Who answers the phone when a client calls? Who provides data on an entire organization? Who cultivates the career development of employees? Who maintains a well-oiled office? Who makes sure customers leave satisfied? The large community of managers does – from account managers to customer service managers and everyone in between. Although there are many different management styles and roles, a common set of skills can contribute to success in this field.
Most managers are highly organized, with a strong understanding of the law, ethics, regulations, finance, mathematics, supply chain management and more. They usually have previous experience to qualify for management. Even if managing a specific team is not part of the job description, those in management should excel in guiding and supporting others and exemplify strong leadership.
Additional skills important to managers include being organized, planning to meet strategic goals and managing both projects and people; all of which require practice to develop. Along with the right education, these skills can lead to many career options in management.
Best of all, companies are always looking for capable managers. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that employment of management occupations is forecasted to increase by 6 percent from 2014 to 2024, including an uptick of roughly 505,400 new positions. As a result, earning an online bachelor’s degree in management can open up numerous career choices. Arizona State University offers the W. P. Carey School of Business Bachelor of Science in Management degree program to help students learn the skills necessary to be effective managers and team leaders. This program builds competency in major skills all managers need, such as communication, leadership, teamwork, problem-solving and more. Furthermore, students in the program come from a wide range of educational backgrounds and have broad interests in careers in management.
“When you tell your friends you’re going to business school, there’s this perception that all the students will be these suit and tie clones, but W. P. Carey isn’t like that,” explained 2017 graduate Mikaela Nixon. “It’s so diverse and unique. I don’t feel like I have to become someone else. I can be myself and still get to where I want to go in the business world.”
Management is a widespread area of business, but what specific jobs could you apply for with a management degree? Discover five potential career outcomes for management-focused students:
Managing customer relationships is important for all companies, especially those that sell a product or service. Account managers connect the company and the customer. Preparing for this role focuses on becoming an expert in the company’s services or products to support clients and make targeted pitches to potential new customers.
Communication skills are highly valued in this position, as account managers work with clients through a variety of mediums. Phone calls, emails and even meeting in person help account managers connect with clients to provide them the best experience possible. Effective communication is also imperative when meeting someone for the first time to seal new business.
Beyond understanding the company’s intricacies, it is important for account managers to understand trends in their field. External factors can impact a business's success, so being prepared will make you a more effective manager for your customers.
The average salary for an account manager is about $51,000 according to Payscale, but experience directly affects the salary. Those with previous experience, particularly in sales, commonly receive a higher starting salary in this position. Growth for this role depends on the specific industry.
Some companies have sales managers in lieu of or in addition to account managers. This position may manage account managers or a whole sales team and, on average, receives a higher base salary.
Regardless of the title, a combination of education and experience are key components to being considered for these roles.
Ensuring businesses run effectively is a huge business in itself. Companies are always striving to operate as efficiently as possible. Management analysts review specific areas of a business and propose ways to improve efficiency while increasing revenue and reducing costs. Frequent travel to meet with clients can be common since they typically work with many companies.
This role is growing faster than the overall occupational average — projected to increase by 14 percent from 2014-2024, according to the BLS. This is a testament to the demand for companies to focus on improving efficiency while reducing operational costs.
The average salary is affected by work experience but hovers around $64,000, as reported by Payscale. Previous work experience is highly beneficial, along with a bachelor’s degree and certification as a Certified Management Consultant.
Human resource administrator
The human resource (HR) department is present in nearly all industries and companies. Strong interpersonal skills are a key element to being successful in HR because a primary responsibility is working directly with other employees.
The human resource administrator addresses employee inquiries, manages the hiring process, handles recruiting, formulates and enforces corporate policies and implements training, making it a central role to a company’s performance. Additionally, this role manages the human resource team.
Demand for human resource professionals tends to grow or decline in line with the overall business environment. Payscale reports a median salary of $47,000, but the more experience you have in HR, the higher your salary can be. Specific skills that can improve earnings include familiarity with benefits and compensation and common human resource information systems. Most often, a bachelor’s degree is enough to qualify for a human resource administrator role, but occasionally a master’s degree is preferred.
Administrative services manager
No office could function successfully without a manager. With so many day-to-day activities to track, the administrative services manager is crucial to any company. While this role’s main responsibility is to coordinate personnel and office operations, the specific duties can vary daily. Administrative service managers are the people who ensure an office operates smoothly.
Organizational, interpersonal and multi-tasking skills are required since this position can interact with every employee on some level. Administrative services managers are also sometimes responsible for external communication.
Work experience is crucial when aiming for a career as an administrative services manager, and a bachelor’s degree is commonly preferred. The median salary is $58,000, according to Payscale, often with the potential to earn a bonus. Because this role is integral to such a wide range of industries, opportunities in this area are expected to grow.
Customer service manager
Like most management positions, a customer service manager is found frequently across the corporate landscape. Whether connecting with customers virtually, in person or by phone, customer service managers are responsible for ensuring their team provides effective customer service while adhering to company policies and procedures.
Building a team of customer service agents that produces the desired results is an important component of this position. It requires good interpersonal and communication skills. Customer service managers ensure their teams perform optimally, and managers rely heavily on customer service feedback to assess their teams’ productivity. As a result, this job focuses as much on management as it does on reviewing performance data.
Extensive knowledge in their specific area of business is very important for customer service managers, so the experience is a factor when applying for the role. Management experience can also be beneficial regardless of whether it is in customer service.
While Payscale lists the median salary for customer service managers at around $54,000, pay depends on the company. Larger companies may offer significantly higher salaries. Overall, opportunities in customer service are estimated to grow 13 percent by 2022 according to Monster.com.
Learn more about your potential career in management
Wherever your passion lies in management, whether you hope to find a job as an account manager, analyst, human resource administrator, administrative services manager, customer service manager or something else, higher education can provide additional exploration and training for professional life. Learn more about management with the BS in management faculty at ASU’s W. P. Carey School of Business.