Commerce Clearing House, Inc.
What is a business manager?
A business manager directs or plans the work of others in order to run a business at a profit. She should have a working knowledge of the following areas, and may be a specialist in one or more: sales, marketing, and public relations; research, operations analysis, data processing, mathematics, statistics, and economics; production; finance; accounting, auditing, tax, and budgeting; purchasing; and personnel. Other technical areas in which a business manager may have expertise are law, science, or engineering.
What makes a good business manager?
The business manager needs to be a self-starter, needs to be observant and persistent, and needs to be able to work well with other people. She needs decision-making skills, assertiveness, fairness, and an interest in business. She should be able to communicate her ideas to others in a clear and accurate manner, both orally and in writing.
What is life as a business manager like?
Business managers direct workers in sales, research, production, accounting, and purchasing. A business manager may own her own business, or she may work as part of a management team in a business owned by others. In larger businesses, she may spend most of her time planning, supervising, and measuring results of operations. In smaller businesses, she may do all of this and take part in some of the operations herself. There is usually no set working schedule; she invests the time required to get the job done.
How do I become a business manager?
With the exception of sales and production, college degrees are preferred or required for all business management positions. A college degree is an asset for sales and production as well, although a high school degree and on-the-job training may be acceptable in many companies. Many business owners do not have college degrees, relying on their own experience and using qualified staff and outside professionals for areas in which they have no expertise, or no time.
In high school you should take college-preparatory courses, particularly those which develop speaking and writing skills. Take courses in the social sciences, such as history and economics. Courses in math and the natural sciences will develop your analytic skills.
Undergraduate degrees are offered in most of the specialties named in the section describing what a business manager is. Either a business or management degree will offer some coverage of each of the specialties. A liberal arts degree prepares one for analytic thinking, discussion, and writing and may be acceptable to businesses that have their own training programs for managers. The graduate program that offers the best training for management is the Master of Business Administration (MBA). For the future business manager who intends to specialize in mathematics, economics, or engineering, graduate work is often a requirement; it is definitely a requirement for specialization in corporate law.
What/where are the jobs?
In New Mexico, there will be a growing need for business specialists and managers, especially in sales, accounting, purchasing, and personnel. Nationwide, the fastest-growing specialties in business are the techni
cal ones that require math and computer skills. Business managers are one of the fastest growing occupation groups in the country.