General Manager Job Duties:
- Increases management's effectiveness by recruiting, selecting, orienting, training, coaching, counseling, and disciplining managers; communicating values, strategies, and objectives; assigning accountabilities; planning, monitoring, and appraising job results; developing incentives; developing a climate for offering information and opinions; providing educational opportunities.
- Develops strategic plan by studying technological and financial opportunities; presenting assumptions; recommending objectives.
- Accomplishes subsidiary objectives by establishing plans, budgets, and results measurements; allocating resources; reviewing progress; making mid-course corrections.
- Coordinates efforts by establishing procurement, production, marketing, field, and technical services policies and practices; coordinating actions with corporate staff.
- Builds company image by collaborating with customers, government, community organizations, and employees; enforcing ethical business practices.
- Maintains quality service by establishing and enforcing organization standards.
- Maintains professional and technical knowledge by attending educational workshops; reviewing professional publications; establishing personal networks; benchmarking state-of-the-art practices; participating in professional societies.
- Contributes to team effort by accomplishing related results as needed.
General Manager Skills and Qualifications:
Performance Management, Staffing, Management Proficiency, Coordination, Coaching, Developing Standards, Financial Planning and Strategy, Process Improvement, Decision Making, Strategic Planning, Quality Management
The general manager typically serves as the top executive for the unit and is responsible for strategy, structure, budgets, people, financial outcomes and scorecard metrics. In larger organizations, the general manager reports to a corporate executive, often the chief executive officer or chief operations officer.
General Manager Responsibilities
A GM's duties and responsibilities cover a lot of ground, but these are some of the most common. He must typically:
- Oversee daily operations of the business unit or organization.
- Ensure the creation and implementation of a strategy designed to grow the business.
- Coordinate the development of key performance goals for functions and direct reports.
- Provide direct management of key functional managers and executives in the business unit.
- Ensure the development of tactical programs to pursue targeted goals and objectives.
- Ensure overall delivery and quality of the unit's offerings to customers.
- Engage in key or targeted customer activities.
- Oversee key hiring and talent development programs.
- Evaluate and decide upon key investments in equipment, infrastructure and talent.
- Communicate strategy and results to the unit's employees.
- Report key results to corporate officers.
- Engage with corporate officers in broader organizational strategic planning
Becoming a General Manager
An individual in a GM role is a generalist who is familiar with all areas of the business and can coordinate processes and operations across the organization. A general manager must speak the languages of finance and accounting, operations, sales, marketing, human resources, and research and development or engineering.
In larger organizations, individuals viewed as having general management potential often work in a series of assignments, rotating through the various functions and gradually growing their expertise and responsibilities over many years. General managers typically have deep industry experience, and if they don't come up through the larger organization, they most likely have long histories of working for one or more competitors within the same industry.
Given the broad base of expertise and knowledge required for success in the role, general managers often have advanced degrees with emphasis on a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degree. It's important to take certain steps if you're interested in moving toward the role of general manager.
· Work with your executive or manager to gain support for regular job rotation into new assignments.
· Consider lateral moves into other departments as a means of growing your experience.
- Volunteer for or get involved in cross-functional projects as a means of learning the business and expanding your professional network of contacts.
- Seek additional education in core management topics, including accounting, operations, sales, and marketing.
- Consider seeking an advanced degree, especially an MBA.
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