Doctor of Business Administration: Career and Salary Facts

Learn about possible career options with a Doctor of Business Administration degree. Explore typical job duties and discover the range of salaries paid for various positions. Schools offering Business degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Career Options Do I Have with a DBA Degree?

Graduates holding a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree are prepared to work in executive positions within organizations or for scholarly pursuits at universities and colleges. Although there are many career options for graduates of DBA programs, your area of specialization and particular career goals will dictate your career path. Some of the more common DBA program tracks are finance, accounting, marketing, strategy and operations management.

Once you have your degree, you are eligible for upper management and executive positions in research organizations, firms, banks and other types of businesses. You may advance within your current company into a broader role or seek employment in another company that offers better advancement opportunities. Some of the job titles that you might consider pursuing include operations manager, chief financial officer, dean of business, chief executive officer, senior managerial consultant and director of human resource management.

Many graduates become business professors and combine teaching with research in their area of expertise. Business professors generally work in colleges and universities but may also teach in professional schools, junior colleges and business training centers.

What Will My Job Duties Be?

Your job responsibilities will vary according to your specific job title and the type of business for which you work. In general, executives and management professionals direct and enhance the overall operations of a business. You will likely be involved in the development of new strategies, technologies and solutions related to business. You may design policies to ensure the company's goals are met. You may also work with other employees to oversee the daily operations of your company. Top executives and managers must possess strong leadership, analytical and problem solving skills.

As a business professor at a college or university, you could teach a number of different core and advanced business classes, such as business administration, accounting, economics, marketing and finance. Most professors split their time between teaching and conducting research. They also help guide graduate students' research. Professors are generally expected to contribute to the overall advancement of their field. This may involve writing research papers and publishing them in peer-reviewed journals, presenting papers at conferences, attending professional conventions and recruiting new students to the program.

What Can I Expect to Earn?

Salaries for executive and managerial positions are generally very good, although they can vary by level of responsibility, amount of experience and with the organization's size. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), chief executives had median annual wages of $160,720, and general and operations managers had median annual wages of $92,650 in May 2009 (www.bls.gov). Individuals working in the securities, commodity contracts and financial investments industry had the highest wages.

College and university professors are typically paid according to their rank and field. For instance, tenure-track faculty members are generally paid on a sliding scale as they advance from instructor to assistant professor, associate professor and finally to tenure professor. Also, professors in fields with high-paying job alternatives, like business, tend to earn more than professors in other fields. The BLS reports that the median annual salaries of all postsecondary business teachers were $73,320. Some professors may supplement their income by doing consulting work, teaching additional classes, publishing research and writing books.

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