21 answers

Can economics land you a position in business?

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I'm thinking of taking economics in college and I was wondering if businesses need an economics major. #business

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21 answers

Amanda’s Answer

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Economics plays a big roll in all types of businesses and is great knowledge to have. Even if you decide to go down a different business major path, I would encourage you to take an few econ classes so that you have that in your back pocket. You never know what type of company maybe looking for business major when you graduate.
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Lauren’s Answer

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Hi Carolina,

Short answer - yes, being an economics major will help you get into a business career. Economics can take you into consulting, finance, pricing, and many more areas. It's a great field of study if this is your goal.
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Robin’s Answer

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Economics will definitely help you land a position in Business. Economics will help you to understand the industry that you desire to work for and to understand how the business is ran and what it takes to develop a successful business. I recommend taking economics classes and see how you like the curriculum. if you love it, then I say go for it! Good luck to you!
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Nneoma’s Answer

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I will encourage you to think about this in terms of the skills developed in course of study not only by the degree or course title.

A general / simple definition of economics is the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. An economics major, will more than likely engage in learning activities that will enable you develop valuable skills including how to analyze complex sets of data, observe and evaluate patterns and trends; extrapolate meaning from data sets, observations and various sources of information, understanding how and why things may or may not work. You are also more than likely to be exposed to tools, software and systems that support research, analysis, decision making, documentation, planning, presentation. And you will have opportunities to develop your writing, speaking, presentation and teamwork skills.

In my opinion these skills are not only foundational and critical for an economics major but they are applicable, transferable, valuable and indispensable skills for all professions and life in general. At the core, economics helps develop understanding and appreciation of relationships and connections, as well as knowledge of how to support the connections with available resources.

I have an undergraduate degree in Economics which served as a well-rounded degree because at the time I wanted to and have had the opportunity to explore / work in different industries (wealth / investment management, marketing and communications, project finance). I eventually decided to focus on a career in risk management and have since earned graduate degrees in business and financial management. Here again, even after several years, my undergraduate degree in economics provided the perfect launch pad.
Best wishes to you!
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Catherine’s Answer

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Yes, myself is from Economics background, and I have few people in my team also from Economics background. We are in quantitative analytics function but some people move to business and really excel. It's really a good leverage to apply the economics and analytics in business role because lots of business decisions are made based on information and numbers. It's critical to develop ability to identify what questions and information needed when faced with business problem or goal to achieve, and use the information to probe and make decisions.

Catherine recommends the following next steps:

  • Take Macro economics, Micro economics, Econometrics classess if you can.
  • Also get experience of understanding causal relationship between known drivers and interested metric through research modeling, at least read some papers.
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Michael’s Answer

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Economics can be a fairly flexible degree, especially if you aren't sure what you want to do in business. It also good not to get too hung up on the degree if you can develop strong skills, and learn how to pivot what you've learned for the job you want.
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qiuhua’s Answer

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Yes, it will help. Economics is about allocation of limited resources. Both Microeconomics and Macroeconomics focus on supply and demand, which will help you to understand how products are priced, its underlying strategy, impact of economic policy (e.g., effect of Covid-19), etc. It will help you to see/analyze the relationship between different economic factors.

qiuhua recommends the following next steps:

  • take basic Microeconomics
  • take basic Macroeconomics
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Jack’s Answer

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Businesses hire people with lots of different degrees, including economics majors. People with econ degrees can also work for the federal government, as well as state and local governments, so there are lots of options. In my first year of college I took an introductory microeconomics course one semester and an introductory macroeconomics course the other semester. Some people like it and take more courses, others decide to try something else. I stuck with it and am still using economics in my job at financial firm many years later. People who graduate with an econ degree can become business or financial analysts, or many other things. Here's an article from US News and World Report that talks about different things econ majors do.
https://www.usnews.com/education/best-graduate-schools/articles/2019-03-04/what-can-you-do-with-an-economics-degree
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Justin’s Answer

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As someone who recently got their undergraduate in Economics, yes, an Economics degree definitely marketable/attractive degree for businesses! It's also a versatile degree in the sense that you are able to focus on the more quantitative aspects of economics (econometrics, and the intersection of computer science/math/statistics), or qualitative through a more policy/case study focused study. If you decide to pursue an Economics degree, just note that your first job most likely won't have the title 'Economist'--it'll be something more akin to a Business/Policy/Financial Analyst/Associate or an Economic Consultant.

If you're trying to dip your toes in to see if economics is the right course/major for you to pursue, I'd suggest reading Freakonomics, or listening to the Planet Money Podcast. I would also highly suggest searching through the American Economic Association's website here: https://www.aeaweb.org/resources/students

A first step you can take during your first year as an undergraduate if you're leaning towards pursuing a job in the private sector/business, would be to take introductory macroeconomics and microeconomics courses (usually denoted as something like ECON-101 and ECON-102). If you are still in high school and have time, I'd suggest checking out if you are able to take the AP Macro/Microeconomics courses!

Justin recommends the following next steps:

  • To learn more about the field, check out American Economic Association's website here: https://www.aeaweb.org/resources/students
  • Read Freakonomics or listen to the Planet Money Podcast to see if these types of topics are interesting to you
  • Take AP Macro/Microeconomics courses if you are still able to
  • Take introductory Macro/Microeconomics courses your first year of undergraduate
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Michael’s Answer

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Economics can be a fairly flexible degree, especially if you aren't sure what you want to do in business. It also good not to get too hung up on the degree if you can develop strong skills, and learn how to pivot what you've learned for the job you want.
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Eric’s Answer

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Yes, it is very possible to have an economics degree and work in business. In fact, this is probably the most popular major outside of business majors. However, one thing that some undergraduate economics major lacks is technical skills, as the major often do not require mathematical/CS courses outside of calculus I. Advanced mathematical and computer science courses will be a great complement to you economics background, which in turn will set you apart from others. I would suggest taking mathematics up to multi-variable calculus and Computer science up to Algorithms.
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Dawn’s Answer

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most of the jobs that economics majors get do not have economist in the job title. here a actual job that I see people doing which would git an econ major perfectly. AT the corporate headquarters of a fast food company, an analyst tracks sales, costs and profits at their stores.
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Lavontell’s Answer

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Yes, when I was in college I was required to take a variety of different economic courses. What I learned from those courses is a lot of the lessons taught all resort back to business. In my opinion they both correlate right back to one another. A variety of those lessons I learned from my economics background I still use in my sales position to this day.
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Bill’s Answer

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Clearly its need as a functional requirement in some jobs but even if not, I think it a good base discipline to have that is relatable to almost all things business.
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Bill’s Answer

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Clearly its need as a functional requirement in some jobs but even if not, I think it a good base discipline to have that is relatable to almost all things business.
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Chris’s Answer

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Yes, absolutely! Economics and market factors are the building blocks of business. A company must have knowledge and a basic understanding of the economic basics in order to survive and flourish. Supply and demand, the most basic concept, is relevant across most businesses. Without knowing where you are in your education journey you will most likely have to take at least one economics course to earn a bachelor's degree. I had to take 3 for my business degree, but every degree is different. If it's of interest to you now, definitely take the first (usually ECON101; principles of microeconomics) as a freshman as this may influence your degree path for the future! Good Luck!

Chris recommends the following next steps:

  • ECON101 - Microeconomics
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James’s Answer

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I was an economics major in college and I’ve built a career in accounting, finance and now Human Resources. I feel economics is the foundation for our economics and why people make certain choices.
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Aaron’s Answer

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Depending on what type of economics you study, you should have a place in business! Every business utilizes economists in some form or fashion, on whether they are on staff or not. So if it is something you are interested in, take a class or two. See if you peaks your interest to continue down that course of study! Good luck to you.
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Richard’s Answer

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For sure! Many business people are from an economics background. However, if your school has a business school, it may be harder to get a business job than if you're only competing with econ people. Also, econ degrees are in many ways more versatile than business degrees and allow you to pivot to more things!
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Cole’s Answer

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While I wouldn't say you "need" an economics degree to get into business, however from my experience as an economics major who now works in product for a large company, it definitely helps. Employers want to see that you can think critically, solve problems with logic and reasoning,a nd work with data, all of which you will be exposed to in economics. But remember that landing a job is based on more than what you study in school, but also what you do outside of your studies.
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Jim’s Answer

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Yes, from the businesses’s perspective, knowledge in micro- and macro-economics actually helps businesses make important decisions, so the economics major is quite relevant. From your perspective, what you learn through the economics major connects with and helps you build skills in many other disciplines, such as statistics, finance, etc., so the major can potentially provide you with a range of opportunities. Introductory courses in economics may be required in your college for a variety of majors (this was the case at least for me), so you definitely have the opportunity to explore economics further in your first year and see if you like it or if it meets your anticipation, without worrying about making firm decisions on what degree to pursue.
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