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Graduates with a Doctorate in Business Management carry an aura of achievement that speaks of tenacity, commitment, hard work and discipline. It is symbolic of the immense opportunities of advancement inherently tied to the many benefits of this qualification.     


  • Balancing the pursuit of knowledge with needs of the world of work 
  • Global demand for responsive qualifications
  • The purpose of a Doctorate in Business Management 
  • Benefits of a Doctorate in Business Management

In the main, Doctorate in Business Management graduates should be flexible enough to adapt, able to integrate theory with practice by applying theory to highly complex problems in a wide range of professional contexts, and should have excellent people skills coupled with a workplace intuition and collaborative mindset. 

Global demand for responsive qualifications

Higher education policy has been strongly influenced by the new global demand that the education and training offered by higher education institutions should be more responsive to the needs and expectations of industry, of the state and of society to ensure economic and social prosperity (Griesel & Parker 2009). 

This call for higher education to become more responsive to societal and economic needs globally is based largely on the desirability of a more direct and closer relationship between higher education and economic development. However, McGrath (2009) argues that the danger inherent in contemporary calls for responsiveness is that the role of higher education becomes reduced solely to its economic purpose, ignoring the social, moral, cultural, and intellectual purposes of education. 

Faced with these additional mandates, higher education must balance the pursuit of knowledge and wisdom with socially constructed relevance, training and multi-ideological requirements with the needs of the world of work (Gewers, 2001). 

Griesel and Parker (2009) posit that management success goes well beyond the simplistic notion of key skills, and is evidenced in the application of a mix of personal qualities and beliefs, understandings, skilful practices and the ability to reflect productively on experience in situations of complexity and ambiguity. 

Griesel and Parker (2009) concluded their study by illustrating how employers value the conceptual foundation, knowledge and intellectual approach to tasks produced by higher education, examining whether there was a need to address gaps between employer expectations and higher education outcomes, and realism on the side of graduates and employers. The study raised the question of whether future business leaders and owners should attain higher-order business management qualifications. 

The purpose of the Doctorate in Business Management 

The CHE National Report on Doctoral Qualifications (2021) describes the purpose of the doctorate as to “develop the highest level of holistic and systematic understanding of scholarship in and stewardship of a field of study through an original contribution that advances the frontiers of knowledge … in so doing advancing the frontiers of professional practice and/or creative activity”. 

This aligns with the conclusions reached by the Bologna Seminar on Doctoral Programmes for the European Knowledge Society – that the core component of doctoral training is the advancement of knowledge through original research and that doctoral training must increasingly meet the needs of an employment market that is wider than academia (Salzburg 2016). 

The Doctorate in Business Management is designed to position the holder to achieve this purpose. 

Benefits of a Doctorate in Business Management 

What are the benefits of pursuing a doctoral degree? It’s a question many graduates consider as they evaluate their post-university plans.

The Doctorate in Business Management is considered a terminal degree, meaning that it is the final stage in academic achievement. It is a research-oriented qualification that focuses on using business theories to solve real-world industry problems. It is the epitome degree in business management and accords the holder equivalent status. 

Considering the paucity of doctoral graduates, a Doctorate in Business Management translates into distinguished recognition, and its graduates are acknowledged as experts. The clout carried by the doctoral degree authenticates what is said by the holder and invariably positions him or her to make significant contributions in corporate settings.

The Council on Higher Education (CHE) (2021) state that doctorates – and thus the Doctorate in Business Management  –  are globally recognised as apex qualifications, and therefore in principle also the most internationally transferrable qualifications. South Africa’s doctorates are commonly regarded as on a par with those produced anywhere in the world.  

Wellington (2013) summed up the benefits conferred by a Doctorate in Business Management as including:

  • A sense of accomplishment;
  • Prestige and credibility;
  • Transferable skills for all industries;
  • Career and advancement opportunities;
  • Enabling the building of important relationships and connections;
  • An enhanced professional network; and
  • The satisfaction of contributing to your field. 

Although the journey to qualifying with a doctorate may be daunting, the benefits that come with the degree and the skills that are learnt through the programme are sure to be worth your while.   


  • Bologna Seminar on “Doctoral Programmes for the European Knowledge Society” (Salzburg, 3-5 February 2005)
  • Chetty Y. (2010). Graduateness and employability in the higher education sector: A focused review of the literature. Department of Institutional Statistics and Analysis. University of South Africa.
  • Council on Higher Education (CHE), 2021. The Higher Education Qualifications Sub-Framework. Pretoria: CHE.
  • Gewers, W. (2001) Higher Education in relation to the market in the South, in the 21st century. Symposium at Globalisation and Higher Education: Views from the South, Education Policy Unit, University of the Western Cape and SRHE, Cape Town, 27–29 March.
  • Griesel, H. & Parker B.  (2009). Graduate Attributes: A baseline study on South African graduates from the perspective of employers. Higher Education South Africa and The South African Qualifications Authority.
  • McGrath. S. (2009). What is Employability. UNESCO Centre for Comparative Education Research, School of Education, University of Nottingham

Wellington, J. 2013. Searching for ‘doctorateness’. Studies in Higher Education 38(10):1490–1503.

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Stanford Makore

PhD, MBA, Postgrad, BBA Chair: HDRC and Senior Facilitator Regenesys Business School

Author Stanford Makore

PhD, MBA, Postgrad, BBA Chair: HDRC and Senior Facilitator Regenesys Business School

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