Thursday, August 25, 2011

MBA Decision - Should I Stay or Should I Go Now?

(I hope you're now humming or singing to yourself)

If you read this blog you'll know that I had am amazing, life and business changing experience in Chicago at the Jerry Ghionis workshop.

It was during or shortly after that workshop that I had to start making some real decisions about my future.

In all honesty, I signed up for the MBA just as much because I thought it might help me in the future as it would currently let me defer my student loans. That might be an ugly truth but it is what it is. I think of it as a win-win debt deferral program. How you may ask? Well you're in the right place to find out an answer to that.

I am taking student loans to go to school, that equals more debt. However I'm paying off debt that isn't student loans such as my car loan, a loan I took to help out during my divorce several years ago, etc. So it is essentialy trading old debt for new debt, with a lower interest rate. Not much of a win, but a win nonetheless. The other win comes from graduating the MBA program with the same amount of debt I had going in, but then I'll have a Masters Degree. Win-win, right?

Now, the why I might not return decision. Last semester was the toughest semester of school of my entire life. With Economics and Accounting I spent 2 nights a week in class for three hours and then usually 2 more nights a week with a study group, sometimes only 1 week night and a 4 hour session at Panera on the weekends.

Huge huge huge time investment. My photography business was going well and I had weddings lined up but I was always so tired that putting on the game face for the wedding, which I truly love doing, was harder than it should have been and the day after left me feeling like I'd just run a marathon, with no time to recover before the race started again.

The time invested into school was soul crushing. Less time with my amazing wife, less time doing what I'm truly passionate about, less time to work out, just plain ole less time.

The Verdict - part 1
I decided to drop down to part time status, which for evening MBA's is only one class for this semester and possibly next semester to see how I felt about finishing the degree.

The Verdict - part 2
I discovered that I could finish within the allotted 5 years (max time you can be in the program without an extension from some board ) by taking 1 class at a time for the next 3 years. That my friends is doable. I do enjoy the learning and although my dreams involve being a full time photographer I can use these classes to push me further ahead in the business side of photography. So my fellow friends in the MBA program can laugh and poke fun but as they head back to class on Thursday nights I'll be hitting the gym, spending time behind the lens, working on new marketing initiatives, planning a beautiful weekend with my more beautiful wife, and sometimes, just unplugging from it all to watch tv, or read a good book (foreshadowing - I just finished an amazing book which you'll be hearing more about soon!)

I will get my MBA, but on my terms.

And with that there is a huge decision gorilla off my back

-Lastly - no suggestions on the blog name, really? I'm going to have to rename this baby all on my own?

1 comment:

  1. Nice! MBA's can have some good value especially for folks running their own business. Sorry I didn't get a chance yet to provide name suggestions. I will think about it, just been a bit busy.