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Become an HR Leader With an MBA

Human resources (HR) is in a time of transition. In the past, HR — as a business function — did not overtly contribute strategically to the organizations it served. Therefore, in many cases, senior management and the executive team marginalized HR in terms of its role as a strategic or revenue-driving function.

Yet this is a new era for HR as it evolves into a more strategic function, gaining a seat at many C-suite conference tables. During its evolution, the profession spawned an aptly named role for its more broadly skilled and strategically minded practitioners: HR business partner. HR business partners combine and balance strategy and execution to support HR functions and organizational development as a whole. They often work across departments, addressing business challenges in an integrative manner through their understanding of the employee experience, talent strategies and data-driven insight.

Level Up With an Online MBA

To perform the complex responsibilities of this modern HR role, an HR business partner requires impressive skills that professionals are not likely to acquire without years of experience or an advanced, comprehensive degree. The online Master of Business Administration (MBA) with an emphasis in Human Resources Management from the University of West Florida is one such degree, offering in-depth studies in HR processes, strategy management, business analytics, business process integration and more.

Along with building foundational business and HR skills, this type of degree program provides students with the broad, leadership-oriented perspective on cross-functional organizations that HR business partners need to meet their responsibilities. If you take this educational path toward a higher-level strategic role in HR, the learning experience itself can help you gain practical leadership and management abilities.

In order to reach senior management at your organization, you must learn to operate and think at their level. This means building the comprehensive, strategic knowledge and skills you can develop through pursuing an MBA.

Learn Business, HR and Leadership Skills

UWF’s MBA with an emphasis in HR Management concentrates on key connections among employees, leadership and the overall business organization. These connections are explored and analyzed in business and HR courses that touch on business processes, finance, analytics, marketing, compensation and recruitment.

Courses such as Management and Organizational Behavior take a deep dive into leadership by examining how management philosophy and style influence organizational behavior.

Strengthen Leadership in Every Assignment

Consider how the MBA student experience can help you build skills considered essential for business leaders, such as communication and teamwork:

Communication — Business leaders are expected to be good communicators whether writing or speaking or listening. And your MBA experience will include numerous opportunities to practice those skills.

Teamwork — Group assignments are the perfect forum for acquiring, building and applying management and leadership skills like team-building and collaboration.

  • Team-building is among a leader’s most important tasks. It involves organizing individual contributors into a cohesive group to meet a common goal. As a student, if you have the opportunity to lead a group assignment, take advantage of it.
  • Collaboration involves a combination of many other leadership skills, starting with communication. As a collaborative team leader, you will facilitate by allowing every team member to weigh in and engage, communicating in a way that creates a safe environment for idea sharing, debate and team-oriented problem-solving and decision-making.

Continue the HR Evolution

As the evolution continues, the new model for HR will require many well-educated human resources business partners with the leadership skills you can gain by earning an MBA in HR management.

Learn more about the UWF online MBA with an emphasis in HR Management program.

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