If you’re interested in business leadership, you may be wondering what your post-school career options are. Business leadership covers a wide range of skills that can be beneficial in a multitude of roles across many industries, making you a highly valuable candidate. Professionals in business leadership roles typically head teams, oversee work, lead negotiations and are in charge of decisions that can have ramifications throughout their companies.
This highly versatile field can open doors in careers across areas like consulting, management, entrepreneurship and much more. If you’re wondering whether this is the right professional path for you, here are some of the top careers in business leadership to keep in mind as you make your decision.
If you have specialized expertise and love working directly with clients who come to you for advice, you might thrive in a role as a business consultant. Consulting is a vast field that can cover a number of different speciality areas, so there’s likely room for you no matter what your background is in. Some examples of topics you could consult on include marketing, human resources and employee training, management techniques, customer service, research and product development, financial strategizing and much more. As a consultant, your role is to help your client understand a certain topic and make informed decisions. Your advice can help boost clients’ sales, company morale, organizational structure or efficiency and productivity. To succeed as a consultant, you’ll have to have a good eye for assessing the state of a company and be able to communicate specialist information to non-specialists. If you enjoy problem solving, this could be a good option for you.
2. Chief Executive Officer
If you truly shine as a business leader and become an expert in your industry, you may be able to work your way up to the role of Chief Executive Officer, perhaps more commonly known simply as CEO. CEOs provide essential leadership skills to their company and serve as the head, usually making final decisions and overseeing operations. As a CEO, you’re responsible for making choices and giving advice that steers the company in a positive direction and helps foster growth. While this comes with a lot of responsibility, many CEOs are also well compensated for their efforts. If you enjoy large-scale thinking, project oversight and planning for the future, you could do well in this role.
3. Human Resources Manager
If you enjoy working with people and don’t mind doing hiring work or interacting with clients directly, a career in human resources management could be perfect for you. HR managers typically make the final call as to which candidates to hire, and may also play a role in implementing policies and making plans that will benefit the company’s employees. In order to succeed in this role, you’ll have to have a knack for understanding your company culture and which candidates would be the best fit for your current group of employees. As an additional perk, many HR managers make well over six figures, especially as they gain years of experience.
4. President of Sales
Individuals who stand out as salespeople could work their way up to become vice-president or president of sales, or step into similar roles, like regional sales manager. Sales is an area that’s typically full of job opportunities, but only those skilled in leadership will rise into management roles over time. If you enjoy not just selling a product but managing and directing people, this job could suit you well.
5. Retail Management
Similarly to sales, retail offers the opportunity not only to sell products but also to interact directly with customers. As a retail manager, you’ll be responsible for handling several aspects essential to your company’s success, including product buying, sales and marketing, distribution and staff oversight. You can work your way up from a sales-oriented position into management with experience.
Finally, if you enjoy leadership but ultimately want to go your own way and be your own boss, the path of entrepreneurship could be the best fit for you. Entrepreneurs are independent, creative-thinking individuals that are perhaps best known for starting up exciting new businesses. These businesses sometimes become successful, fulfill consumer needs, put new products or ideas on the market and may ultimately create many new jobs. As a successful entrepreneur, you’ll be an important part of the economic growth engine, since you’ll be innovating new opportunities. However, be aware that because success in opening a business is not guaranteed, your income may vary.
Whether you’re interested in managing a human resources department, opening up your own consulting firm or becoming an entrepreneur and picking out the best new business ideas, the skills you learn in a business leadership program can carry you into a number of exciting career paths. If you’re currently studying business leadership or are interested in pursuing the field, keep these top career options in mind. You’ll be well equipped to choose the best professional path for your background and talents.
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