Considerations accorded decision factors related to organizational support of managers enrolled in Executive MBA programs

Date of Completion

January 1993


Business Administration, Management|Education, Business|Education, Higher




This study examined considerations accorded decision factors related to the organizational support of employees enrolled in Executive MBA programs at colleges and universities. Executive MBA programs are among the more rapidly expanding graduate programs in the country, but little or no research has been conducted on the dynamics of decision making by corporate and other organizational sponsors. This bodes ill for the programs when the initial surge of interest subsides and institutions have to compete for sponsored students.^ Officials of 1,000 corporations and other organizations were invited to participate in the study. Two hundred seventy-one officials accepted the invitation and completed survey instruments designed to ascertain the weights accorded thirty-six decision factors related to decisions to sponsor managers in Executive MBA programs. Attributes of participants and non-participants were not significantly different.^ The responses of the officials were tested for the influence of size and type of organizations and region of the country in which they were located.^ Rank-ordered means and standard deviations, along with factor analysis and one-way ANOVAs followed by Scheffe a posteriori tests, comprised the principal statistical applications for the study.^ Key factors in decisions to support managers in Executive MBA programs included the degree to which officials felt that such support would result in accrual to their organizations of new knowledge and perspectives, along with enhanced problem solving, decision making skills, and practical business applications. Smaller organizations were more apt than others to accord significant weight to the amount of company resources to finance sponsorship and to the availability of payment plans and arrangements, while larger organizations were more inclined than others to accord significant weight to the degree to which the program focused on international business issues. Finally, organizations located in the western part of the country appreciate a shorter graduate program duration than do midwestern organizations. ^