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Courtney Mobilia 26 July 2023 | 5 minutes

Imagine taking the traditional MBA pressure cooker for building networks and upgrading it with digital connectivity.  

Australia’s premier MBA is now available as an Online MBA program for working professionals. With a mixture of online and in-person opportunities to network, you can now have the best of both worlds, as well as the best business qualification in Australia. 

Our aim with the Melbourne Business School Online MBA is to create an authentic, vibrant learning community that ensures you can effectively connect with your peers, our faculty and industry experts. We want the online learning experience to be just as powerful in fostering connections and building networks as the traditional experience. 

So why is networking important, and how can you do it online?  

Why networking skills are crucial for job prospects

To highlight the value of networking skills for job prospects, let’s look at the employment process from the employer’s perspective. 

While estimates vary, there’s no doubt that hiring staff is an expensive prospect. After applications have been reviewed there’s an interview process, which involves two or more senior staff doing two or more interviews. There are costs associated with background checks, repeating the whole process if it fails and then, finally, onboarding the successful candidate. 

This long and expensive process explains why employers often look to their networks for prospective employees who are more likely to be successful candidates. At the very least, most hiring managers post about their vacancies on their LinkedIn profile. Better connected hiring managers reach out to trusted people in their networks. 

To improve your job prospects, you can improve your networking skills and ensure the right people can contact you when opportunity arises. 

How does our Online MBA bring together collaboration and networking?

How is your networking game? It can be challenging to build networks in an authentic way that doesn’t feel like you’re constantly asking for help. 

Networking is one of the most valuable outcomes of an MBA and many graduates have amazing stories about how their network played a vital role in their career success

There are two key principles that are often discussed by successful networkers.  

The first is to never be afraid to reach out – if you don’t ask, you don’t get. Usually, the worst that can happen is that they say no, or don’t respond. 

The second principle is that in networking (like in life), it’s better to give than to receive. So, respond to requests for help or open your networking request with a suggestion or compliment. 

Now, how can you apply these principles in an online environment? Our Online MBA has three different opportunities to uplevel your networking game. 

Authentic syndicate groups

An integral part of MBA programs is group work to complete challenging assignments that simply couldn’t be achieved by one person. Because group members take on specific roles in a business sense, the groups are called syndicates. 

Syndicate groups are the famous, high pressure project teams that you’ve heard about in MBAs because they forge such strong network relationships. 

Head of Learning Design for the Melbourne Business School Online MBA, Aliki Christou, points out that syndicate groups give you access to the most inquisitive minds in the field – AKA your fellow students. 

“The collective knowledge that you and your peers bring to Melbourne Business School Online programs is invaluable, and syndicate or group work is one of the many social learning formats that allow you to tap into this,” says Christou. 

“Most subjects will have a group project of some kind where you work together over an extended period over the course of the subject to exchange ideas, consider various perspectives, provide constructive feedback on each other's work, or solve a business problem related to the theme of the subject.” 

Melbourne Business School Online uses innovative social platforms to facilitate and nurture a thriving learning community through syndicate groups and other activities.  

“You can work in your syndicate groups in highly interactive live classes with the support of a facilitator. You can also engage with your classmates and team members via Yellowdig, a social media platform designed specifically to support peer-to-peer learning,” says Christou. 

You can also use this experience to get the jump on networking by asking your syndicate members to post recommendations on your LinkedIn profile based on your work together. 

“We believe in empowering you to shape your own learning experience at Melbourne Business School Online. This sense of ownership will motivate you to contribute to the collective knowledge and encourage your peers to do the same,” says Christou. 

“The result will be a dynamic and supportive learning community – the more you bring to the community, the better it becomes for you and everyone else.” 

Business theory with practical application

The Melbourne Business School Online MBA gives you access to academics with global experience and the most skilled professionals in business. We’ve prepared a broad and in-depth curriculum, so you can develop solid and practical business skills that provide tangible career outcomes. 

What brings this business theory to life is practical application. You’ll have opportunities to bring real-world business problems into your studies, learn from the challenges of others and roleplay in business scenarios that you can only dream of. 

Jim Frederickson is Professor of Accounting with Melbourne Business School and a passionate advocate of the broader business benefits that come from our Online MBA. 

“The MBA from Melbourne Business School is so much more than just knowledge. It’s listening to a classmate bring their workplace into a class discussion, it’s working with people from different industries on real company projects, it’s watching presentations by prominent businesspeople, it’s late-night discussions with other students, it’s networking with alumni, and it’s being pushed to not settle for the easy answer,” says Frederickson. 

“In short, the MBA from Melbourne Business School is an experience that, if you let it, can transform your life. This experience is central in our new Online MBA.” 

Online and in-person MBA networking events

We’ve created a 100% Online MBA that you can study anywhere and anytime – but we didn’t stop there. 

As part of our commitment to your network, we’ve prepared online and in-person events that provide networking opportunities with industry leaders and the best in business. 

The in-person events are a bonus that give you an opportunity to meet your syndicate members and MBA peers IRL. These are valuable and professional events where you can enrich your connections with students, academics, and industry. 

Alternative online methods of quality MBA networking events

You may be wondering why we are focusing so much on networking. The simple answer is that networking is a challenge for many of us.  

Network struggles are not just a symptom of our online world – you don’t have to go too far back to remember a time when networking meant a stack of business cards that you’ll get around to following up one day. 

The key to successful networking is to have a strategy and avoid some common networking mistakes. We’ve all received a random LinkedIn request with boilerplate text from somebody who wants to help us 10x our results in some area. Maybe you’ve spotted the networker who only reaches out when they need something, or they ghost you after a meeting or phone call. 

Once you’ve sharpened up your networking strategy, you’ll need some opportunities for quality networking. That’s where our MBA comes in with exceptional opportunities like the MBA Summit. 

Learn more about the MBA Summit. 

Our global alumni network

The Melbourne Business School MBA alumni consists of 10,000 of the smartest minds in business around the world. As a graduate of our online MBA, you’ll join this inclusive community of alumni who are doing great things in their industries. 

Head of Learning Design for the Melbourne Business School Online MBA, Aliki Christou, says this connection provides benefits far beyond your time spent studying together. 

“The business knowledge you will acquire from your time at Melbourne Business School comes from the leading academics and industry experts in business. It’s based on decades of research in business, coupled with insights and stories from actual businesses at the forefront of innovation.” 

“Carefully curated resources from the most reputable academic resources are complemented by real case studies, stimulating dialogues and challenging problem solving alongside our industry partners - many of these are Melbourne Business School Online alumni like you will be one day,” says Christou. 

“Industry engagement is one of the signature pillars of the Online MBA, and it will help equip you with a strong set of foundational business skills while cultivating a learning and innovative mindset that will help you continue to learn in the future.” 

Why choose the Melbourne Business School Online MBA?

It’s reasonable to say that not all online MBAs are created equal. Only one online MBA is built on the foundations of the #1 MBA in Australia.  

This MBA brings the rigour and reputation of our top ranking on-campus MBA to an online environment. That rigour includes an entry requirement of at least two years’ work experience. If you have six years’ work experience, you may qualify for entry into the Melbourne Business School Online MBA without a university undergraduate degree. 

What this means is, you’ll be joining a diverse class of your peers with experience in their industry and ambitions for their future. That’s the kind of future business leaders that you want to be networking with. 

You’ll be learning from some of the world's leading academics and industry experts, while you’re exposed to cutting-edge research through a future-focused curriculum that’s been designed to meet the changing demands of leaders, businesses, and the market. 

Most importantly, this MBA is 100% online, which means you can study anytime, anywhere and chart your own path to success. 

The complete Melbourne Business School experience

Ask anyone about their MBA studies and they’ll probably tell you about an intense experience working in small groups to overcome challenges that forged network bonds for life.  

The Melbourne Business School Online MBA is a program specifically designed to foster student collaboration that supports deep learning and enduring relationships. 

In addition to networking with industry leaders and the best in business, the Online MBA also provides opportunities for instant feedback to drive continuous improvement. 

Dr Damir Mitric, Learning Transformation Director, has created an online learning experience for the Melbourne Business School Online MBA that is far from set and forget. 

“In order to evaluate the online learning experience and to continuously improve the experience for our students, we critically listen to student feedback and use learning analytics to ensure we meet our quality standards,” says Mitric.

Next steps to networking with Melbourne Business School Online

You can upgrade your network right now by heading to the Melbourne Business School Online page on LinkedIn and following our page. 

The next steps to networking with Melbourne Business School Online are in your hands. You have the opportunity to learn from the best in business and connect with like-minded business professionals on your terms. All you need to do is reach out. 

Download a brochure to learn more about our 100% Online MBA today.