At many educational institutions, the business schools and programs are in a separate department than technical skills for manufacturing– i.e., why welding isn’t in the business school curriculum, and vice versa. While both typically incorporate some science and engineering, and most definitely math, culturally, there are different skill sets associated with these paths.
And while it’s hard to refute that the two have their differences, those interested in a business career should know that there is plenty of opportunity for that type of talent in a manufacturing career. After all, manufacturers are businesses too, and the financial questions at stake are often just as important as those in an investment banking, accounting, or marketing career. Businesses need all of these elements, and those with a passion for creating products as well as the business side behind it, may feel right at home in a business career– for a manufacturer.
This means that if you’re interested in manufacturing, it doesn’t necessarily have to be a skilled, hands-on career (although that’s what many people interested in this field certainly love). Here are some of the options if you love business, and just might love manufacturing too—You don’t have to choose just one!
Accounting: From Central Community College to Metro Community College– in fact, at just about every educational institution on our Partners in Education list — accounting is listed as an opportunity for degree seeking candidates. It’s a popular choice these days, especially as the Occupational Outlook Handbook specifies that business positions will grow in the 12% between 2012-2022 in areas like management and supervision in sales, retail, manufacturing, wholesale, quality control, and more.
Learning accounting is essentially learning to speak the language of business, and it is a critical component of every business you can think of. From construction firms to food manufacturers to mass-production manufacturing firms, those who get excited about using current technology to solve accounting problems, or analyzing and interpreting information to make business decisions, will be a great fit for this diverse field.
Business Management: As we mentioned before, all manufacturers are essentially business environments with the goal of producing and creating as efficiently as possible. This is not able to happen without management skills to ensure that no balls get dropped. So with a degree in Business Management from say, Metro Community College, workers can prepare to become a manager at any function for a manufacturer. Graduates will have good leadership and communication skills, will be analytical and detail oriented, and will be able to cope with deadlines and resolving specific problems. These skills are all a must for manufacturing.
Business Administration: This is similar to business management, but can be targeted toward general business, accounting, marketing, entrepreneurship, information systems, or insurance-financial services. With either a certificate or a diploma, students can choose from focus areas depending on where they see themselves working one day. To learn more about this wide variety of choices in a broad field, check out the program at Southeast Community College.
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