A big benefit for MBA students attending a traditional college or university is the network of close friends that they can make during their time there, but students using online MBA programs face some difficulties in this area. And as your alumni can be great contacts for future jobs, creating a community for your online class over and above the class forum provided by your college is a really good idea.
You Won’t Lose Access to a Community That You Control
While you can get to know your fellow students in your class forum, once you’ve finished your masters in business administration online, you’ll need another way to keep in touch, and social media can be too noisy to keep track of people properly.
People could also be reluctant to really be themselves on a college forum board, which makes it difficult to form the close bonds that hold together over the years.
If you set up a community yourself, your peers can get to know one another better, and your group won’t be scattered once you all graduate.
What Can You Do with An Online Community?
You can do anything you want! Your community can publish website pages detailing member achievements and other news, you can run a newsletter to keep everybody updated about events and get-togethers you’ve planned, and you can support good causes together; the only limit is your imagination.
Members can chat in your very own forum, send private messages, and of course post job openings that your group will be interested in. You could even brainstorm business ventures together.
Since many business leaders choose to write books these days, if any of your members plan to go down this route they’ll have a ready supply of contributors and critics to hand to make the book shine, and a group to help kick start its promotion.
Likewise, if some of your classmates eschew the corporate life and set their sights on bootstrapping a startup, they’ll have readymade support, and a group who may be able to help them make just the right business connections they need to succeed.
You never know what amazing opportunities will come from your social network, especially as the years roll by. And of course, by keeping in touch with your class, you’ll have the chance to benefit from one another’s ever-growing social networks.
Set Your Group Up for Success
When you’re looking for a platform for your group, you should look for a solution that’s easy to use and feature rich, so that everything can be tied together in one interface.
As the person responsible for getting your group started, you’ll need to be persistent in your efforts to get people to join and stay active. That job will be easier if you don’t try to do it all alone, so invite a couple of your course buddies onto the admin team right at the beginning.
With a little effort your class community could be a great success, leading to fabulous opportunities for your members, and of course, as a reward for all of your hard work, you’ll get to add business community leader to your resume!