Consider your education, experience, and talents to become a manager. You may need to improve in one, two, or all of these areas to qualify for a management position and become a competitive candidate.
Numerous professionals across the workforce and in all industries aspire to become administrators one day. In many organizations, after attaining a certain level of experience, you are eligible to apply for a management position.
However, although experience is a significant factor in becoming a manager, there are numerous skills and competencies that the most effective managers intentionally cultivate. This may be accomplished through independent study, mentorship, or further education.
Let’s examine what makes an effective manager and how you can get started in that direction.
What is a Manager?
If you have never held a managerial position, you may be unaware of the complexity of management.
“In a nutshell, a manager plans, organizes, coordinates, and controls resources to achieve organizational goals,” according to Bryor Mosley, MEd, a career advisor at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU).
According to Mosley, a manager’s day-to-day responsibilities typically include:
- Communicating with key constituencies
- Delegating duties
- Strategic decision making
- Managing funds
- Resolving disputes
In addition to supervising employees, managers often superintend the group’s productivity and interpersonal relationships.
Richard Grant, who is also a career counselor at SNHU, stated that some managers may not have direct reports but are instead responsible for managing initiatives or processes. Managers typically have budgetary responsibilities and must concentrate on attaining the organization’s objectives in the most efficient and cost-effective manner possible.
What Qualifications Are Required for a Management Position?
So, you’ve decided to pursue a managerial position. What then?
While the precise qualifications may vary based on the field, industry, and position you’re pursuing, there are three components you must possess in order to qualify for a management position.
According to Mosley, they are pertinent education, experience, and skills.
1. Think About Education
The majority of management positions require a bachelor’s degree, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the United States.
“Education enables administrators to acquire knowledge that will aid in decision-making. “Managers can learn the theoretical framework that will subsequently be applied on the job,” said Grant. “The trick is to be able to apply what you’ve learned in a course to real-world situations, which are not as neat and tidy as they may be described in a textbook.”
A master’s degree can increase your competitiveness as a job candidate. Master of Business Administration (MBA) and master’s in management programs, for example, can help you develop management-related skills and demonstrate to employers that you have the sophisticated business tools necessary for success.
“Pursuing an MBA degree can provide valuable knowledge, practical skills, and networking opportunities, which can enhance a manager’s ability to make strategic decisions, communicate effectively, and build a successful and long-lasting career,” said Mosley.
According to Mosley, obtaining certifications can also open up managerial opportunities, and you can often find certifications that are specific to your field.
2. Develop Skills
Whether you are leading people, processes, or initiatives as a manager, you will need to exhibit leadership qualities.
While some of these qualities are technical skills and industry knowledge that can be acquired through education and experience, the majority are soft skills. According to Mosley, to become a manager, you must demonstrate the following three essential soft skills:
“They should be able to manage time effectively, prioritize tasks, and delegate responsibilities to others,” Mosley said. “Other essential qualities include adaptability, strategic thinking, emotional intelligence, and the capacity to motivate and inspire others.”
In addition to these skills, according to Mosley, you will need to focus on relationship building and employee development. “(You) should also listen to feedback, be open to new ideas, and strive for continuous improvement,” he advised.
3. Gain Experiences
Mosley suggests searching out opportunities for management in your current position. Building management experiences, such as volunteering to lead a project or mentoring junior team members and trainees, can help you develop the skills employers expect of managers and demonstrate your abilities during a management position interview.
Additionally, demonstrating initiative and being a self-starter will distinguish you from your peers as a potential manager.
You can also take advantage of any opportunities to learn about the organization from a different perspective. For instance, if you work in the accounting department but have the opportunity to observe some sales calls, you can obtain valuable insight into another layer of the company.
Managers must be conversant with the operations of the entire organization; therefore, any opportunity to collaborate with another department is an opportunity to broaden your knowledge and increase your overall competence.
“It is essential to understand the company, the industry, and the jobs your employees are performing, as well as the employees who work in close proximity to your area. “You must also know your customers and competitors,” Grant said.
By comprehending how your organization operates and the market niche it occupies, you can develop a holistic perspective that informs your managerial strategy and decision-making.
Examples of Qualifications for Management
Qualifications required to become a manager depend heavily on the field and industry selected. Examining the differences in education, experiences, and skills between two distinct categories of management positions.
Managers of Human Resource (HR) Resources
If you wish to become a manager of human resources, the BLS lists the following qualifications:
- Education: Some employers require a master’s degree in human resources (HR) or business; obtaining HR certifications can also make you more competitive.
- Numerous years of experience organizing, supervising, and leading individuals
- Communication, deliberation, interpersonal leadership, and organizational
Managers of Information Technology (IT)
According to the BLS, the typical qualifications for IT administrators are as follows:
- Bachelor’s degree, typically in a technology-related field; however, many IT administrators also hold a graduate degree, such as an MBA.
- Numerous years of experience in a relevant IT position and field
- Analytical, business, communication, decision-making, leadership, and organizational abilities.
Mosley’s three management components — education, experience, and abilities — are applicable to both HR and IT management positions. While there is overlap in management qualifications, it is vital to review job descriptions to determine what is necessary for positions of interest.