How to Find the Right Management Qualification for your Career
by Petra Wilton, Chartered Management Institute
May 5 2015 - Lift yourself out of a professional rut by attending a course or studying for a recognised qualification. Here's how to find the course that best suits you and your career aspirations.
If you need one killer stat to convince your employer to invest in your abilities, try this one: 79% of bosses questioned by CMI think the benefits to the employer of management and leadership qualifications outweigh the time, money and effort spent in obtaining them. But winning over your boss is the easy part. Assuming they agree to invest in you, what should you choose to study? With so many options and courses on offer, you could be forgiven for not knowing where to start. Here are some questions that you can use to find the right management qualification for you.
Is this your first management position?
The fundamental question. If you have never previously studied for a management qualification or you have recently been promoted to management level, a basic course in management is what the career-doctor would order. Basic courses aimed at junior and first line managers cover off the fundamentals that every manager needs to get right from the outset, such as team leadership, effective communication, allocating workloads and resource planning.
Want to learn how to help your team learn?
Management and leadership courses aren't just geared towards those who purely want to acquire more knowledge. Some are designed for those who want to teach it among their teams, with research showing that a coaching style of management is highly effective. CMI's popular coaching and mentoring courses, for instance, typically include units such as coaching and mentoring for operational processes, coaching and mentoring relationships and the complexities of managing team dynamics.
Are you set for strategy?
Asking whether you will need strategic or operational skills is crucial to ensuring that you and your organisation get the most from your course. Skills in strategy usually apply to senior managers, but in small organisations, those managers with an operational bent may be asked to provide input into the company's vision too. If this is you, then you will benefit from a formal course that tackles strategic plans, how to think about organisational direction and strategic information management.
Solving the ‘trilemma' of demands presented by work, study and home life can prove difficult, even for the most organised of people working for the most progressive of employers. Fortunately, the flexibility of CMI's management qualifications means that you can pick and choose among the modules that you need most to find the course that best suits you.
A CMI management qualification isn't just CV-candy that your contacts can comment on or ‘like' via LinkedIn. Gaining a qualification comes with more serious benefits, such as CMI membership and access to its events, continued professional development and e-learning capabilities to help you progress further in your career.
Petra Wilton is the Director of Strategy and External Affairs at The Chartered Management Institute (CMI), and takes a lead role in building strategic partnerships in the public policy arena. She is responsible for promoting the needs of practising managers through engaging with and accessing the views of the CMI's 100,000 plus members. Petra also leads on the development of customer insight and building CMI's body of knowledge, and she has co-authored many CMI reports. She also set up the Campus CMI initiative to inspire and create confidence in young people through developing their management and leadership skills. She manages the All Party Parliamentary Group on Management and represents the CMI on various external group, including the recent ABS Innovation Taskforce, the Employee Engagement Taskforce Gurus' Group, Valuing your Talent and Professions Week.