Many organizations have multiple offices or plants, which require supervision by a top executive at each location to meet its goals. A general manager typically oversees and directs the daily operations of a specific site, plant or office. The role of a general manager includes administering a variety of business functions such as human resources, project management, financials and policies.
Policies and Human Resources
Following the organization’s goals and objectives, general managers administer policies and work-related procedures for their operational areas. This includes human resources functions such as employee handbooks, hiring, disciplining and assigning responsibilities to employees. They appoint supervisors and management staff in different departments to ensure successful daily operations. General managers also ensure that the site is compliant with regulatory agencies.
General managers oversee and manage projects to ensure that they are completed in accordance with project deadlines and budgets. They schedule and plan projects, then assign responsibilities to managers, supervisors and employees. General managers are kept aware of any problems that arise during projects to ensure that they are resolved.
All organizations have financial budgets for each department, division and site. General managers prepare annual budgets, which are approved by other top executives of the organization. They ensure that a the site operates within its financial budget and ensure financial goals are met. They find ways to cut spending and also advocate for new services, products or other functions of the site to obtain the funding required to improve the site’s productivity and profitability.
Careers and Salary
Most general managers are promoted into this role after years of progressive experience. Competition is high for general manager roles, as many organizations look for highly-qualified candidates with specific industry experience. A combination of factors, such as the highly competitive aspects of the job, influences the 5 percent growth expected through 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The average salary for general and operations managers was $114,490 per year, according to the BLS.