There’s more to management than money, including respect, prestige and the chance to inspire others and make a difference. However, it’s no coincidence that managers are the best-paid workers in the business world. Their vision and their strategizing and delegation skills make things happen, and they must have both a college education and a great deal of work experience to reach these high-level roles. The salaries for these positions are commensurate with the rigorous requirements for the job. Outside of supervisory and senior-level roles, analyst jobs offer some of the best wages and advancement opportunities for graduates of a business management degree program.
Manager Roles in Business and Finance
The median annual salary for all management occupations is $102,590, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The best-paid business management roles can see even higher wages. For example, in the chief executive classification of top executives – including chief executive officer (CEO), chief financial officer (CFO), chief human resources officer (CHRO) and chief operations officer (COO) roles – the median wage is $189,600. Another manager role with outstanding earning potential is advertising and marketing manager. For overseeing the campaigns and personnel involved promoting products, services and brands, these professionals earn a median salary of $132,620, the BLS reported.
A $127,990 median wage is in store for the job of financial manager, according to the BLS. This position, which involves both financial reporting and strategic planning to preserve and grow the financial health of the company, includes job titles like treasurer, finance officer and controller. For sales managers, with a median wage of $124,220, commissions and bonuses are often part of the equation, as well, the BLS reported. Sales managers supervise teams of sales representatives, including training new salespeople, setting sales goals and plans to achieve those goals and assessing the performance of teams and individual sales representatives.
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Compensation and benefits managers enjoy the highest wages among human resources management roles. Specializing in company pay structure or employee benefits program administration, then earn a median salary of $121,010, according to the BLS. Purchasing managers, who are in charge of acquiring the goods, services and raw materials a company needs, earn a $115,760 median annual wage, the BLS reported. While purchasing managers supervise buyers and purchasing agents, they tend to handle the most complex procurement tasks personally. For public relations and fundraising managers, who work to garner positive publicity or funding donations for their organization or clients, the median salary is $114,800, according to the BLS. The median wages for generalist human resources managers and specialized training and development managers are similar, at $113,300 and $111,340, respectively, the BLS reported.
Other business management roles with a six-figure median wage include industrial production managers and general and operations managers.
Just because you go to school for business management doesn’t mean that you will become a manager right off the bat. All of these manager roles require at least a few years of relevant work experience. Often, you begin working in an entry-level role and gradually move up through the ranks of seniority, advancing to assistant management and middle management positions before you can work in this high-level role. For some – though not all – of these business manager positions, you may need a master’s degree. Earlier on in their careers, graduates of business management programs are more likely to hold analyst roles. There are many different types of analysts working in the business world.
Management analysts, for example, are outside contractors brought in to solve problems that improve a company’s efficiency and financial performance. Also called management consultants due to their role as outsiders looking in at a company’s performance, they enjoy a median salary of $82,450 per year, according to the BLS. For budget analysts, who develop a company’s budget and oversees spending, the median wage is $76,220, according to the BLS. Business analysts earn a median wage of $59,343. Like management analysts, they gather and interpret data to identify problems in a company’s operations, but they more often work within a company rather than as an outsider, and they may have more limited expertise in developing detailed plans to solve the problems they identify, compared to a management consultant.
The financial analyst offers an even more lucrative $85,660 median wage, but you may need more than business management coursework for this job. The BLS ranks courses in finance, statistics, math, accounting and economics as important for financial analysts.