Is Business Management the Degree You’re Looking For?

A degree may open the door to a variety of opportunities and diverse career paths. The degree programs offered at AIU will not necessarily lead to the featured careers. This collection of articles is intended to help inform and guide you through the process of determining which level of degree and types of certifications align with your desired career path.

People who pursue higher education may do so in hope that it will help open doors in their chosen career path, and this may include moving into a management role in their current field. Business administration or management programs focus specifically on the challenges and requirements of these types of roles, but how do you know if business management is a good degree specialization for you?

A degree in business management is designed to provide you with an understanding of business fundamentals at every level of an organization's operation. This may involve providing perspective on how companies change over time, the interpersonal and professional differences that may need to be addressed within a business environment, and the role that managers play in guiding and shaping a particular organization. A specialization in business management can help you prepare to pursue options in dynamic business environments where you may have a tangible impact on an organization through planning and organizing day-to-day operations.

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What is Business Management?

Business management is essentially the role of an overseer. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, a degree in business administration and management "prepares individuals to plan, organize, direct, and control the functions and processes of an organization."1 As a business manager, you may be responsible for making decisions based on research data, delegating tasks to employees, establishing and evaluating goals and results for a particular department, and even hiring and training new employees.

While business management encompasses broadly focused leadership roles, there may also be a variety of more specific management-related concentrations available depending on the degree program you choose. For example, managers may have to make decisions based on marketing data and the need to ensure that products and services match current consumer needs. If planning and executing programs to grow a business from the marketing side is appealing to you, then you may consider pursuing a business administration degree with a marketing specialization.

Other possible business administration specializations may include:

  • Operations Management
  • Project Management
  • Healthcare Management
  • Human Resources Management
  • Technology Management

What Are Some Entry-Level Business Management Positions?

Entry-level business management jobs may involve managing a particular department or aspect of a company's operations, which can mean a wide variety of options for those looking to put a business degree to use.

Advertising, Promotion, and Marketing Manager

These positions involve planning advertising campaigns, developing pricing strategies, initiating and analyzing market research, and directing the hiring of relevant staff members. While some companies may distinguish between advertising managers, marketing managers, and promotions managers with specific positions or even departments for each, others may expect employees to oversee a mixture of all three.2

This field appears to be experiencing faster-than-average growth, with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projecting a 10% growth in employment of these positions from 2016 through 2026.3

Administrative Services Manager

While the exact responsibilities of an administrative services manager can vary greatly from company to company, the role generally involves coordinating support services that are essential to the smooth operation of an organization. Such services may involve keeping records, facility planning and maintenance, and mail distribution. In smaller businesses, this role may be referred to as business office manager or a facility manager.4

The BLS projects employment of these positions to grow 10% from 2016 through 2026.5

Sales Manager

Sales managers serve as the heads of a business's sales team, potentially specializing in a particular sales region, product, or service offerings. Standard responsibilities may include analyzing sales data, setting goals, and recruiting and training salespeople, as well as interacting with clients and responding to any customer complaints or sales issues. Sales managers are often required to travel, both to maintain contact with distributors and to sign new customers.6

Employment of sales managers is on track with the national average, with the BLS projecting a growth rate of 7% from 2016 through 2026.7

How Can I Tell if Business Management is a Good Fit for Me?

At its core, a career in business management requires a passion for self-direction and leadership. A successful business manager will ideally be able to coordinate several different parts of an organization to achieve the best results. If you're asking yourself if business management is a good fit for you, think about how comfortable you are pursuing a leadership role in an organization. If you like the idea of managing a team of other employees and have a strong desire to help shape a company's future, then the answer may be yes.

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1. “Classification of Instructional Programs: Business Administration and Management, General.” National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved from: https://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/cipcode/cipdetail.aspx?y=55&cipid=88877 (Visited May 25, 2018).
2. “Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers: What Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers Do.” U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/advertising-promotions-and-marketing-managers.htm#tab-2 (Visited September 7 2018).
3. “Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers: Job Outlook.” U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/advertising-promotions-and-marketing-managers.htm#tab-6 (Visited September 7, 2018). Conditions in your area may vary.
4. “Administrative Services Managers: What Administrative Services Managers Do.” U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/administrative-services-managers.htm#tab-2 (Visited September 7, 2018).
5. “Administrative Services Managers: Job Outlook.” U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/administrative-services-managers.htm#tab-6 (Visited September 7, 2018). Conditions in your area may vary
. 6. "Sales Managers: What Sales Managers Do." U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/sales-managers.htm#tab-2 (Visited September 7, 2018).
7. “Sales Managers: Job Outlook." U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/sales-managers.htm#tab-6 (Visited September 7, 2018). Conditions in your area may vary.

For important information about the educational debt, earnings, and completion rates of students who attended these programs, go to www.aiuniv.edu/disclosures. AIU cannot guarantee employment or salary. Not all programs are available to residents of all states.
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