THE EDUCATION OF A BUSINESS ADMINISTRATOR AND THE CHALLENGE OF PROFESSIONAL COMPETENCE

C.R. Oliveira, E.J. Ribeiro Santos

Universidade de Coimbra (PORTUGAL)
The undergraduate program in Business Administration in Brazil is the one presenting the highest number of enrolled students, among all undergraduate courses. However, the level of competence currently required for the profession is reason of criticism, considering its methodological teaching approach. This approach is still predominantly traditional and theoretical, and fails to keep up with the current demands of the role of Manager, considering the dynamics and constant changes in the competitive world of business. Therefore, this article tries to find evidence to this reality, with a view to proposals and discussions about the identified problem; and in order to achieve that, a research was conducted on students of a Business Administration course, graduates of a college in the city of Santos, State of São Paulo, Brazil. The study took as its basis the structure adapted from a business plan, in the concept of entrepreneurial education, and accompanied the development of this project throughout the final year of the administration program. The study sought to measure the level of knowledge of students before and after developing the project, as well as behavioral changes observed from the standpoint of parameters studied as an entrepreneurial profile. Results prove, actually, students' difficulty in practicing the knowledge acquired throughout the course. They also evidence the effective change the project has on the students, in the development of practice and interdisciplinarity, considering Business Administration to be a quite diversified field of knowledge. The work was developed as a group effort, with strict observance to deadlines and quality, applied to each item of the project, which required the students to do a lot of planning, discipline, teamwork, etc. Consequently, that led to considerable changes in the behavior of students, in addition to a better understanding and knowledge of the required contents, according to their own perceptions, raised through the application of questionnaires. The study reaches the conclusion that the teaching methodology for Business Administration needs, indeed, to focus more on the students’ skills, aiming at a higher professional competence of the administrator.