Too often I see people earn the title of manager and then lose themselves in their new identity. Some will thrive and grow in their new positions while others will become stagnant after a period of time.
Most, when asked, will say they are “a manager” and my next question is always this:
What type of manager are you?
Truth be told, there are plenty of differences. We have general managers, senior managers, managers, supervisors, and – well – you get it… you could place a wide variety of different terms on the different levels or types of management. I know of one company that assigned the title of “Assistant Vice President” to every mid-level manager in the organization. Sounds nice, right? The problem is that many people don’t understand exactly what their titles mean.
Let’s take a look at a couple of those titles and their definitions:
General managers have a very broad responsibility, in most cases. General managers aren’t responsible for one specific part of an organisation. Instead they are responsible for the function of all areas – with each individual manger of those areas to get the jobd one.
Senior managers usually work in organisations with a lot of employees – those who feel as those there are so many levels they need to add additional people to the hierarchy to help keep control. Senior level managers generally fall somewhere below the general manager, but above a regular department manager.
Managers, in general, are individuals in charge of directing the work of a specific group of people. Managers may be in charge of an entire department, or they may be in charge of a team within a department. They’ll either report directly to the general manager, or to a “senior manager” above them.
A supervisor, in some cases, is considered a manager. In other places, a supervisor is someone who is in a junior management position. Supervisors may be in charge of a small portion of a team, reporting back to the manager at the end of the day as to the status of a project. Supervisors generally have very little authority, and in some cases can’t even hire or fire employees.
Where do you fall on the management mall map? Are you where you want to be, or are you aching to move up the corporate ladder?