Careers with an Organizational Leadership DegreeCareers with an Organizational Leadership DegreeCareers with an Organizational Leadership Degree

As the global economy continues to expand, organizations are in constant search for leadership professionals who can help them capitalize on the vast range of market and business opportunities that are discovered daily. In order to pursue a career with an organizational leadership degree, one should have extensive knowledge of the human aspects of business management.

Proficiency in this area requires the ability to balance the needs of internal and external stakeholders with the overarching goals of the organization. Upon completing their bachelor’s degree in organizational leadership and gaining experience, aspiring professionals will have the tools and skills needed to start down the path toward achieving an organizational leadership position.

Female organizational leader

Industries Hiring Organizational Leadership Graduates

Students might wonder, “What can I do with an organizational leadership degree?” However, organizational leadership graduates understand how to bring the stakeholders of organizations together to achieve a specific goal, making them valuable in the following industries:

  • Healthcare
  • International businesses
  • Government
  • Education administration

Popular Organizational Leadership Careers

Organizational leadership graduates work in a variety of different industries and fields, ranging from healthcare to higher education. The following positions are some of the most popular with organizational leadership graduates. However, due to the advanced nature of organizational leadership, it’s important to note that some organizational leadership or management positions will have specific employment requirements beyond an undergraduate degree. Some positions, for instance, may require a graduate degree or a great deal of previous leadership experience. Before pursuing an organizational leadership position, it’s important to research the particular requirements and qualifications for the position.

Human Resources Management

The labor force of an organization must be managed by leaders who can comprehend the psychological needs of employees and more tangible needs of the business. Human resource managers take on this hefty task and are responsible for overseeing the process of hiring and onboarding new employees, while ensuring that active employees are in constant compliance with company policies. Organizational leadership graduates understand what it takes to help people perform well in their respective positions, and by tapping into this knowledge, they can excel at selecting the best candidates for open jobs in their organization. Their ability to communicate, set goals, and motivate employees also benefits them in human resources management because they can apply these skills to facilitate the process of reforming undesirable employee behaviors.

A bachelor’s degree is sufficient to qualify for this position, but leadership professionals will likely need several years of related work experience to understand the complexities involved with controlling the administrative functions of entire organizations. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), estimates show that between 2016 and 2026 there will be 9% growth in the number of human resource management positions available (12,200), with a median salary of $106,910.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Relationship management
  • Interviewing
  • Negotiating
  • Interpersonal communication

Medical and Health Services Manager

Healthcare is an unpredictable industry, so skilled leaders are highly valued in medical institutions. Healthcare managers — who are also referred to as healthcare administrators or executives — plan, implement, and direct the strategies of health and medical organizations. This includes performing administrative tasks like recruiting, educating, and supervising staff members, as well as developing departmental goals and managing the organization’s finances. For an organizational leadership graduate who has an interest in medicine, this occupation presents an opportunity to improve healthcare practices at the system level by working closely with doctors, nurses, laboratory scientists, and other administrators to enhance patient health outcomes — ultimately helping the healthcare institution grow.

When paired with three to five years working in the healthcare industry, a bachelor’s degree in a healthcare or management-related field, such as organizational leadership, can qualify a professional to work as a healthcare manager. The median salary for this occupation is $96,540, and 20% (69,800) more health service manager positions are expected to become available in hospitals, nursing homes, and other health service centers between 2016 and 2026.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Knowledge of healthcare environments
  • Relationship management
  • Interpersonal communication
  • General administrative skills

Community Service Management

When a community has a pressing issue that must be solved, community service managers step in to devise a plan of action with the goal of eliminating the problem. A community service manager’s primary objectives are to collect and analyze data about their community, secure funding, then implement programs and services to improve it. As these community programs develop, the community service manager evaluates the effectiveness of each program and decides whether it is necessary to implement changes. If the community is viewed as one large organization, the expertise of an organizational leadership graduate becomes highly valuable in this occupation. Because they understand how to engage their colleagues in the pursuit of goals, they can effectively communicate with community members to identify the most in-demand services. Examples of projects a community service manager may supervise are anti-substance abuse campaigns, mass promotion of preventive healthcare, and community-wide employment initiatives.

To qualify for a community service management role, it is important to obtain at least a bachelor’s degree. Having previous management or social work-related professional experience will help candidates stand out for positions in this occupation. The median salary for these professionals is $64,680, and between 2016 and 2026, the BLS predicts 16% growth in the number of jobs available in this field.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Attention to detail
  • Team leadership
  • Critical thinking
  • Strategic planning

Top Executive Leadership

To coordinate their operations, large organizations require talented executives who can effectively apply the key tenets of organizational leadership to certify profitability. This also applies to smaller businesses, government institutions, and academic institutions, as most organizations in every industry have some form of executive leadership. This entails devising effective goals and developing policies that progress these objectives. Top executives often oversee some aspects of the organization’s finances, as well as the negotiation of important contracts or agreements. As they lead the labor force from the top levels of the organization, these executives have a unique vantage point that allows them to observe operations and make changes to programs to enhance performance.

The decisions a top executive makes could determine whether an organization succeeds or fails. As most industries employ executive leaders, the range of degrees that can be used to enter this role is diverse, but a bachelor’s degree in organizational leadership will help them connect with the constituents of their respective field to implement positive change. While there isn’t significant growth occurring in this occupation, the median wage is far above average, at $103,950.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Leadership
  • Understanding of effective delegation
  • Project management
  • Long-term planning abilities

Postsecondary Education Administration

Students who pursue higher education need to be enrolled into programs that will effectively prepare them for the future. The role of a postsecondary education administrator is to ensure that the staff and faculty of a college or university is functioning correctly with an emphasis on providing students with a positive educational experience. Depending on the area of the school they are responsible for, these administrators could have a variety of responsibilities. The following are the four main branches of postsecondary education administration.


  • Deciding how many students the school can admit in a specific area of study
  • Engaging with prospective students to attract interest to the school
  • Reviewing admission applications to select new students
  • Scheduling space and time for students
  • Producing data about student enrollment and classes
  • Maintaining academic records

Student Affairs

  • Counseling students regarding academic, social, or housing concerns
  • Implementing nonacademic student programs
  • Scheduling athletic events and recreational activities

Chief Academic Officers

  • Assisting the school president in making faculty appointments and tenure decisions
  • Managing the institution’s budget
  • Directing the individual colleges in larger schools (i.e. law school dean)
  • Overseeing faculty research

Aspiring administrators are often thoroughly educated, and many institutions require their administrators to have undergraduate and graduate degrees in administrative or educational related fields. The median pay for this role is $90,760, and the number of available jobs in this field is expected to grow by 10% (18,000) between 2016 and 2026, according to the BLS.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • General administrative skills
  • Analytical decision-making
  • Interviewing
  • Interpersonal communication

Individuals who imagine themselves coordinating some of the most important administrative decisions within companies would benefit from listing an organizational leadership degree on their resume. This is because there are many high-paying careers available for those with an organizational leadership degree. Graduating with a bachelor’s degree in organizational leadership is an effective way to bring their expertise up to par with other leadership professionals, as through coursework they will learn how to use interpersonal communication and strategic planning to optimize their organization’s operations. Learn more about Maryville’s online bachelor’s degree program in organizational leadership.

Now that you’re familiar with potential careers with an organizational leadership degree, discover what organizational leadership is in the digital age.


BLS, Social and Community Service Managers

BLS, Medical and Health Services Managers

BLS, Top Executives

BLS, Management Analysts

BLS, General and Operations Managers

BLS, Postsecondary Education Administrators

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