organizations rely on data analysts to determine which markets they should move into, products to manufacture, customers to target, and investments to make.

  • Supply Chain Specialist / Manager

    Supply chain specialists are supervisors who ensure the supply chain’s progress from beginning to end. This specialist tracks inventory and orders and forecasts supply needs. They may manage several employees and departments within the organization’s supply chain. They oversee operations to maximize the efficiency and productivity of the entire process. They hold a vital role as they develop and maintain beneficial relationships with vendors and distributors.

  • Chief Financial Officer
    A chief financial officer (CFO) is a senior executive. They are responsible for managing their organization’s financial actions. This may include tracking cash flow and financial planning. They may analyze the financial strengths and weaknesses of the organization and propose corrective changes.


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