Executive Careers in Operations

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You are ready to step into a real leadership position in your field. You feel confident that you are executive material, and you have the experience and education to back that up. Operations executives work in virtually every industry. Every company needs a core group of people at the helm. In order to qualify for executive operations jobs, what qualifications do you need? What kinds of opportunities will you find?

Obviously, you have already put a lot of time and effort into a specific field. The first thing to ask yourself is did you choose that field, or did the field choose you? Before you make your move into that top echelon of movers and shakers, it is time for you to do a thorough self-examination of your motives.

If you work in engineering, do you enjoy that field? Are you good at it? If it is pharmaceuticals, do you believe in what you do? Whether it is insurance or education or health services administration, does the corporate mission still motivate you? We are at an economic crossroads in this country, so ask yourself if you feel confident that your company's products or services will continue to be a vital component of our economy. If you do not believe in the product or service that your current company provides, then you will not achieve that necessary sense of balance between your career and your personal life. As you decide to seek advancement, ask yourself first of all whether you want to make a move up the ladder in your current industry, or whether it is time to move laterally into another field and then upward from there.

You more than likely already know that you will not succeed in a search for executive jobs if you do not have a minimum of a bachelor's degree, and many companies will require a master's. In fact, the bachelor's degree is really only acceptable these days for someone who has been in the industry for many years and offers integrated experience opportunities to back up the basic degree. In all likelihood, however, you will be leaving behind a five-figure salary—if not immediately, then this will come as you effectively move forward. Progression into the top level of your career requires your dedication to your continuing education, your willingness to work long hours, most likely the flexibility to travel, and the willingness to make hard decisions that other people may resist.

At the executive level you will be impacting a large, complex organization. Your experience must include performance management, strategic planning, and goal setting. You must be able to demonstrate compelling leadership in a culturally diverse environment; along with this is the necessity to unite many types of employees. In fact, your decisions will determine a total corporate culture that enhances symbiotic relationships between employees and clients. Your decisions regarding human resources planning and development will affect the lives of many.

Can you collaborate at the executive level to perform before your board of directors or during interactions with advisory and regulatory agencies monitoring your industry? For these purposes you must demonstrate both oral and written communication skills so that you can motivate others to build common goals. Often you have to analyze vague communications quickly and impart appropriate responses on sensitive issues. You need to have the vision to know when changes are necessary and then take the initiative to effect those changes.

Beyond that, required experience depends upon your field. Those seeking executive operations jobs look for certifications specific to their chosen industries. If you are in information technology (IT), you need to be knowledgeable about hardware and competent in many different software applications. If you are in the insurance industry, you need to become an expert about principles of different insurances, annuities, and policy owners' contractual rights and responsibilities. If you are in the banking or securities industries, you need to understand government and fiduciary requirements in order to support pre-developed solutions for product delivery and performance. Those in the healthcare field must exhibit knowledge of biotechnologies and the ability to apply regulatory requirements to institutional needs. In the area of facilities planning, you must address issues such as facilities expansion programs, construction and design projects, and environmental safety and health issues. Some knowledge of architecture and engineering might be required. You will need to analyze variances and formulate necessary policy changes to stimulate positive outcomes.

If you feel passionate about our world and the effect you can have on it, then you belong at the leadership level. Where can you find the best listings of executive operations jobs? At OperationsCrossing.com, a division of EmploymentCrossing, experts have searched the Internet for all available openings for an executive job search and have placed them into one easy-to-search database. You can search by area or salary; you can plug in your current credentials; you can look for perks such as relocations assistance. It is also possible to learn about transferring your knowledge in one field for a management position in another field, if you feel that is the right move for you. You will form a professional partnership with the staff at OperationsCrossing.com that you will want to maintain even after you find the one position that meets all of your career requirements. Visiting OperationsCrossing.com today is the next step in researching your next career move.
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