There are 30.7 million small businesses in the U.S., according to the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy. This provides Master of Business Administration (MBA) grads access to a huge variety of workplace settings if their goal is to enter an already established business and hold a higher position.

Then there are the MBA grads who want to push that number higher by starting their own business. If this is you, and you’re looking for a small business idea that you can pursue on your own, there are numerous options to consider.

Small Business Ideas for MBA Grads

If you’re ready to jump into business with both feet and want to own and operate a company that you’ve built from the ground up, here are a few small business ideas to get you started.

1) Digital Marketing Service Provider

In your MBA courses, you learned about marketing. You may have even specialized in this area. You can use these skills to help other businesses stand out among their competitors in the online world. This small business idea is good for people with a creative mind who like social media and also enjoy getting into the mind of the consumer, then creating a message that inspires them to take action.

2) Event Planner or Organizer

People today are busy, making event planning an unwelcome stressor when added to their already full plate. Use your project management skills to take care of the planning and organizing for them. From securing the venue to getting all of the vendors on board and in place on the big day, your customers will thank you for your service.

3) Food Truck Owner

Owning and operating a brick-and-mortar business can be costly. So, why not satisfy your love for business and food by owning a food truck instead? There are some upfront costs associated with this small business idea—such as purchasing the truck, equipment, and food—but if you’re up to the challenge, it can be incredibly satisfying to see the smiles on your customers’ faces when they bite into your delicious food.

4) Entertainment Services

People are constantly looking for new ways to spend their time outside of work. You can use your MBA to provide them with the stress relief and fun they crave. The great thing about this small business idea is that the options are endless. From axe throwing to personalized scavenger hunts to murder mysteries where the audience takes part in the action, you can take this one down any number of paths.

5) Life Coach

If you like working one-on-one with people, why not start your own life coaching business? In this role, you would help people overcome some of their biggest challenges so they can achieve greater success in their lives personally, professionally, or both. The value of this option is that you can do it online or in person. You can also specialize in a certain area, such as being a health coach, finance coach, or relationship coach.

6) Independent Consultant

If you’ve been in the business world for a while, you can use your education and experience to help others in your industry identify problem areas and correct the issues that prevent them from reaching higher levels of success. This is a great small business idea for someone who likes variety and enjoys coming up with problem-solving strategies.

How to Create Your Own Small Business Idea

Maybe none of these small business ideas speak to you. That’s okay. You can also come up with your own idea and pursue that. Here are a few questions to ask yourself to help uncover a small business idea that you didn’t even know you had:

  • What are you passionate about?
  • What type of work doesn’t feel like work at all because you enjoy it so much?
  • Is there a certain portion of the population or specific demographic that you’d like to help? If so, how would you like to help them?
  • Would you like to work with people in person, online, or a mixture of both?
  • Is there a need in your local community that you’d love to fill?

Answering these types of questions can help inspire a small business idea that would provide you with a professional life loaded with satisfaction and joy.

Put Your Small Business Idea into Action with an MBA

If you have your own small business idea, earning your MBA can provide the skills needed to help make that business a success. This graduate-level degree program teaches you about marketing, finance, business ethics, legal considerations, and more.

You will learn about all of these in Saint Leo University’s Master of Business Administration program. For instance, some of the courses include Human Capital for Organizational Performance, Managerial Economics, Business Analytics, and Corporate Finance.

Saint Leo’s MBA degree program also provides the opportunity to complete an externship at a business related to your curriculum. This gives you hands-on experience that you can use when putting your small business idea into action.

Contact our Admissions Office today at (877) 622-2009, via email at, or by filling out our convenient online form. We look forward to learning how we can help you reach your business-related goals.