General Manager – Concept, functions and responsibilities

We explain what a general manager is in the business field, its functions, responsibilities and the requirements for the position.

general manager CEO
The general manager or CEO is the top of the business pyramid.

What is a general manager?

The term general manager, general director or even CEO is used (from the English Chief Executive Officer) to refer to one of the highest ranks of executives in the hierarchical structure of the business world. He is the head of the administration of a company or organization.

A general manager represents the top of the business pyramid, on whom the greatest share of responsibilities falls and is, in addition, the maximum spokesperson for the company. He is an authority figure in the business field; strategic management and decision-making is expected from him high, to achieve the fulfillment of organizational objectives.

Above them is usually only the company’s board of directors, made up of its shareholders, that is, its owners themselves. The general manager can be fired or hired by them, since is the highest ranking employee of all.

In many organizations, general managers are difficult to identify, if they have more general or horizontal organizational methods, but there is always someone in charge of that function. In the case of public organizations, this figure can be called in other ways, such as President or director.

General manager functions

The roles and responsibilities that a CEO performs can be summarized as:

  • Planning, organization and supervision general of the activities carried out by the company.
  • Resource management of the entity and coordination between the parts that compose it.
  • Strategic management of the organization and act both as a leader within the company and as a spokesperson outside it.
  • Take decisions critical, especially when it comes to issues central or vital to the organization.
  • Motivate, monitor and mediate among the work team.

Requirements for the position of general manager

The requirements for a general manager are different, depending on the profile of the company and its particular history. It should be considered that it is a vital position, which implies high levels of confidentiality and commitment.

Therefore, it is unusual for general managers to be hired from a pool of unknown applicants. Conversely, they usually come from the company’s own cadres or they are chosen by the board of directors from among the individuals who result from their total trust and agreement.

However, a suitable general manager is expected to possess:

  • Business vision and capacity for strategic planning in the medium and long term.
  • Leadership, charisma, motivation and a high commitment to work.
  • Very high command of oral and written expression, which allows him to be a spokesperson for the organization when necessary.
  • Business instincts, decision-making ability and a lot of courage.
  • Commitment to the company, honesty and a professional journey that inspires the work team.

What is a manager?

general manager CEO differences manager
The managers of each area are coordinated by the general manager.

A manager is an individual in charge of the management of an organization or an area specific to her (sales manager, finance manager, insurance manager, etc.). In other words, he is in charge of materializing his objectives, of ensuring that they are fulfilled in the best way.

Therefore, the managers are the identifiable head of a work team: they are the ones who will answer for the successes and errors of the same, and they are the executive nexus of the team with the other parts of the organization. Managers are individuals of authority, with a high level of commitment to the organization and who, therefore, occupy the top of the hierarchical pyramid in their area.

The term manager comes from the Latin gerens or gerentis, which means “the one who carries out something” or “the one who manages something.” The general manager of a company would be, in some way, the manager of managers.