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International Business Is a Top MBA Specialization

For students of modern business administration and management, an in-depth understanding of international business matters is increasingly important. The impact of a globalized economy and international trade demands today’s business leaders grasp the complexities of doing business across borders. This involves a wide range of competencies, from knowledge of global logistics and international law to a comprehensive understanding of cultural differences around the world.

The University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) offers an online Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a Specialization in International Business program. Focusing on the nuances of managing multinational organizations and human resources with a global perspective, this program prepares degree candidates for success in the world of international business.

What Is the Importance of International Business?

In order to grow in the modern, globalized economy, businesses across size, scope and industry continue to expand worldwide. By capitalizing on developed or developing foreign markets, a business’s market share and profit margins can potentially increase. In addition, targeting consumers in different markets with differing demands can help companies diversify existing product lines or find more successful markets for underperforming products.

Global expansion is also essential for many aspects of business function beyond sales. Design, material sourcing, manufacturing and assembly for a single product can occur in numerous countries simultaneously. Trade agreements between countries often encourage this international movement of goods and services, interlinking economies to benefit all involved.

These open doors of international trade also provide business options and opportunities. For example, some companies have shifted employment of entire departments, like customer service agents, to countries where the labor market is more favorable. Another example is in the film industry. Production companies have set up entire studios in foreign countries to take advantage of tax incentives, cheaper real estate and location. The list goes on.

What Is Unique to Studying International Business?

Due to the globalized economy, international business is now an essential part of modern business as a whole. An international business MBA augments core coursework in traditional business management skills and knowledge with the study of various topics like international trade policy, tariffs, international laws and foreign tax policies.

International management competence, however, is not limited to law, tax and finance. Human resource management and marketing strategy both rely on extensive market knowledge. This requires an understanding of cultural differences in varying markets, and basing strategy and policy on that awareness.

In the area of human resources, employment laws and expectations, working conditions, compensation, and communication vary by country and culture. Effective consumer engagement, product pricing, delivery and other aspects of marketing and distribution also vary greatly across cultures. This may involve determining the kinds of media people engage with and how they are exposed to products and services, as well as how they access and consume those products or services.

Another important aspect of working in international business is networking and building strategic partnerships with other businesses around the globe. This can involve a variety of business functions like supply chain and logistics, manufacturing, marketing, subcontracting services and securing trade deals. In each of these interactions and connections, an awareness of and respect for cultural differences and norms is required for effective networking and communication.

UNCW’s MBA in International Business program places heavy emphasis on developing intercultural competencies across all areas of international business management. This cultural perspective is an integral component of study, whether focused on building a business’s competitive advantage in different markets or the management of multinational organizations.

Is Earning an International Business MBA Professionally and Financially Beneficial?

According to Bankrate, international business is one of today’s most popular MBA specializations. Students value the importance of this area of study, for both its intrinsic value and professional reward. Bankrate also reports that the average annual base salary for professionals with an international business MBA is among the highest of popular MBA concentrations.

Further, a survey conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) found that top employers around the globe highly value many of the qualities and competencies emphasized in UNCW’s online MBA in International Business. The rigorous coursework at UNCW helps students learn how to motivate teams, think critically and strategically, communicate effectively, solve complex problems and make data-driven decisions. These all relate to the skills employers believe are most important right now as well as in the future.

International business is one of the most relevant and fascinating areas of MBA specialization. Students in UNCW’s online degree program develop a foundation of the complex knowledge and skills necessary to be effective in international business management and development. Beyond gaining competency with all matters of doing business globally, students expand their cultural perspective. For both the individual professional and the business they represent, it is the combination of cultural awareness and international business competency that leads to success on the global scale.

Learn more about UNCW’s online MBA with a Specialization in International Business program.

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