4 Organizational Leadership Careers for Ambitious Career Advancers

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You’ve been in the business field for a while, putting in your time and doing your best. But you’re tired of being in the same position and know your talents could shine in a more advanced role. With your years of experience, you’ve probably spent some time thinking about working in leadership and management roles—and the education and training you’d need to be effective.

If you’ve got your sights set on managing teams and taking on a leadership position, one educational option worth considering is pursuing a Human Resources and Organizational Leadership degree. This is a great option for those with a background in business who are looking to branch out, advance upward and make an impact in an organization.

What is organizational leadership?

Before learning about the potential employment routes you may pursue in this field, you may want more information on what organizational leadership is exactly.

There is no set organizational leadership definition as the field covers a broad swath of internal issues. From hiring and training staff to monitoring budgets to consulting on management, organizational leadership aims to improve the overall efficiency and processes of a business. Examples of how to do so include recruiting the best talent or through managing the day-to-day administrative side.

Those in organizational leadership are crucial to a company’s overall success. A business would be nothing without the people who run it, and those in organizational leadership aim to equip businesses with the right people and resources needed to succeed.
Sound interesting? Take a look at some organizational leadership jobs to learn more.

4 Organizational leadership jobs that could be yours

These organizational leadership roles cover a wide spectrum—some are geared toward those who are just getting their start in the field while others, like human resources management roles, are suited for more experienced candidates. No matter where you’re at in your career, it helps to know about potential career paths if you choose to pursue a degree in organizational leadership. Let’s dive in. 

Human resources manager

Projected employment growth (2016–2026): 9 percent*
2017 Median annual salary: $110,120*
Human resources (HR) managers are responsible for the high-level planning and coordination of the administrative work that keeps organizations running. As managers, they typically have teams of HR specialists reporting to them and seeking overall organizational direction. Depending on the organization, these HR management positions can cover specialized areas like training and development, benefits or talent acquisition.

Human resources specialist

Projected employment growth (2016–2026): 7 percent*
2017 Median annual salary: $60,350*
If you are interested in working on the human capital side of a business, then a career in human resources could be right for you. Human Resources specialists recruit, interview and hire employees. Like HR managers, they may work in specific areas such as compensation and benefits or training and development, depending on the size and the structure of the organization they serve. HR specialists often work as a guide for employees; they answer questions on procedures and policies, benefits, payroll and any federal, state or local regulations.

Training and development specialist

Projected employment growth (2016–2026): 11 percent*
2017 Median annual salary: $60,360*
Training and development specialists are the HR professionals responsible for the planning, design and administration of programs created to improve employee skills and processes. This is an excellent position for anyone who enjoys the mentorship and nurturing aspects of management—your work is devoted to making others better at their jobs. Training and development specialists help organizations’ employees identify areas in need of training, review potential materials and develop programs for ensuring their success.

Compensation, benefits and job analysis specialist

Projected employment growth (2016–2026): 9 percent*
2017 Median annual salary: $62,680*
This is another critical focus area for HR and organizational leadership professionals. Compensation, benefits and job analysis specialists are responsible for researching insurance, retirement, wellness and other programs and policies. Additionally, these HR pros may be tasked with evaluating and classifying position descriptions, which can determine potential compensation packages offered for each role. This work focuses on some of the most important factors in employee happiness, and well-administered benefits programs and plans can be a boon for an entire organization.

How can you land one of these organizational leadership jobs?

Unfortunately there’s no magic trick to getting started in one of these positions—you’ll need a combination of education, experience and aptitude to make the cut.
That being said, a Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources and Organizational Leadership will equip you with knowledge in the areas of organizational development, organizational behavior analysis, leadership and teams, contemporary leadership challenges and other topics pertinent to the field. This level of educational attainment is practically a must-have for anyone looking to get started in HR.

But as your career advances to new heights, so does the bar for qualification. Upper-level human resources and organizational leadership roles are competitive, and often require candidates with a strong background. If you have ambitions beyond middle management, you may want to consider earning a Master’s degree. Check out the Rasmussen College Master of Human Resources Management degree page to learn more about how this convenient online option could help you stand out.

*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, [career information accessed November 1, 2018] www.bls.gov/ooh/. Salary data represents national, averaged earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries and employment conditions in your area may vary.

About the author

Anna Heinrich

Anna is a Copywriter at Collegis Education who researches and writes student-focused content on behalf of Rasmussen University. She believes the power of the written word can help educate and assist students on their way to a rewarding education.

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