Executive MBA Costs vs. Benefits – Calculate Your ROI

An Executive MBA (EMBA) is an advanced degree targeted at mid-career professionals.

The average EMBA candidate is between 32 and 44, with at least eight years of work experience. They have competitive resumes and are poised to move into senior leadership roles.

As one such candidate, your choice in the Executive MBA program is critical. You want a globally competitive program that will allow you to advance your career. Ideally, you also want it to be flexible enough to allow you to keep your job. 

Thankfully, today’s best EMBA programs are designed to help you achieve just that. They offer accelerated programs to suit the busy schedule of working executives.

Typically, the courses take a more applied approach and focus on developing:

  • Business acumen 
  • Organizational leadership 
  • Industry-specific knowledge

Some programs even offer online or hybrid formats. This gives you more flexibility, and thus more balance between your work, school, and personal life.

But, an Executive MBA can also be a costly venture. Tuition from a top-ranking program averages north of $100,000. And although the courses are accelerated, they often run for up to two years.

Choosing to pursue an EMBA is a big decision and a considerable investment. With so much on the line, it’s only reasonable that you should wonder if the degree is worth it.

In this article, we’ll explore the different features of an EMBA. We will also take a look at their value and potential for return on investment to help you make the right decision.

How Much Does an Executive MBA Cost?

When considering an EMBA, an institution’s reputation is critical. And as you will find out below, the cost of a program rises along with an institution’s reputation.

Average Cost of an EMBA

According to a survey conducted by Ivy Execs, the average cost of an EMBA in the U.S. is $75,000. 

The average cost of an EMBA from a top tier program amounts to almost twice that, averaging at about $133,000. For example, an EMBA from:

With tuition fees like these, you’d be remiss not to wonder if your investment will be worthwhile.

Thankfully, you’d be pleased to learn that it often is. 

According to a 2017 survey by the EMBA Council, the average EMBA student’s salary is $172,498. This saw an increase of about 14% after graduation taking the average income to about $197,719. 

This sizable increase in pay means that you will see a return on your investment soon.

“Graduates can expect to earn a bonus for obtaining their degree and an average salary of $164,845. With a significant jump in income, EMBA graduates are able to quickly pay off any loans and completely cover the cost of going back to school in less than two years.”

Dan Scalco, Contributor Huffpost

We also learn that 41% of EMBA students receive a promotion after graduation, and 52% saw an increase in responsibility.

However, an Executive MBA from a traditional program is not always feasible. Thankfully, there are more accessible options through online programs. These offer candidates a more flexible, digital-first, and remote-friendly alternative. 

Some of these are affiliated with long-standing top tier business schools. While others are from accredited independent schools like Quantic School of Business and Technology

It’s important that you understand the nuances of the different programs available to you, so we’ll do our best to shed light on all your best options.

The Quantic program is based on a proprietary pedagogy developed in collaboration with professors from elite institutions like Georgetown, and Insead Business School.

This helps make elite business education more accessible. Especially considering we charge modest tuition of $9,600 for this program.

Consider the following cost comparison between Quantic and other top-tier programs:

Executive MBA Cost Comparison

Executive MBA Scholarships

According to the EMBA Council:

  • 20% of EMBA students have full scholarships from their employers. 
  • 34% of EMBA students have partial scholarships from their employers. 

The remaining 46% are self-sponsored. But they often have access to financial aid or tuition assistance.

In addition, 59% of the institutions that offer EMBA programs offer their candidates scholarships and fellowships.

Clearly, despite the high tuition of an EMBA, you have options to help offset some of the costs. Be sure to check with your employer and school to determine those options. 

This is key information that will determine your return on investment.

At the Quantiac school, we also offer scholarships to eligible candidates.

However, unlike most institutions, we don’t have a separate application process. You will be considered based on your application and notified along with your admission decision.

If your employer wishes to sponsor you, we also offer means and resources for employer-funded reimbursement.

What Are the Benefits of an Executive MBA?

Executive MBAs come with many benefits, including:

#1: New Networking Opportunities

An EMBA brings together a diverse group of people from different fields. It also gives candidates access to an international student and alumni community.

These give a foundation to expand your professional network across the globe. Alumni communities, for instance, help overcome some of the networking challenges executives face.

Additionally, most programs offer an international experience option. According to a 2018 Executive MBA Council survey, 93.2% of the programs offer international trips. Some programs even offer global topics as elective and concentrations.

#2: New Challenges and Learning Experiences

After a few years of working and moving up the ladder in an industry, you develop skills in your discipline. An EMBA curriculum is designed to help refine these skills and turn them into expertise.

It also gives insight into the most pressing factors affecting business today. You will also get to learn accounting and financial acuity.

These are skills that will help catapult your career forward. Moreso if you are looking to move into an executive leadership role.

#3: An EMBA Helps You Become a Better Leader

Most EMBA curriculums include business coaching and leadership training. These help you learn about your managerial style, making you a more effective leader.

Other leadership skills you can expect to learn from an EMBA program include:

Analytic Thinking 

You will learn how to dissect and understand different areas of business. This helps you develop critical knowledge in your field, enabling you to make more educated decisions.

Problem-Solving Skills 

As you work and learn at the same time, you can apply the knowledge you gain in real-time. The program encourages you to analyze your environment and use your newly acquired skills to solve any issues.

Confidence 

An EMBA program will help you build confidence in your knowledge. This will come in handy if you are looking to break off and start a business of your own. Or even looking to get into C-level management.

Communication 

This is one of the most critical skills, especially for those in leadership. An EMBA equips you with the tools to communicate within your business environment.

#4: Better Earning Potential

As an EMBA graduate, you can expect to see a salary increase much sooner than you would with a regular MBA. 

On average, you can expect an increase of about 13.5%, according to a 2019 Executive MBA Council survey.

It also indicates that you are 53% more likely to receive more responsibilities. And 40% more likely to get a promotion.

In addition to these, an online facility like Quantic also comes with a few added advantages. These include:

#1: Student Peer-To-Peer Learning

You will have access to a group learning platform. Here, they can receive class exercises, interact, and build each other’s knowledge.

#2: Executive MBA Student Network

This refers to a platform where you will be able to interact with other students and alumni. Here, you will be able to exchange ideas, grow your networks, and even take part in events.

#3: Group Projects

In the Quantic program, you will get to work in groups on several projects throughout the program. You will also work on a final project where you will get a chance to showcase your newly acquired knowledge.

#4: Optional In-Person Weekend Conferences

These conferences offer an opportunity to meet and network with classmates and alumni. The conferences span multiple days and happen four times every year around the world.

Previous locations have included: Copenhagen, Seattle, Singapore, and Washington, D.C.

#5: Full-Time Job Placement

An EMBA will also afford you specific opportunities after graduation. This is because certain programs offer networking and career support to graduates.

Some programs even offer career networks. Here candidates can get leads to new jobs and mentorship opportunities.

Is an Executive MBA Worth It?

Given the information above, you must be wondering whether an EMBA is right for you. Right off the bat, let us clarify that the degree is an excellent investment. But it might not be the best fit for everyone, or where they are in their career. 

Consider the following instances: 

The key takeaway from an Executive MBA is that it prepares you to move up the corporate ladder.

However, if you are new to your industry or management, then the degree is probably not the best fit for you. It’s also not a great fit if you are a recent graduate looking to get ahead in the business world.

In this instance, you will be better off with a traditional MBA. Or better yet a few years of real-world experience managing projects and people.

Additionally, you have to consider whether you can manage the time commitment required to complete the program. 

If you are unable to commit this amount of time, then perhaps it might not be the right time to start your EMBA.

Another critical factor to consider is employer support. Remember, support is not just financial; they might also need to adjust your work schedule.

Ensure that you and your employer see eye-to-eye before starting your course.

However, if your career has hit a plateau, then you might want to consider an Executive MBA. Fresh technical skills, training in soft skills, and decision making will help you take on more responsibility.

Additionally, the connections you forge during your EMBA will also help propel your career to the next level.

Finally, to work out whether an EMBA is worth it, you need to first determine your career goals.

Ultimately, Executive MBAs are designed to get you to top-level management. If this is your end goal, then the answer is YES. An Executive MBA is worth it and will prepare you for this role.

If you would still like to pursue an Executive MBA but cannot meet the commitments of a traditional program, then you should consider an online program.

Non-traditional programs like Quantic’s EMBA offer more flexibility and low financial barriers.

The online delivery method means that you can learn through bite-sized lessons at your own pace and receive individualized feedback.

An online program will also give you unique insights into the evolving workplace. It will equip you with the skills to succeed in a changing work environment.

Your Executive MBA ROI Analysis

Investing in yourself through an Executive MBA pays off in both ways you can and can’t measure.

You gain business knowledge, broaden your perspectives, and build your networks. An EMBA also positions you to earn the highest salary of any postgraduate program.

But this is not all that goes into calculating your ROI.

The Figures

EMBA candidates are usually above 35 years old with about eight years of work experience. They often hold a management position upon entry into an EMBA program.

On the other hand, most MBA students are in their late-20s with about five years of work experience. They often hold sub-management positions when joining a postgraduate program.

Comparatively, EMBA candidates tend to be more senior, and thus are paid better.

On average, EMBA programs charge about $75,000, 50% more than MBAs. And EMBA graduates end up earning an average of $175,000 compared to $121,000 for MBA graduates.

From this, we can work out the ROI for an average EMBA degree is 133%. This places EMBAs as the most valuable degree in terms of post-education remuneration.

But raw figures are not enough to give a full picture of an EMBA’s ROI.

Education Value

Executive MBAs, unlike traditional MBAs, put equal value on both soft and hard skills. You will learn just as much about people management, as you will about the process under which the same people operate.

This makes for one of the EMBA program’s most valuable ROIs. 

Of course, in terms of investment, this does not qualify as a financial return because technically, knowledge is invaluable.

However, when you choose to pursue an EMBA, you invest more than just money in the course. Therefore, the soft and hard skills you gain from your EMBA are among your most valuable ROIs.

Intangible Benefits

The greatest ROI you can earn from your EMBA is the networks you form through the course.

Micheal Simons argues in his article that, “The No. 1 Predictor of Career Success According to Network Science” is being part of an open network.

Open networks bring together people with different areas of interest and expertise. Closed networks include individuals with similar interests, professional fields, and acquaintances.

“People in open networks have unique challenges and opportunities. Because they’re part of multiple groups, they have unique relationships, experiences, and knowledge that other people in their groups don’t.”
Micheal Simons, Author.

Being part of an Executive MBA program provides exactly that – the opportunity to be part of an open network.

This is arguably the most valuable (and the most unquantifiable) ROI from your EMBA degree.

The Quantic Executive MBA Program

Unlike a traditional MBA, the Quantic EMBA focuses on leadership, strategy, and governance. All while still allowing you to learn everything you would in a regular MBA curriculum.

It does away with time-consuming lectures and focuses on fast-paced, personalized modules. Note, however, that this is not an indication of a lighter curriculum.

Quantic’s EMBA program is based on a proprietary pedagogy that uses active learning. This helps ensure the same learning outcomes as that from top business schools.

The courses are developed in partnership with experts and business school professors. They ensure the program suits the evolving needs of executives from across the globe.

The program also offers you the opportunity to focus on relevant topics in today’s workplaces. These include subjects such as data science, digital marketing, and entrepreneurship.

This, combined with the social learning environment and worldwide classmates, delivers: 

  • Financial benefits,
  • Personal growth,
  • An expanded worldview.

Should You Get an Executive MBA?

An executive MBA can expand your career opportunities substantially. It also equips you with the set of skills and knowledge you will need to move up your existing career. Or to launch a new one.

Although EMBA curriculums vary, most focus on professional skill development and leadership. These give you insight into real-world management problems and how to overcome them. 

An EMBA will also equip you with knowledge from the following fields:

  • Economics and Finance
  • Operational Management
  • Organizational Leadership
  • Entrepreneurship 
  • Business Policy
  • Business Ethics
  • Communication
  • Marketing

In light of this information, it’s evident that an EMBA is a worthwhile investment. Given how impactful an EMBA can be to your career, your choice in school is all the more important. 

Your first instinct might be to consider a traditional EMBA program, and rightly so. 

However, non-traditional programs are steadily gaining traction. They offer more flexibility, less overhead costs, and are more adaptable to your schedule. 

Some even partner with professors from top business schools. This helps make Ivy League business education more accessible on a global scale

Please consider the following quick overview of the Quantic Executive MBA program: 

The Quantic Executive MBA program is specially designed to suit the needs of a working professional. The curriculum provides a world-class education in a flexible, technology-driven learning environment.

The program is also enhanced by the diverse knowledge and experiences the global students bring to the program.

This makes for the perfect setting to network with a diverse group of experts. A feature we’ve discovered is one of the key ROIs from an Executive MBA.

And all this at a fraction of the cost of a traditional EMBA brick-and-mortar program.

So perhaps rather than asking whether you should get an Executive MBA, you should instead ask, “How do you sign up for the Quantic Executive MBA?”