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What Is a Managing Director and How to Become One


What Is a Managing Director?

A managing director is the most senior position at a business. You have the final say on all company actions and are ultimately responsible for all decisions made by the company. You are the liaison between a company’s upper management and the board. You make frequent reports to the chairperson and board. Unlike the CEO, you oversee the management and daily operations of the company; your duties include implementing new policies, protocols, or directives, paying close attention to how these decisions affect budgets and profitability. You are also the one who chooses and leads a board of directors.

How to Become a Managing Director

A managing director typically has had a long career in business and has years of experience in a managerial setting before taking on the role of managing director. You should have a bachelor’s degree as well as a graduate degree, such as a master’s of business administration. Other qualifications include a working competency of corporate legal regulations, a strong ability to follow market changes, the ability to instill effective new business solutions into a corporate culture, and the ability to identify and retain talented workers who will help you implement your policies throughout the company.

How to Be a Good Managing Director

A good managing director has strong leadership qualities. You are the driving force behind the day-to-day operations of a company, making sure that the vision of the CEO and board is put into practice. You need to remain up-to-date on the latest changes in your company’s field, be able to read and assess budgets, understand the needs of the company, and carry out any changes mandated by the board. You are also responsible for interacting with your company’s shareholders and you must be able to translate complex business ideas for a broader audience.

Is Managing Director Higher Than Director?

The managing director is the highest management position in a company, and the director works beneath the managing director. At a large company, there are typically many directors who work under the managing director. These positions include titles such as the director of planning, director of personnel, or director of finances, all of whom report directly to the managing director. They implement the various parts of the managing director’s strategy and goals that are related to their departments. The managing director has the discretion to fire a director and find a replacement for the team.

Managing Director Job Description Sample

With this Managing Director job description sample, you can get a good idea of what employers are looking for when hiring for this position. Remember though, every employer is different and each will have unique qualifications when they hire for their Managing Director position.

Job Summary

We are seeking a skilled, experienced, goal-oriented managing director to take ownership of our company’s voice and vision. In this position, you will serve as the company’s leader, responsible for the success, performance, and strategies of the business. You will manage all business operations and ventures and will report to the chairperson and/or board of directors.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Provide strategic advice to the board of directors
  • Establish company goals, aligned with the board and shareholder goals
  • Prepare long-term and short-term goals and company objectives
  • Advise board and chairperson on their market and industry
  • Plan cost-effective business strategies
  • Develop new ideas based on market and industry
  • Guide and maintain the performance of the company
  • Develop strategic operating plans
  • Communicate company reports and achievements to the board, shareholders, and business partners
  • Manage financial investments and business ventures
  • Provide leadership and motivation to all employees
  • Supervise executives and managers
  • Provide the company and employees with a clear vision for future achievements
  • Ensure bottom-line profitability
  • Develop reporting tools to monitor the ongoing performance of the company
  • Lead strategy for new development and clients
  • Establish relationships with industry and marketing experts
  • Establish thought leadership through publication
  • Build the company public profile through networking, conferences, and speaking engagements
  • Serve as the public face of the company

Requirements and Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in business, business administration, or related field; master’s degree and/or Ph.D. preferred
  • 10-15+ years of relevant experience as managing director or related title in the industry
  • Up-to-date on the latest industry trends; able to articulate trends and potential clearly and confidently
  • Proficient computer skills, including Microsoft Office Suite (Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Excel)
  • Familiar with corporate law and management best practices
  • Strong knowledge of the company, business, brand, and product; understanding of the company and its position in the market/industry
  • Previous experience with media and public relations
  • Able to travel extensively
  • Encouraging to team and staff; able to mentor and lead
  • Able to analyze problems and strategize for better solutions