Category Archive: Articles

  1. Popular Job Titles for Hospitality Managers

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    Businesses are, at the fundamental level, built on the service (or product) that they provide to their customers. This is especially true in the hospitality industry. The success of lodging, tourism and food service ventures hinges directly on their ability to provide a positive experience to those they serve. Especially in the world of Yelp reviews and social media, even one unhappy customer in a restaurant or hotel can result in lost business and revenue.

    Facing this challenge demands business leaders with an eye for both financial growth and a positive customer experience. Pursuing further education in hospitality business leadership can help develop financial acumen, but the second set of skills is more personal. This specialized sensitivity can be difficult to come by, but offers those who have it a number of unique career paths. Here are some of the distinct, popular job titles for hospitality managers.

    Leadership in Hospitality

    Event planning manager

    Event planning is a major industry, with everything from conventions to corporate meetings to weddings requiring a high level of organization and leadership to plan. As a result, the demand for event planners at all levels is estimated to grow by 33 percent over the next decade, making it one of the most popular job titles for hospitality managers.

    Event planning managers interact directly with clients to understand the scope of their vision for the event. They then compile bids and offerings from various vendors to determine the one that best meets both budgetary constraints and their client’s needs. On the day of the event, they oversee all operations to ensure things run smoothly. This makes organizational, logistical and financial skills valuable to anyone in an event planning leadership position. As many event planners operate independently within their own business, advanced business skills can be incredibly helpful.

    Hotel and lodging manager

    Managing a hotel or resort can involve a number of different tasks, including everything from monitoring staff performance to managing financial records and creating budgets. Larger hotels are sometimes divided into departments with managers in each. General managers, as they’re typically accountable for daily operations and the work of each department, can benefit from a broad business skillset. The departments they oversee might range from HR and finance to public relations and advertising, depending on the nature of their environment. This challenge is well-served by both a strong sense of business operations on several levels and leadership skills to help motivate staff. Managers in hospitality must also be attentive to customer feedback and act swiftly to address any issues.

    This isn’t all the hotel and lodging field can offer to those with advanced business expertise. Major hotel chains and franchises may also require managers in their corporate offices to help set policy and drive performance in all of their locations. This is less of a hands-on role, but offers unique leadership opportunities and the chance to shape a larger, multi-national business.

    Tourism marketing manager

    Attracting tourists to destinations and venues also falls within the hospitality field. To do this, hospitality marketing managers working within state tourism offices, private firms and notable venues shaping messaging and advertising that drives new visitors. In the era of digital media, this can involve creating a social media strategy and crafting new content to reach a broader audience.

    In essence, their work is similar to that of marketing managers in other fields. However, in order to bring tourists to the attraction they represent, professionals in destination marketing can benefit from a specialized understanding of the space. The action required of their customers is more substantial than many fields, involving travel plans and sometimes significant costs. It’s helpful to have a specialized sense of how to create a good value for the audience. It’s also useful to have the analytical skills needed to evaluate what makes the attraction they represent unique among other destinations.

    Food service managers and leadership

    Especially when leading and managing an independent restaurant, well-honed business skills are essential. Managers in food service oversee every element of their establishment – from financial concerns and budgets to health safety. They also lead and supervise their staff, creating a dining experience that encourages a steady, regular base of customers. If running their own restaurant, they also have to be able to identify their niche within the local market and identify ways to keep their business strong. They may even work closely with their executive chef to build new menus that strengthen their product.

    Similarly to hotels, national food service chains and franchises also have corporate offices that determine national strategy for their various locations and develop plans to foster growth. This can be an excellent fit for someone with advanced business education that focuses on hospitality.

    Interested in pursuing leadership opportunities in hospitality? Learn more about the Lynn University online MBA program with a specialization in hospitality management.

  2. What can you do with an International Business degree?

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    Our economy has grown into an amazingly globalized and international marketplace. To keep up, businesses need professionals who can coordinate business operations and identify new business opportunities abroad. This doesn’t just affect multinational corporations. The Internet has increased consumer awareness, with more purchases happening online every day. Now, even small and local businesses are looking for employees with an international mind-set.

    National boundaries are becoming less and less of a dividing point. Given the internet’s undeniable ability to help the cultures of the world communicate on a massive scale, it’s safe to assume that consumers are well-aware of what other markets have. In some cases, cultural demand can even be dictated by what’s popular in other countries.

    New potential markets, products, and partnerships around the globe are discovered by experts in international business. No matter their focus, international business professionals leave an indelible mark on the state of the current economy.

    What does “International Business” mean?

    The literal definition of “international business” is simply, “transactions that take place across national borders”. The practice, however, is far more nuanced than that. International business experts can serve in a number of different environments. Some stay in their home country and coordinate overseas through technology. Others travel to foreign locations, or work as an expatriate in a satellite office. Those with the skills necessary to comprehend the interactions between markets, cultures, and various trade agreements serve a variety of functions. Some of these include:

    Sales
    Business professionals that can drive transactions across national boundaries can add a great deal to their organization. Sales representatives need a sharp sense for the cultural mores that guide each lead they follow. This leads to greater success in negotiations and pitches.

    Marketing
    Taking a product that’s successful in one country and bringing it to a new market can be a daunting task. Experts in international business are well-suited to this challenge. Other countries may have a completely different set of successful advertising practices. They might even have a unique set of delivery systems for a brand’s messaging. That said, the fundamental principles of marketing remain largely the same across international boundaries. The application of these ideas demands a flexible, curious mind ready to learn about new cultures.

    Financial analysis
    Things like the cost of travel, transport, tariffs, and component pricing are all significant concerns. A financial analyst must keep these things in mind when serving a company with global aspirations. Finding cost-saving opportunities around the globe, whether in shipping, manufacturing, or elsewhere, can make a monumental difference in a company’s success.

    Operations
    In a similar vein, operations on the international scale involves the coordination of a number of different factors. For franchises with a multi-national presence, licensing and compliance issues are of constant consideration. Ensuring that any overseas subsidiaries operate according to brand standards and national law is fundamental to globalized business. For those who import or export materials, operational efficiency in trade and shipping is of the utmost importance.

    In the global economy, businesses in every niche can have a share of the global market. This makes an international sensibility a useful trait to nearly every function within an organization. The broader challenge for all organizations is applying creative thinking and cultural savvy to growth opportunities on the world stage. That’s what you can do with an international business degree.

    Explore the online MBA offered by Lynn University with a concentration in International Business.

  3. MBA in Finance vs. MBA in Accounting—Which is right for you?

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    MBA in Finance vs. MBA in Accounting—Which is right for you?

    MBA programs provide students with a useful foundation in business and can help you climb the ranks in your career and increase your salary. But when it comes to choosing a concentration, many individuals have difficulty making a decision. For example, it may be hard to distinguish between an MBA in accounting and MBA in finance. While the degrees may seem similar at face value, the programs cover different curricula and prepare students for distinct careers.

    MBA in Accounting

    MBA in accounting curricula often includes specialized courses in financial reporting and understanding taxes. In some programs, students have the opportunity to elect an area of concentration, including taxation or courses to prepare for the CPA exam.

    MBA in Finance

    An MBA in finance arms students with knowledge about investing and portfolio management, as well as leadership, management, marketing, and financial accountability. Students typically study several valuation models, including Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM), Arbitrage Pricing Theory (APT), and Equity Valuation. Techniques learned include forecasting, financial analysis, navigating IPOs and mergers and acquisitions.

    Career in Finance vs. Accounting

    Careers in finance and accounting are very distinct, as are the primary job roles of individuals in these areas. Accountants and auditors’ main responsibility is to review and maintain financial records (Bureau of Labor Statistics). As mentioned previously, many accountants become Certified Public Accountants (CPAs). Additional certifications accountants may obtain include Certified Management Accountant (CMA), Certified Internal Auditor (CIA), Certified Information Systems Auditor (CISA) and more. These certifications can increase job prospects and demonstrate proficiency. According to a survey conducted by the Institute of Management Accountants, Inc., those with certifications – CPA, CMA or both – earn 31 percent more than peers without credentials. The job outlook for accountants and auditors is projected to grow 13 percent from 2012 to 2022, about as fast as average.

    Working as a financial analyst is a popular career in finance. Financial analysts assist businesses and individuals with making investment decisions (BLS). Individuals can enter the field with a bachelor’s degree, but in order to advance their career, typically need a master’s degree – either an MBA or master’s degree in finance. Financial analysts may also seek certification as a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) to further advance their careers. The job outlook for financial analysts is projected to grow 16 percent from 2012-2022, faster than the average for all occupations.

    Additionally, finance vs. accounting salaries differ. The BLS reported the median salary for accountants and auditors was $63,550 in May 2012, while the median salary for financial analysts during this time was $76,950.

    MBA in Finance vs. MBA in Accounting

    So, which degree is the right choice for you? Individuals working in both areas can benefit from earning a credential specific to the field. Additionally the job outlook, while higher for financial analysts, is good for both. However, job responsibilities for individuals working in accounting and those working in finance are very different. It’s important to consider your areas of interest and ultimate career goals when choosing between an MBA in finance vs. MBA in accounting.

    Lynn University offers an online MBA in finance. The degree provides a solid foundation in business along with specialized courses that introduce students to concepts related to the use of valuation analysis and portfolio management.

  4. Master’s in Marketing vs. MBA in Marketing

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    In the era of digital platforms that have a consistent presence in the lives of people all over the globe, the work of marketing professionals has never been more essential to building a strong business – or more complex. To reach an audience that’s bombarded by messaging on a nearly constant basis, advertising and communications efforts have to be immediate, impactful, and highly targeted.

    A leader in the field has to have more than simply an intimate familiarity with their audience. They need expert knowledge of the latest content and media distribution methods, the ability to adapt to the shifting world of digital marketing, and an ongoing commitment to developing valuable strategies that benefit an organization’s specific goals. However, you may be interested in developing more business-focused skills and understanding your place within and impact on your organization. Either way, a marketing manager or director that can spot focused opportunities to communicate with their brand’s desired audience effectively while meeting ROI targets are perpetually in-demand, as the current state of the industry reflects.

    To develop these essential skills and acquire a competitive advantage in the job market, aspiring marketing professionals may choose to pursue graduate education. The advanced coursework completed through graduate programs can offer specialized skills and opportunities for accelerated career advancement and greater earning potential.

    However, there are several variations of master’s degrees in marketing that suit different professional aspirations and desired skill-sets.

    Master’s Degree in Marketing

    A Master of Science in Marketing is typically a highly focused course of study that offers in-depth insight into modern marketing techniques. For students who have a specific area of interest in mind, like sales leadership or social media marketing, pursuing an MS can present a unique opportunity to develop their desired abilities.

    Master’s in marketing programs often focus on a particular approach or discipline in close detail, which can be a beneficial course of study for some students. Those seeking this type of credential typically have a distinct position already in mind, and seek to build the skills necessary to perform in their desired marketplace.

    MBA in Marketing

    For those interested in exploring marketing’s place within the larger effort of fostering an organization’s growth, an MBA with a marketing concentration might present the better option. In addition to providing an overview of brand management and effective communications, an MBA with a marketing concentration allows the student to build on their fundamental business skills and develop as a complete business professional.

    Beyond that, the MBA credential carries with it a high degree of respect among employers. The skills developed through MBA coursework are often preferred for jobs throughout the business world. This means that students can complete a valuable professional credential while also fulfilling some specialized requirements in marketing, becoming expert leaders in the field with a keen sense for the larger goals of any business.

    MBA or Masters in Marketing?

    Both of these credentials offer distinct advantages to those interested in pursuing or enhancing their career in marketing. However, the coursework they offer can vary greatly, as can their applicability to the current business landscape. When considering each credential, be sure to keep your academic needs and professional interests in mind, and choose the one that fits them best and complements your path to becoming a marketing leader.

    Lynn University offers an online MBA with a marketing concentration designed to reflect the latest trends in the industry while providing a fundamental, proven business curriculum.

  5. Pursuing a “One-Year” Online MBA

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    The past several years have seen a dramatic shift in the design and structure of MBA programs nationwide. As the debate regarding whether or not the credential is worth pursuing in the current economy continues, schools are beginning to create new approaches to their programs to make them invaluable to aspiring professionals. Individuals from all branches of the business world can profit from the fundamental courses offered in any MBA program. The cost of a traditional MBA, especially with mounting student loan debt, when combined with the time it takes to earn the degree and see a return on such a significant investment, often creates a substantial barrier to entry.

    The question remains, then, how these programs can remain relevant in the coming years, especially given the advent of online education and other innovative modes of learning material delivery?

    One such adaptation, the creation of the “one-year MBA” – a version of the fundamental coursework presented in traditional MBA programs that can be completed in one year (as opposed to the traditional two) – has garnered a great deal of attention as a rising option in the field. The structure has proven phenomenally successful, both in providing an effective overview of essential business skills and an attractive, practical option for students.

    Prominence of the One-Year MBA
    Even some of the most recognized MBA programs in the country have seen declines in traditional MBA applicants of up to 7%. Many of those same schools, however, have adopted new, one-year MBA programs that seem to be running counter the trend, with some top-ranked programs seeing as much as a 24% increase in applications to the course of study since 2009.

    Class sizes for these programs are increasing incredibly quickly, with more and more students seeing the one year alternative as a perfect, practical access point to the expanded career opportunities and high return on investment that an MBA offers. Students have taken to the idea of quickly realigning their skills to match advanced career goals with a one-year MBA, and schools have certainly taken notice.

    Reasons to Pursue a One-Year Online MBA
    Some schools, like Lynn University, have taken the same principle and applied it to their online course offerings. There are a number of reasons why a one-year online MBA presents an incredibly convenient way to earn a professional credential still integral to career expansion in many industries.

    Flexibility
    A one-year online MBA makes it possible to pursue an advanced degree from the comfort of your own home, and with a schedule that suits your life.

    Accelerated Pace
    Since the program can be completed in one year, it means even less time before you can start enjoying the benefits of a new credential and exploring new career opportunities.

    Work Full-time
    Without the need to commute to campus or attend classes at a scheduled time, students can create a schedule that allows them to account for both their personal and professional life, maintaining their current job.

    Tuition Savings
    While online education is sometimes a more affordable alternative to on-campus, students who pursue a one-year MBA online can benefit from even further reduced tuition over traditional programs.

    Lynn University Online MBA
    Lynn University is one of the schools at the vanguard of this new structure, offering a one-year online MBA that can be completed entirely off-campus at an affordable tuition rate.

  6. Job Profile: Financial Analyst Careers

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    Financial analysts are highly-skilled advisors who help companies and individuals make sound investment decisions. They usually specialize in a certain area of the investment process, either focusing on recommendations concerning the selling of stocks or adding options to an investment portfolio. Additionally, financial analysts make careful assessments of market performance and predictions of market strength. Their role is defined by fast-paced, sometimes high-risk, decision making.

    A career as a financial analyst is a good fit for someone with the ability to think analytically and execute good judgment in high-pressure situations. Because financial analysts are required to explain their investment recommendations to clients who may not be as financially savvy, excellent communication skills are also very important.

    Understanding current and historical financial trends is necessary for a successful career in finance, so analysts undergo a rigorous certification process to ensure that their knowledge is up-to-date and relevant. Taking the Series 7 and Series 63 exams or participating in the CFA Institute’s certification programs is often required to demonstrate that a financial analyst is prepared to take on the responsibility of making important investment decisions.

    Types of Financial Analyst
    There are four common types of financial analysts: fund managers, portfolio managers, risk analysts, and ratings analysts. Fund managers work strictly with the investment strategies of hedge funds, trust funds, mutual funds, and pensions, while portfolio managers work with a combination of products and industries. Risk analysts work to prevent economic losses by assessing and minimizing a client’s exposure to risky investments. Ratings analysts analyze the financial capabilities of investors and investments to evaluate how companies manage debt and repayments.

    Professional Outlook
    While the career preparation is extensive, the rewards of the position can be great. The median salary for a financial analyst was $74, 350 in 2010. And with the financial industry expecting above average growth in the coming years, choosing a career in finance can be a great way to remain competitive in any job market. In addition, starting out as a financial analyst can eventually lead to some of the highest paying jobs in the financial industry. For example, chief financial officers and managers can expect to make upwards of $300,000 per year on average.

    Pursuing a Career as a Financial Analyst
    It is widely known that financial analysts work in a very demanding and highly-competitive industry. Many employers seek job candidates with a combination of education and experience, but it can be difficult to receive an education while actively employed. Obtaining an online MBA gives potential financial analysts the flexibility to work, while attending classes at their convenience. Lynn University offers an online MBA program that specializes in financial valuation and investment management. Not only does the coursework allow students the ability to work, the program is affordable and taught by industry experts. Lynn University’s asynchronous curriculum gives students the freedom to learn in a way best suited for them, a pathway to independent education that will prepare future financial analysts for the aggressive finance world.

  7. Top Social Media Trends and Forecasts for 2014

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    It doesn’t take advanced training to see that social media has completely reshaped the digital marketing landscape. Social networks have had such a profound impact on modern marketing that business owners now see an active social media presence as a basic requirement for survival. The logic behind this is simple: a business needs to be wherever its customers are. And social media is where everybody is.

    The benefits of social media marketing include better business exposure, an increase in lead generation, improved gathering of market intelligence, a rise in search engine rankings, and reduced marketing expenses. All this makes it all the more imperative for business owners to know how to get the most out of their digital marketing efforts by keeping abreast of the latest social media trends.

    Below are some of the Top Social Media Marketing Trends and Forecasts for 2014:

    Emphasis on visual content. Visual content is the big thing in 2013, with image-based social networks Pinterest and Tumblr enjoying monumental growth rates of 88 and 74 percent respectively. Experts predict that the trend will continue well into 2014, with strong visual content becoming a crucial part of businesses’ social media strategies. The smart move would be to make content on social media less text-heavy and to shift emphasis toward photos and infographics.

    Increase in micro-video popularity. Corollary to the trend of social network users gravitating toward easily digestible visual media, micro-video apps like Vine and Instagram are expected to play a bigger role in social media marketing come 2014.

    Greater platform diversity. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn used to be the central networks for social media marketers, but the growth of other social media sites has opened up more viable options for businesses in various niches. Google+, with the second highest number of monthly users, is expected to become a major player in the social media marketing scene. Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram, and even MySpace are also showing promise.

    The move to mobile. Mobile and tablet usage has proven to be a key driver in the growth of social platforms, as evidenced by recent surges in mobile sharing on Twitter and Facebook. While this trend is of particular note to digital marketers who are heavily dependent on these two networks, its repercussions go well beyond social media. Businesses will also need to ensure that their websites and blogs are fully responsive or have mobile-friendly versions. Facebook and mobile ads are also expected to pull in more revenue in 2014.

    As more and more businesses realize the measurable benefits of investing in social media, the upshot will be an increase in the demand for skilled social media managers, consultants, and strategists. Courses such as those offered in the Lynn University online MBA program under the Mass Communications and Media Management specialization can contribute toward a thriving career in social media marketing.

  8. Beginning a Career in Airport Management

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    Airport management is a dynamic field that covers a broad range of key academic disciplines relevant to the aviation industry. Breaking into a management career in this industry requires in-depth instruction not only in business administration and analysis but also in more specialized areas of study, such as aeronautical engineering, aviation safety, security and emergency planning, aircraft maintenance management, air transport and airport operations, global logistics and supply chain management, and airline marketing and management.

    Responsibilities associated with an airport management position include implementing healthy business practices, evaluating whether or not an airport meets local and federal safety and security standards, ensuring efficient logistics and passenger safety, training airline employees, and more. Management personnel in smaller airports frequently take on even more specialized job responsibilities, such as supervising flight controller and airfield operations, running aircraft repair stations, and handling accounting and record keeping, making them a truly integral part of the complex aviation and airline tech industry.

    Career-wise, an education in airport management offers opportunities for employment in a wide variety of roles. Typical job descriptions include airport manager, ground crew manager, aviation instructor, air transport consultant, airport operations director, supply chain analyst, and revenue management analyst. Aviation instructors, in particular, are currently in demand worldwide, as the recent rise in hiring activity among airports, airlines, and charter service companies are prompting instructors to take on more hands-on positions.

    This increase in hiring within the aviation industry comes as a result of the recent surges in business travel and international tourism. Industry experts anticipate a continuing increase in the need for air transport and airfreight services, thanks to the demands of globalization. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the fast-moving sector to grow by as much as 7 percent in terms of the number of industry employees between 2008 and 2018.

    Sought-after attributes in airport management personnel include a sound knowledge of the industry, personnel management and assessment skills, analytical and observational skills, public relations skills, a high regard for regulatory compliance, and a willingness to work in a challenging environment. Job prestige and high annual earnings will keep the competition for management positions fierce in the coming years. However, an online aviation MBA can provide the necessary foundation for gaining a competitive edge in the field.

    An online aviation MBA goes beyond the scope of the average graduate-level business degree. It offers an added specialization specifically designed to improve students’ future employability within the air transportation sector. The Lynn University online MBA program, for instance, offers an aviation specialization that incorporates foundational courses in business and management as well as airport operations, aviation organization management, and other aviation-specific courses.

  9. International Business: The Stable Egyptian Economy

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    Despite the coup this year that resulted in the removal of former President Mohamed Mursi from office, Egypt’s two primary stock market indexes have risen over 12 percent since the end of June.

    According to several economic experts, the fact that the Egyptian economy is performing better than just “staying afloat” represents nothing short of an economic miracle. Several factors have coalesced to provide Egypt with the economic cushion the country requires during turbulent times.

    The Egyptian Economy

    The interest rates the Egyptian government pays to attract bond investors have fallen since the onset of the coup. In a Bloomberg Businessweek interview, emerging-markets economist William Jackson attributes relative investor calm – somewhat counter intuitively – to the Egyptian military’s current role in government operations. Jackson says investors believe strongly that the Egyptian military plans to keep all vital industries vibrant and, more importantly, keep the Suez Canal open for business. The Suez Canal provides the gateway for oil imports and exports not only in the Arabian Peninsula, but also worldwide. Closing the canal for just a few days can prompt panic selling on oil future exchanges. The Egyptian military has secured Suez Canal ports and the waterway that ensures international business transactions. Moreover, Jackson believes the Egyptians that operate businesses welcome military intervention to prevent the outbreak of civil war.

    Foreign Aid and International Business

    The hard currency generated by continued oil revenue has allowed Egypt to absorb a few economic blows. Because of the violence, tourism has virtually disappeared in the country. Tours through the historic Pyramids and religious centers have cancelled their planned excursions. Pilgrimages by citizens from neighboring countries have dramatically declined as well. Egypt’s large textile industry has experienced a reduction in domestic orders, although foreign demand remains high.

    Despite the economic problems that somewhat counterbalance strong oil revenues, Egypt has done more than “stay afloat” because of the financial support of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia has coordinated support with Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates to pledge over $12 billion dollars in foreign aid. As of September 2013, the military-backed Egyptian government has received nearly half of the pledge money. Cash infusions such as the pledged donations from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates stabilize the Egyptian currency, allowing the country to withstand a precipitous trade balance decline.

    International Business Specialization

    20 years ago, the Egyptian coup may have created a catastrophic meltdown of the country’s economy. Any disruption in oil shipments or other commerce along the Suez Canal would have caused an economic rippling effect felt in the United States. The crisis averted in Egypt represents, for the time being, a major success of the international economy.

    As the global economy grows, professionals with a firm understanding of the challenges of overseas operation are in higher demand than ever. The Lynn University online MBA offers a unique, focused specialization in international business, which helps to prepare future business leaders for the many regulatory, monetary, and sociopolitical challenges of working internationally.

  10. Lynn University Sets New Bar for Enrollment – Highest in Six Years

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    According to current enrollment numbers, the largest incoming class since 2007 will be starting classes at Lynn University on Monday, Aug. 26, building on an upward trend in enrollment that has been maintained over the last four years.

    “Based on our current numbers, we’re projecting approximately 600 students starting classes this fall,” Gareth Fowles, vice president of enrollment management, said. “This continues our trend of increasing enrollment that can be attributed to a variety of factors.”

    Although the final enrollment numbers are not available until drop/add is complete in early September, assuming current trends hold, final enrollment will be one of the largest classes in the last six years.

    Read the full article on the Lynn University website.