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What is Business Management?

Those hoping to work as business management professionals in Oklahoma will have plenty of options when it comes time to find a position in the state. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 27,040 business managers were employed in the state in a recent year; their annual mean wage was about $89,030.

In Oklahoma, industries such as real estate, rental and leasing, educational services, healthcare and social assistance, mining, quarrying, oil and gas extraction, professional and business services, finance and insurance, transportation and warehousing, retail and wholesale trade, construction, and others all have a significant presence in the state’s economy. Each industry contributes to the state’s economic base, and every industry has something in common - they all employ business managers who help to manage departments within their organizations and aim to ensure that they make a profit.

All businesses benefit from leaders who effectively manage their daily processes and employees. A skilled manager must be aware that they are overseeing people of various ages, that each employee has different motivations for doing their jobs well, and that some people work better individually while others are skilled team members, among other very important things.

Along with ensuring that the company follows efficient business practices, managers must also motivate these employees. A motivated work force also helps an organization to be more effective. This is part of why management training includes a focus on communication skills.

Businesses struggling to operate because its managers don’t have the management skills they need may find they are being pulled down or held back. Where people should be motivated, they might instead struggle with low morale; where a business should be making a profit, they may instead be held back by wasteful budgets. Best practices may not be consistently used. Management may fail to engage their employees. All of this can be solved through appropriate management education, which can help you see when your employees are striving to do their best or struggling to reach unreachable goals.

Every business needs managers to ensure that the whole endeavor stays on track.

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Online Business Management Education in Oklahoma

The term business manager may not be the title you end up with, even if you study business management or administration. However, this is an umbrella term for a variety of management positions.

Most managers must use the data they have to confront business challenges. Some spend much of their time interacting with clients or giving workers recommendations or feedback. If a client isn’t happy with the service or product sold to them, the business manager may be tasked with finding out why they aren’t happy and fixing the problem. Other managers, such as finance or accounting managers, work with financial data; they watch the flow of a budget or transactions and correct developing issues.

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Business managers are those responsible for supervising employees and making sure they are completing tasks in a timely manner. They may use their analytical skills, combing through data and presenting it to company officers, who make the decisions to move the organization forward. They may also be responsible for making process improvements and helping the organization to meet high metric goals.

Online Associate Degree in Business Management (AS)

Future college students looking for schools offering a business management degree in Oklahoma may want to explore their local community college programs. Here you could find an Associate of Arts, Associate of Science, or Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Business Management. These are just some of the many possible associate degrees you could consider. There are also general degrees in business and those in business administration. Whichever one you choose, at this level, will allow you to access a variety of business degree or business management degrees at the bachelor’s level.

In associate business management degree programs, students are introduced to general education requirements and basic business courses which can help graduates to land entry-level positions in management. No matter which degree you choose, you must make sure that the school you attend holds appropriate accreditation. Regional accreditation must be held by the school you choose if you want your degree to hold value. Those programs that also offer accreditation by The Accreditation Council of Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) are recognized as being high quality across the nation.

An associate degree should take around two years to complete if you are able to attend full-time. However, if you attend part-time, it may take an extra year to get through all the courses you must complete. These courses usually comprise around 60 credit hours and business programs are often available through online learning. However, no matter what kind of program you choose, if you think that you might want to complete a bachelor’s degree later, then you might want to look for a program that has a transfer agreement with a four-year institution, and you definitely want to attend an accredited school.

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Online Bachelor's Degree in Business Management (BS)

At the bachelor’s level, students learn management skills that will help them develop policies for their company and guide the operations of organizations including non-profits, corporations, or even government agencies.

By earning a bachelor’s degree in management, students gain the skills they need to work with people, lead them, and communicate with them professionally and effectively. They should also learn about the theories and practice of management and gain all the tools they need to begin successful careers. Internship opportunities are also often available in programs at this level, and these will allow students to use their newly learned skills and gain on-the-job experience.

Earning a bachelor’s degree of any kind usually takes around four years, though you may be able to find an accelerated program and finish in three. If you’ve already finished an associate degree in business or business management, and the majority of your credits will transfer over, then you might start your bachelor’s as a junior rather than a freshman. No matter how you start your degree, a bachelor’s nearly always requires that students earn around 120 credit hours altogether.

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Online Master's Degree in Business Management (MS)

Management professionals in Oklahoma focused on earning a master’s degree in management can look out-of-state for an online degree, or, if you want to earn an MBA, then you need look no further than Oklahoma State University. There are a huge number of MBA programs available across the country, and many of them also provide many options for a concentration that will allow you to focus your degree on a specific department. Concentrations can include business analytics, human resources, supply chain management, employee relations, public relations, social media strategy, executive communication, small and family business, human resource management, logistics, recreation and sports, management and leadership, marketing, and many more options.

An online master of business administration (MBA) can make earning this degree easier than it would be with a traditional, in-person program. Classes can be offered synchronously (they go live at regular times and students log in simultaneously) or asynchronously (in which students can complete their work whenever it is most convenient for them). The advantage to a synchronous format is that students interact in real-time with their classmates and instructors, while an asynchronous format provides a huge amount of flexibility to a program.

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Online PhD Degree in Business Management (PhD)

Business students who are interested in doctoral programs may want to consider finding one that allows candidates to structure their own program depending on interests. These programs can offer an education in management or administration that will allow those who are interested to move into academia (education) or research; or they can work as consultants for companies that are desperate to figure out what’s wrong in their current structure or have other questions they need answered. You might also be able to find programs with concentrations such as organizational behavior, strategic management, or research methods.

These programs offer candidates the opportunity to work alongside faculty members, those recognized for their skills and knowledge nationally and internationally and engage in research and publication before they even graduate. A College of Business will usually be quite selective in choosing only well-qualified candidates for these programs, and the academics are rigorous, challenging each student.

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Become a Business Manager in Oklahoma

As with many other professions, there are no requirements for licensure, or even specific education, to become a business manager. However, education and certifications are likely to move you upward in your career more quickly than those without these advantages. Professional certifications help to inform future or potential employers that you have the skills they require of a business manager. Certifications will make you stand out, and might even move you to the top of the interview list. There are many general business certifications, and even more focused certifications that can help you move forward in a specific department, such as HR or marketing. Here are just a few options to give you an idea of the requirements for such credentials.

  • Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)
    This study course and exam are the best for newer project managers. Professionals studying for this exam must show proof of accumulating 1,500 hours of experience in project work or they should be able to prove they have attained 23 hours of education in project management. Once they have earned their certification, it will remain valid for five years. To maintain certification, you must take the exam again.
  • Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP)
    Offered by the Association for Supply Chain Management (APICS), this certification helps supply chain professionals keep up with current developments in the field. It focuses on supply chain concepts and technology. Professionals learn about end-to-end operations and the strategies they may employ to keep goods moving from the supplier, through the organization, and to the consumer.
  • Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP)
    This certification helps those who work as business analysts, developing solutions for organizations. The International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA) offers the certification and exam. It is classified as advanced and only managers and leaders who have accumulated more than five years of experience in business analysis should sign up for the study program. They should have a minimum of 7,500 hours of experience in the field, earned within the past 10 years. Additionally, 900 of these experience hours should be directly related to four BABOK Guide knowledge areas - there are six such areas. Finally, 35 hours of professional development credits, earned within the past four years, and two references are mandatory.

Careers for Business Management Graduates

  • Sales Manager
    Sales managers locate possible customers and develop leads for organizations. They also create techniques and strategies needed to achieve sales targets. They may also promote a brand in order to increase its popularity with consumers.
  • Benefits Specialist
    This professional administers the employee benefits program. They educate employees on what their options on health insurance are, as well as helping them enroll for a pension plan and any other benefits the company offers. Having strong organizational skills helps them to perform well on the job and they must maintain accurate and current knowledge of benefits plans and processes.
  • Director of Operations
    The director of operations ensures that all processes throughout the company are effective and will have only the best outcomes. This may include hiring practices being used by the HR department, communication coming from team leads and managers, and more. This professional may also be called an operations director, business operations manager, or the chief operations officer (COO). They are responsible for analyzing organizational data and metrics, which enables them to evaluate the performance of the staff and encourage employees to work at their highest potential.
  • Accounting Supervisor
    This manager supervises everyday transactions, such as accounts payable or receivable, and oversee bank reconciliations and general ledger entries. They may also oversee payroll, tax audits, and prepare budgets and budget reports. If it is a large department (in a larger company) they will oversee a team of accountants, leading them in the completion of all financial functions.
  • Management Information System Specialist
    This tech professional offers support to workers, managers, and executives through a company’s technology platform. They may determine all requirements (with input from leaders in the company) and then design, develop, test, and implement appropriate technology solutions. In a business where these programs are already in place, they will maintain system functionality and oversee any upgrades.

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  • C-Suite Executive
    This executive works at the highest level of the company: the C-suites. Their decisions affect the entire organization and they may be in charge of the entire company, overseeing all management staff, or they may be in charge of one specific department. These departments include IT, finance, marketing, sales, communications, and others.
  • Non-Profit Manager
    Most non-profit managers hold either public administration or business degrees, but there are major differences between how a private company and a non-profit must be run. For one thing, a non-profit is run by a board, so a non-profit manager will have to answer the board rather than running the company the way a CEO would. Additionally, non-profit managers must spend a significant amount of time on tasks such as finding or managing volunteers and fundraising.
  • Customer Service Associate
    This professional works directly with customers, helping them by addressing their concerns. They aim to keep relationships with customers positive and to not lose money while maintaining the chance for future purchases. Valuable customer service associates who anticipate customer questions and who are familiar with services or products are more likely to be effective in helping customers.

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