An assistant operations manager is someone who makes certain a company runs efficiently, reporting only to the general manager (GM). Assistant operations managers work in a wide range of industries, including hotels, restaurants, retail stores and automobile dealerships. They perform a multitude of tasks, from bookkeeping to scheduling employees to making sure employees stay motivated and work as a team.
Assistant operations managers must understand their company's policies and mission, and not only carry them out, but get employees to do so as well. They occasionally hire and train employees, or help create marketing and sales strategies. Basically, assistant operations managers do a little bit of everything. And while they don't need to know how to perform every task, they should know how to put qualified managers in charge of the respective departments. Some assistant operations managers lead by example, performing a variety of supervisory duties that can change on a daily basis.
Assistant operations managers should be confident, motivated, persistent and able to effectively communicate the purpose of their company to both employees and customers. They must be able to follow the directions of upper management, and possess strong leadership and organization skills themselves. Oftentimes, assistant operations managers will also need basic computer and math skills, particularly for the purpose of keeping a close eye on the company's bottom line.
Assistant operations managers almost always need to possess a bachelor's degree, and maybe even a master's degree. College course work usually focuses on marketing, business, administration and advertising, as well as studies in the specific industry that employs them. (For instance, the assistant operations managers of a hotel would likely need courses in hotel management.) Most assistant operations managers also need to have spent some time working their way up through the lower levels of their respective industries.
Jobs for top executives such as GMs are expected to experience little or no change through 2018, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics--but such is not always the case for assistant operations managers. In many industries, assistant operations managers are highly sought after as replacements for GMs who are retiring or have been fired. That is especially true when an assistant operations manager has worked for a successful organization under a successful GM. Assistant operations managers in those situations are often recruited as candidates for GM positions by rival organizations that may not have fared as well.
Salaries for assistant operations managers are also at the mercy of their industry, as well as their responsibilities and experience. According to PayScale.com, assistant operations managers in the hotel business earned anywhere from $30,000 to nearly $46,000 per year in April 2010, while those in the restaurant industry garnered earnings between $31,000 and $47,000. Those in the property management industry topped out at $48,620, PayScale reported.
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