8 Crucial Business Management Skills For a Leadership Career
Business management skills are attributes a person running a company uses to help the company and its employees reach goals and improve. These skills are usually acquired through on-the-job experience or by studying them in an educational environment. Understanding these skills can help you refine your own skill set and potentially learn new skills that can benefit your leadership career.
In this article, we discuss eight crucial business management skills, how they function in the workplace and how to improve them, and we show you how to highlight them on a resume.
8 crucial business management skills
While there are dozens of important business management skills, these are eight of the most crucial for success in company leadership:
Analytical skills: Business leaders need strong analytical skills so they can review situations, projects and business plans and find details that affect their outcomes. They also analyze business needs and help solve complex problems.
Leadership skills: Leadership skills such as mentoring and coaching and acting as an example are crucial for business management. A company's leaders help set the example for the company and lead through effective coaching of subordinates.
Budget management: Business managers also often handle the company's budgeting, working with the accounting team or chief financial officer to help create, maintain and monitor company budgets to ensure financial health and success.
Motivation: The ability to motivate others is a crucial management skill because business leaders help the company achieve its goals. They guide others by motivating them to do better and achieve goals, and they provide support for their teams.
Organization: Organization is an important skill for business managers because they need an organized schedule and workspace to function properly.
Strategic thinking: Business leaders often help develop crucial business strategies that affect the health and future of a business. This can require strong strategic thinking and experience with business strategies.
Business acumen: Business managers understand how companies operate, how money moves through a business and how a workforce ultimately affects the success of that business. Business acumen is crucial because it's a unique combination of technical business skills and the manager's experience and perspective.
Communication: Communication is a crucial skill to have when seeking a business management job because you often interact with employees, peers, bosses, clients, business owners, the media and suppliers. Both verbal and written communication skills are vital for internal and external communication, such as during negotiations and in meetings with clients or coworkers.
Read more: Top 10 Communication Skills for Career Success
How to improve company management skills
As a job seeker in a competitive and growing market, it's often vital to improve your management skills to adapt to growth. A great way to improve is by assessing which of your skills need strengthening and working on them in the following ways:
1. Pursue education
There are many learning opportunities available that can help improve your management skills, such as pursuing a certificate, degree or master's program. Today, higher education learning institutions offer online and offline courses in management skills. You can study these courses on a short- or long-term basis depending on which management skills you want to improve and how much time you have.
Related: What is Business Management? And 12 Jobs You Can Get With a Business Management Degree
2. Attend workshops or training sessions
Online and offline workshops and training sessions offer you opportunities to grow your management skills in a short period of time. Such programs can last from a few hours to a week. These workshops and training sessions address specific topics on management skills due to time constraints.
Related: What Is Business Process Management? Types and Benefits
3. Seek mentorship
When you're applying for jobs, it can be helpful to seek individuals from within your field who have experience in the management skills you want to improve. Such mentors can offer you insights into business management based on the experience they have accumulated over the years while working in competitive business environments. They can also help you understand certain nuances about management formal education might not cover.
Related: Business Consultant vs. Management Consultant
Business management skills in the workplace
In the workplace, there are several ways you can apply business management skills to be a more productive employee:
As a business manager, your organizational skills ensure that the company is always moving towards its primary goals. Being organized can help you prepare a plan to track company projects and which employees are overseeing them. This allows you check with specific employees if you need to know a project's progress. Such organizational skills can also help you gauge your employees' productivity to ensure everyone is performing their essential job tasks efficiently.
Related: 15 Business Management Tips You Need To Know
Plan and prioritize
Time is an asset to a company, and as a business manager, you help ensure employees meet deadlines and that the teams complete the most important tasks first. Prioritization and planning help business managers determine which tasks are more important and who to assign work to. Managers understand how to use their team effectively to reach deadlines while maintaining quality.
Related: 7 Important KPIs to Measure With Dashboard Management
Be open to ideas
It's important to be open and approachable to employees offering operational suggestions, so you can learn new perspectives and methods. This openness can create an innovative environment and introduce better business processes. These new processes may positively impact the company's productivity, improve service delivery and lower operational costs.
Related: 9 Benefits of Having a Business Management Degree
Address conflicts quickly
For a company to meet its goals, harmony among employees is important. When conflicts arise, as a business manager, address them quickly before they affect team collaboration and productivity. You can address workplace conflicts by meeting with the employees involved and hearing their sides of the story. To positively resolve conflicts, you should be fair to all sides and remain calm during the process.
Related: 18 Business Management Best Practices for Supervisors
How to highlight management skills
To have a higher chance of impressing employers during the job application process, it's important to show them how your management skills can be an asset to their companies. You can do this with your resume, cover letter and during an interview. For each of the three stages, here is how you can positively portray your management skills:
Management skills on a resume
The resume you send to potential employers highlights how the management skills you learned in school or acquired through experience can apply to their companies. If you have previous experience in a business management position, list it on your resume. You can also briefly outline how you used your business management skills positively and effectively in your previous position.
Read more: How To Write a Resume Employers Will Notice
Management skills on a cover letter
A cover letter allows you to elaborate on how you intend to apply your management skills to the company offering the job. Highlight achievements from past jobs and describe how you used business management skills to positively impact the companies. For example, you can say: “In my previous position, I minimized operational costs of processing by 25% after encouraging the CEO to mechanize our body painting unit, which increased our minivan production by 15%.”
Read more: How To Write a Cover Letter (With Tips and Examples)
Management skills for the job interview
When you're being interviewed, listen to the questions first without interjecting, and then answer them. Use the interview opportunity to cite examples of when you successfully used your management skills with your previous employer. Before attending the interview, thoroughly research the company's operations. This can help you discuss specific ways your skills can be useful to the company to impress the employer.
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