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General Manager

File Photo: General Manager
File Photo: General Manager File Photo: General Manager

What is a General Manager (GM)?

A general manager (GM) generates income and controls expenditures for a department or corporation. The general manager may be a prominent executive in small firms.

GMs are above most workers but below corporate leaders in hierarchical companies. The position’s role and relevance vary by company and structure.

Understanding General Management

The GM oversees subordinates. Lower-level managers may oversee many divisions yet report to the GM. Department heads receive explicit orders from the GM. A general manager supervises lower-level managers’ hiring, training, and mentoring. The GM may promote employee incentives, evaluate department performance, and provide strategic business strategies aligned with company goals.

The general manager oversees the firm, including everyday operations, administrative tasks, and money. Effective delegation is crucial due to the role’s size.

GMs work with executives and subordinates to achieve goals. Budgeting for marketing, supplies, equipment, and hiring falls on this individual. GMs earn more than entry-level workers because of their responsibility, complexity, and demand for appropriate expertise.

General manager requirements

Before becoming GMs, GMs usually work in lower-level management. GMs can rise by becoming top executives or joining larger, more prominent organizations. They must know their departments or company’s operations, manage and lead personnel, and make sound business judgments. They must also have:

  • Budget, plan, and strategize
  • The ability to solve problems
  • Knowledge of business functions
  • Communication skills
  • The capacity to analyze
  • A college or graduate degree, depending on industry

General Manager Duties

General managers oversee the daily activities of the workforce. Responsibility may also include:

  • Maintain budgets and find ways to enhance
  • Establish procedures
  • Manage hiring and training
  • Assess financial and operational performance
  • Comply with rules
  • Offer solutions

General Manager Types

The GM may have other titles. Their primary responsibility is to handle general operations and high-level activities, including financing, marketing, and staffing. In the C-suite, the CEO is the GM responsible for the whole firm. GMs may manage a corporate process, unit, or segment at the departmental level.

GM ranks slightly behind the CEO in the executive suite. The CEO oversees all business lines, while GMs operate specific lines.

For instance, technology businesses call the GM the product manager. The branch manager is the local GM of a bank. GMs in consulting or other services companies may utilize the managing partner or director title. Consumer corporations often refer to their GMs as brand managers.

Operations managers work like GMs. Operations managers establish methods to boost efficiency and profit, like GMs. They also collaborate with other divisions to keep the company running smoothly.

Job prospects and salaries

General manager salaries vary by industry and firm; however, the Bureau of Labor Statistics provides typical compensation for industries with high GM employment:

 Industry Hourly Mean Wage Annual Mean Salary
Restaurants $31.10 $64,680
Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting $69.91 $145,400
Company and Enterprise Management $76.55 $159,230
Computer Systems Designs $70.65 $146,950
Merchant Wholesalers $57.91 $120,440

Percentile wage projections for general and operations managers:

  • 10%: $473,260
  • 25%: $60,690
  • 50%: $97,970
  • 75%: $151,750
  • 90%: < $208,000

A reasonable perspective exists since general managers work in various businesses. Several industries will see major changes if general manager employment rises 6.7% through 2031. Here are some:

  • Coal mining: -24.5%
  • Tobacco Manufacturing: -53.4%
  • Garment Production: -36.9%
  • Printing and Support: -23.5%
  • Making Magnetic and Optical Media: -50.8
  • Booksellers and new dealers: -47%
  • Florists: -29%
  • Other retailers: -23.8%
  • Newspaper, book, and periodical publishers: -22.1%
  • Cable/subscription: -21.2%

Fossil fuels, clothing, conventional printing, physical storefronts, and other traditional general manager employers may lower their GM numbers. Technology, renewable energy, health, corporate social responsibility, and the significant shift to internet purchasing may explain this.

However, general managers still have many job opportunities. Expected wind and solar power generation, electric component manufacturing, and passenger transportation growth is over 30%.

By 2031, insurance and employee benefits firm general managers will have the highest employment growth of 66.7%. By 2031, arts and entertainment, performing arts, sports, event promoters, artists, authors, and amusement park general managers are predicted to rise 20%–50%.

General Manager vs. CEO

General managers oversee many firm departments. Overseeing departments, sectors, or work sites is a significant responsibility. They manage tasks and ensure their departments meet executive goals.

A CEO is a company’s top leader. CEO responsibilities include strategy, long-term decision-making, operational control, and budgetary oversight.

Operations vs. General Manager

GMs oversee all firm areas, whereas operations managers oversee production and operations. GMs handle HR, marketing, and strategy.

Operations managers usually specialize in a specialized industry.

General Managers Do What?

A general manager manages a workforce, finances work, staffs the corporation, and performs other high-level business duties.

General Manager: High Position?

General managers frequently supervise multiple subordinates, making it a top job. They frequently report to executives but are not executives.

General Manager versus Manager?

Manager levels vary by sector and corporate structure. Managers oversee staff at the division level, whereas general managers manage at the department level.

The Verdict

General managers control everyday operations, finances, and business goals. Most GMs need advanced management experience and a college degree in business or their area.

GMs’ career prospects vary per industry, but these highly qualified workers will be in demand and well compensated for the foreseeable future.


  • While running a firm or division, a general manager must boost efficiency and profitability.
  • General managers control staff, budgets, marketing, and other business aspects.
  • General managers oversee lower-level managers and report to executives.
  • General managers might be branch, brand, or operations managers.

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