The managing director is the most senior position in any business or company.
They direct and oversee all business operations, providing strategic guidance to the board of directors or management team.
Ultimately, a managing director is responsible for ensuring that the company achieves its long-term goals and objectives.
The following guide looks at everything you need to know about becoming a managing director; it includes a breakdown of the job description, earning potential, relevant qualifications, typical employers, and more.
- Managing director job description
- How much do managing directors earn?
- What does a managing director do?
- Requirements, skills and qualifications
- Who employs managing directors?
- Which junior jobs progress to managing director roles?
Managing director job description
Job title | Precision Technology
About Precision Engineering
Precision Technology is the UK’s leading 3D printing companies. We specialise in creating prototype models for entrepreneurs and designers looking to get their new products into the market.
About the role
Precision Engineering is searching for an experienced managing director with a background in manufacturing or tech to take our business to the next level. The successful candidate will work closely with our senior leadership team to shape, develop, and implement a successful strategy that leads to sustained growth and profitability.
- Develop and implement a commercial strategy that drives growth and profitability
- Provide advice and guidance to the senior management team
- Liaise with outside investors, keeping them up to date with developments
- Lead board meetings and shareholder conferences
- Monitor and optimise budgets, financial forecasts, and revenue and KPIs
- Attend industry conferences, give interviews to the trade press
- Research and analyse industry trends, identifying areas of interests and potential risks
- Create initiatives to foster a culture of innovation and collaboration throughout the business
Location & commitments
- Based at our head office, although the role will involve travel to other sites and conferences
- am – 5.pm, Mon-Fri, with one hour for lunch— 35-hour working week
- Overtime as and when required, including some evening and weekend work
- MSc degree in business or tech, MBA preferred
- Experience overseeing a business with more than 100 employees and an annual turnover exceeding £60million
- At least 10 years experience in senior management, as well as an additional two years experience in an MD role within tech or manufacturing
- A deep knowledge of the latest developments in the tech or manufacturing industry
- Well organised, with excellent time management skills and the ability to multitask
- Innovative and entrepreneurial approach
- Develop positive relationships with business partners, investors, and senior management
- Strong leadership skills. Someone who sets a strong example and leads from the front
Contact us to apply
To apply for this exciting role, please send a CV and cover letter to Adam Bateman at A.Bateman@precisiontech.co.uk
How much do managing directors earn?
As the most senior person within a company, managing directors are generally well paid. The average salary is £42,500, which is above the national average.
Managing director salaries in the UK
- Low: £32,500
- Average: £42,500
- High: £62,500
Managing director salaries will vary hugely depending on;
- The industry of the employer – Does the financial controller work for a bank, investment firm, insurance company, or a large multinational?
- The size of the organisation – Managing directors working at larger companies tend to earn more than those at medium and small businesses
- General salary factors – Experience, location etc.
Although £62,500 is the highest average salary, managing directors can earn significantly more. In fact, it’s not unusual for managing directors to make six-figure salaries, especially those working in banking or finance.
These average salary figures come from job advert samples and career sites. They do not include additional benefits, such as bonuses, overtime, healthcare, or other non-financial benefits.
What does a managing director do?
The job description for a managing director will breakdown a wide variety of duties and responsibilities, which include:
- Strategize – Develop and oversee strategies to achieve short and long term business goals
- Sales & marketing – Setting sales goals and directing departments to achieve them
- Reporting – Prepare, write, and then present reports to the board of directors and senior management team
- Build relationships – Cultivate and maintain positive working relationships with major stakeholders, including board members, investors, and business partners
- Networking – Attending public events, speaking engagements, and conferences to enhance the company’s public profile and build business relationships
- People management – Supervise, manage, and advise senior management on how to best perform their duties
- Cost reduction – Creating budgets and initiating plans to reduce costs, such as efficiency improvement projects, or supplier switches
- Compliance – Ensure that all aspects of the business operates with legal and regulatory guidelines
- Maximise profit – Ensuring that the business continually runs at maximum profitability
- Analyse – Keep up to date with any changes that might affect the business, looking for ways to maximise efficiency and reduce risk
- Research & development – Ensuring the company remains ahead of competitors in terms of technology and procedures
What do managing directors need?
Managing Director is the top position within a business, so candidates need a wealth of previous experience, knowledge, and qualifications to do the job effectively.
Exact requirements will vary depending on the nature of the business and industry. But, generally speaking, managing directors need the following:
Candidates need extensive experience at senior management level – usually around ten years – and a proven track record of driving growth and implementing positive change within a business. They will also need to have extensive experience and knowledge in their field (e.g. banking, retail, pharma etc.)
Managing director skills
Being a managing director is a challenging role that comes with a considerable amount of responsibility. As such, aspiring managing directors need to demonstrate a range of skills to potential employers. They include:
- Communication: Communicating the business vision to senior managers, keeping investors and other major stakeholders informed about the business
- Leadership: Overseeing a large number of staff throughout all levels of the business, taking responsibility for driving positive change and overcome challenges
- Organisation: Coordinating several different projects at once, attending meetings, public events, and overseeing all aspects of the business
- Business acumen: A deep knowledge of financial markets, relevant industries, and other commercial matters
- Finance – A deep understanding of business financials such as profit and loss, margins, cash flow and balance sheets
- Resilience: The ability to remain calm under pressure and respond quickly to new challenges
- Problem solving: Finding practical solutions to complex problems that can arise in the business, accounting for all potential outcomes
- Goal orientated: Driven by a desire to improve, grow, and exceed targets and expectations
Managing director qualifications
The majority of managing director roles will require some formal and professional qualifications, especially those at larger companies.
Here’s a closer look at some relevant qualifications.
As a minimum, most employers will be looking for candidates with an undergraduate degree in business studies or a related subject, such as economics, management, or accounting. Many will also ask for postgraduate qualifications, like an MSC in Business and Management.
A Master of Business Administration (MBA) is a postgraduate qualification designed to teach students the skills they need to succeed at the highest levels of the business world.
It’s internationally recognised and is generally considered as one of the most prestigious business qualifications in the world.
Courses last around two years, although part-time students can finish the course over five years. Most MBAs consist of ‘core’ subjects and elective modules, which means students can select the modules that are most relevant to their career ambitions. Topics to study include accounting, economics, marketing, and operations management.
What is expected of managing directors?
Managing directors would be expected to commit to the following:
- Full-time hours – (35 – 40 hours per week)
- Regular overtime – With so much responsibility, overtime is a part of life for many managing directors. They can regularly work 50 hours or more every week
- Location – Normally based at the employer’s office
- Regular travel – Roles in large companies with multiple offices can involve traveling to other cities and countries.. Managing directors are also expected to attend business conferences and other important networking events
Managing director benefits
In addition to a well-paid salary, most managing directors are rewarded with a generous benefits package. Each company and industry is different, but benefits could include:
- Bonuses – Related to performance or meeting financial targets, these can often be many multiples of the MD’s base salary
- Company share options
- Wardrobe allowance
- Company car or car allowance
- Expenses – to cover any work-related travel costs
Who employs managing directors?
Managing directors steer companies toward success and can even transform the fate of a failing business; therefore their talents are highly sought after.
They are a vital part of small, medium, and large businesses in every sector of the UK economy and are always in high demand. In fact, those with a proven track record of success are often ‘headhunted’ by firms and recruiters, meaning they’re never short of job opportunities.
Here are just some of the sectors where managing directors can find work:
- Leisure and entertainment
Which junior jobs progress to managing director roles?
Before stepping up to become a managing director, most candidates have gained years of valuable experience working in senior management roles. They include:
Operation managers implement strategies laid out by the managing director. They know the inner workings of a business or organisation, giving them the knowledge to progress to the top position.
Sales directors are responsible for increasing revenue by creating better and more efficient sales strategies. They understand what it takes to help a business grow, which is a vital part of being a successful managing director.
Which senior jobs do managing directors progress to?
Becoming a managing director is the pinnacle of any business career. But while there is no more room to move up, managing directors can make a lateral shift into other industries or organisations.
For example, a switch to banking and investment firms means greater earning potential. Alternatively, managing directors can move from the private sector into charitable and not for profit organisations for a more personally rewarding career.
Managing director job description – conclusion
A managing director is someone who takes ultimate responsibility for business successes and failures. It’s a high-pressured and challenging role, but it can also offer large financial and personal rewards.
It pays well above the national average and includes the chance to make a significant impact on businesses, organisations, and even entire industries.